Data Demystified

by | Jun 27, 2023

You can collect data through customer surveys, which can provide priceless insights into customer behavior and preferences. Surveys like these can be conducted in person, over the phone, or online and should be offered at every opportunity! Who knows what your customers want better than your customers themselves?

Another crucial (and often overlooked) data collection tool is social media. Use social media analytics to track engagement metrics such as likes, comments, and shares. This data can provide insights into which types of content are the best for your brand and which social media platforms are most effective for reaching your target audience.

How to Analyze Data

Once you have collected your data, you will prepare it for use. Before analysis can even begin, the data must be cleaned and organized. This involves removing duplicates, correcting errors, and formatting the data in a way that makes it easy to analyze. Disorganized, incomplete, or inaccurate data can and will cost businesses money.

Data visualization tools such as charts and graphs can be used to make the data easier to understand and identify patterns and trends more quickly. For example, a heatmap can show which areas of a website are receiving the most clicks, while a line chart can show how sales have changed over time.

Once you have analyzed the data, you can interpret the results and draw conclusions. Use this to make informed decisions that can help ensure your place as the top dog in your DMA.

Ways to Use Data

You can use data to create powerful, personalized marketing campaigns that are tailored to individual customers’ preferences and behavior. You can send targeted email campaigns to customers who have previously expressed interest in a specific make or model of vehicle or reach highly specific segments of your target audience with tailored Social Media campaigns for compelling results.

Predictive Analytics can be used to improve your overall marketing strategy too. Predictive analytics involves using historical data to identify patterns and make predictions about future behavior. Important indicators to consider are conversion rates, acquisition costs, and lifetime value.

Conversion rates measure the percentage of website visitors who convert, or take a desired action, such as filling out a form or making a purchase. This metric is important for measuring the effectiveness of website design and marketing campaigns.

Customer acquisition cost measures the amount of money a dealership spends to acquire a new customer. This metric is important for understanding the return on investment of marketing campaigns and identifying areas where costs can be reduced or need to be focused.

Lifetime customer value measures the total amount of revenue a customer is expected to generate throughout their relationship with the dealership. This metric is important for identifying high-value customers and prioritizing marketing efforts accordingly.

Analyzing data can provide a wealth of benefits for car dealerships from an operational standpoint. Know thy enemy. Analyzing market data, also referred to as competitive intelligence, can help dealerships stay ahead of the competition by identifying emerging trends and potential threats. This information can be used to make educated decisions about pricing, and inventory. 

Data Challenges

While there are many benefits to collecting and analyzing marketing data for dealerships, there are also several challenges that can trip you up along the way. If you are smart and careful, navigating these pitfalls will be well rewarded.

The need for specialized technical skills can be an obstacle. Analyzing marketing data requires the skills I mentioned earlier, (data cleaning, data manipulation, statistical analysis, and data visualization) that may not come naturally to your GM or sales team. Consider hiring or outsourcing data analysis from specialized agencies.

Integrating data from multiple sources may present a challenge as well. Dealerships often collect data from multiple different sources, including their website, social media, customer surveys, and CRM systems. Many data integration tools and services can streamline the process and ensure that all data is accurate, consistent, and safe. It is critically important to be transparent about data collection methods and to obtain customer consent. You should provide clear and concise privacy policies that outline your data collection practices.

What’s Next?

With this guide, you can put a plan into place to manage your data ethically and wisely. Empower yourself to make decisions that help optimize your operations, enhance the customer experience, and ultimately drive sales and revenue growth. By embracing data-driven strategies and investing in the right technology and talent, you can set yourself up for success in a rapidly evolving industry. With the rise of blockchain and machine learning technology changing the landscape at such a fast clip, harnessing the power of data has never been more vital to stay relevant in the automotive sector.

About the Author

Sheila Pogue started at a dealership parts counter and worked her way up to Director of Operations over eight years in the industry. Today, she uses her intimate knowledge of operations management and digital marketing to consult with and advise dealers across the country for Dealer OMG. Connect with her on LinkedIn or email her at

About Dealer OMG

Dealer OMG is an automotive digital marketing firm focused on helping dealers measurably grow sales, service, and trades. Founded by former Facebook employees and automotive executives, Dealer OMG pioneered the VINAmp platform to refine target audiences, making ads more relevant to shoppers. Through white-glove dealer-specific creative and VINAmp platform, Dealer OMG’s dealership clients are able to be the dealership continually in the shopper’s feeds.

For more information, you can contact our Chief Operating Officer, Keith Turner at