Ben Barbor

October 3, 2023
Ben Barbor and Paul J Daly sit down to chat at ASOTU CON 2023.
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Ben Barbor is an Automotive Advertising Sales Manager at Effectv.

Thanks to Effectv for making ASOTU CON Sessions possible!

Paul Daly: 0:05Listening to a soda con sessions by effective live from a soda con 2023. Ben, thank you so much for joining me on a soda con sessions by effective.

Ben Barbor: 0:19

Thank you for having me.

Paul Daly: 0:20

And I just want to thank thank you all for being such supporters of a soda con and being a part of the movement.

Ben Barbor: 0:24

Yeah, I think I think the message that you guys are putting out there is exactly what the industry needs right now. So we are 100% behind you guys, and making that happen. We had a great time last year, the first DeSoto con in Philly. And so we're just really looking forward to coming back here again,

Paul Daly: 0:39

yet while you're here and we're in full effect. I think we kind of stepped it up a notch. Yeah, the energy and then just the compliments around all the all the sponsors that have helped make this is a fantastic setup. Fantastic. So let's talk about your trip in automotive. And I love it when I don't know all the backstory because we can get into it a little bit. How did you get into automotive to begin with?

Ben Barbor: 1:01

So the in 2016, our company recognized that the automotive vertical, just had so many arms and legs to it. And it was way too important from an advertising perspective, and that we had to have people who were specialists in it. And so we create who was

Paul Daly: 1:15

selling it before then it was just as anybody the same guy selling the plumbing company in that place. Okay. 100%.

Ben Barbor: 1:22

And so, so, in 2016, they said, We're going to stand up the automotive vertical, and we're going to have teams that are solely focused on calling on automotive dealers. I can't believe

Paul Daly: 1:32

that it is that recent. Yeah. Yeah. Well, it

Ben Barbor: 1:35

says it seems like it's been a long time, seven years, we have grown leaps and bounds the the account executives and the management and the leadership that we have dedicated, there's so many times so much time and resources, put towards understanding the business putting together technologies to help dealers reach their audiences. And it's, it's a really fun ride, it's been great.

Paul Daly: 1:59

So tell me about the team that you lead. And like the team that you're on the team that you lead, you know, what, what is the structure. So

Ben Barbor: 2:07

my team in Philly, we have two teams, my team pretty much handles the PA side of Philadelphia, we believe a little bit in New Jersey. But I think if you add up the years that we've been with the company, it's probably somewhere around 101. So it's just with a century of super experienced, everybody's a professional, I got four lone wolves, they kick butt every day. And I love working with them. They're just great people, they really aren't, most of them are friends. I've known them all for so because I've been there 20 years. So you know,

Paul Daly: 2:38

I mean, that makes a great environment. I think whenever you're doing business with a company, to be working with people who enjoy working together makes all the difference in the actual performance in my experience,

Ben Barbor: 2:49

and it helps when you're in, you know, sometimes high stress environments. When you know, the people you're dealing with really well. And you can communicate on that level. It's really it's nice, I'm lucky, I really am with the team, I have

Paul Daly: 3:02

fantastic. You have access, and I think a unique view on the industry, because you see what a lot of people are doing, you have access to a lot of data, you have access to a lot of channels, what are the things that are kind of like bubbling to the surface, from your perspective, from an advertiser perspective, from a video perspective, that you might have a unique awareness of that a lot of people may not be seeing yet.

Ben Barbor: 3:27

So I think, you know, what's happening now is, first party data is like King, right? And when we're talking to dealers, whether they're doing something with us, because obviously there's a lot of vendors out there, that very a lot of them can be helpful. The ones that are dealing first party data are the ones that we recommend, you know, where we can kind of pull in other really good companies like Polk, or even did start to do data sharing with dealers, and things like that, to really reach audiences

Paul Daly: 3:59

get and get what does that mean? Like, like educate the data sharing with dealers. Okay, so

Ben Barbor: 4:03

and, you know, we've tested this were in a third party compliant way we upload how our subscriber data compared to the customer data for a specific dealership, and then we can run ads that are on networks and websites targeted towards their particular customer without

Paul Daly: 4:22

sharing with one way or without sharing one way or the right it's kind of masking up cleaning

Ben Barbor: 4:27

rights in third party. And what you know, it's sort of the next level of that because one of the ways that we tested it is with a dealer group and they it was during ship and they were gonna do message if we want to buy your car back right because they sold the car to them now they want to buy it back because they were they were looking for inventory. Another extension of that is to sort of create like a look alike audience. So these are people or households that have characteristics of a dealers customer yet but may not have necessarily purchased from that dealer yet. So what better way to try to acquire new customers and to reach somebody who looks like your customer. But hasn't worked with you yet. So that's kind of some of the things that we're headed towards now. I mean, addressable has always been something that was sort of pie in the sky, and we're just starting to have those discussions.

Paul Daly: 5:12

Explain that. Because I think that some people listening to the shows have varying levels of understanding, say, addressable,

Ben Barbor: 5:19

so addressable, meaning if we're choose your target target in market for SUV. We know based on what Polk information, and that scriber data that we have, that we can literally deliver a commercial to a household that we know has an SUV that potentially could be three years old, and they might be in market again. And that's really what we're going towards. I mean, we're in the early stages of that. But that's where it's headed. And as as TV becomes more digital, and as TV becomes more like the internet, we're going to have more ability to target.

Paul Daly: 5:50

So targeting ability, definitely on the rise, big time, your ability to match data up, especially as dealers are getting more intentional about collecting and aggregating their their first party data. Right. There's obviously this big intersection that is here now, that has never been here before. Yeah. And it is certainly just poised to keep getting deeper. Well. And that's,

Ben Barbor: 6:11

that's one of the sort of the prerequisites for when if we're going to try and do these things with dealers is they have to do a really good job of managing their back end systems. Right. And so the ones that we've done this with and piloted so far, are people who are set up for it, because not everybody is Yeah, I think that's,

Paul Daly: 6:27

that's something that's happening in a conversation I'm hearing a lot is a lot of conversations about CDP's. And what are people actually doing with it? Yeah, if they like, okay, like, I want to get one and then what do I do with my data? Like, you need something to still like, deploy it? Yep. And I think that's a big misunderstanding, like a CDP? I don't have one. Do you have one? You have one? I need one. Right. Right. So and then what you do with it, right? And then what do you do with it? So you're saying that you're working with people that kind of are already on the path, getting it together that 100% know what to do it under? So there's like a requisite understanding Yeah, and commitment to the industry

Ben Barbor: 7:06

is getting there, some people are there, a lot aren't. And that's okay. You know, we're, they're evolving, like, we're evolving, and the technologies will continue to get better, and then, you know, kind of grow together.

Paul Daly: 7:17

And if you do, if you make the investment and the time investment and learning and you do what's the upside of getting it together, and then starting to deploy that first party data in a sophisticated way through a video advertising platform, it just

Ben Barbor: 7:29

efficiencies, right? The media market is so fragmented now, and anything that you can do, because you can't be everywhere all the time. So if you have the ability to, especially with first party data to know that you're targeting in the best way possible, and putting yourself in front of the audiences that are most likely to purchase a vehicle from your dealership, the through geography and or just what they have sit in their driveway, then that's a huge plus. It's a huge plus.

Paul Daly: 7:57

So alright, so we're talking about the data. We're talking about deploying it. Well, get talking to talk for a minute about creative. It's one of my favorite things to talk about. Yeah, sure. And so the creative game in Video Advertising has changed a lot. What works, what doesn't work? Definitely people that are more in the streaming mindset than a network television mindset. Right? We're starting to see all these things kind of come into play. When you when you think about the creative that auto dealers are using and maybe if you get put your wish list together for the type of creative you wish they were making, or would encourage them to make. What are they making? What do you think they should be? You know, I mean, obviously, I'm making very big blanket statements about holiday. It's

Ben Barbor: 8:39

it's about what's going on in the market, right? When we went through COVID and we were in Pennsylvania and dealers doors were shot, it was the messaging shifted to our doors are still open for for service, right, it's still service your vehicle. As we went through chip, we had a lot of dealers that wanted to buy when I buy cars back and they're willing to pay the most for their car, and you've seen we still see a lot of that. So there's a lot that resonates with that. I mean, me personally, I like things that are funny. It's hard to pull off funny and an incentive at the same ad without being like goofy. So London that goofy? Yeah, but there's there's some there's some really quirky ones that I love. I love it's good. Sometimes it's fun, just to literally go into our video library and just start looking at cars. So I'm gonna send you

Paul Daly: 9:21

please do I was gonna say I'm gonna, I'm gonna hit you up. Because we will. We will like play these things as like intermission intermission video clips.

Ben Barbor: 9:30

I get trouble. You got to watch it and let the kid show anybody.

Paul Daly: 9:33

Okay, well, this if you see something and are offended by in the future this? I didn't get it from Ben. That's right. I just found it on the internet. No, nothing. No, but I would love to see the fun stuff. Yeah, there's so good stuff out there. You know, I often encourage dealers to look at other retail industries and say like, what type of content are they making? What type of content do you not skip? And I think there's this thought that like when we're making car commercials, yeah, it's got to feel like a car commercial. Kyle and I were working with the dealer group. And we were watching the car commercials, we were kind of on a consultative basis. And the commercials were like, I don't know, if this agency is gonna cut it, you look at it. And it's like, it looks like a guy walking between two lines of cars waving his hands like this one, and this one of this one, right? And then we were having this conversation with the dealer, the general manager. And then what happened was, we were like, let me check this agency's, you know, sweb site, we got to their website, and they had some of the coolest content I've ever seen. That's cool music videos. And we were like, they had just left that we call it, but can you call them and have them come back? Right? So the owner agency comes back, and he's sweating at this point. I feel so bad. And and we're like, hey, what, what were all this stuff go this great content that we just saw, how come like that's what you're making? And they're like, Oh, well, you know, we had to make a car commercial?

Ben Barbor: 10:59

Well, some of its Co Op, right? So the dealer gets cold, because they have to do XY and Z in the

Paul Daly: 11:04

right. And I'm not advocating for like, you know, with the empathy to that, yeah. Just the manner in which it doesn't mean it can't be shot well, or badly on or before the, the music curation can't be different. And that's the mindset I think that a lot of dealers get in. And, you know, from your standpoint, you're like, please give us some great creative because you know, it's just going to perform your x, how much do they ask you? Yeah, when you have a piece of content that has good creative, yep. How much differently does it perform?

Ben Barbor: 11:37

Well, I mean, the view through rate on most of what we're doing from, from a streaming standpoint is non skippable anyway. So it all performs pretty well, gotcha. Some of the things that we recommend, depending on if you're doing any kind of short form, or long form, if you're going to show up in a two minute clip on something, you keep it to a 15. And that's normally like straight up incentive driven. If it's going to be more long form. You know, we're sticking with a 30. Because you get the opportunity to tell your story. And it's not skippable. It's in that non skippable environment. But, yeah, I mean, the standard commercial is a donut where it's the dealer in the beginning, it's the incentive in the middle, and it's the dealer at the end. But some of the some of the best ones, they don't use co op for because they want the creativity to be able to make their dealership top of mind as opposed to, you know, it's one brand.

Paul Daly: 12:27

Right? Yeah, yeah, I have seen a number of dealers that have stepped back from coop. Yeah, for that. And, you know, I can say it because I don't have a, I don't have anyone to answer to I guess, I've really wished that OEMs or co ops would would take a serious look at that and get a little bit more broad in what they allow Co Op to, to contribute to and what they don't. And I think in order for that to happen, the marketers on the dealer side also have to understand what the coop is trying to accomplish. Right. And I do believe that there's a world where they both live now grins, sometimes it just needs to be like a 15 second incentive. Yep. But we know that that's not the only thing that customers see.

Ben Barbor: 13:07

Exactly, exactly. I think the best campaigns don't have just one commercial, right? They've got give me an ideal campaign. An ideal campaign, you're you're running one commercial that is truly hard hitting incentive. This is your monthly incentive. You've got another branding spot that talks about you in the community and the dealership, your dealership what you do, that your that your people live in the community, they work in the community. And then again, I'd throw another one in, that's just sort of quirky, funny, something that people are gonna watch, because it's entertaining. Yeah, if you, you know, you, you can marry that up where as you get towards the end of the month, you're driving incentive a little bit more earlier in the beginning of the month, you do something that's a little more soft sell, right? The mix changes, right? So to me, that's sort of the right balance, you know, dynamic and well rounded. Yeah. And but that takes a lot of work. You have to, you know, keep stay on the booth creative. So that's

Paul Daly: 13:56

one of the reasons I think that so many Co Op dollars are actually wasted. Yeah. Because if you put a little bit of work into it, they wouldn't be wasted. Right? That's, that's where we started to get into where things start to sound like noise, right? And then it's bad for everybody. It's bad for every Co Op dealer. It's bad for the OEM.

Ben Barbor: 14:13

I think at that point, when you're when you're just doing the incentive, you're literally talking to somebody who's like, I think I need to buy it, you

Paul Daly: 14:18

have to know right, you have to know that they're ready to go. And you also have to know or have to believe that you've done the work. Yeah, to kind of have them take a step forward.

Ben Barbor: 14:26

Right. So that's what we think some of the other creative can be used for is to sort of drive people into the consideration phase where then the hard hitting incentive hits home a little bit sooner than it might have otherwise. Absolutely.

Paul Daly: 14:37

Well, Ben, it's been so much fun. Sharing the podcast stage with you for a little bit at a soda con. Thanks again for your support. And looking forward to hearing more from you more in the future. We

Ben Barbor: 14:46

have some creative coming your way All right.

Paul Daly: 14:52

Thank you for listening to this. So to concession by effective if you want more content like this, you can check out our other podcasts we have Have a daily show called The automotive troublemaker Monday through Friday here and podcasts also live streamed on YouTube and LinkedIn and Facebook. We also have a long form podcast called Auto collapse auto collapse. And if you just want to go a little deeper into this community, you should sign up for our regular email. We put our heart soul into it. You can get it for free by going to a We'll see you next time.

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