Proton Cars (UK), one of the UK’s leading automotive brands, has appointed digital marketing agency Itineris and creative agency Xcetra Media to deliver a major new online project. Itineris and Xcetra are developing more than 80 individual websites for Proton’s UK dealerships. The Itineris i.content® content management system will enable Proton to provide each member of its UK network with a local website which is tailored to the individual requirements of each dealership whilst retaining a corporate feel. Xcetra has been working with Proton since March this year, providing creative solutions on a range of offline and online projects.
Proton Cars relies heavily on its dealer network to secure UK sales as well as reinforcing its brand identity. Simon Park is Proton Cars (UK)’s general manager for sales & marketing; “The core Proton website (proton.co.uk) was redesigned in 2007 and since its re-launch has been successful in generating brochure and test drive enquiries. However it is key that we have a local presence as well as national, hence the need for individual dealer sites.”
“People searching for a new car will generally search on Google or similar sites to find a car they like within their area; the local dealer sites will help to improve our presence/ranking in search engine listings so that customers can find their ideal vehicle quickly,” Simon continues. “We understand that our customers like dealing with a local sales team which offers a personal service and the new dealer sites will reflect this.”
Whilst the 80 new websites will clearly follow the Proton Cars (UK) corporate style, each individual site will be tailored for the local dealers. It was important that the chosen content management system (CMS) was efficient, easy-to-use and automated many tasks for its dealers across the UK. The sites will be built using Itineris’ content management system, i.content®, which provides a comprehensive yet easy to use platform allowing Proton to manage its 80 dealer websites from a central location. After a competitive pitch process Xcetra Media and Itineris were selected as delivery partners due to their complementary blend of technical skills and design ability.
Simon Park continues, “Because our dealers offer different services, icontent will help us tailor the sites to each dealer’s strengths; rather than us trying to employ a ‘one size fits all’ approach which some of our competitors favour.”
Matt Horsup is business development manager at Itineris. “Proton dealerships around the UK currently manage their own websites,” he says. “As many dealers operate several franchises from one site, websites can be extremely confusing for customers and often don’t contribute to growing the Proton brand. Whilst dealership staff may be able to use i.content to ensure that their individual site is kept up to date with latest offers and news, the central Proton team will have editorial sign off to ensure consistency.”
Before national roll-out, Proton will be testing the new sites with a number of individual dealers to ensure that they deliver what the dealers need in terms of content management and customer usability. Upon launch the sites will be backed by a series of local pay per click campaigns to make sure that local buyers can easily find their local Proton Cars supplier.
Jake Xu is from Xcetra Media. “Proton had very specific requirements which, as a partnership, we were able to address, offering both creative and technical solutions which focus on adding to the brand but also benefiting dealers at a local level,” he explains. “We’ve worked well with Itineris in the past and know that our style of working, technical ability and personalities complement each other very well.”
For more information on Proton Cars (UK) Ltd visit www.proton.co.uk.