Tier10 Case Study: Paragon Honda & Acura, from #17 to #1
Tier10 Case Study: Paragon Honda & Acura,
from #17 to #1
October 23, 2013
Tier10 Case Studies: Get a deeper look into the challenges presented to Tier10, the solutions employed
and the results of these campaigns.
Paragon had an in-house ad agency that worked with 12 different companies to execute every part of
their strategy, and the vendors didn’t work together so the campaigns were not integrated. It was
confusing for their customers because the TV and radio commercials had one message, direct mail had
another, the Internet manager was sending emails with different offers, and none of it was on their
website or point-of-purchase materials in the dealership. Paragon looked to Tier10 to develop and
implement a single integrated marketing strategy that is completely connected and consistent.
Tier10 uses extensive market research to identify consumers that have the highest statistical probability
of doing business with their clients. We use the manufacturer’s research, Polk Market data, and the
dealer’s historic sales and service trends to plan which customers to target in the future.
Traditional advertising on TV, radio and print is expensive in New York, like other major metro markets.
As a result, Paragon shifted a lot of their traditional ad budget to more targeted marketing that generates
better returns. However, since Latinos make up half of Paragon’s market, they have leveraged some good
buys on Spanish radio, as well as print ads in the New York Times where they include QR technology, a
barcode that links consumers’ mobile phones to Paragon’s website where they can learn more about the
offer and contact the dealership.
Over 90% of Honda consumers use the web to shop, so we implemented an in-depth strategy. This
includes SMA, email marketing, ODA, pre-roll, social media marketing, online reputation management
and mobile marketing.
Search Engine Marketing
Since the majority of consumers use search engines to find their next new vehicle, Paragon uses SEA
or targeted pay-per-click search marketing campaigns to attract in-market consumers who are shopping
for Acuras and Hondas to their website and dealership.
Tier10 believes that a free, five-minute story on a major TV network that appears online forever has a
bigger impact than an expensive 30 or 60-second TV ad that runs out when the budget expires. We
created and distributed relevant press that generates interviews with local press, and we have received
exposure in the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, NY Post and hundreds of stories on national
outlets, including CNN, ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX and MSN.
Today’s consumers rely more on other consumers’ reviews than advertising, so Online Reputation
Management is a top priority at Paragon. When consumers Google Paragon, they will find out about all
the things they are doing in the community and they will be able to read positive reviews from satisfied
Paragon communicates with all in-market Honda and Acura consumers by sending custom offers based
on their vehicle, miles and position in their ownership cycle. Paragon sends custom campaigns via mail
and email to promote all their profit centers — New, Used, Finance, Service and Parts. We dial into
Paragon’s DMS to target in-equity customers, and we use variable printers to send a custom message to
each consumer that shows them how they can get a newer vehicle for a lower payment.
We created a corporate purchase program to employees of large organizations in their market that gives
them special pricing and service when they do business at Paragon. We sent an information package to
the HR departments of the largest organizations in our area to ask them if they want to give this free
benefit to their employees. If a company wants to join the program, they receive a communication kit from
Paragon that explains the program to their employees. Companies have the option of having brochures
customized with their logo and sent to their employees directly so they don’t even need to stuff their
When you walk into Paragon Honda and Acura, it is obvious something is going on. Even if consumers
don’t know about their sale, the merchandising quickly reminds them that they are lucky they stopped by
at the right time. The dealership has extensive POS Merchandising that promotes the Paragon Guarantee
and Paragon’s Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles.
Paragon Honda and Acura grew from #17 to the #1 New & Certified Pre-Owned Honda & Acura Dealer in
the U.S. in a short six-month period because of executing the Tier10 strategy.
“Overall, it was our best year in business despite being the worst year in the industry,” said Brian
Benstock, GM and partner of Paragon Honda and Acura. “We had a record year for volume and
profitability during a record low year for the car business.” The biggest thing that impacted Paragon’s
growth was changing their marketing, sales and service strategy last June. “We had an in-house ad
agency, but decided to bring on an outside company to help us build and implement a new plan to grow
our business,” said Benstock.