Industry News & Trends

2007 Dealers’ Internet Sales Choice Award for Favorite Blogs they Really Like…Alllot!

DealerRefresh has won the “Triple Star Award” for the 2007 Dealers’
Internet Sales Choice Award for Favorite Blogs they Really Like…Alllot

I want to personally thank everyone that has voted for
DealerRefresh to win this prestigious award. So many thanks to my readers!! I
appreciate each and every one of you. I’m just so excited to use this highly recognized
award in all of my future advertisements. Signifying the level of service and
product DealerRefresh represents! It’s an honor.

Seriously, what is up with all of these "Best Internet
Sales Dealer Awards"
, "Dealer’s Choice Awards” and what about the “Top eCRM
Dealers of the Year Award
”? Come on…who buys into this shit? Is there an actual
standard for gauging this stuff or is it whoever pays the most to be on the

I’ve NEVER once been surveyed for any of these awards results
and I have never heard of any of my fellow ISM’s being surveyed neither (so speak
up if you have!). It’s marketing at its worse if you ask me.

Some of the results for these dealer choice awards have to be a complete joke. My
favorite was Auto Dealer Monthly’s award for Top Customer Relations Management Tools


#1 – AVV Webcontrol – Ok..I’ll let this one slide only because
there are a lot of dealers using it.

#2 – Reynolds and Reynolds Contact ManagementNO WAY! Comeon, I’d
rather use Outlook express.

#3 – Of course BZ Results would be here. I’m actually surprised they’re
not #1 for owning the back page of AutoDealer Monthly magazine to advertise
their “Top eCRM Dealers of the Year Award”.

#4 – Cobalt?, I can only assume they are referring to
Prospector CRM. I was using Prospector even before it was owned by The Cobalt Group. Matter of fact I was
just on there the other day scoping it out for changes. It’s basically the
exact same as it was over 2 years ago and far from being a top performing CRM.

Apparently dealers fall for this form of advertising all the
time. I bet it’s the same dealers that still run those ads in the local newspaper; $199.99 a month with 15K down. I don’t get it but I guess whatever works.

What’s your feedback?

Founder of DealerRefresh - 20+ Years of dealership Sales, Management, Training, Marketing and Leadership.
  • T
    Todd Mathews
  • May 7, 2007
I couldn't have said it better. This type of marketing has worked well in the pass, however, I believe (Hopefully) dealers will wise up and make theses companies produce the goods. No more smoke and mirror marketing, just solid applications and ROI's.


That’s why I love reading your stuff... You hold NO punches.
I always wondered myself on how certain companies won all of these awards. I guess it isn't hard if you spend a ton in advertisements. I was floored to find out recently that certain magazines sell the covers of their magazine to the highest bidder. Me personally, I rather let my skills and proven success of my clients speak for my company's talents... Besides $12,000 for a cover of a magazine is just way too pricey for me.

Hey, I guess if you got it like that...

Finally, the topic I've been waiting to sink my teeth into!

First off, congrats on the award Jeff. I didn't vote for you though. I would have, but I wasn't asked. That brings me to the whole point of where these awards come from...where do they come from? Who decides? What are the standards? How were these vendors, dealers, etc. picked?

If there is anything I would like to see come out of the Dealer Refresh efforts, it would be a standard for judging the Automotive Internet Community. It is the same reason why I asked how other dealers count internet deals in a different topic.

I will continue to contribute to Dealer Refresh, AAISP-like organizations, and other venues in hopes that we will all agree to some sort of standard some day.
  • R
  • May 8, 2007

You truly do have the best blog.


Dealers are the masters at smoke and mirror marketing.


First of all, good job on winning the award... you certainly deserve it!

Second, are you saying that you used to use Prospector when it was still Cowboy? That's cool, I am friends with the 2 guys (Brad & Jordan) that created Cowboy and sold it to (and now are employed by) Cobalt.

From 2005 to 2007, I was a member Cobalt's Customer Advisory Board and was very sad to see that Cobalt's LMCC (Lead Manager Customer Central) is over taking Prospector as the main CRM offering from Cobalt. I've used Prospector and LMCC extensively & hands down Prospector is a much better product... as far as this award goes though, I think they are probably referring to LMCC (as this has many, many more users.)

-JoE Drosen
National Sales Director, CarSpot
  • J
    Jeff Kershner
  • May 10, 2007

Yes..I was using Prospector when it was owned by Cowboy. Cobalt grabbed it, re-skinned it after about 6 months and has not really made any major changes (from the dealers perspective) since then.

Don't get me wrong, I can make Prospector work. It has some features that I have never seen in other CRM's, like having the ability to change your view and sort fields then saving them as favorites. Their Desklog screen is one of the better ones in the industry. If Cobalt would have continued to move and push this product to it's ability they could have really done something with it. I think it might be the platform it was built on that has prevented them from taking it any further (though I would be totally wrong).

I have also used LMCC for years and I totally agree with you. Prospector is a better product overall. I was under the impression that LMCC was phasing out and Prospector was going to be their main CRM/ILM. Maybe I was mislead.

I always like to keep on-hand as many articles as possible that proclaim Vendor X as the "dealer's choice" or "#1 performer". I stockpile this stuff so that when a vendor or a GM comes to me touting Vendor X's superiority on some "unbiased" survey, I can just toss them the pile of articles and say, "according to these, everyone's a winner. I'm gonna go sell cars now if that's alright with you".
  • C
    Chris Hawley
  • May 14, 2007

I have to agree with you. Cobalt and Prospector and even ReyRey make my head hurt. I can make them all work well, but I could use the same amount of effort and use a Outlook based program.
These systems tend to get in their own way.

Most of these "lead management in a box" systems don't work for most dealers who are trying to get to that next level. Which is why they all ask for long term commitments, because once you know what you are doing, you have out grown their system.

Fully Customizable systems are becoming the only way to go in my opinion.