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It's a question we often ask our dealers and something that we now ask the Driving Sales community. What's next?
There was a time when having a website meant little more than putting up an online billboard that said, "Here's where we are. Here's our number. Call or come by and let's talk." Now, the Internet is viewed by most dealers as the most important venue for delivering the message, grabbing the leads, and starting the sales process.
We now see robust websites with lots of tools, tons of pages, loads of inventory, and plenty of content. Search engine optimization and pay-per-click marketing are important aspects for driving traffic. Social media has emerged as a tool for retaining customers as well as finding new ones.
Microsites have been around for a while but are really starting to become an important part of most dealers' marketing strategies. Goal-specific landing pages flood the web. Portals, hub sites, splash pages... all getting more attention.
So, what's next? Is it QR Codes? A lot of hype is surrounding them, but are they really the next big thing or a passing fad? Many dealers have mobile sites, but is there something more to mobile that is on the horizon, being used by cutting edge dealers today? Is social media continuing to grow in popularity to the point that we need a more comprehensive presence on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and blogs?
Inventory posting services are becoming more innovative. So, too, are lead-vendors themselves, finding new ways to get more leads. Reputation management has been in buzz for a while, but what about reputation marketing (something we have up our sleeves)?
With so many "emerging" technologies and venues, we would love to know what YOU think is next. It could be one thing or many. It doesn't have to be new - search engine optimization, for example, has entered into a new phase with more dramatic changes to search than we've seen in a couple of years.
For the better of all of the savvy dealers in this amazing community, we encourage dealers, vendors, and industry professionals alike to chime in.