It’s a Nerd Meltdown

Marketers have extended Black Friday through Sunday, which leads into Cyber Monday. The entire week following Thanksgiving has become the biggest engineered consumer shopping spree imaginable. In fact, some of the car More »

Internet Battle Plan XXI Schedule & Program

View and download the full class schedule for Internet Battle Plan XXI in ATLANTA at the link below! Internet Battle Plan XXI Class Schedule – PDF Internet Battle Plan XXI Class Schedule – Word doc More »

There’s a Vacancy in Mom’s Basement

Several years ago, I got into a friendly debate with Bill Wittenmyer from ELEAD1ONE. Bill had just performed a dynamic presentation on “How to Market to Millennials” at an Internet Battle Plan More »

Objects in the Rearview Mirror

If you’ve never seen Meat Loaf perform live, there is a small vacuum in your life. He is one of the greatest recording artists of all time. His music, lyrics, and powerful More »

 

It’s a Nerd Meltdown

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Marketers have extended Black Friday through Sunday, which leads into Cyber Monday. The entire week following Thanksgiving has become the biggest engineered consumer shopping spree imaginable. In fact, some of the car manufacturers decided the entire month should be “Black November,” extending the sale to 30 days. Customers flooded the showrooms. Then, just when everything was going so well, at around 10 o’clock on Friday morning, the reports started coming in on social media. The car hashtags on Twitter and private car groups on Facebook all lit up at once: VinSolutions had crashed. The panic was immediate and widespread. If you’re not on VinSolutions yourself, you should know it’s one of the premier CRMs on the market today. I would guess that thousands of dealerships

CPO: Are You In or Out?

It’s going to be the hottest game in town. The question is, will your dealership be sitting at the table or watching from the sidelines? I’ve been predicting for much of the year that used-car values would take a monumental dump in the fourth quarter due to the glut of off-lease and fleet units returning to market. What I didn’t count on was Donald Trump getting elected to the presidency. Yes, I am a huge Trump supporter, believer, and advocate, but, like many of you, I was beginning to buy into the belief that Hillary had him beat. So with the uncertainty came the miscalculation that pre-owned values would drop significantly due to the flood of used inventory returning to an already saturated market. Well,

Internet Battle Plan XXI Schedule & Program

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View and download the full class schedule for Internet Battle Plan XXI in ATLANTA at the link below! Internet Battle Plan XXI Class Schedule – PDF Internet Battle Plan XXI Class Schedule – Word doc

There’s a Vacancy in Mom’s Basement

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Several years ago, I got into a friendly debate with Bill Wittenmyer from ELEAD1ONE. Bill had just performed a dynamic presentation on “How to Market to Millennials” at an Internet Battle Plan conference. In my trademark devilishly antagonistic Ziegler fashion, I told Wittenmyer that Millennials were the most worthless, lazy, know-it-all, entitlement-based, unmotivated generation in the history of the world. I said that most Millennials lived in Mom’s basement on a pullout sofa playing Xbox well into their 30s. Why market to anyone who doesn’t want and can’t afford your products? I cracked up when manufacturers came up with “youth” vehicles like the ill-fated Scion lineup. Millennials didn’t buy them, but old people did, and every unit they moved represented an unsold Corolla. For several

Fasten Those Seatbelts

Did you hear those loud thuds? That was the sound of car sales hitting the wall in September and October. It’s the first week of November, and sales don’t look great this month, either. It’s amusing hearing people blaming the slowdown on pre-election jitters. Once it’s over, they say, everything will be great again. By the time you read this, the election will be over. I’m willing to bet sales didn’t spike up. Hey, I’ve been calling this sales dip for nearly a year now. Now analysts and manufacturers are beginning to accept that the market is reaching saturation. Kelley Blue Book warned 2016 sales will fall short of 2015 levels, and Ford reluctantly admitted U.S. sales are off 10%. I’ve also warned since May

Internet Battle Plan XXI in Atlanta January 2017!

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Objects in the Rearview Mirror

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If you’ve never seen Meat Loaf perform live, there is a small vacuum in your life. He is one of the greatest recording artists of all time. His music, lyrics, and powerful message have been a huge influence on my life since the ’70s. His stage presence is unmatched. All his songs evoke powerful emotions and memories, but “Objects in the Rearview Mirror” is the one that totally envelops me every time I hear it. If we are the result of everything we’ve ever experienced, then it’s fair to say we all look to the past to chart our way forward. Meat Loaf says objects in the mirror are closer than they appear, and for the most part, that’s true. But in today’s world, old

Harry’s in a Slump

Even the best of us can fall into a slump. But when my friend Harry, a top salesman at his General Motors store in small-town America, messaged me through Facebook a few months ago, I could feel his pain through his words. “Hey buddy, I am in the worst slump of my sales life. I need some Alpha Dawg help, as I am not sure what to do at this point,” he wrote. “I’m thinking of going to Walmart to try to ‘up’ some people in the parking lot. Jim, I cannot quite put my finger on it, and I would appreciate your tips and help.” Well, nobody — and I mean nobody — knows prospecting better than I do. I am the master of

The Big Talent Drain

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I have been screaming it from the mountaintops for more than a decade now: “When you pay peanuts, you get monkeys.” Now it seems the so-called industry press is finally catching up with me. I have read several recent articles talking about the ongoing talent drain in the retail automobile business. Qualified leaders are becoming incredibly hard to find, particularly for the general manager and general sales manager roles. These days, a GM with any kind of track record can demand stupid money to make a move. Some dealers are putting off buy-sell agreements and postponing acquisitions until they can find a qualified operator. You have to offer a substantial guarantee and a buy-in just to get them to talk to you. You family-owned dealers

Time to Pay the Piper

I’m sure you’re all familiar with the story of the Pied Piper of Hamelin. Although more legend than truth, it’s based on events dating back to the Middle Ages, around 1284. As the story goes, the German town of Hamelin hired a piper who promised to solve it’s rat infestation by luring them into the Weser River with his magical pipe. As the story goes, the dastardly Mayor of Hamelin refused to pay the piper the gold he had promised. In retaliation, the piper used his pipe to enchant the children of the town. They followed him to Keppenberg Mountain, where they were magically swallowed up. One theory is that the piper was a professional rat catcher, and the children who disappeared were actually victims