Going into a roundtable titled “Dealer Sharing: Your Best Marketing Result of the Last 12 Months,” one can expect a lively conversation of managers and marketers eager to share their success stories. The ensuing 60 minutes fit the billing as dealerships from each corner of the country shared tips on earning new leads for their business. Some took an innovative approach leveraging technology and untapped social media avenues, while others suggested adding a new twist to reliable conventional networking tactics.

Work Smarter, Not Harder

Several managers recently implemented an automated A.I. chat system for their dealership websites, equipped with several pre-written responses to common questions visitors may have. The tool helps discourage bounce rates from customers and is capable of carrying on a conversation long enough for actual employees to notice the interaction and then jump in with more specific advising. “We can transfer those leads to the used equipment manager, then they can qualify them and retrieve specific contact information,” notes one attendee, adding how the chat feature allows for multi-tasking and more efficient employees overall.

Social media platforms, notably Facebook for spreading awareness, have proven to pay surprising dividends for minimal amounts of time or effort being required. Opportunities such as “invite campaigns,” which send a notification to every friend asking to like a page, quadrupled the total number of likes (and potential leads) for one attendee’s dealership.

Utilize Established Mediums

While automated chats or keyword optimization have tangible benefits and represent the new wave of digital marketing, Dealership Minds Summit attendees warned against overlooking traditional strategies out of excitement for what’s trending. Hosting community events with free meals or simple networking exchanges (such as a free hat for an email address) have withstood the test of time for a reason, with one attendee noting to, “Catch the new customers with ‘chance-to-win’ giveaways, as the younger ones are more likely to give their information away.”