Pretend you’re the owner of a 2010 Ford Focus that recently went off warranty. Your check engine light just clicked on – most likely due to a battery issue – and you need to get it fixed ASAP. There’s seven inches of snow forecast for the weekend ahead and you can’t afford to risk an issue in the cold. Put your consumer hat on and think about where you’d turn for help and information given the circumstances.
Now take it one step further.
Pull out your smartphone or open a new tab in your mobile browser and search for “battery replacement,” “brake repair,” “oil change,” or any number of common services consumers look for online in your neighborhood every day.
See what comes up!?
If you’ve ever sat through one of my more recent presentations over the last few years, you know I’m a fan of value build data visually presented in a format that’s easy for the consumer to read and consume.
Offering value building data on your dealership website is a no brainer. They’re a strong tool to be used for initially responding to a customer lead, and just as effective (if not more) as a tool for long-term follow-up – where many dealers struggle.
I’ve used and implemented follow-up processes utilizing visual value building reports with huge success. I’ve had just as much success (if not more) utilizing these reports on the showroom floor.
Yes, a vehicle purchase can be an emotional one, BUT consumers want to know they’re making the right decision. A logical decision. That’s where value build reports become an extremely effective tool – online and offline.
For the past three years, Google’s Zero Moment of Truth has been a pillar of the automotive industry. Wedged into nearly ever conference workshop and lauded by trainers, vendors and dealers alike, the groundbreaking study shed light on the multi-faceted journey car shoppers take every day when purchasing vehicles.
With tangible proof of the importance of things like online research, reviews and excellent customer service, we were forced to take a step back and put our consumer hats on, to realize that many of our greatest marketing challenges were right in front us waiting to be solved.
But where ZMOT starts to answer the what, it stops short at the why – why do car shoppers use the tools they use to make decisions?With so many moving pieces, how do they all fit together in the minds of consumers?
Latest HOT Discussion in the Forums
“I’ve never had a computer.” The paradigm shift from next door.
Last night, I was at a buddy’s house and his 21-year old next door neighbor came over and he was showing me his newest phone, the Samsung Galaxy S5 Active (it’s sick.)
Anyway, at some point, I moved away from smartphones and asked him – “what operating system (Windows or Apple) he used on his laptop or desktop?”
“Neither,” he replied.
“Linux?” I said.
“No, I mean I don’t have a computer.”
“What happened to the old one?” I asked.
“I’ve never had a computer,” he replied…. keep reading and comment
Email isn’t easy; you have less than 30 seconds.
We all know it’s not easy to build a relationship with prospective customers through email. Especially when you consider that on average readers spend only 15 to 20 seconds on any email they open (studies indicate the average English reader takes 20 seconds to scan about 50 words).
So, you have less than 30 seconds and just a few sentences in any one email to communicate your message, gain trust, and convince your prospective customers that you’re the right dealer to sell them their next vehicle. Pretty challenging, right?
But wait, it gets better.
In my years working for a dealer website provider, I was often tasked with keeping up with the latest trends in website design, particularly how they pertained to their value from a traffic and lead-generation perspective. Google was always my beat. It wasn’t an easy task since they put out about as much content in the form of blog posts, videos, and patents as any other non-news publication out there, but I enjoyed it because they rarely delivered messages that were crystal clear. It gave me the challenge of being an interpreter and the turmoil of the possible consequences if I was wrong. Call me a geek, but in many ways working the “Google beat” was exhilarating.
The search giant has been more forthcoming in recent years. One of their first very straight-forward recommendations was for responsive website design. They published many things about it back in 2012, including an article on their Webmaster Central blog titled “Responsive design – harnessing the power of media queries“. They reiterated it a couple of months later in their recommendations for smartphone-optimized websites.
At the time, my direction was clear. I recommended that my former company build responsive websites. It was the future, the near future in my opinion, and we needed to be early to the game. There were already a handful of companies going into the responsive realm in the automotive industry and I didn’t want us to be left behind.
8th Annual Kain Automotive Workshop – Register
The conference season is amongst us. From DigitalDealer 13 to DSES to J.D. Power to a few others like the Internet Sales 20 Group in Chicago. In this post I’m here to help promote the 8th Annual Kain Automotive Workshop hosted by David Kain and crew.
I’m sure most readers of DealerRefresh already know David and his involvement in the industry as a top consultant. David is someone that if you don’t already know, you should. I’m confident you’ll walk away wondering if he isn’t truly one of the nicest people you’ve ever met. Sincerely.
This post isn’t just to talk about how nice of a guy David Kain is but rather to make everyone aware of another quality conference to choose from before the end of 2012. An opportunity to help accelerate your Internet sales performance beyond the basics through proven practices, cutting-edge strategies and techniques that will differentiate your dealership and operations from the competition.
What I like most about the Kain conference/workshop is it’s personal touch and relaxed educating atmosphere. As the title says, this is a “workshop” and not so much a fast-paced conference. More time to open up and learn, meet new people and converse over great ideas and best practices.
This years Keynote speakers include:
Keynote Presentation: Jason Ezell, President of Dataium
Keynote Presentation and Q&A: C. Michael Rose of Google Cars
Keynote Presentation: Todd Smith, CEO, ActivEngage
Keynote Presentation: Lindsey Kirchof, PR Specialist, Hubspot
On top of the Keynote Presentations, there will be break out sessions that include:
Jack Simmons from Cars.com
Jim Bell from Don Ayres Honda
Pogo Parr from Century Interactive
Jerry Petrotto from DealerOn
Ricky Lopez from Greenway Dodge
Egon Smola from Dealix
Jeff Kershner (me) from HookLogic
…and many more!
Each year David hosts a “Best Ideas” contest. Every attendee qualifies to enter the Best Ideas Contest. The winners will be selected by attendees. The best ideas will be shared with all attendees, and a vote will take place on Day 2. Be sure to submit your Best Idea (submit before Nov. 10) but before doing so, click here to register.
Do it!! Join Us for Our 8th Annual Client & Friends Workshop
Nov. 13-15, 2012, at the Hilton Downtown Lexington in Lexington, Ky.
If you’ve attended one of the Kain Workshops in the past – sound off in the comments below and let us know!
Dataium pushes the envelope by giving greater visibility into online consumer shopping behavior and the path to their next vehicle purchase. We have also talked about its potential to Revolutionize Automotive Digital Marketing and the Role of CRM. Speaking of digital marketing and Dataium, be sure to check out this Webinar on Friday (August 17th) at 11:30 AM EDT.
HookLogic will be hosting this Webinar with Dataium. The Dataium crew are big fans of HookLogic. Why? – because as enlightening it is to have great data, you need an executable.
Side Note: This webinar will include how HookLogic Automotive is using Dataium in their Lead to Show feature.
Dataium’s Cloud Intelligence® (CI) Platform, which HookLogic now leverages to make automated real-time decisions, aggregates billions of behavioral events and consumer activity allowing dealerships across the US to work with executables like HookLogic’s AutoHook to provide timely personalized offers and incentives to people shopping for a vehicle.
To explain how, Sean Murphy from Dataium will discuss the following topics on Friday August 17 at 11:30 AM EDT.
In this webinar, Sean will also explore…
- Knowing the Future – Today’s shopper behavior predicts tomorrow’s shopping trends.
- Knowing Your Customer – Dataium sees the entire online buying process, from keyword usage, inventory searches, lead submission, and everything in between.
- Knowing Your Website’s Performance – Unlike most other web analytics providers, Dataium enhances website statistics with comparative industry, brand, and market benchmarks.
- Automated Data-based Decisions – With HookLogic’s Lead2Show program you can automatically incent shoppers the minute they show new signs of wanting to buy a vehicle.
Let us demonstrate precisely how much clarity you can achieve utilizing Dataium’s Cloud Intelligence® solution in conjunction with AutoHook. As the largest aggregator of online automotive shopper behavior Dataium can provide you greater visibility into the consumer path to purchase than ever before. By analyzing the online shopping behavior of over 100 million auto shoppers across a diverse network of automotive manufacturer, dealership, and retail portal websites, you can finally remove the blinders to attribution, influence, comparative performance, and in-market activity.
One Year of Service Free
As an added bonus, everyone that attends this webinar will qualify for one full year of Dataium‘s comprehensive Cloud Intelligence® (CI) service absolutely free.
If you have had some questions around Dataium and how to use the data, I would encourage you to attend this webinar.
5 Ways to Promote Your Dealers Mobile App
Mobile app promotion was easy in 2008. App developers could submit their application to Apple app store and compete amongst the thousands of other apps for user’s attention. “Thousands” being 10,000. End of 2008 – five months after the mobile app store launch only 10,000 total iPhone apps existed. If an applilcation was popular, it would make the top 25 list in multiple categories and enjoy front row promotion to users around the world.
Today, over 500,000 apps exist on Apple’s store alone. Complex and large dollar promotional strategies back new attempts to crack the top 25 category – even for a day. Companies pay hundreds of thousands of dollars for faux downloads, contracting “incentivized install” companies that use virtual and real currency to pay users a fee to download the app. If enough downloads can be driven for a particular app, it has a chance to crack the top 25 of a given category.
This leaves a hole for quality mobile applications targeted at a smaller audience. How do we compete with the launch strategy for the next Angry Birds release? How will our customer find us amongst a sea of “other apps”? The answer is they won’t. Not in the app store.
Dealer mobile app promotion “for the rest of us” centers outside the app store. Creating an effective strategy requires leveraging many of your existing channels and creating new ones.
Top 5 ways to get your app into customer’s hands…