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Jared Hamilton
From: Jared Hamilton
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The Outside View is Easy. It's What's Inside (the car business) that Counts for Innovation.

Car Peopl

When I first started working for automotive vendors around two decades ago, digital marketing innovation was a function of the outside world. The automotive industry was generally reluctant to embrace the internet as a marketing venue, so the majority of people who worked for my companies were outsiders brought into the business.

This was necessary because there simply weren't very many internet-savvy car dealership personnel at the time. Most dealerships didn't have a website, let alone an internet department, so we were forced to pull talent from other industries.

Things have changed. A valid argument can be made that the car business is the most savvy industry that's not based in Silicon Valley and that we're trendsetters for digital marketing practices. It's not just the vendors doing the innovating anymore. Anyone who has been to a Driving Sales Executive Summit knows that the best ideas come from dealers.

As the CEO of an automotive digital marketing company, I'm often tasked with finding new talent. Growth has been strong, so we're always on the lookout for talent. In every other company I've worked for, the mentality was geared around hiring industry outsiders to bring in fresh ideas and expertise. To me, this concept is antiquated.

Vendors can and should be hiring the vast majority of their people from inside the industry. This isn't just a call to other vendors to change their hiring practices. It's a call to those of you working in the trenches at dealerships to consider bringing your talents to the vendor side of the ball. I know that many of you have some tough vendor relationships. I also appreciate that working at a dealership can be one of the most satisfying and enjoyable professions in the world. Still, it's good to keep your LinkedIn profile updated and your ear to the ground.

This industry is at a crossroads. The prosperity that has come over the last couple of years wil have the unfortunate side effect of kindling complacency. Now more than ever, dealers and vendors need to put their foot on the gas and kick it into high gear so that the upward trends that we've been seeing can continue.

Forgive me for sounding like I'm delivering a State of the Union on job creation, but this is a crucial time for the industry. Many companies need good "car people" to fill their staffing needs. I know we do.

Photo Credit: Apple Chevrolet

Jillian Marchewka
So Tyson... Does this mean that Dealer Authority is hiring? Haha.
Tyson Madliger
As a proud member of Driving Sales and a supporter/sponsor of DSES, we try to always abide by the rules of keeping our posts informative and educational for the community. Self-promotion and self-serving posts have no place on this glorious platform. With that said, Jillian... maybe! :)
Ron Henson
Well said Tyson! :-)
James Klaus
Great Post Tyson!
Chris Spensley
Great post Tyson and one of the most accurate I have seen lately. Both of us have been in environments where it was assumed that the best digital ideas came from outside of the car business. Where the actual automotive retailer was at a disadvantage when presented with the complexity of digital marketing, social media etc. It was thought that the automotive industry lacked innovation and expertise in this space. Maybe at one point, but definitely not today, most of the great ideas I read and experience are from people in the business, the automotive business. There is a sweet spot when the tools meet the reality of the job and the users have outpaced the "experts" these days. So in short I totally agree- hiring automotive people is the best play. They communicate better, are results driven and have tendency to be very passionate about not just digital but how digital fits in the car business. One other thing while I am busy agreeing with you today. The statement about complacency. Anyone who has spent any amount of time in the car business knows it is cyclical and, sooner or later, what comes up must come down. The business evolves that way and a lot of "geniuses" today that don't continue to do everything they can to get better will find the sledding tough when the business doesn't come so easily.

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