Opinions & Advice

Get Out of Dodge!

image of greener grass

Let me preface this blog by saying that it has nothing to do with the Dodge brand. It could be called “Get Out of Chevy/Toyota/Ford/Subaru” for all I care. This has to do with the sign of the times and the inability of some people to read signs.

We are now a 2012 cooperative. All of your efforts are being spent to achieve profit and success in the year 2012 and beyond. That is your goal. Your focus. To achieve online sales dominance in the new year. Nothing can stand in your way… except decision makers.

Look at where we are technologically in 2012. Mobile is fully adopted by society. 800 million plus are on Facebook and engagement on social sites is growing. There are over a billion tweets a week.  Your television is connected to the Internet. So is your 7 year old.  So is your 70 year old grandmother.  Data from online resources drives the majority of advertising decisions. Except, for some reason, in dealerships.

I have a request of you.

If you are one of those nose-down, shovel-full winners that have been embracing Internet sales for years, selling cars from A-Z, delving into digital media, and begging for buy-in with little to no backing from management… Get Out of Dodge. Leave. Pack your bags and find another dealership home.

We are in the realm of a 2012 world. A digitally connected and socially linked online world. If your ownership/management/decision-makers don’t realize this today… now… you have no other choice than to jump ship and swim for shore. If they can’t recognize the world has 100% changed (not ‘changing’, but ‘changed’ – past tense), then there is no hope for them and no hope for your position there.

Yes, we know the sayings – “the grass isn’t always greener” or “the devil you know is better than the devil you don’t”. Hogwash.  Things in life ALWAYS get better eventually if you work hard enough to ensure they do. You may also think, “there aren’t any jobs available around me.” Once again… Phooey.  Ask any consultant like myself (or attend any 20 group) and you will hear dealers clamoring for someone who knows what they are doing both in front of a customer as well as behind a computer.

Internet sales skills are worth their weight in gold right now. If lead management, online selling, and eCommerce are what you do best, yet you don’t have the support where you currently sit because of a lack of understanding from the powers that be…Get Out of Dodge.

You’ll find a better fit.

You’ll be happier.

And someone will appreciate the dedication and passion for the craft that you bring to their store.

Is your dealership in 2012 and up with technology or are you considering (or have already) Gotten out of Dodge?

  • Anonymous
  • December 27, 2011
Internet - check.  Mobile - check.  Mobile Internet - check.  Social reputation management - check.  For everything else let's hope 2012 is the year the hype bubble finally bursts.  

Social engagement is decreasing - people spend less and less time on Facebook the longer they have an account.  Overall hours per month per Facebook user have been going down for a year.  Facebook growth has come to a halt in the US and is slipping backwards in key demographics.  Businesses are not successful is using Facebook for engagement other than the rare story everyone can tell that was told to them by someone selling social media services.  

Twitter is a world where everyone is talking and no one is listening - your odds of having a follower actually read your Tweet (without putting in their @name) is about as close to zero and a number can be without being zero. Everyone Tweeting is trying to sell something to someone else.  If you look at the Twitter followers of the average dealership (any dealership?) it is people selling something else just building their list with an "I follow you if you follow me" strategy.  There are virtually no legitimate customers following your feed, there is nothing you are going to Tweet that they would find valuable and they will never see your Tweet unless you mention them by @name.

I've never seen any study comparing dealerships that have "nailed" social vs. those that have nearly ignored it and shown any consistent advantage to the social stores.  I doubt I ever well because it doesn't exist.  I would suggest that on average across the industry for every dollar spent on Facebook and Twitter consultants and employee time the social stores are a dollar less profitable.
J
Very well stated! Five years ago we were saying these guys needed to get a clue, by now we should be letting them know they are in denial.
D
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    Dave
  • December 28, 2011
Speaking of mobile I've tried explaing that we've had a 73% growth in mobile visitors this year and my request for a mobile site and the proposal to get one has been in the "black hole" for over a month now. Another item about 3 months in the "black hole" is a professional camera man, mics and editing to help us with walk around videos for each model for only $800 total. Other items in the hole include requests for real photos of new cars (learned from Jeff Kershner at DDC), 2012 Internet strategy, and simple things like a survey for custy to complete while waiting for finance. I'm getting out of dodge
J
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    Jeff Kershner
  • December 28, 2011
I feel your pain Dave. I can't imagine not having a strategy around mobile. Sounds like you have a dealer in denial.
It might be time to move on. Be sure to keep an eye open for job postings - http://forum.dealerrefresh.com/f47/
T
  • T
    tom.feary
  • December 28, 2011
We're always looking for digital savvy sales and marketing folks at IFMG.  :)  
D
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    Dave
  • December 28, 2011
Will do! Thanks for the tip!
T
@baileyb7 I couldn't disagree with you more.  I would be interested in the source(s) you are using to cite
T