Thursday, February 21, 2019

2019 Marketing Trends You Need to Know

It’s no secret that digital marketing is here to stay, but it’s important to keep in mind that the landscape is also ever-changing and evolving. It can be hard to keep up with the trends at the rate they are moving - that’s why we’re here to help. We’ll break down the marketing changes, updates, and trends that are on the rise in 2019. Check out our findings below.

Content Still Matters - We like to say that content is king around here (alright, Bill Gates likes to say it too), and the phrase still rings true in 2019 as content marketing is on the rise. Generalized content can be useful, but more and more businesses are creating specialized and personalized content specific to their industries - and they are seeing big-time results. According to HubSpot, 55% of marketers say blog content creation is their top inbound marketing priority; so if you don’t already have a blog or a resource center - it might be something to consider so you can provide helpful content to your potential buyers. A few examples of helpful content could be as simple as creating a buyer’s checklist or writing a quick article/blurb on how to determine the right bike for you - the possibilities are endless. Remember, you are an expert in your field and consumers want to hear from you. We are fully aware that creating content takes time and effort, but it’s important to keep in mind that you want to market your business as not only a dealership, but as a true resource center for potential buyers.

Time to Up Your Video Game - Did you know that according to Forbes, YouTube is America’s most popular social media platform? Consumers LOVE video content and we expect to see that trend grow as the year progresses. It’s important to use video to your advantage to better reach your customers. Video content can show off your dealership’s personality and it’s an effective way to get important information out quickly and clearly. Check out our additional tips on incorporating video into your business strategy here.

AI is on the Rise - Have you heard of artificial intelligence aka AI? If you haven’t, we’ll catch you up. To put it simply, AI is the simulation of human intelligence processes by machines, especially computer systems.1 Computers are getting smarter by the minute and while we didn’t think that they could be as smart as the human brain… we are starting to see a shift. While that may sound slightly scary, AI can be used for marketing purposes and we expect those uses to rise in 2019. So what is AI marketing, exactly? Glad you asked. AI Marketing is a method of leveraging customer data and AI concepts, like machine learning, to anticipate your customer’s next move and improve the customer journey.2 By gathering this big data, AI marketing can help businesses better target consumers by boosting campaign performances, and increasing ROI in the long run. We are going to keep a close eye on AI marketing this year, and we’ll even break down how Cycle Trader actually uses this technology in a future post - stay tuned.

Voice Search - Smart speakers are becoming a common sight in your average household. “Alexa do this”, “Siri do that”, and “Ok, Google” are also becoming common utterances we hear and use on a daily basis. Voice search is on the up and up and we only expect this to rise exponentially as these speakers get more advanced. In fact, according to research conducted by NPR and Edison Research, 39 million Americans use smart speakers and 65% of them say they wouldn’t want to go back to life without their voice-controlled assistant. Consumers are searching for anything and everything with voice search, so if they search for your dealership’s hours or directions to your dealership - will they find up-to-date content? It’s important to make sure all of your information is current so consumers can find it when using voice search. Smart speakers were created to help consumers in a new way, and businesses have taken notice. We expect to see advertisements make their way into the smart speaker world sooner rather than later, which means buying voice ad space could be a new marketing tactic in the future - only time will tell.

Social Media Stories - If you’re not using social media for your dealership, we suggest jumping on the bandwagon ASAP. Social media usage is consistently on the rise and we are seeing particular interest in not only posting regular content, but participating in social media stories. This is an important tool to consider when planning your social media strategy. From Instagram, to Snapchat, to Facebook - there are plenty of new ways to get your stories out there. To keep it simple, stories enable users (like you) to create photo and video collections that can be viewed only a few times before disappearing after 24 hours. You can add to your stories throughout the day and add fun text, GIFs, and graphics to your posts to tell your brand story, highlight an event you have coming up, or poll customers on questions you’re eager to ask. We suggest experimenting with this feature as it will no doubt become more and more popular in 2019.

There you have it. The top 5 marketing trends you need to be aware of in 2019 - it’s hard to believe we are already two months in. As always, we’ll continue to keep you aware of any marketing trends, changes, and updates we see throughout the year. As we mentioned, the digital marketing landscape is always changing - but we’re here to keep you in the know.

1 TechTarget
2 Emarsys
Trader Online Web Developer

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Top Searched Makes and Models of Q4 2018

It’s hard to believe that 2018 has come and gone. Let’s take a look back to see what Cycle Trader consumers were searching for in the last quarter of 2018. We’ve seen a few consistencies, as well as a few changes, we think you’ll find interesting and informative. So, the wait is officially over - your Q4 roundup is here.

Top 5 searched models of Q4 2018:
  • Dirt Bike 
  • Trike 
  • Sportbike 
  • Cruiser 
  • Dual Sport 
Dirt bikes took the top spot in Q4 2018, making up 17% of total consumer searches. The models have gained 3% of searches since last quarter but saw a slight decline of 2% Y.O.Y. We have consistently seen dirt bikes remain the #1 searched model on Cycle Trader. Trikes came in second with 11% of total searches - down 1% from last quarter and also down 1% Y.O.Y. Sportbikes secured third place with a total of 10% of searches, down just 1% Y.O.Y. Cruisers came in fourth place with 9% of searches, and dual sport motorcycles rounded out fifth with 9% as well. It is interesting to note that we did see a shift in placements Y.O.Y. In Q4 2017, scooters came in third place, while cruisers took fifth. We are interested to see how these numbers shift in 2019 - only time will tell. Let’s dive into the top makes of Q4 2018.

Top 5 searched makes of Q4 2018:
  • Harley-Davidson 
  • Honda 
  • Yamaha 
  • Kawasaki 
  • BMW 
The top five searched models of Q4 remain consistent Y.O.Y., with Harley-Davidson continuing to dominate the searches on Cycle Trader. Harley took first place with 21% of all total searches on our site in Q4 2018 - that’s 3.6 million searches. Honda came in second with 17% of searches (consistent numbers Y.O.Y), and Yamaha secured third with 11%. Kawasaki placed fourth with 8% of total searches and BMW rounded out fifth place at 7%. While the numbers and placements remain fairly consistent Y.O.Y., it’s worth noting that in Q3 2018 Suzuki took fifth place and now they have been bumped down to sixth. We’re curious to see if they can climb back to fifth place in Q1 2019.

Stay tuned for that report coming this April and let us know how your dealership compares with our findings in the comments below.
Trader Online Web Developer