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7 car dealership event ideas you can use all year long

By Luke Ramassa | No Comments | 23rd July 2018

Attracting new customers to your car dealership business is not always an easy task. Studies revealed that it costs 7x more to acquire a new customer than to keep an existing one. One thing you can do to bring in new customers on a low budget is to continuously organize car dealership events. To do that, you need to generate creative car dealership event ideas and use it all year round.

Generating creative car dealership event ideas have a good number of benefits:

  1. Car dealership event ideas help you generate continuous foot traffic to your dealership
  2. Car dealership event ideas help you keep your existing customers
  3. Car dealership event ideas help you create brand awareness for your dealership
  4. Car dealership event ideas help you get more customers

However, despite the benefits above, it is difficult to come up with car dealership event ideas. You need creative ideas that will generate customers and keep them engaged.

You can generate car dealership event ideas for the whole year and schedule them in your calendar. This will mean that you will have a car dealership event every month. However, to help keep your events in one place, you can use mobile event apps. These are apps that enable you to create a custom mobile app for your events using simple or no coding. It allows you to create apps with the necessary car dealership events details such as schedules, maps, attendee’s information, speaker bios, etc. Your attendees can download the app on their mobile phones to access all your car dealership events. After you’ll acquire the interested leads on your event it’ll be vital follow up on  them with a solid email campaign. To get some ideas on how to plan an accurate follow up email strategy on your contacts check out this post! 

In this article, we will look at 7 car dealership event ideas you can create and use for the whole year and the right mobile events apps you can use to keep things organized.

Before jumping to the article don’t forget to check our post on how to increase your website traffic through 5 dedicated marketing strategies tailored made for the car dealer industry. 

Let’s get started.

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1. Car dealership event idea: Free Car wash

This car dealership event idea may look too simple, but it works every time. Customers want things that make their lives easy. Your goal here is to make it easy for your customer to enjoy a clean ride and this will keep them coming back to your dealership.

You can run a free car wash for every customer that brings their vehicle for servicing. This is especially good during the spring period when drivers usually clean their cars up after a long winter.

Below is an example from Daytona dodge Chrysler Jeep RAM & FIAT. They offer a free car wash to their customers.


A good mobile event app you can use for your customers is DoubleDutch app. It enables you to create captivating experiences for your customers.

The second car dealership event idea you can use for your dealership is to “Sponsor and host local events”.

2. Car dealership event idea: Sponsor and host local events

Sponsoring and hosting a local event is another great car dealership event idea you can use for your business. It will help you increase your dealership’s interaction with the public, drive traffic, generate more repeat business, create brand awareness and increase visibility.

There are different community events that take place during spring and summer. Use the opportunity to sponsor as many as you can. It will enable you to build your brand image. Check out local events schedules on websites in your neighborhood to find out the appropriate ones that fit your dealership goals and model. Keep your target audience in mind when doing this so you can reach out to them appropriately.

Although sponsoring local events is a good car dealership event idea, another thing you can add to it is to host the event at your dealership. You can stage a big weekend barbecue with free food and games for the locals for free. It will bring in new faces and create goodwill for your business. This can eventually turn to business for you.

A good example of this is what Franklin Sussex auto mall in rural North Sussex, N.J did. They hold Safari of savings event each September.


During the car dealership event, they fill the showroom with different animals and provide music, barbecue and camel rides for their attendees. The car dealership event always brings about 25 to 30 sales of vehicles on the day of the event.

You can use Hubbs to manage the event.

The third car dealership event idea is to “run a tax return promotion”.

3. Car dealership event idea: Run a tax return promotion

A great car dealership event idea you can implement is the tax return promotion. Here you will target the tax season. This is the time people get their tax returns. It is also the time you see many people visit auto dealerships stores. One thing you can do here to get more people to patronizes your business is to create a tax return promotion to encourage them to pay down payments.

For instance, you can add a certain amount to a customer’s down payment to boost their morale. However, the terms and condition of the promotion are totally up to you.

If you want to hold this kind of event, you can use Eventmobi to create a good experience for your prospective clients during the live event.

The fourth car dealership event idea is to offer “test-driven incentive”

4. Car dealership event idea: Offer a test-driven incentive

Test-driven incentive is another car dealership event idea that can skyrocket your sales. It is a gift you give to people who test drive a vehicle. You can give incentives to people who test drive a particular car model or those who bring along their friend to test drive a car. You can reward them with gift cards, prepaid cards or merchandise. They can even enter sweepstakes or sponsored prize packs. To get people to take part in this car dealership event idea, advertise it in a local newspaper and online newspaper or through targeted direct mail campaign.

To get the best result, target the best audience. Consider those people who are planning to buy a used or new vehicle. This car dealership event idea will help you turn car browsers to buyers.

For example, Nissan makes use of this car dealership event ideas to a great extent. They use customized prepaid cards for test-driven incentives to give away $50-$100 to participants. Check out the cards below:


A good mobile event app you can use to keep your participants’ details in one place is Gather digital.

The next car dealership event idea is “Referral incentives”.

5. Car dealership event idea: Referral incentives

The best Car dealership event idea is the one that can improve your business through referral or word of mouth. It is a cheap marketing channel you can use to grow your customer base. You can advertise in a local newspaper and online that anyone who sends a referral to your dealership, and the person makes a purchase, the referring party will get a prize such as tickets to an upcoming event in your area. Referral programs can help you boost sales cheaply.

A great example of a company that put this car dealership event idea to work is Tesla motors. They created a referral program for their target audience. When someone refers a friend that makes a purchase, the new customer wins $1000 towards their new car. The friend that referred also gets a little gift. This referral program generates 40x ROI for the company.

You can use Yapp to quickly create mobile apps for the event.

The sixth car dealership event idea is to “Offer free gas”

6. Car dealership event idea: Offer free gas

Offering free gas to customers on a car purchase is a great way to make people buy. This is a great car dealership event idea because it acts as an incentive to enable them to make purchase decisions. It is a great way to distinguish your dealership from all your competitors. For instance, Seeger Toyota in St. Louis, offers “100 free gallons of gas” at $4 per gallon which totals $400 with the purchase of a new Prius.

Another way you can leverage this car dealership event idea is by letting your customers know you can give them free gas if they agree to paste your advertisement on their car. It can be in their license plate frame, the cover of the tire or even the body of the car. You can then specify the miles they must drive each month and the condition of the car. This will enable you to get maximum brand awareness for your auto dealership.

A good mobile app event you can use to coordinate this idea is etouches.

The last car dealership event idea you can execute is to “Offer free car seats safety clinic”

7. Car dealership event idea: Offer free car seat safety clinic

Last, another great car dealership event idea you can try is to offer your target audience a free car seat safety clinic. It is a good avenue for parents who do not know how to install car seats for children in their vehicles. Likewise, it is also a good opportunity for you to showcase your product. You can easily use a family friendly car to show the parents how to install car seats. It will spark up their interest and you can end up getting more customers in the long run.

A good example of a dealership who use this car dealership event idea is Grimsby KIa.


They partnered with St. John Ambulance to create a safe and responsible community by teaching parents how to install a car seat and observe safety measures.

To organize the event, you can use Core-apps.


Above are the seven-car dealership event ideas you can use to skyrocket your customer base and make more sales.

Hey…did you know that there’s a tool specifically designed to connect your automotive CRM with your favorite event management software?  Check out our dedicate tool EventLeads!

Ps: If you are still struggling in choosing the best CRM for your business don’t miss our article on this topic. We’ve carefully selected the best CRM software for a car dealer. (Go to the article)

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Luke Ramassa

Digital Marketer at LeadsBridge, passionate about Marketing and Technology. His goal is help companies to boost their online presence.

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