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Yes, I am stealing a title of a great book that I would encourage everyone to read author Jim Collins studied 1,435 good companies over 40 years and tried to pin point events that triggered them going from good to great. A basic summary of the book is companies that make the change from good to great have no name for their transformation—and absolutely no program. They neither rant nor rave about a crisis—and they don’t manufacture one where none exists. They don’t “motivate” people—their people are self-motivated. There’s no evidence of a connection between money and change mastery. And fear doesn’t drive change—but it does perpetuate mediocrity. Nor can acquisitions provide a stimulus for greatness: Two mediocrities never make one great company. Technology is certainly important—but it comes into play only after change has already begun. And dramatic results do not come from dramatic process—not if you want them to last, anyway. A serious revolution, one that feels like a revolution to those going through it, is highly unlikely to bring about a sustainable leap from being good to being great.

 

I think the above information is important to understand before you follow my recommendation and conduct an evaluation of your Internet/BDC manager.  I continually hear things like 70% or 80% of all dealership traffic originates from the Internet which of course is true which leads me to the obvious question, Is the person managing this team of people in your Internet department or BDC the person you want training, managing and leading that team?  More importantly are they at the level that you would trust them with 80% of all your customers from start to finish?   Most of the time they are a salesman promoted from the floor, an IT guy who is new to the business or a seasoned sales professional who has just gotten to the point where they can’t run the lot anymore.  I would argue that this person is the single most important person related to your sales success or failures in the entire dealership.  This person should not only know how to sell, train and manage but also be negotiating 3rd party contracts for services and software they need and be an expert in marketing and the tools and technology that exists in the industry.

 

Before you make any decisions on this person make sure you have a full system in place that tracks all metrics of that department.  Don’t forget about simple things that make a huge difference which I have coined the phrase for them: Show More, Tell More, Sell More.  Show More- means take more pictures of your new and used cars 40+ is where studies show make the biggest jump in lead volume.  Tell more- are you doing custom descriptions and custom titles of your vehicles and Sell More is the result of the other two.  Once you have your metrics results ask your fellow GM’s or Dealer Principals and compare your findings.  Then when you discover you have a very talented and productive professional running that area then ensure you keep them happy or someone else will.

 

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I have to admit that when Pinterest came out I had no intention of joining. I was already up to my ears in social media; ie Facebook, blogs etc. and Pinterest was one more thing to suck me in and suck up my time so I was saying NO! Well that lasted all of a few months..I know I’m weak. All of my friends were talking about this amazing recipe or that awesome home remedy  and every time I asked where they found X,Y or Z they replied “Pinterest”..duh Ashley. So I caved and joined and I love it and it doesn’t take up too much of my time and it has been a great source for everything and anything under the sun. Want to know how to get spots out of the carpet?? Just look on Pinterest. Want plans for a sandbox? Ask Pinterest! Want to learn how to defog your headlights at home? Ask Pinterest! So I was wondering if dealers use Pinterest and sure enough they do, here is a dealer I found. I am still having a hard time deciding as to how this benefits a dealer or if nothing else is it just important for dealers to be tuned into all forms of social media regardless if it directly benefits them on not? What do you think? If you are a dealer that is currently using Pinterest what are the benefits you see? We want to know!

Are you totally Twittered-out?  Is your mind blank, as you stare cluelessly at your computer screen, your fingers frozen above the keyboard?  Oh, I recognize this frustrating syndrome all too well, the frustration comes into play when you are stumped!  You have simply Tweeted and Twittered your heart out, and can think of nothing else worthy of posting.

Hopefully I can help in your quick  recovery!  Here is  list  of  ideas that I bet has something on it that is worthy of a Tweet which you might have over-looked……

Trivia tweets about the history of your dealership and your brand(s)

News and announcements from your brand

Interesting news from and about the auto industry

Tweet weekly deals, coupons, specials and sales announcements

Tweet daily tips on your vehicles – seasonal car maintenance, driving in different  weather conditions, recalls…

Announce a “fan-of-the-week” with some incentives or freebies to the winners and then post pics of them and their winnings

Recognize your “employee-of-the-week” (-month or –quarter) with an ‘at a boy, and post a pic of them

Post your dealership’s blog updates along with the link

Ask for input on what blog topics your followers want to read

Share the upcoming events at the dealership and follow-up by Tweeting pictures afterwards

Share the community and fund-raising events you are participating in and follow-up by Tweeting pictures afterwards

Post light-hearted one-liners, jokes, quotes, daily inspirations for some fun

Tweet about local and national upcoming sporting events

Post dealership milestones, awards and recognition

Tell people about open job positions and opportunities at your dealership

Invite people to share their experiences with their new car and with your dealership, even better if they post a picture

Search your brand name and respond to tweets that are about you

Participate in the relevant hashtags – which will get you more visibility

Follow people and make acknowledgement via tweets

Show your appreciation by thanking those people who have recently followed you

Direct people to all your social media efforts (facebook, LinkedIn, Word Press…) by tweeting about them

Post a photo of a cool concept car, your sales and service departments, your favorite booths at NADA….

Tweet well wishes to everyone for all the holidays

Recognize the many National Awareness Months – Safety Month, Car Care Month, Crime Prevention Month, and many more….

Followers love a daily “tweet-greet” – tell them “good morning”, wish them well…

Ask your followers for responses or stories – What was their first car, When and why did they get their first traffic ticket, What is their favorite car, What was the longest driving vacation they have taken…..

I hope this list has helped, and look forward to reading your Tweets!

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