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Do You Understand Search Algorithms?


Google and Bing are constantly fine-tuning their search engine algorithms to provide better results for users. With all the recent changes in search, it's easy to get confused on how search engines work, and how businesses should be using them to get the best results from their search campaigns.On this episode of Think Tank Tuesday, Paul explains how you can take advantage of search in your marketing strategies. Learn what algorithms are, how they work, and what you should know before starting your own search campaigns.
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Http://www.internetbattleplan.com 

I highly recommend that if you are able to make it to New Jersey that you make it to the Internet Battle Plan. This one is going to be AMAZING!!

I just concluded the Internet Sales 20 Group in Chicago and I had the honor of having JD Rucker and Paul Sansone Jr. As Speakers for my event and WOW!! They killed it! Everyone LOVED their presentations!! 

And Cory Mosley is one of the best trainers in the industry PERIOD. He is an amazing speaker, you will get so much from going to see him speak.

Jim Ziegler's Battle Plan is filled with top subject matter experts. If Jim has them on the Roster... They are good. 

I had the pleasure of co-hosting the original two Dealer Battle Plans and they were phenomenal back then, I assure you they have evolved into an even more amazing and powerful educational platform. 

Jim knows how to pick venues... Revel is the Newest and BEST Hotel in Atlantic City. I am not just saying that. I live in New Jersey and I just bought a building in NJ. I am in AC from time to time. Karen and I have stayed at Revel numerous times and LOVED IT. You will too! 

So, have fun, learn and be inspired at the upcoming Internet Battle Plan! 

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Paul Long on Customer Loyalty Programs - Digital Dealer 10 Conference from Paul N Long

http://www.internetsales20group.com

Discover what frequent flier programs already prove: loyalty programs will give you the best ROI in your digital marketing strategy

Increase your repurchase loyalty, service loyalty and overall profitability. Learn what the airline industry, hospitality industry and the top auto dealers already know: loyalty programs increase bottom line up to 85%. Paul Long defines what customer loyalty programs are and dispels five major myths about them. From his experience in building national loyalty programs in multiple verticals, Long will share what makes a loyal customer and why you want them in your dealership. He will also provide valuable tips to help your business build a loyalty program that will create and keep customers for life. Loyalty allows you to reap the benefits from customers' ongoing relationship to your dealership: increased car sales and fixed operations gross profit.

Learn how to build a loyalty program that motivates action. This seminar will give your dealership the tools and know-how to develop a loyalty strategy that will increase car sales and fixed operations gross profit.

Customer loyalty is a big buzz-word in the automotive world today—in fact most automakers are moving away from CSI scores and focusing on CRS—or customer retention. After all, what good is customer satisfaction if they still don't buy their next vehicle from you? Customer loyalty and retention has a huge impact on profitability, and it's right to focus on it.In fact, as little as a five-percent increase in customer retention can improve a company's bottom-line profitability between 25 percent and 85 percent.

Long will give you an overview of what loyalty marking is and dispel five major myths about it. Then attendees will be shown practical ways to implement a loyalty program in your dealership, and how to track its success. By the end of our session, you'll walk away with both the knowledge and the excitement for building a loyalty program for your business that helps you create and keep customers for life.

After completing this workshop, the attendee will know how to unify sales and fixed operations marketing with a loyalty program

The attendee will be able to calculate the effect which customer loyalty has on bottom-line profitability. • The learner will be able to identify and track three main benefits of successful loyalty programs and loyalty marketing initiatives.

The attendee will be able to develop a loyalty marketing strategy that works for all levels of the organization.

Paul Long, president of re:member group, has been increasing customer loyalty for 15 years. He was integral to the development of the Northwest Airlines WorldPerks Program and has since used his extensive knowledge of and experience with loyalty programs to help businesses worldwide. Long particularly enjoys working with auto dealerships, and he has employed new technologies and cutting-edge strategies to create a state-of-the-art infrastructure for effective communications, member tracking, and rewards distribution

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Indicators of Dealership Loyalty

Many dealers ask me for help in retention measurement, and statistics surrounding Customer Loyalty Indicators.

Two important indicators of Automotive Dealership customer loyalty are the purchase of additional service after the sale by Members and multiple vehicle purchases.

In the automotive dealer sector, these are also sources for the greatest margin, so they’re critical not just as indicators of customer satisfaction but as profit drivers in their own right. Little profit is made on the sale of the first vehicle. Dealerships must rely on repeat service and additional vehicle sales to make the customer life cycle profitable.

However, most auto dealers haven’t the vaguest idea which car buyers are loyal service customers at their dealerships, or multiple car buyers (especially if they're a multi rooftop autogroup). On average, dealers retain only 30 to 40 percent of post-warranty service dollars on vehicles they sell. What’s more, remarkably few dealers track service purchases systematically. As a result, as little as 3% of vehicle buyers will purchase again from the same dealership.

While it may be necessary to keep sales separate from an organizational point of view, it is very important that their tracking systems be linked. One simple way to do this is through a digital loyalty solution like re:member group’s BEDROCK® and ASPIRE® platforms. While re:member group makes no claim in having a CRM solution (see DealerSocket for the best one in my opinion), our loyalty solutions do identify repeat buyers in all departments and can assist in determining a lifetime customer value to Members.

The information Service Advisors acquire should easily be cycled back to encourage salespeople to target buyers who have remained loyal service customers. In addition, incentive systems should identify the lift that dealerships receive as a result of implementing a loyalty program in both service and sales. The keystone measurement in this case should be repurchase loyalty, as this is the best possible indicator of customer loyalty.

The Walser Automotive Group in Minneapolis, Minnesota makes customer loyalty a significant part of their overall marketing strategy. Thirty-one Percent of Walser’s Customers purchased more than one vehicle between 2005 and 2009, representing fifty-six percent of Walser’s Total Vehicle Sales. In that time, Walser has increased their repurchase loyalty by four percent.

Furthermore, Sixty-nine percent of Walser’s customers continue to service their vehicle after the sale.

Recall what loyalty expert Fred Reichheld claims: a five percent increase in customer loyalty can yield an increase in profitability between twenty-five and eighty-five percent.

What are you doing to increase your customer loyalty? Or, what is your customer loyalty percentage?

 

Paul Long

President

re:member group

cell: 612.221.0463

email: paul@remembergroup.com

www.paulnlong.com

www.remembergroup.com

 

 

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The Perfect Storm: The Prequel Part 3

I met Randy McPherson for the first time in February, 2003, at the Interchange Building in St. Louis Park, MN. The interchange building was the “headquarters” for all the Walser Automotive Group’s affiliate companies, which Randy headed up.

I walked into the offices on the 18th floor and was greeted by a receptionist named Rita. Immediately in front of me was a large window looking into a board room occupied by (mostly) men in suits, obviously conducting a meeting. The board room looked out onto the Minneapolis downtown skyline.

I noticed one gentleman right away. He was wearing a pressed flannel shirt and slacks. he had a smooth head and a groomed goatee. Clearly a renegade. I took a seat in the waiting room.

When the meeting adjourned, the men in suits filed out. The gentleman in the pressed flannel shirt walked out, and greeted me warmly. “Hi, Paul, I’m Randy McPherson,” he said.

We went back to his office, and had a nice conversation. Among the family photos and hunting relics in his office, something caught my eye: an empty guitar stand in the corner behind his desk.

The interview went the way most first interviews go, which is to say pretty innocuous. We talked about the Walser Car Club, and how it was birthed. Since the inception in October of 2002, it hadn’t had solid leadership to spearhead enhancements, new partnerships, or growth to new dealerships. In fact, there wasn’t 100% compliance among Walser’s 10 locations in the Twin Cities, Randy said. They were looking for someone to build process, partnerships and new business.

We talked about my experience in sales, e-commerce and loyalty. I told about my experience in building loyalty partners. But Randy became particularly interested when I discussed points–the ability for Walser customers to earn points when they get their vehicle serviced, OR whenever they make purchases through participating merchants, like rental cars, hotels and retail.

This was the first of many conversations between Randy McPherson and me in scoping out what is today the products the re:member group offers.

“What I’d like you to do,” Randy said, “is to put together a business plan and meet with my CFO and me in two weeks. There’s another candidate that we are considering.”

As I left, I mentioned the empty guitar stand in the corner. “Do you play?” I asked.

“Oh yeah,” Randy said. “Do you? What kind of guitar do you play?”

“I play a Martin D-35 that my wife gave me for a wedding present,” I said. “How about you?”

“I play a McPherson,” Randy said.

It was mid February but as I walked out of the Interchange Building that late afternoon, I think it started to rain.

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The Perfect Storm: The Prequel Part 2

“Yeah, you should meet with Randy McPherson. I think you could help Walser Automotive out with Loyalty.”

I’m not really sure why Chad Dufault met with me over Davanni’s. Sure we were friends, and still are very close. But to this day I don’t know if he wanted to talk about loyalty in his mortgage company, or have me vetted for Randy. We never really accomplished anything for Chad’s mortgage company that evening, so my guess is that it’s the latter. That’s the way Chad rolls–he usually puts others before himself.

My life was already hectic. A newborn, a stay-at-home mom, and a realization that the choices I make are no longer affect only me (that was never the case anyway, but I was made aware of that fact pretty quickly once Henry was born). I had enough on my plate, and was enjoying life.

“Sure, I’ll meet with him.”

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The Perfect Storm: The Prequel Part 1

In early 2003, I had a great job at Northwest Airlines, managing partnerships for their award winning WorldPerks program. I worked with a great team of people and loved what I did. I had finished my MBA from the University of St. Thomas in Minneapolis, MN in the summer of 2002. And my wife had just given birth to our first child in November 2002. Life was great, if not hectic.

I was privileged to work with some of the best loyalty marketers on the planet. My primary WorldPerks partner was U.S. Bank, which issued the WorldPerks Visa, and I handled a $200 million book of business for this partner alone. And since U.S. Bank was such a behemoth, I was able to develop co-partnerships with all the other partner categories, including car rental, hotels, communications, and the WorldPerks Mall.

My Pet Project, my passion, the WorldPerks Mall. The WorldPerks Mall gave me the opportunity to work with merchants in all categories, and gave WorldPerks Members the ability to earn miles by doing the things they did every day. I built partnerships with hundreds of “non-traditional” merchants in categories like department stores, clothing, electronics and toys. And then there were services that allowed Members to earn points…

MilesAbove was WorldPerk’s answer to small regional merchants who wanted to play in the mileage game. You’re a plumber? Give miles for Members using your service. Own a Co-op? Give miles to your patrons for their business. We had three “no go” categories: alcohol, fur, and auto racing. Other than that, partner development was fair game.

Originally managed by Carlson Marketing Group, MilesAbove proved too expensive to have an outside vendor manage it’s partner development. I brought it in-house, and automated the purchase of miles for companies wanting to play. An unintended benefit allowed Members looking to “round-out” their accounts to buy miles. The best professional development benefit was having the privilege of working with people from one of Mark Lacek’s companies, MilePoint, to build the first ever Buy Miles engine. We sold $1 million dollars in miles in the first 6 months after revamping MilesAbove. Carlson, a trusted marketing partner, was instrumental in process and collateral development. It was a team firing all pistons, and a high point of my tenure at NWA.

All of the merchant partnerships we built required a form of payment, which brings me full circle. WorldPerks Visa was an “anchor store”. It’s what every other partnership revolved around. My team and I loved building co-partnerships and finding creative ways to allow Members to earn miles without ever having to get on a plane.

Life was great. I loved my job, and the people I worked with were among the brightest and most creative I had ever met. I was having fun with my young family, traveling wherever and whenever we wanted.

“Marry me, fly for free.” My wife still reminds me of the promise I made to her.

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The Birth of the Walser Rewards Program

The Walser Rewards program was birthed in October, 2002. It consisted of a card, a gas discount, a AAA new member discount, and a car rental discount. Buy the car, get the card.The first time I caught wind of the Walser Car Club (what it was called back then) was from a full-page ad in the Minneapolis Star Tribune. A card, gas discount, AAA and car rental discount. And a simple message: buy the car, get the card.The Walser Car Club was the brainchild of Randy McPherson and Paul Walser of the Walser Automotive Group. Randy and Paul had a unique relationship in the early 2000s, in that they partnered to build affiliate companies to the Walser Automotive group, including an insurance company, mortgage company, real estate company, leasing company, and a marketing company. The marketing company was set up to run the Walser Car Club, and possibly build additional “clubs” for other auto dealers.The marketing company was called WAM Advertising & Marketing. WAM is an acronym for Walser Advertising & Marketing. So, in reality, the full name of the marketing company was Walser Advertising & Marketing Advertising & Marketing.October 2002. Star Tribune ad. The “Walser Car Club”, the only product of a company with a bad name and one client.
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Conversation over Pizza

I met Randy McPherson in early 2003. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

 

My good friend Chad Dufault and I were having a conversation at Davanni’s, sharing a pizza. I think it was January 2003, but something tells me it may have been late 2002. I was working for Northwest Airlines in WorldPerks partner marketing, and he was VP of a mortgage company that Randy owned alongside Paul Walser of the Walser Automotive Group. We were talking about how to build his business, and how to retain customers. Since Loyalty was my focus at NWA, Chad was picking my brain. And we were just enjoying a pizza.

 

“You should talk to Randy McPherson,” Chad said out of the blue. “Walser is building a loyalty program, and they could use your help.”

 

I had never heard of this Randy McPherson before. “Who is this man,” I asked myself.

 

Location:Davanni’s, Edina, MN

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