April 11, 2019 Joe Gastler

The Glue Guys

If you watched much basketball during NCAA tournament season, you might’ve heard a broadcaster say something like “he’s one of their glue guys.” It’s a fun catchphrase to describe those players who bring a little something extra to the table: their teammates will rally around them, they’ll make the extra pass to find the open player, or they’ll scramble for a loose ball a little bit harder. Glue Guys do everything they can to help improve the team around them.

If you’re an automotive dealer, you know that reaching and closing enough customers to make your numbers is a grind every month. You need a lot of things to go right to sell a vehicle—your team has to deliver a great experience, you need to stock the right inventory, and you need to price it right for your market—but none of that matters if your marketing doesn’t stick.

Your OEM isn’t going to give you much help; they’re dealer-agnostic. They don’t care where their numbers come from as long as they hit them. Your inside team can’t help you either—you might have some marketing skills, but very few dealers can hit every marketing channel well without help. Marketing Agencies don’t always have your best interests at heart, either. Most agencies work on commissionable media, which means they have an incentive to drive you where they make the most money rather than the best fit for your dealership.

You need a way to pull all of your talent and resources towards the goal of winning customers. In essence, your dealership needs a glue guy.

At Four Columns, we have experience with automotive marketing that sticks. We shape our services to automotive dealers around where we can provide value to them, and where we can improve the dealership team around us. We believe that when we do our job right, everyone benefits.

Here are a few ways we’ve helped be the “glue guys” for our clients.

Share The Rock

One of our dealers in a small market chose not to invest in the higher-end packages offered by Cox Automotive for their website—and rightly so. Cookie cutters are for cookies—not websites, and especially not Search Engine Optimization.

After [redacted] had spent years working with this particular Toyota dealership, they still hadn’t added the nearest major metro area to their SEO targets. They didn’t want to step on the toes of another Toyota dealer. Here’s a chart that shows you organic traffic for this dealership. See if you can spot where we told them to add that metro area:

We looked at the potential, we made the call, passed the ball, and change happened. Glue Guys take initiative.

From The Logo


Take another dealer client—located in a outskirts suburb of the D/FW Metroplex, but not in a wealthy area. They carry Cadillac, but they can’t turn them. They can’t find a significant quantity of customers with the income to justify this brand within their immediate area.

We heard call after call with GM reps and they offered no forward progress on addressing the issue of finding customers, only mounting pressure to spend significantly more money on localized advertising.

Four Columns found a digital solution focused on finding and delivering low-funnel customers over a larger, more customizable area, and guided the client and the vendor to success. We worked to understand the problem—which was geographic—and solved it. The client moved inventory 2-3x faster than they had in previous months with minimal spend.

Glue guys know that talking about automotive marketing problems doesn’t solve automotive marketing problems.

It’s The Number of Shots You Take

If you’ve got a store that’s doing everything right from the sales side, your set, met and close rates should be 30% or higher. If you’re not hitting those numbers, scroll on down to the bottom and fill out a contact form—our team would leave to talk to you about improving sales effectiveness.

If you are running a store with good closing numbers, then your business comes down to lead generation—and not just “leads,” quality leads. You need more opportunities to close business, and that comes from having an omnichannel marketing strategy. Another of our automotive clients engaged us for marketing leadership. We handled the entire range of their marketing, from managing vendors to providing TV & radio creative, to support for community and major collegiate sponsorships and even a complete rebrand.

What did that get them? Continuous lead growth over a nearly two-year period. Four Columns has the marketing expertise to develop a cohesive, omnichannel marketing strategy that helps every piece of your marketing—every dollar you spend—pull in the same direction: sell more vehicles.

Glue Guys make your whole team work together.

To learn more about how Four Columns can spur your business’ growth by encouraging teamwork, connect with a member of our team.

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Four Columns Marketing Provides Goal-Based Marketing Strategies to Optimize Profits