The Refresh Recap – Google Places, #DD11, #DSES, ZMOT, Deals

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What you may have missed…

DealerRefresh – The Blog

1. Did You Receive Your Google Places Notice? – For many of us, managing our dealers Google Places page proves to be a real challenge. Brian Pasch offers some advise and links to help out.

2. Digital Dealer 11 Review by Kevin Frye – In traditional format, Kevin offers up his review of the 11th Digital Dealer Conference. The conference continues to get better and better.

3. Satisfy Me! – Jerry Thibeau offers a real story on customer service. What 8 areas do most dealers miss out on customer service?

4. It’s Not the Length, But How You Use It – A title like that could only come from our favorite Joe Webb. In this article Joe talks about about quality, not quantity. It’s the only true way to measure greatness.

5. Will AutoTrader Build An Exclusive ZMOT Data Network? – Will Dataium Revolutionize Automotive Digital Marketing and the Role of CRM?

DealerRefresh – The Forum

We’ve had some stellar discussion in the forums over the last week. Be sure to review and weigh-in!

1. How Many Calls Do You Expect Your ISMs to Make? – From cradle to grave or in the BDC – how many follow-up calls do you expect from your team?

2. Highlights from Vegas? – If you attended Digital Dealer 11 or DSES in Vegas, lets us know what you liked the most about each conference.

3. Original Window Sticker – Imagine having access to a copy of the original window sticker of every used car on your lot…

4. QR Codes – In or Out? – The QR thread that never dies. What are you doing with QR?

We’re working on a review of Driving Sales Executive Summit – it was a great conference (one of the best I have ever attended for our industry), we’re not sure where to start.

Deals for Dealers

We have 2 new Deals for Dealers to jump on…

1. DealerFire is offering 10-pack of professional services for dealers  now available for $499, that’s half off!

2. 1to1News is offering 2 months of newsletter service for your dealership. If you have been thinking about adding a newsletter into your marketing mix – this would be a great time to test out a great service.

The Refresh Recap – Facebook, Chat Abuse, Reviews, Likes and GenY

Is it  Sunday night already? I hope everyone’s August is shaping up to be a positive one.

What you may have missed…

DealerRefresh – The Blog

1. Is Your Dealership Chat Used or Abused? – Joe wraps up some keen observations on chat and provides us with some actionable data. Are your dealers chatting?

2. Facebook: what has it done for you lately? – Our first guest post from Darrin Michael. Facebook isn’t as important as you think. In fact, most social media really doesn’t help drive sales at all. What do you think? Click here to comment.

3. DealerRater Reviews on Google – What Happened? A Quick Q & A – I sat down with Matt Lamoureux – Vice President of Business Development for DealerRater. We discussed how DealerRater was handling Googles decision to remove 3rd parry reviews.

4. Does Your Dealer Block Social Media? – Studies show over 50% percent of companies block social media in the work place. Does it make sense to block social at the dealership? Click here to comment.

5. A Sneaky Way to “Like” the Competition! – I wrote a quick post on how to subscribe to a dealers facebook wall without having to “like” them by using RSS.

6. Internet 5.0 – Here comes the cloud

7. Why You Should WANT Gen Y Workers in your Dealership – Jade Makana stirs up some conversation over GenY working in the dealership. Will they make it?

DealerRefresh – The Forum

1. QR Codes – In or Out? – Here’s a thread that won’t die. Are you on the QR bandwagon?

2. Email marketing 2.0 vs 1.0

3. Anyone know how to set up a Google Alert for your Google Places page?

4. Who wants a Sharp Probing?

5. Does Video REALLY increase time on site?

6. Dealers flooding review sites with fake user reviews

Deals for Dealers

We also introduced our latest Deals for Dealers offer. I’m personally jumping on-board with this one and geetting my dealers signed up for the FREE 2 months. PureCars Trade-in Reports 2 Months FREE for Dealers

Up & Coming Industry Conferences

1. PCG Pit Stop Conferences scheduled. The dates for these events are:

Vancouver – September 18th
Seattle – September 21st
Toronto – October 20th

More details can be found at http://www.pcgpitstop.com

2. Ignite Dealer Summit in Twin Cities, MN – September 7th – Details can be found at http://www.ignitedealersummit.com

3. Internet Battle Plan 7 in Park Ridge NJ – October 5-7th – Details can be found at http://www.InternetBattlePlan.com

4. DrivingSales Executive Summit in Las Vegas – October 9-11th – Details can be found at http://DrivingSalesExecutiveSummit.com

5. Digital Dealer Conference in Las Vegas – October 5-7th – Details can be found at http://www.DigitalDealerConference.com

I just noticed that the Digital Dealer Conference and Internet Battle Plan 7 are at the same time. Which one will you be attending?

The Refresh Recap – Edmunds, Google Interview, 4 Words and Pricing Strategy

What you may have missed…

DealerRefresh – The Blog

1. What Drives Auto Shoppers’ Behavior – eMarketer sat down with Kimberly to discuss what factors are influencing the way today’s consumers shop for their next vehicle and automotive products.

2. Pricing – Strategy or “Just a Tactic”? – Is your vehicle pricing a real Strategy or nothing more than a Tactic? This was a quick post on the blog to help support a fired up thread over on the forum.

3. De-Stressing the Dealership Environment – 3 things a dealership could do to help de-stress the the typical dealership environment.

4. The 4 Words That Make Sales Managers Sound Stupid – When are we going to get away from the phrase “Just get ‘em in” ?

5. Edmunds TMV vs TrueCar – Dealers, wake up! – Dealers, you have been warned. Now it’s up to you to make a decision. How much more transparency does our business need?

The Refresh Recap – Dealer Chat, Call Tracking, CarMax and March Sales

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DealerRefresh – The Blog


Call Tracking – 8 Questions You Need to Ask
Stephen Cravens,  head of sales and marketing at Century Interactive contributed a must read article for dealers looking at new call tracking services.

Live Dealer Chat – Exclusive Interview with Contact At Once!
I sat down with Marc Hayes, the founder and head of products for Contact At Once! for an exclusive interview right after the announcement that AutoTrader.com would be providing their dealer chat services.

Google +1 – A Boon to Your Dealership or Just Noise
Think of it as a Facebook “like” button, but for Google. How can these changes impact your business? Laurie Halter of Charisma! Communications explains.

Insight Begins By Seeing
Brian Hoecht – CEO & founder of Ai-Dealer contributed an article on how technology is changing the landscape of the dealership. How well does your dealership adapt and embrace technological and process change?


DealerRefresh – The Forum


CarMax EasyShop – Is this the FUTURE of car buying?
You didn’t miss the announcement of CarMax EasyShop did you? ShopEasy allows you complete more of the car shopping process at the convenience from any computer before arriving at the store and IMO. Will CarMax be the big trend setter for full online transaction?

Crisis in Japan – Is your Dealership Worried?
If inventory dries up – should we consider cutting back our marketing? With only so many vehicles to sell, our price per vehicle in advertising could shoot up fast. Who else is worried about the possible reduction in inventory over the next few months?

Your sales for March 2011..Good or Bad?
How did your dealers March numbers come together? Overall it seems as if most DealerRefreshers had a decent month. What will April bring?

How does your dealer Monitor their Reputation Online?
Ed’s question continues to get lots of play. Great informational post, comments and insight for any dealership looking to monitor their online reputation.

April is the Month for Conferences


Digital Dealer 10 is right around the corner! Be sure to study the #DD10 agenda. I offered a few of my personal recommendations and sessions.

WARNING – Your Competition is No Longer Asleep – Join myself and several other key industry professional at the next Automotive Marketing Bootcamp.

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The Refresh Recap – Cars.com, Smart Phones, Reputation, Lead to Show

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Ok – let’s see if we can get the Weekly Refresh back on the press. This is something I was doing awhile back. While it’s a great idea, it’s sometimes difficult to keep up with, while – you know having a full time job and several other projects going on all at the same time.

As always – the blog and forums have been busy. So lets get started with what happened here on the blog…

DealerRefresh – The Blog

1. Laurie Halter, the owner of Charisma! Communications reminded us why agencies (and even dealers) need to be careful with administrating more than 1 twitter account! Oops! New Media Strategies Sacked Over Chrysler Tweet

2. Cars.com dealer reviews went live March 15th. I sat down with their Product Manager, Nick Hummer for an exclusive interview / Q&A. I’m sure dealers will have many questions about their new dealer reviews service – Exclusive Interview with Cars.com on Dealer Ratings and Reviews

3. Erin Touponse contributed one heck of a brilliantly written, forward thinking article Smart Phones Will Be Their Weapon of Choice! – This is a must read!

4. From the DR Archives – Internet Department vs. Floor Sales Staff …need your comments!

DealerRefresh – The Forum

The forum never stops and this week was no exception…

1. Our friend Ed Brooks started 2 great threads this week all based on Reputation Management – How does your dealer Monitor their Reputation Online? and What does your PRICING have to do with your REVIEWS?

2. We had a few more additions to Silly Shit in the car business! Post your favorite! Thanks Matt, Pete and Chris!

3. Jerry over at Lang Chevrolet wants your opinion on this pesky little video spokesperson, the ones that pop-up on the home page and start talking to you.

4. Joe enlightens us with his Used Car King Make Over Diary in good’ol Pistell fashion.

Looking to increase your Lead to Show? I’ll be hosting a webinar this Wednesday with HookLogic! We’ll review how to use incentives to convert more of your website browsers into walk-ins, increase the conversion rate of your lead follow-up process, while  improving the effectiveness of your outbound marketing campaigns. You can sign-up here.

AutoTrader.com will be offering ContactAtOnce dealer chat services to dealers with their Connections Bundle package.

Side Note: Be on the look out for a new feature being introduced here on DealerRefresh. Dealers and Vendors will both enjoy!

As always, don’t forget to support our sponsors by giving them a click and checking out their services!