Chrysler Lets Dealers Customize Marketing Materials

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Online marketing tools provider AAS is working with automaker DaimlerChrysler's Chrysler Group North America to help local dealers access customizable creative that can be tailored, bought and sent directly from their desktops.


The Web-based portal, called the AAS Marketing Planner, lets users retrieve digital assets for marketing materials without downloading big files as well as create their own ads and direct marketing materials. It also lets dealers see trade promotion funds available from Chrysler in real time.


"We used to only provide assets to dealers, and we wanted to expand on the role we play while maintaining control over the way dealers marketed our materials," said John Fisher, direct mail manager at Chrysler Group North America. "We needed a framework where we could manage this function more specifically, and speed to market was a big issue."


Because Chrysler already approved the direct mail templates, the local dealers now can customize them to insert information relevant to their customer base. This lets dealers access corporate digital assets as well as personalize marketing materials to suit local market needs.


This initiative helps local Chrysler dealers market more heavily to sell Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge cars. The online tool from AAS, Farmington Hills, MI, aided the automaker a few months ago with its "Summer Sales Drive" promotion.


Here's how. The tool enabled customization, list selection, ordering, print production and mailing of more than 4 million individual pieces sent to prospects selected by Chrysler dealers. The process took 72 hours from the time of order approval to mail entering the stream.


Two thousand dealers were involved. The marketing piece included a test-drive incentive, plus vehicle art, pricing, headline and message information. This customized the mail piece.


The AAS application is used by 4,000 dealers, field marketing personnel and agencies. Since AAS began work with Chrysler two years ago, the marketing planner tool has generated 4,500 direct mail campaign orders for the dealers with 8.1 million mail pieces produced. AAS in the first half of this year alone processed 1,847 orders and 1.82 million mail pieces.


"The Web-based portal holds all the marketing assets that populate these templates," Fisher said. "They manage all the meta data that surround the templates and assets, especially with dealers that are franchised. AAS manages who can use what materials. They handle the production and data and creative. They bring it all together."


Mickey Alam Khan covers Internet marketing campaigns and e-commerce, agency news as well as circulation for DM News and DMNews.com. To keep up with the latest developments in these areas, subscribe to our daily and weekly e-mail newsletters by visiting www.dmnews.com/newsletters


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