Why Now is the Time to Keep Communicating with Your Customers

Henry Ford once said, “A man who stops advertising to save money is like a man who stops a clock to save time.” Who would’ve thought that a simple statement made nearly a century ago would be a driving factor for success in today’s environment? As we all know, inventory levels and customer loyalty are at an all-time low, leading many dealerships and groups to pull back on marketing to customers. But much like investment strategies in the stock market, often the very best time to surge ahead is when others around you are running for cover. It establishes brand dominance at a time when the stakes are low and ensures faster recovery when your customers come back into the dealership to buy.
Below are three reasons why now is the time to turbocharge your marketing efforts:

Acquire Quality Used Cars

New car demand is still high and while it is becoming increasingly difficult to keep the vehicles on your lot in line with demand, the ability to acquire quality used inventory is critical right now. By using a dedicated data intelligence tool, you can pinpoint the customers who have vehicles ready to trade or turn back in, and then use your CRM system to help determine different buyer profiles and strategically messages to these groups. This is also a great strategy to push units off your lot that may not be moving as fast as you’d like in this market.

Drive Revenue in Your Service Department

Another bonus in regard to a lack of new vehicle inventory? Customers are focused on keeping their current vehicles in good working condition, longer. Don’t let up on those maintenance emails and continue to encourage your service customers to bring their vehicles in for routine maintenance. Now is also a good time to use data mining to pinpoint the parts most requested during service appointments and stock up in these areas as well.

Invest in Customer Relationship Marketing to Create Customer for Life

Customer experience is becoming more important in the automotive ecosystem. Beyond the benefit of a lifetime value of revenue through future vehicle sales and increased service revenue for these customers, manufacturers are keeping a close eye on CSI scores. Why not use your data mining solution and CRM together to target customers for special loyalty offers and incentives to bring them back into your service bays? Many dealerships have paused these programs while inventory is low, making it a perfect time to break away from the pack and shine through with special offers.

Eventually, inventory levels will stabilize, so don’t stop advertising to save money—strategically advertise to make money. Go make Henry Ford proud!

DealerPeak CRM Includes New Features that Enhance Visibility, Desking Functionality and Mobile Communications 

Phoenix, AZ – June 14, 2022 – DealerPeak, the only CRM dedicated to making the industry regain their love of selling cars, announced today the immediate availability of a new release of its DealerPeak CRM platform. This feature-rich release is designed to directly improve the success of DealerPeak clients navigating the chip crisis and help shore up demand for their used vehicle inventory. 

The new features in the release focus on providing enhanced visibility, desking functionality and mobile communications. The user interface, for example, has been enhanced to give immediate visibility to problem areas across a group or by individual.

Desking functionality has also been improved, with multiple new features to help dealers desk the best deal for each customer, desk multiple deals at once, and even help the customer desk their own deal, with the appointment request sent directly to the sales team.

Upgrades to its mobile features enable the entire sales team to make deals on the spot, supported by a robust enterprise-wide reporting structure.

“The new features we’ve added to the latest version of DealerPeak CRM are designed to show dealership management where the bottlenecks are in the sales process,” said Matt Moore, CEO. “We want our clients to know how they can quickly get the sale back on track and how they can use the existing inventory they have to create lifetime customers.”

Summary of DealerPeak CRM release features:

  •  Redesigned dashboard risk settings and alert icons to help management monitor customer interactions, reduce clicks and provide better visibility.
  • Created a “new leads without response” icon to enable management to respond to any problem areas immediately, helping to save the sale.
  • UTC time zone updates across all dealer customers to be able to sync times for dealers with locations in multiple time zones.
  • Desk Log design and user experience improvements for better data accessibility and appointment tracking.
  •  Improved mobile app to enable users to add customer profile notes, as well as flag emails and text messages.
  • Expanded “Click to Call” functionality through the mobile app to work with customers, even without an assigned task.
  • Included text message templates to make mobile communication more efficient.

DealerPeak’s best-in-class, enterprise-wide solutions automate the hard work of relationship building through real-time updates, customized workflows, desking solutions and more. The aim is to bring joy back into the process, while helping each dealership contribute to a healthy bottom line. 

Get in touch with us for more details.

About DealerPeak:

DealerPeak’s mission is to help our industry regain our love of selling cars, both for the dealers who sell vehicles and the customers who buy them. We help dealerships use all of the information at their disposal to capture the magic that exists when a customer finds just the right vehicle for their needs. Our best-in-class solutions automate the hard work of relationship building through real-time updates, customized workflows, desking solutions, and more. Our aim is to bring joy back into the process, while helping you contribute to a healthy bottom line.  

Media Contact:

Laurie Halter 
Charisma! Communications
503-816-2474
Laurie@charismacommunications.com

New Releases For Chip Shortage

How to Still Win When the Chips Are Down

The pain was slow in coming. But once the COVID-19 virus began spreading, dealerships that didn’t immediately turn to digital retail or were not already digital, took a big hit. Worried consumers stayed away from showrooms and OEM factories were shut down. Dealers soon found themselves in uncharted territory; and nobody had a map to lead anyone out. As a result, auto sales went down by 14.6 percent for 2020.

That was the bad news. The good news was that a year later, auto sales picked up again. Dramatically. With vaccines freely available, safety measures in place, and a pent-up consumer demand ready to buy, commerce roared back to life. 

Then bad news reappeared — and lingered — with the rise of the Delta variant. And, as it turned out, there was more to come. It seems, COVID-19 is the industry disruptor that keeps on disrupting

Enter the Chip Shortage

In an odd and unexpected twist, semiconductor chip manufacturers earlier had shifted production from vehicles to personal electronics, in part to meet increased demand for home devices created by post-Covid-19 social distancing. Ultimately, this created a chip shortage. And since new cars can require up to 1400 computer chips to manage complex systems, the chip shortage disrupted manufacturing, which, in turn, kneecapped new vehicle sales.

Overall, the chip shortage is expected to cost the global automotive industry $110 billion in lost revenue in 2021, according to a May forecast from consulting firm AlixPartners cited by CNBC.

Lead time between chip production and cars hitting the market can run several months. So, what are a dealership’s best options for sales in the interval, especially when consumers are chomping at the bit to buy?

CRM to the Rescue

Thanks to the computer chip shortage, the retail automotive industry faces a classic short-term supply and demand problem. Cars sell as soon as they hit the lot. Unfortunately, dealers don’t have enough new car inventory on their lot because of the current bottleneck. It is ironic that just as consumer demand surges, new products still sit in the manufacturer’s lot waiting to be completed.

All is not lost, however. A solution already exists within each dealership. Dealers who want to immediately benefit from consumer demand can turn to their CRM for help. As a repository of all things great and small about customers, your CRM is where to look when it’s time to pivot.

3 opportunities to leverage sales from your CRM in the coming months.

  • Promote Your Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles. Identify customers in your database that have a position to trade in their current vehicle for a newer one with little or no increase in payment. Today’s buyers are out there, ready to make their next purchase. In some cases, new vehicle models will take months, instead of weeks, to deliver, because of the chip shortage. Don’t make your customers wait. Find matches in your current inventory, through data-driven equity mining. It is important to look for matches representing exact to-the-penny payment offers.
  • Give Your Customers Options. Structure deals that identify multipayment offers for finance and lease or both side by side. Make sure to calculate each deal using a best-in-class calculation engine, such as Market Scan. Use a comprehensive and dynamic database of lender programs, as well as OEM rebates and incentives. Improve your chances of closing a deal by structuring the best deal for the customer and your dealership.
  • Upsell Your Service Clients. Search your CRM to identify who is coming in for service. Create a list each day for the service drive managers of all customers that could trade out of their current vehicle. Give customers a bonus for each vehicle traded or purchased by placing an offer in their windshield when they pick up their car. If the customer had to pay any out of the pocket expense for service, offer to reimburse 100% of the repair.

A Shoutout for Digital Retail

While COVID-19 was shutting down showrooms and factories, digital retail marched on. This has been especially true for dealerships with digital retailing at the core of its CRM—and not merely a bolt-on application.

Digital retail empowered consumers to review vehicle choices and negotiate from the convenience of their home. Likewise, it enabled dealers to structure deals without the stressful back and forth of in-person haggling.

Your CRM can tell you all you need to know about your customers. Don’t let a sale delayed become a sale denied. Mine your CRM for continued success.

Our Mission

We help dealerships thrive in a digital age by empowering them with the technology they need to serve their customers with efficiency and transparency.

BUILT BY DEALERS, FOR DEALERS!

New Features to Directly Combat Chip Shortage 

Denver, CO –November 30, 2021 – DealerPeak, the only CRM dedicated to making the industry regain its love of selling cars, recently announced updated features that make a more seamless process for customers and provide greater visibility for management.

Many of the new features released today will directly impact the success of dealerships navigating the chip crisis and help shore up the demand for their used vehicle inventory. This release includes changes to the user interface to give immediate visibility to problem areas across the group or filter down to individual salespeople. Risk settings and alert icons on the dashboard have been redesigned to help management monitor customer interactions, reduce clicks, and provide better visibility. For instance, management is now alerted with a “new leads without response” icon so they can immediately respond to any problem areas in order to save the sale.

“We are in the middle of an interesting intersection of challenges within automotive, “said Rick McLey, Partner of DealerPeak. While the overarching discussion is about digital retailing and seamless interactions to move more cars, the truth is, we still have thousands of lots sitting empty waiting for vehicles. The new features we’ve added to the latest version of DealerPeak CRM are directly focused on showing dealership management where the bottlenecks are in the process, how they can quickly get the sale back on track, and how they can use the existing inventory they have to create lifetime customers.”

This newest release includes multiple features to help dealers desk the best deal for the customer, desk multiple deals at once, and even help the customer themselves desk their own deal, with the appointment request sent directly to the sales team. Mobile upgrades enable the entire sales team to make deals on the spot, and an enterprise-wide reporting structure is the most robust in the industry for multiple location reporting.

DealerPeak automates the hard work of relationship building through real-time updates, customized workflows, desking solutions, and more. The aim is to bring joy back into the process while helping each dealership contribute to a healthy bottom line

Acquiring Used Inventory

How to Acquire Quality Pre-Owned Vehicles in a Tight Market

If the last few years have taught us anything in our industry, it’s to roll with the punches and accept disruption as a normal part of our ever-changing sales plan, and nowhere has this been more true than in the need to acquire quality pre-owned vehicles while new vehicle inventory is low. In an ever-changing market, it’s important to leverage the tools you already have, like equity mining solutions and your CRM, to find and reach targeted sellers to bring used vehicles on your lot, fast. Below are three easy ways you can use your data equity mining and CRM solution to bring in quality pre-owned vehicles, starting today.

Leverage Used Car Trends

By looking over the used car trends at your own dealership over the last 30, 60 and 90 days, you’ll get a clear picture of the vehicles your customers are looking for and which vehicles need to quickly be priced to sell and get off your lot. By mining your data for customers with vehicles coming off lease, ready to be traded in, and a certain number of years owned, you can define the exact criteria needed and design a campaign around those data points to push out through your CRM. This specific targeting can result in big monthly profits from your used car inventory.

Instead of Auctions, Turn to Your CRM

Using a CRM and equity mining tool helps proactively pull your customers into market vs. them finding another option for selling their car. Taking the initiative and playing offense, through designing campaigns based on the needs and wants of your customers, leads to higher grosses on each sale and savings on acquisition costs—which ultimately saves you the time, money, and headache of having to go to auction. This also helps boost owner loyalty and builds lifetime value for those customers. Why deal with the uncertainty of auctions when you have plenty of drivers ready to trade in their used vehicles sitting in your database, waiting to be discovered by you?

Don’t Miss Out on Co-Op Funds

Having an equity mining solution that can seamlessly communicate or integrate with your CRM and push used vehicle acquisition messaging to the right seller at the right time is key. But there is another area of hidden savings many marketing managers don’t necessarily think of when actively marketing – Co-op dollars from the OEM! Many CRM and data mining providers can obtain OEM or co-op approval prior to launching these marketing efforts, helping you not only bring in additional profits by acquiring quality cars but also saving you money on these marketing campaigns, If you’re not sure if your provider currently offers co-op dollars for these services, be sure to ask. You may be missing out on opportunities to grow your business at little to no cost to you.

By taking just these three simple steps above you’ll be well on your way to acquiring quality used vehicle inventory, creating a loyal, lifetime customer base, and using very little of your own funds to do it by taking advantage of co-op dollars.

The Next Evolution of Automotive Technology is Already Here

Our industry is moving at a greatly accelerated pace since the pandemic hit nearly a year and a half ago. Dealerships are learning new processes, tools, and ways to relate to the customer on a daily basis. The leaders we’re seeing in auto right now are the general managers and marketing executives who are sharing what they’ve learned with others to help the entire industry succeed. Heavyweights like Brian Kramer of Germain, Liza Borches of Carter Myers, and Paige Goodwin of Group 1 are all giving their numerous talents and resources to help make our industry better as a whole.

So how can we begin moving from a “me” to a “we” mindset and why, exactly, should dealers want to in the first place? Simple – it will make our entire industry better. I believe the future of automotive is open and accessible, and I think the foundation that makes the most sense for this next phase lies within your CRM.

I see CRM as being the single most important data repository for automotive retail in this digital age. Imagine how quickly we would be able to launch new solutions and tools without the painful integration stage? By building solutions using an existing CRM platform, vendors would be able to build and scale quickly on top of the rich dataset held within a CRM, while dealers would no longer be charged a pass- through cost for the CRM, leading to overpayment and headaches.

Let’s go one step further and imagine a fully functioning app marketplace on top of your CRM solution. Think of it as an Apple App store for automotive. Best part? Because of full data export, dealerships regain ownership of their own customer data.

Let me show you a few different ways this could work in the real world:

Digital Retailing: With an open platform built on top of a CRM platform, dealers would be able to pinpoint the lead data they need to know through an easy user interface, customized to show just the most pertinent information for that dealership. They would also have full access to pull the lead data out of the system to measure lead status and conversion rates.

Marketing Agencies: By building an open platform on a CRM, ad agencies would be able to close the loop and offer precise ROI numbers and calculations per campaign. The result would be more targeted buys and less wasted spending.

Dealer Groups would be able to custom develop their own solutions or proprietary intellectual property to help speed up desking, better target inventory management, determine service needs, and schedule for peak times. All of this would be built on top of the customer data sitting in the dealership CRM, so it would all work together seamlessly and from one integration point.

I understand we’re automotive. We’re built on a bell to bell schedule and competition is one of the core aspects of our DNA. But, I wonder if we can’t work toward the idea of sharing information and creating an open development platform as A PART of the winning formula? Can we move to a mindset where the idea of winning as an industry is a greater goal than winning in a vacuum?

At DealerPeak, these ideas are not just pipe dreams. They’re in development now and I think they represent the next big leap in our automotive technology evolution. Isn’t it time to look at the single largest depository of customer information we have at our disposal and work together on top of that information to make the entire industry better? We think the answer is yes.

Contact us at https://www.dealerpeak.com/contact/

    See our newly released Peak Insights Report for top converting lead sources and partners for Q1 2022