Keep it Simple!
We all know K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple Stupid) right? Good. That’s the main thing to keep in mind as you travel over the co-op landscape.
The key to selling advertising related to manufacturer co-op plans is to help the local dealer with aspects of the process they’re not comfortable with or need some level of assistance. Your sales process remains the same as it would be for any prospect; you’re selling the value of your audience as potential customers of their business. With co-op however, any material they run generally needs to be reviewed and approved by folks with the manufacturer brand, since they will be reimbursing the dealer a portion of the ad cost. When all is said and done, the local dealer is paying your ad invoice and submitting a co-op claim based on that spending, along with any proof-of-performance documentation (tearsheet, screenshot, notarized script, etc).
Thousands of manufacturers provide advertising dollars to the dealers of their product lines, but you can never assume that those dealers are entirely aware of how to make use of it. Increase chances for co-op success by using these four simple steps:
- Provide Co-op Advertising Research – Find promotion opportunities with manufacturer brand partners from a co-op plan database or ask the dealers what they know about the brand’s marketing assistance. Most major brands offer some level of local advertising support to their dealer base, so find what you can and ask the local store how you might be able to help them run this with you.
- Present Brand Advertising Opportunities – Manufacturers run sales promotions all the time; special financing, gift with purchase and new product introduction offers hit the market regularly. The manufacturer is promoting these through the major networks and other national media, and usually trying to “incentivize” their dealer base to run local promotions as well. Do the stores know how to target your audience with these?
- Offer Co-op Advertising Approval Service – Simplify the co-op process for local businesses by offering to have their finished ad reviewed by their manufacturer contact. Helping them manage the approval process will ensure approved dealer promotions and co-op reimbursement.
- Supply Co-op Claim Documentation – Ease the process of claim reimbursement for your local dealers by compiling any necessary proof-of-performance under the plan guidelines. Simply commit to delivering a duplicate copy of their invoice and tearsheet/screenshot/script/etc. for each co-op schedule that they run with you.
Stick to the easy stuff! You’ll have far more luck in co-op advertising with the major brands. With your local accounts, look for the big-name product lines that normally have well-established programs and materials. The bigger manufacturers are much easier to work with since the parameters are already established for dealer promotion, and there are online portals for ad material access. All brands will have some semblance of dealer marketing support but in most cases, bigger is better.
Take advantage of current manufacturer promotions. April opens up Spring business north of the Mason-Dixon line and manufacturer brands offer sales promotions to build consumer business. Among the hot categories/brands with consumer promotions this month:
Auto Aftermarket: Castrol, Pennzoil, Valvoline, Bridgestone
Motorsports: BRP CAN-AM, Suzuki, Yamaha
Outdoor Equipment: John Deere, Snapper, Simplicity, Toro
Paint: Ace Hardware, True Value, Benjamin Moore
Certain local dealers will need some level of assistance with the co-op process in order to make sure they get reimbursed for the effort. The only way to know for sure is to ask. – TIM
Tim Brennan, VP of Recas Strategic Development | 309-678-8745
This information is provided by Recas to help take the mystery out of co-op advertising. For more information on how Recas can help expand your brand advertising potential, please visit http://www.recas.com