What to Make of the Recent SAAR Reports

Recent SAAR reports indicate this year’s brutal 2019 winter brought sales numbers down a bit from initial projections. This has prompted some dealers to begin re-evaluating their advertising plans for the rest of the year.


One school of thought has dealers contemplating major advertising cutbacks. But the savvy, experienced dealers realize there are still thousands of people looking for cars every month. They understand now is not the time to cut their ad budgets; instead, it’s actually time to go on the attack, seizing the opportunity to gain a greater market share.


The best defense is a good offense.

This famous quote is heard frequently when describing how high-powered sports teams win their games. Military leaders have also been known to adopt it for their strategy on the field of battle. The general premise is when you’re on the attack, it puts the enemy in a defensive position.


Dealers using this strategy when fewer customers are purchasing vehicles tilt the proverbial playing field in their favor, getting more than their fair share of sales while their competition cuts back on their advertising or, worse yet, goes completely dark. There is no reason to settle for being “a little below average” when you can continue being great!


This formula has worked well before – in tougher times than what we’re currently experiencing. During the 2007-2008 recession, dealers who “stayed the course” reaped the benefits, not only during those lean years but immediately afterward when things began to get back to normal. How? By continuing to advertise during the recession, they remained top-of-mind to everyone in their markets after it was over.


Don’t let the SAAR Reports deter you from advertising. The dealer who sends a consistent message: this is who we are, this is what we offer and this is why you should buy from us … is the one who wins during less-than-ideal times.


JKR Automotive Advertising: The car dealer ad agency.