We recently participated in the GM Compass meetings being held throughout the United States. During these meetings, it became obvious that the factory is expecting dealerships to spend more and more on Internet and BDC related items, and yet very little credible information was offered to help dealerships learn what they can do at the store level to make sure these investments pay off for them.
Our philosophy at AIT has always been simple: When dealers are required to spend on opportunities, they also need to make sure they're investing in results. Having a well-trained BDC/Internet team using the right techniques and processes can insure that the money you're being asked to spend on digital and website marketing isn't just going into the black hole of unrealized results. You need to make sure your team has everything they need, including scripts, schedules, templates, process, training, competitor messages, and more, to make these expenses worthwhile. So many times the OEM message to dealers seems to be more about throwing more money into the digital marketing pot, and dealers are overwhelmed by the sheer volume of programs that they are being asked to fund. This can shift their priorities away from the things they need to do internally to make these investments payoff.
We are in total agreement with all the OEMs when it comes to just how important digital marketing is. But one thing that seems to be missing in most of the factory promoted programs is the ability for an individual dealership to promote its message, or present its self as the consumer’s best choice in the marketplace. Perhaps the most troubling thing we see is the inconsistencies of the OEM message as far as how to maximize the opportunities that can be created by these digital campaigns.
One of the things that makes what we do for our client dealerships unique is our commitment to developing solutions based on the individual qualities of the dealerships and groups that we work with. We take the time to learn about what they are, what they want, what they don't want, what their strengths are that we can build from, and what their opportunities are so we can address them. Because everyone in our company has real world dealership experience, we’re able to deliver a process that works without having to change the fundamental structure of the dealership, and this helps us get better results; faster, and without the disruptions in personnel and manager angst that usually comes with making these kinds of changes. But best of all, it puts dealerships in a position to really reap the benefits of the digital programs they''re being charged for.