The increased Business That Car Dealers Are Looking For May Already Be There...
Finding more business is a challenge for most car dealers, how to sell more cars, write more RO’s and sell more parts. Often it is easier to look outside for a shiny, magic bullet that promises increased business than to take a good hard look in the mirror. During my 30 years in dealership sales management I was constantly bombarded with the idea that more training was the solution to all sales woes; hire an outside sales trainer, set aside an hour each shift for sales training or make the Friday morning meetings at least half sales training etc. etc. etc.… Not once did I ever hear about the importance of training on the tools we used. No one ever told me I should brush up on my knowledge of the dealerships DMS, ever! Most of the time when I would accept a new position, I would be shown how to operate the DMS by another sales manager and many times they barely knew the basics themselves! I will admit that my ego often got in the way as I nodded along and said things like, “oh yeah I know how to use the ‘M&M’ (or CYA, or Adnot, or UCMe etc etc) system, we had it at my old store…” and then tried desperately to figure it out on my own because I was usually being shown how to use the system in ways that were not the most efficient and sometimes even wrong! I know I am not alone in this experience, as I have visited and worked with over a hundred dealerships this year so far I have continued to recall my own experiences in joining a new dealership and can’t help but wonder how many others were brought on-board the same way. From office staff to service advisers and from parts counter guys to salespeople, how many of your dealerships team were hired and then shown ‘the ropes’ of your store by someone who may not have been qualified or even interested enough to train your new employees in the best manner possible? Ask yourself, ‘how many of my staff were actually trained on our systems by the trainers from that company, and how many have been trained by other staff that may not even know how to best use it themselves’? Scary when you stop and really think about it right?!
If I were to jump back into managing a dealership today, my first course of action would be to personally speak with all my staff and ask them who trained them on our system and how well they feel they know it. Often, we look at our dealerships DMS as a commodity only, a necessary component to running our business however our team’s efficiency with the system can be an asset or a hindrance to how our business runs. For instance, does your Business Manager have to dedicate an entire day, or more, to completing the General Ledger report for end of month? How much more could they accomplish if they were able to get it done in a couple hours or less even? How many more RO’s could be written in the Service Department if your advisers were more proficient with the system? Here’s another angle to consider… How long is the customer wait time between accepting the terms of their car deal and them going into the contract office to sign? If your Sales Manager were a bit faster with the system and could load deals quicker is there a chance your back-end would go up a bit? Without hiring any new staff or spending any more on advertising I firmly believe that there is more business right in the dealership at this very moment and with a focus on ensuring our teams are running on all 8 cylinders with our operating system we can increase sales, profit AND customer satisfaction.
Of course, this is just my own $0,02 but… it is $0.02 that could make your dealership another $100,000, or more, next year! 😉
After years of rumors and suspicions of a looming end, Google announced today that the consumer version of Google + will close in the next ten months.... In a blog post referencing a review that began in March and highlighted the "significant challenges in creating and maintaining a successful Google+ that meets consumers’ expectations. Given these challenges and the very low usage of the consumer version of Google+, we decided to sunset the consumer version of Google+...." The post goes on to explain that Google does intend to "give people a full opportunity to transition, we will implement this wind-down over a 10-month period, slated for completion by the end of next August. Over the coming months, we will provide consumers with additional information, including ways they can download and migrate their data.
At the same time, we have many enterprise customers who are finding great value in using Google+ within their companies. Our review showed that Google+ is better suited as an enterprise product where co-workers can engage in internal discussions on a secure corporate social network. Enterprise customers can set common access rules, and use central controls, for their entire organization. We’ve decided to focus on our enterprise efforts and will be launching new features purpose-built for businesses. We will share more information in the coming days...."
I was an invited user of Google + near its very beginning and have loved the platform over its lifetime, although this news saddens me a little personally it also excites me to know that Google is doubling down on their development of Google + as a corporate social networking tool. I will keep you posted as more develops, the blog post can be read here:
Wherever I go I usually snap a pic and post it, its kinda my hobby I suppose. Well, it looks like my pics have been seen a few times!! Not too shabby, if I do say so myself ;)
To date the over 2,000 pictures I have posted to Google Maps have been viewed just over 1,150,000 times. Some of the images I have posted to the Google My Business pages for dealerships I have worked with have over 30,000 views. There is something to be said for the visibility that is gained organically just from posting pictures of your business, its free so why not? How are you using the power of the Google pages?
Spring is here and with it comes the need to clean out the cobwebs that have gathered and Social Media is not exempt from the focus, or at least it shouldn't be! In a recent post the always awesome Kathi Kruse outlines five easy steps to put the 'Spring Cleaning into Your Social Media in 2018' and I am particularly found of #3!
"3. Engage Your Most Valuable Asset
Let's face it, creating content for your website and social media can be super hard! But it doesn't have to be if you 'crowdsource' your ideas.
Your most valuable asset for your social media is your own employees.
Many of them are already using social media to network and engage with prospects. These folks are the most valuable of your most valuable!"
Read the full post HERE.
I had the opportunity to participate in an awesome conversation this morning with some powerful folks in the automotive industry I admire, follow and respect tremendously. One of the topics we discussed was the power of individual branding for salespeople these days and there was a real moment of clarity for me when we all agreed that salespeople are the new marketing channel in automotive! Digital marketing pro Ralph Paglia, referred to today’s socially savvy salespeople as ‘Tier 4 Marketing’ and he’s right! Dealerships need to include them in their marketing strategies, or lose them to dealers that do...
When dealership GM's ask me what I can do for them and I start to explain my digital and social media management they always assume one of two things. First they ask if I do search and pay-per-click, ad words etc. No.
Then they say 'oh you do Facebook...' Yes, that may be a part of it but only a part, there is SO much more! Click the pic for a quick video of what I mean!
Have questions about maximizing YOUR company's digital presence? Call, email or text me! I will be happy to help in every way I can :)
Social Media pro and MeetEdgar founder, Laura Roeder, Tweeted a great thread about the updates Twitter made to their Terms Of Service. If you are managing multiple accounts on Twitter it is critical you take a look at the new TOS!
As we look around and notice the clutter and dust that has gathered over the Winter we start to put together our Spring Cleaning list of activities. One of the best places to start, at least for business owners and managers, is by taking a good look at the Google Business listing for your company. It has been reported that 20% of all Google Searches are for local business, TWENTY PERCENT! That's a huge chunk of search traffic and one of the most important results that show up on a search is your Google Business listing, is it current? Is it correct, are there recent and relevant posts to help boost your visibility? How do you know??
It's time for Spring Cleaning! When we start our cleaning spree at home it's usually after we notice that cobwebs have formed or dust has gathered in corners and then we re-look at the places we have gotten complacent about over the prior months and notice how things have gotten dusty or cluttered right before our eyes without notice. It can happen in business as well! Often we get so caught up in the busy work of running our business we don't pay attention to all the little details that unfortunately can be the FIRST things a potential customer may notice! This dealership's Meet Our Team page has definitely been neglected, how does yours look? Are there staff members that no longer work for you there, or perhaps new team members that haven't been added yet? Now is the time to take a step back, look over all the pages of your dealerships website, take a few minutes to open your stores social media profiles and check some of your business listings through the eyes of a new visitor. Is the message consistent, current and really what you want being said? If not, call your Social Media company or, call Mike theCarGuy and together we can SUPERCHARGE the Social in your dealerships Social Media!
Hey there, I'm Mike theCarGuy and here are some of my thoughts about cars, the car business and sales! Take a look around, maybe you will learn something or at the very least find your self smiling, and if you do... leave me a comment so I know I at least did something right! Thanks for stoppin by...
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