Bullet points from Digital Dealer 21, August 8-10, 2016

Best practices were shared, many that run counter to the way most dealers do digital business


  1. How to measure if your digital advertising dollars are working to sell more cars and service
  2. Joni Stuker, President, Owner Connnect
  3. Brian Pasch, Founder, PCG Companies
  4. Kathi Kruse, Founder/CEO, Kruse Control Inc
  5. -- (BP) Facebook provides the biggest opportunity to target your in-market customer: build custom audiences and build look-alike audiences from your customers taken from your CRM, segmented and targeted
  6. -- (KK) re: Facebook vs. Youtube, FB better because it's about real relationships. Saving in-market audience lists by days-out, vehicle types, service customers, repeat buyers -- and building look-alikes from these lists
  7. -- (JS) The To-BDC-or-not -to-BDC decision is a false one. Essentially, BDC is phone support, and all dealerships need to staff for proper phone support.
  8. -- (BP) The average general manager has to see 25 reports per month, and adding digital reporting on top of that is frequently unworkable -- you have to distill all of these down to actionable information
  9. -- (KK) While Facebook is the best digital medium in many ways, digital links to home pages and digital ads for following shoppers/retargeting is the biggest waste of digital ad spending -- Facebook ads should send to landing pages with compelling offers and simple, inviting lead forms. Facebook ads should create leads via landing page forms that can be tracked for conversions, sales. Landing pages are the key to Facebook advertising.
  10. -- (BP) Measurable results means re-thinking the showroom sales process. Open floor is dumb. Open floor promotes everything we hate about broken CRM processes. Managed floor sales processes (NextUp and other tools) create a starting point for measurement, a productive system.
  11. -- (JS) The way to train a sales person -- you teach "how to sell a car" backwards. The first 30 days should start with communication and customer service (taking phone calls, supporting service, observing how we care for owners), delivery, working showroom deals with prospects in person, follow-up and than lead response, in that order.
  12. -- (BP) You still have to do skill matching. Some people are great selling cars and horrible on the phone.
  13. -- (JS) Trained on phone skills, BDC-handled calls close fresh prospects near 25% because they explore wants and needs, their goal is to set appointment. Sales people handling fresh phone calls focus on that one car the customer asks about, and trying to sell that car, the close rate is closer to 6%.
  14. -- (JS) BDC reps trained to ask for referrals on the initial call do so surprisingly well. Don't wait until sale/delivery to have the sales person ask for referral, it won't go nearly as well.
  15. Stop thinking like a dealer and more like a customer -- give them the processes they want, not the outdated processes you have
  16. Josh Mitchell, BDC Manager, Dan Cummins Chevrolet
  17. -- Dan Cummins Chevrolet surpassed 6,000 units sold in 2014, over 7,500 in 2015, and they are on pace to sell 10,000 vehicles in 2016
  18. -- That's 2,300 form leads, 3,600 phone calls, to sell 850 units a month. One strong BDC staff member is routinely setting 285 appointments per month, out of which 235 show, and of those shown appointments, 115 sell.
  19. -- 40 sales people, 9 BDC reps
  20. -- Padding payments (old school jargon, adding "leg") are a crutch for finance department, they stopped doing it
  21. -- They recognize customers hate to wait, and they staff the dealership to prevent it.
  22. -- Process is key: change and refinement is constant, templates change every few months, as do phone scripts
  23. -- BDC are not the entry-level receptionists, they are the most important point of the dealership