Online vs. outdoor advertising: which should your auto body shop choose?

auto body shop marketing

We’ve been talking a lot about the different ways that an auto body shop might choose to advertise itself.  With all of the media options out there, it can be tough to decide how best to spend your precious marketing budget.  Many shops try a little bit of print advertising (maybe some coupons or an ad in the local paper) or rely on outdoor marketing (a billboard nearby or maybe a bus stop poster).  So when our clients first come to us, they’re usually very intrigued by the possibilities of what online advertising has to offer, but they’re skeptical of how it stacks up against the old stand-by types of marketing. 

Are you currently in the same boat?  Perhaps you’ve invested in your shop’s website, but haven’t explored much else that online marketing might have to offer.  Maybe you’ve tried some ads on Google, but your colleagues think your money is better spent on a billboard.  At Stratosphere Studio, we’re major advocates of digital marketing.  If you’re currently debating between spending your budget on outdoor advertising or online advertising, here is our comparison.

auto body shop marketing

Getting your message across.
In a lot of ways, marketing can feel like fishing.  You put your bait into the water and hope that some fish will come along and be interested in your service.  With a billboard, you have a gigantic space, but it gets viewed from a distance and usually at high speeds.  Therefore, you can only put a brief message on it to entice your passers-by into remembering you when they need you.  They’ll only see your message for a split second before they return their focus to the road, to their kids in the backseat, or to the upcoming traffic signal. 

With online marketing, however, the sky is the limit in how you can get your message across.  You can post a banner ad, which only allots a small amount of space, or you can conduct an email marketing campaign, which increases the amount of advertising space you have by a longshot.  Either way, here are the major advantages of online marketing over outdoor marketing:

·         Online marketing is immediate.  When anyone views your message online, they can immediately click over to your website to do more thinking about your shop.  With an outdoor ad, the viewer has to wait until later to investigate your services further.

auto body shop marketing

·         Online advertising can be much more targeted, whereas a billboard is targeting just anyone who passes by and happens to look at it AND give it a second thought.

·         Online advertising is trackable.  Thanks to an assortment of tracking services out there, your online marketing can be tracked in virtually every way.  With a billboard, however, all you have is an estimate of how much traffic passes by.  You can ask your customers to reveal how they heard about your shop, but that’s a less reliable method of tracking, compared to Google Analytics.

·         Online marketing lasts.  Unlike a billboard, which comes down after a set period of time, online marketing is nearly always available.  A blog post can stay posted.  Your Facebook page will have archived posts.  Even emails can live on in inboxes. 

Ready to give digital marketing a real shot?
If you’re looking for a digital marketing agency to help you bring more cars into your body shop, then give Stratosphere Studio a call.  We specialize in online marketing for auto body shops and have an excellent track record for bringing our clients more business.  Our clients span the U.S. and are some of the most successful shops in their respective cities.  We would love to help you next!