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Dealix Ralph Paglia Automotive Marketing Interview Part1

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  1. 1. Effective Online Automotive Sales: Interview with Ralph Paglia of Courtesy Chevrolet December 2006Effective Online Automotive Sales VOLUME 5 ISSUE 12HOME Interview with Ralph Paglia of Courtesy Chevrolet CONTENTS The Intelligent Approach to Challenges Big and SmallInterview with Ralph The Dealix Dealer Newsletter recently sat Paglia of Courtesy down with Ralph Paglia, CRM/e-business Chevroletdirector at Courtesy Chevrolet, consistently Third Party Autoone of the top Chevrolet dealers in the Sites: the Trusted country. A well-known expert in online Source for Online Carautomotive sales, Ralph shared so many best Buyers practices with us that we decided to publishhis advice over the course of two issues. In Want to Sell Morethis first installment, Ralph talks about Cars More Efficiently?adapting to market trends and competing with Ask Gilbert: Getting the imports. Buy-In from the GM What Drives DealerDealix Dealer Newsletter (DDN): Thanks Satisfaction?for taking the time to share some of yourexperience in online auto sales with our The Annual Badreaders, Ralph. According to a recent survey by Cobalt and RL Polk, 56% of new Leads Listcar leads wound up as sales; but only 8% of these sales took place at the Metro Areas with the dealership where the lead was first submitted. On top of this, 34% of these Fastest Close Timesbuyers wound up with a different model - and frequently a used car. In your of Q3 2006 opinion, why is this happening? What can dealers do to make that original sale? Internet Training and Industry RemindersRalph Paglia (RP): At Courtesy Chevrolet, we handle over 5,000 leads permonth, and we get those leads from a wide variety of resources - so we are Previously in theuniquely positioned to spot trends in the nature of these leads. What weve seen Dealix Dealeris an evolving landscape of lead generating business models and strategies that Newsletter have contributed to the Fickle Prospect syndrome. View a Movie to See How Dealix Can HelpMy explanation of why so many leads wind up elsewhere is simple. Over the past You Sell More Cars 10 years, shopping online for a car has become mainstream, and so manycustomers are submitting multiple leads to multiple dealers simply because its so SUBSCRIBEeasy to do. If a single customer submits five leads to five different dealersrepresenting five different brands, then 80% of those dealerships will experiencea perceived failure to close the sale. However, we still need to keep in mind thatwith Internet leads, the cost per sale is generally lower than with traditionaladvertising. Where before, we could assume that car buyers were viewing manydifferent ads and different brands in newspaper ads, with Internet leads we canactually measure that behavior. Consumers love choice. On the other hand, seeing new car leads ending up as used car sales is nothingnew. Its just that the explosion of Internet leads is making it much more visible.Those of us who grew up selling cars have long known the value of switching anew car buyer to a used car. Switch to get rich! we used to say - referring to http://news.dealix.com/e_article000706890.cfm?x=b8ylmVJ,b4bG84ht (1 of 3) [1/11/2007 9:34:09 AM]
  2. 2. Effective Online Automotive Sales: Interview with Ralph Paglia of Courtesy ChevroletSubscribe to the Dealixthe greater gross potential on the sale of used vehicles. Dealer Newsletter. Enter your email Now lets look at the question of lead defection to competing products. The address in the box number of cars sold each year in the US has been holding steady at around 17 below and we'll add you to the list:million. With lead volume increasing at the same time, its inevitable that the rateat which dealers lose leads to other brands will increase. Dont think my point is that dealers should be comfortable with high loss rates.But you have to look at the causes behind these rates and figure out where you AddRemovecan have an impact. For example, at Courtesy Chevrolet weve recently modified Submit our lead management processes to acknowledge the reality that most leads windup buying a different car from the one they initially said they wanted. Were nowfollowing up with a second round of price quotes for certified pre-owned vehicles -quotes selected based on the leads original inquiry and any information collectedby the Internet sales specialist. DDN: Given the huge array of choices buyers are presented with online, its easyto understand a certain amount of fickleness. But one thing weve learned in ourresearch is that a dealers ability to connect with online buyers exerts a powerfulinfluence over where and what they wind up buying. As a very successful dealer, youve no doubt developed some really effectiveways to make this connection. This is probably all the more true, since youredoing very well selling a domestic brand at a time when domestics are a toughersell. What advice would you give to domestic dealers who are struggling toimprove their Internet business? RP: At the risk of giving away the secret sauce, Ill tell you that one of the mosteffective ways for domestic dealers to increase sales is to aggressively pursuebuyers who are considering Asian brands and competing domestic brands. Wetake great pride in convincing Toyota and Nissan buyers to consider a Chevy. Weuse search engine marketing to target customers shopping for competing brands.We bid for keywords related to these brands, and we place our ads on sitesdevoted to these brands. Targeted campaigns of this kind can push Corollabuyers to consider a Cobalt, Sequoia buyers to consider a Tahoe, and so on. Something else we do that makes an enormous difference is using a triage leadmanagement process. Instead of making random or round-robin assignments, weassign leads to a specific Internet sales specialist based on the leadscharacteristics and that sales specialists historical strengths. Then we have acustomer service representative in our BDC contact every unsold lead 72 hoursafter it comes in, in an attempt to get the customer to visit the dealership. Then,a third person follows up three days later, if there is still no appointmentregistered in our CRM system. Multiple interactions early in the process ensurethat we win our fair share of deals with buyers who are deeper in the salesfunnel. Involving additional people in those interactions serves as a safety netthat keeps leads from slipping through the cracks. Dealers have to stay focused on a basic fact thats part of everything we do atCourtesy Chevrolet: anytime you can replace randomness with a process thatsgeared to a desired outcome, you have a greater opportunity to optimize salesresults.Well continue our conversation with Ralph Paglia next month. http://news.dealix.com/e_article000706890.cfm?x=b8ylmVJ,b4bG84ht (2 of 3) [1/11/2007 9:34:09 AM]
  3. 3. Effective Online Automotive Sales: Interview with Ralph Paglia of Courtesy Chevrolet [PRINTER FRIENDLY VERSION]Published by Dealix Corporation Click here to Tell a Friend about the Dealix Dealer Copyright 2006 Dealix Corporation. All rights reserved. Newsletter The Dealix Dealer Newsletter is sent to Dealix members and anyone who has expressed interest in our services. To unsubscribe, enter your email address in the subscription box appearing within the newsletter and choose the Remove option. Or, just click one of the links below. http://news.dealix.com/e_article000706890.cfm?x=b8ylmVJ,b4bG84ht (3 of 3) [1/11/2007 9:34:09 AM]
  4. 4. Effective Online Automotive Sales December 2006 Effective Online Automotive SalesVOLUME 5 ISSUE 12NEWSInterview with Ralph Paglia of Courtesy Chevrolet The Intelligent Approach to Challenges Big and SmallThe Dealix Dealer Newsletter recently sat down with Ralph Paglia, CRM/e- business director at Courtesy Chevrolet, consistently one of the top Chevrolet dealers in the country. A well-known expert in online automotive sales, Ralph shared so many best practices with us that we decided to publish his advice over the course of two issues. In this first installment, Ralph talks about adapting to market trends and competing with the imports.[FULL STORY]Third Party Auto Sites: the Trusted Source for Online Car Buyers Interview with KBBs Manager of Automotive Partners Sherrell INSIDEKovach Interview with Ralph Paglia of CourtesyTheres no doubt about it: with the Internet, todays car Chevrolet buyers have a wealth of options at their finger tips. OEM Third Party Auto Sites: websites, dealership sites, and independent, third party auto the Trusted Source forsites all promise the quintessential user experience to entice Online Car Buyers car buyers into their worlds. While having your own website Want to Sell More Carshas become a necessity for todays dealerships, and no one is More Efficiently? going to say no to subsidized leads from their OEM, the best Ask Gilbert: Getting Buy- In from the GM third party auto sites continue to win the hearts of consumers as a trusted source for information - and a great source of What Drives Dealer Satisfaction? leads for dealers. We spoke with Kelley Blue Books manager The Annual Bad Leads of automotive partners, Sherrell Kovach, who talked about Listwhy this is, and how premium third party auto sites continue to be on the cutting edge when it comes to consumer experience and lead generation.http://news.dealix.com/index000152060.cfm?x=b8ylmVJ,b4bG84ht,w (1 of 5) [1/11/2007 9:34:12 AM]
  5. 5. Effective Online Automotive SalesMetro Areas with the [FULL STORY] Fastest Close Times of Q3 2006 Internet Training and Industry RemindersWant to Sell More Cars More Efficiently? Previously in the DealixCheck Out this Movie to See How You Can Dealer NewsletterView a Movie to See Whats the remedy for the sales How Dealix Can Help challenges that dealers are You Sell More Carsfacing today? Connecting with SUBSCRIBE as many car buyers on the Subscribe to the Dealix Internet as possible. Dealix Dealer Newsletter. Enterhelps you do this b

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