Recently I took my truck into my local Chevy dealership to get a LOF and a rotate. Now I used to work at this dealership, so I was chatting with my old co-workers about managers and their marketing styles. In my time in the car dealerships, I had some great managers and they made a huge difference in the total monthly sales. One such manager would come up with a new way every Saturday to bring in hundreds of customers. Whether it was radio ads, newspaper, TV or word of mouth, he was the king at getting people in the door on a Saturday. One of the craziest things I witnessed was the Saturday car giveaways. That’s right! We gave a car away on a Saturday morning! It was insanity. The parking lot was jammed with people trying to drive that car home.
The car itself would be an old trade-in that might have been worth $1,500 to $2,500 bucks. We would service it, detail it and put it out on the lot for display throughout the week. Come Saturday morning at 8:30 am, we would open the gates and the lot was already full of customers. By the time we opened the doors for business, we already had well over 1,000 people standing in our lot looking at cars. The first 100 people in line would get a key, and by 10:00 am, the car would be awarded to some lucky person. When we did this, we didn’t just provide them with the car, and they had to complete the transaction. We paid for everything! The car, the service, the detail, the first oil change in 3 months, the taxes, the license, the doc fee and a full tank of gas! Needless to say, we had customers test driving and buying cars like they were made of money. It was hard not to sell 30+ cars on that special Saturday. I wished it could have been that way every Saturday.
Fast forward to today, and I don’t see or hear of any car dealerships doing this, and it’s a real shock! Giving a car away was cheaper than most advertising, and with the power of the internet, you could have people drive from hours away to come camp out on your lot. What more could you ask for? After a lengthy discussion with my old co-workers we surmised that this was due to a lack of social networking skills. How do you reach out to your customers in today’s super high tech world? It’s not easy if you don’t have the right website framework to get you started. The first thing you need is a great website running WordPress. If you don’t have this, it ain’t gonna happen!
How are you going to reach the customers who make you profitable? The bulk of your car customers are between 30 and 55, and this means the baby boomers are outside the demographics of your target market. Don’t get me wrong, the baby boomers still contribute, but the percentages are shrinking fast. You must reach out to the generations that make up your customer base. This means you need a website that “makes this happen” for you. If your website can’t integrate with your social networks, then you may as well close your doors. If your website is not the most popular WordPress website integrating your social networks, and therefore your customer base, then you must make a change. If your website is difficult or impossible for your staff, then we have the answer right here. Our car dealership websites are ridiculously easy to integrate with your social networks, and we make it easy to post your Saturday morning specials for thousands to see. If you think your internet manager can get your social network activity boosted with the wrong website … it ain’t gonna happen!
“If your website is difficult or impossible for your staff, then we have the answer right here.”
Let’s be realistic, in more than a decade in car dealerships, I never met one manager that knew how to use a computer for generating business. The odds that you’ll find one is slim at best, and if you don’t have the right website framework, it won’t matter how talented your next manager is, they’re going to fail by tomorrow. It’s important to understand that in today’s connected world, it’s not about the person sitting in front of the computer screen, it’s about the code computers use to talk to each other. Your manager can’t change that code because they don’t have access to it. You can’t change Facebook anymore than I can change Facebook. But … you can make your car dealership website code more Facebook friendly, more Twitter friendly, more LinkedIn friendly.
“it’s not about the person sitting in front of the computer screen, it’s about the code computers use to talk to each other.”
Now let’s take my old managers Saturday morning special above and turn it into a social network firestorm. It goes like this …
- Write a blog post on your INA2N car dealership website about your car giveaway, and make sure the featured image shows the car.
- Include all the rules in your blog article and post to all your social networks at least 5 days in advance (Monday morning). The INA2N website code is social network friendly and will make sure all your social networks have everything they need to deliver your message with minimal effort. Most of the time all you do is provide a link to the article. Ridiculously easy!
- Make sure the person who sees your post “LIKES” your social network page. They cannot win the car if they don’t “LIKE” your social network page.
- Make room for the campers! I’m not kidding here. You will have people camp out the night before just to get a key, and only the first 100 will get a key. To create a buzz, welcome these campers and post pictures of them for your social networks!
- Repost your original blog article from step 1 about 3 days before the giveaway. Because you have been telling people they must “LIKE” your page, you now have hundreds, maybe thousands, of new followers. Reposting will now reach even more people! See how this works?
- Repost the same article again the day before the event. It’s now Friday, and you will have many new followers, fielded many questions and possibly sold a few more cars leading up to Saturday’s giveaway. All this from just one blog post!
- At precisely 10 am Saturday morning, you unlock the car, and make sure someone is video taping the entire event. Better yet, mount a camera inside the car on the dashboard. Any modern smart phone can record video for at least 30 minutes. The first person to start the car wins it once you confirm their social network connection. It’s important that the winner “LIKE” your social network page because you’re going to use them to help promote your generosity and your car dealership. Of course, this needs to be clear in the rules from your blog article you originally posted.
- Video, video, video! In today’s social network obsession, video is everything. When your general manager congratulates the winner, make sure you’re getting video. When the lucky winner starts that car, make sure you have it on video.
- Now take the video clip of the winner, your general manager and the event, then send it to your local TV stations where you advertise. Once the TV station airs the clip, make sure to get that TV clip from your station, then write a new blog article on your website congratulating the winner and thanking everyone for participating. Now post this to all your social networks.
The rest of this great Saturday belongs to your salesman. Make sure all hands are on deck. Not much will happen before the drawing, but in my experience, I would sell 3 or 4 cars that Saturday, and that is the best feeling any car salesman can ask for on a Saturday!
I hope you can see how important it is to have a website that talks the social networking talk. Without it, you can’t walk the walk, and that puts your car dealership at risk. It’s also important to understand that the right manager can make a world of difference, but once again, the wrong website code will cripple the most talented internet manager.
“but once again, the wrong website code will cripple the most talented internet manager.”
Car dealerships employ a substantial percentage of your local citizens, INA2N exists to provide you every possible opportunity for success. Use it!
The first 10 days are on us! What do you have to lose? You’ll get the right website code, the right hosting, the support and the customer traffic to your car dealership. Without us, it ain’t gonna happen!
“I have one favor to ask, please print this article, and give it to your internet manager. This is just one example of a roadmap for success!”
As a basic exercise to demonstrate just how easy it will be to integrate your new INA2N ridiculously easy website with your social networks, just copy the URL link in your browser above, and post it to your social networks. You will see immediately that this post builds itself on your social networks and all you do is post the link. Now that’s ridiculously easy!
As always, please call, text or email me any questions you may have.