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Ryan Leslie

Ryan Leslie VP of CarStory Strategic Partnerships

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"I'm a card-carrying member so you better..."

A very good friend sent me an article from the LA Times that ran this week that frankly made my skin crawl. I can't wait to see what the DrivingSales Community has to say about this one...

Meet Brad Newman.

By his own admission, Brad is "kind of a big deal." He's a self-described serial entrepreneur and the inventor of the first Facebook, although his version didn't catch on quite as well as Zuckerberg's. He now spends his time marketing Dental practices, but it is that black card in his hand that will likely make you want to make him visit one if he ever steps foot in your dealership. ;)

This is Brad's latest creation, the REVIEWERCARD. You see Brad feels that by waiving around his $100 REVIEWERCARD in your dealership he is putting you on warning that by giving him exemplary service, moving his RO to the front of the stack to save him time and heck, even cutting your prices to save him money is a fair exchange for a good review. Failure to do these things will most certainly get you a very negative review. Brad is careful not to say it in those terms, but it is certainly implied.

Not just everybody has the gall to be a card-toting member of the "I'm kind of a big deal" club like Brad, but I know that this customer often darkens the door of your dealership. I'll hold my comments and advice until the community has had a chance to weigh in. What do you think?

What do you do when faced with a Blackmailin' Brad? How do you handle a customer that makes it very obvious that they are willing to use their consumer voice in an attempt to "negotiate" with you? 

Here is a link to the article as published.

Russell Brown
Great article Ryan. I would hope that after time, karma would catch up to these kind of customers and so would their reputation.
Larry Schlagheck
Russell, you're absolutely right, and the companies have the opportunity to bring this guy to his knees by being active online and responding to poor reviews by telling their side of the story. If enough companies shed light on "Brad", his reputation will then be the bruised one. Problem is, not enough companies/dealerships are addressing these online issues. Take the DrivingSales vendor ratings platform for example, do you know how many companies embrace the opportunity to respond to poor ratings? You could count them on one hand.

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