Showcasing the world’s most-loved cars
75 years is an impressive amount of time to be in the motor industry. Witnessing the evolution of the automobile, while selling some of the world’s most-loved cars is just part of the job at JCT600.
Starting as a family-run business in Bradford, the retailer has now accelerated into one of the countries most recognised and respected car dealerships, with showrooms all over the North East of the UK.
And whilst the cars get slicker, quicker, and more technologically advanced - it’s important the marketing team don’t get left behind.
So, buckle up and read on to discover how JCT600 use Dash to showcase their brand portfolio to the rest of the world.
It’s all in the visuals - using imagery on social to build brand awareness
As Tom sits behind the wheel of JCT600’s content and social media, it’s vital he has quick and easy access to the visual content needed to showcase their brand partners. Whether it’s posting new product photography on Instagram, creating hype around an upcoming launch or celebrating the history of British motoring, Tom needs access to high-quality visuals every single day.
But there’s one problem. Being the sole conduit of the company’s extensive media library is hugely challenging.
"As we needed more and more files, it just became increasingly difficult and unmanageable. I was purely using folders on a server which I viewed through File Explorer on Windows."
Making the most of JCT600's authenticity to build a new website (and race ahead of the competition🏎️)
The team decided it was time for a website redesign. At the time, all photography and videography were mostly second-hand visuals sent over from the brand partners themselves. This wasn’t ideal, but as the team worked together to build a new website and their ambitions grew, they realised that authentic visuals were the key to standing out against their competitors.
“It was always our ambition to have our own, original photography - now incredibly important with the new website build.”
Being in the car trade, JCT600 works with Mercedes Benz, Audi, VW, Ferrari, Aston Martin - the list goes on. This means Tom has access to all their imagery, but in order to set themselves apart from the competition, the team wanted to produce their own photography and to generate their own content.
“It makes people feel at home with our content. Whereas, if you’re just seeing our accounts posting the same as everyone else, it’s less impactful and less meaningful.”
Getting a handle on visual content means ditching the network drive
Using a network drive to manage and organise the hundreds of photos needed to promote the likes of Aston Martin, Bentley, Lotus and Ferrari just didn’t cut the mustard. JCT600 needed something that was quick, intelligent and - most importantly- a joy to use. Just like the products in their showroom.
For anyone currently using a company server, you know how out-of-hand file management can get. Photos are stored in random places, files aren’t named properly and sharing important documents becomes, not just time-consuming, but incredibly dull.
And, if this wasn’t enough, the team at JCT600 started working remotely due to the pandemic, so they had to contend with the VPN which they found to be "quite painful". (We hear you)!
So, in the midst of building a new website and juggling marketing campaigns, Tom found that logging into the VPN and rummaging around the network drive was becoming harder to manage and taking up far too much time.
That’s why it was time to ditch the network drive and move onto the cloud with Dash.
How JCT600 use Dash to partner with freelance photographers and harness original content
Tom works closely with freelance photographers to produce original and authentic content. Before moving to Dash, Tom would receive finished imagery via email or WeTransfer. These large files were then saved onto the server, which took up a lot of space and time.
Now, Tom can send his photographers a link to Dash where they can upload directly. He uses Dash to approve uploads from his photographers, meaning he can go through any files from his photographers waiting for his approval before JCT600’s other Dash users can see them. He can either approve the ones he likes or request amendments for ones that need a bit of work.
“It puts the onus on them to manage their photography. If I’m paying them a service, it seems only right that they should have the freedom to upload their own finished work. It’s a real-time saver for me - not to mention the amount of effort it saves!”
Now, JCT600’s social channels are filled with original and authentic content. Tom has more time to commission work and build a brand-ready media library that can be posted online in seconds.
Creating a professional edge with Dash’s sharing functionality
The sharing function in Dash enables Tom to offer a professional, on-brand edge that you can’t get with WeTransfer or Dropbox. By using a JCT600 branded link, external partners feel like part of the team.
“Dash has helped us raise our professional standards. With WeTransfer, you get a standard link that everyone sees. Now, they get a link with our logo in the top corner. Whether it’s an agency we work with on a daily basis or someone who we are sponsoring - it’s just a much better experience. It leaves a great first impression. “
Rev those engines - searching just got a whole lot quicker
When it comes to finding images, things couldn’t be simpler in Dash.
Often, Tom needs to post about a specific car, in a specific location. Instead of going into the network drives, searching through multiple folders and fiddling around with thumbnail sizes to view what’s actually in the image; a simple search in Dash will bring up the results in seconds.
“It’s so easy. If I was looking for Vauxhall Corsa imagery, for example, I can type in Corsa and it will show every image relating to that word. If I wanted a picture of one in Bradford, I can type in ‘Corsa Bradford’ and immediately get those images.”
This search functionality is set up using keywords and custom fields. By using multiple fields, JCT600 has set up their Dash to make assets much more discoverable. For team members who only need to use Dash periodically, they can log into the platform, search for a few keywords and instantly find what they’re looking for. It’s a win-win for everybody.
“Before Dash, I’d put a lot of effort into something and I’d have a file that was multiple gigabytes. It would just be saved in random folders, hoping that somebody, someday might find it. With Dash, I just feel more optimistic.“
And, it may sound like a cliché, but for the team at JCT600, time really is money. Being the only member of the team in charge of content and social, Tom needs every spare moment he can get to work on new campaign ideas, arrange for more photography and generally get those creative ideas flowing.
How did JCT600 know that Dash was the right platform for them?
After one of JCT600’s agencies bought up the idea of media management, Tom and his team went on the hunt for a solution. With a small team, money is always going to be at the forefront of everyone’s mind. Luckily, Dash’s affordable plans matched nicely with JCT600’s budget.
After chatting with Charlie, Dash’s Customer Success Manager, Tom realised they wouldn’t need a heavyweight solution that cost them the earth every year. Instead, he opted for a lightweight, monthly payment plan that still offered all of the features that make his workday so much easier - including everything we’ve mentioned in this case study!
“The Dash team understood what we were trying to do. They understood the industry we were in as well as what point we were coming into Dash from. We’re not a huge supplier with teams of photographers generating hundreds of terabytes a day. This means we don’t need a huge amount of cloud storage. We just need something that does the job and makes our lives easier.”
Now, the team at JCT600 uses Dash as the go-to home for their content. Network drives? They’re a thing of the past. The team can now search and deploy images quickly - meaning less time spent on network drives and more time showcasing the world’s favourite cars to their customers.
"Dash has helped us raise our professional standards."
Tom Swain, Content and Social Media Manager for JCT600