Jayme Roberts
I noticed my local Chevrolet dealer puts balloons on all of their cars every Saturday to create a "sale" type atmosphere. I think it would be a waste of time and helium. What's your thoughts???
Tyler McCabe
I would love to hear an explanation for the use of balloons on the lot! Jayme you are right on, it is a waste of time, helium, balloons, ribbon and money! But don't forget the day after the balloons are put out more time is wasted taking the balloons down! If you try to skip on the clean up, the lot looks trashed with balloon corpses everywhere you look. In my tenure in the automotive industry I have yet to hear a fresh up say, "Well I had no plans to buy a car until I saw those balloons!" But every summer morning we are out ballooning the lot. We don't have room in the budget for "any of that fancy Interwebs stuff" but balloons are a necessary expense.
Jared Hamilton
Im going to play devils advocate here, and yes I am a very die hard web marketer, however balloons can have their place at the dealership. There is something to be said about creating a buying festive atmosphere at the dealership. The ideal situation for a retailer is for a customer to hear an ad on mass media, perhaps on the radio or on the tv. The message, say "red tag clearance" prompts them to go to google, where they search "red tag clearance local market", a microsite of yours should pop up (or landing page) about the red tag clearance, if they visit a general site (edmunds, kbb, cars etc) your red tag banners and messaging should be present. When they reach your website it should be up to date with proper messaging of the "red tag clearance" your operator, sales person and manager should echo the message and when they arrive at your lot you should have "red tag" messaging throughout the store. This is where balloons come in (in my opinion). Point of sale messaging is critical. That being said, it must be consistent with your brand. Balloons for balloons sake can be a waste of resources, but balloons as point of sale support to tie into your message are a good endeavor. IMHO. I will admit, we went shopping for some furniture recently and they provided a balloon to my 3 year old, worked some magic for keeping him busy. The sales person was grateful because it mean my attention was more spent on spending money with him rather than chasing tyler... thats a small example of balloon ROI. :-) haha
Courtney Cole
I would agree with Jared. I believe wholeheartedly in the internet, but there is something to be said for an atmosphere that projects a sale. Point of Sale material projects this atmosphere. It gives the guy driving by the feeling of "Wow, what's going on there? They must be busy or they must be having a big sale."
Tom White Jr.
I'll agree with Courtney and Jared - balloons are great for creating an inviting atmosphere at the dealership. The other reason I like balloons is that they create movement on the lot (especially in the Kansas wind) which helps to draw attention to the display. I totally subscribe to the theory that lot display is a VERY important part of the image I want to create for the public. Clean cars lined up like soldiers with professional POS stickers and balloons on each shows an attention to detail that most dealerships lack. The cost of the helium and the balloons pales in comparison to the image they help create in my opinion.
Troy Spring
There are a lot of us who grew up in this business with BALLOONS.... We simple were PAGED every day after the sales meeting. "all salesman to the balloon room. I am sure there are many different opinions on the subject as we are seeing here and some who would say it is a waste, hokey, etc. But for those of us who are tried and true die hard car guys from 1980's and beyond balloons hold a place in our minds that may never be replaced. I was always taught and still believe that we try and get all the senses working and involved to create that atmosphere. Balloons for the eyes, Music for the ears, and popcorn for the nose!!!!!! It works it works it works.. I have done @ 500 sale events in my time and can't imagine not paging the troops to put out the balloons, This, all of course is just my humble opinion.

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