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Gary May

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Everyone's worried about their bottom line, revenues, expenses, marketing,future and what's going to happen next. Worrying so much they have forgotten how to think forward and act intuitively. Better yet, they're not even paying attention to what is not being done by competitors (in and out-of-brand) that can easily be capitalized on.

Two years we were talking about 'an edge'. Now most every dealership is talking about falling off of it. Nothing has changed...nothing! Now, you may have to be more selective and conscience. But you have to market, you have to connect, you must communicate and you absolutely need to build.

Here's a little secret about what 80-90% of dealerships in your market are not doing (or doing effectively at all):

  • Online marketing: SEO, SEM (paid search/PPC, banner ads, etc)
    • Google Analytics (please!)
  • Customer Relationship Management: email, events, incentives
  • Social networking: Facebook, Twitter, Plaxo, etc for increase engagement
    • And drives first two bullets!
  • Reputation management: DealerRater, CarFolks, MyDealerReport, Yelp, etc
    • And drives first three bullets!
  • Capitalize on resources for education
    • Automotive Digest, Digital Dealer, AutomotiveDigitalMarketing, Driving Sales
  • Capitalize on resources for training
    • Consultants, brand events, networking (chamber, local businesses, etc)

More often than not, 10% or less of the 'things that must get done' are and even when they do get done, they're not maintained. Some of the MOST fundamental activities are just not being done and for what?

  • The road to hell is paved with good intention
  • The road to debt is paved with discounts
  • The reason that 90% of people fail is the inability to deal with people
  • Nobody ever earned a dollar without spending one

These are the times when (as a good friend of mine in the industry put it) you can get a larger piece of a smaller pie or you can save yourself to death. Most everything listed here can be done for free to hundred of dollars per month.

One of IM@CS' clients has reduced their marketing expense by nearly 85%, increased their brand exposure, delivered more cars in the past month than they did over the past six, is driving over 25% more web traffic and nearly doubling their own website leads over the past three quarters. They're doing all of the above.

It's completely up to you. So what are you doing about what your competition is not? Someone has to wake up first and get going. It might as well be you!

Best practices: Professional Insight, Powerful Results

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