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Tis the Season!

WOW!  The Holiday Season is here!  Did it creep up on you too?  Where has the last month gone!?!


I know I have had my head down working hard to make sure that Dealer Synergy is prepped and ready for 2011, but I did want to stop everything I am doing just for a few minutes and...



Wish everyone a very wonderful, merry, joyful, happy, safe and prosperous Holiday Season and New Year!!  I hope everyone gets what they want, and especially gets time to spend with great family and friends!  Enjoy it!!


Best Wishes,


Andy Fedo

VP of Training

Dealer Synergy

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Like Sean said.....

We laughed , we cried, we have lost people during this training!  But all in all, this has been the most amazing training experience for me.  Sean has definitely taught me some vary valuable lessons and has even taken me away from my "deer in headlights" look and feelings....(do not watch those videos by the way, lol) I am so pumped and cannot wait until I am able to get on those phones and start making money!!!!  He has succeeded in turning us all into phone ninjas and now gets to go home to his beautiful wife and children....well deserved!  Thank you so much Sean!

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Jesse Thomas is the CEO and Founder of JESS3, a Creative Interactive Agency. JESS3 designs products and experiences for brands like Google, Nike, Facebook, MySpace, C-SPAN, Microsoft and NASA.

“Likes,” views and followers were all the rage in 2010. Despite the social media community emphasizing engagement instead of reach, media agencies quickly learned that engagement doesn’t scale easily, making it difficult to sell. Enter Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. As consumer use of social media spiked, the leading social networks retooled their advertising products to satisfy the newfound demand from brands. Instead of fizzling out like the popular online communities of yesteryear, they are driving toward profitability after several years of trying to figure out what they wanted to be when they grew up.

On the flip side, as consumers incorporate social media more into their daily lives, alternatives to the “big three” in the form of niche and location-based social networks have increased in appeal. Advertisers willing to experiment with media campaigns on these networks will have a distinct advantage moving forward as consumers become desensitized to text, display and even rich media ads. Whether they choose to go big or small, the social web equips advertisers with significantly more consumer data points than ever before to improve the targeting and relevance of online advertising.

Below are six predictions for digital advertising in 2011."


Read the rest of the article and watch the videos here!

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Foursquare Adds Photos and Comments


Location-based check in service Foursquare has just announced the addition of photos and commenting features, due to arrive within hours to users of its iPhone application. The features have already gone live on the website.

According to Foursquare, these two features were among the most requested from its users for months, a signal that, perhaps, folks are beginning to demand more social elements from check-in apps: rewards, either virtual or tangible, are just not enough.

A post on the official Foursquare company blog says that the added features make Foursquare "more useful and social," a statement that addresses the negative sentiments spouted by those who claim they don't see the point of check-in apps and call them useless.

What's New?

Now, you can comment on your friends' check-ins, a feature that serves as an additional form of communication for the service's users. Previously, communication was limited to shouts, tips and comments on your own check-ins, the latter which could be syndicated to Twitter and Facebook. You can even add comments while browsing the website itself too, allowing for a second opportunity to interact with other users.

Perhaps even more anticipated than comments, however, is photos. The addition of photo posting "changes everything," reads the Foursquare blog. You can "see dishes before ordering them, figure out if a venue looks fun, or easily identify a hard-to-find spot."

Photos will be syndicated to your history page on, transforming it into more a interesting life-stream of sorts, where photos and comments will be preserved alongside your check ins.


The new comments feature is also integrated with iPhone's push notifications system and there are privacy settings that can apply to photos.

Pics, Please!

With this update, Foursquare is clearly responding to user feedback - even its most-engaged users are beginning to tire of the check in for check in's sake, it seems. They want more than the occasional coupon or reward, badge or crown. Innovative photo-sharing startups like Instagram have been able to capitalize on users' desire to share comments and photos along with their location. However, on Instagram, the roles are reversed - photos come first, location second. With Foursquare, it's the other way around.

Foursquare even makes mention of Instagram in its post, noting that, as a Foursquare partner, photos taken with the app can be syndicated over to Instagram. With this comment, it almost sounds as if Foursquare thinks of Instagram as just another third-party application built on top of Foursquare's API (application programming interface), as opposed to its own standalone community.

Photos from Foodspotting and another location-sharing app picplz will now flow into Foursquare, too.

Although today's update is only for users of the iPhone app, Foursquare says that Android users will get a new app later this week, Palm and BlackBerry users will see an update in January and other major platforms will be addressed in early 2011.  In the near future, additional features will be added, says Foursquare: photos shared with Foursquare users will be able to be posted to Facebook and Flickr, comment tracking will be improved and photos will be archived in a "more useful place."



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INSIDE a LIVE Training WORKSHOP on Objections, Expectations & Rebuttals... Automotive Internet Sales Ninjas in TRAINING!

VERY POWERFUL!!! Notice... They are NOT using ANY Scripts or Books!!! All on the FIRST DAY! Go Team GO!



Read more… Here is an article that I wrote years ago and it was re-published by numerous National Automotive Sales Magazines & Newsletters... Mastering Objections, Expectations and Rebuttals by Sean Bradley, CEO and Founder of Dealer Synergy We all have had customers voice objections such as “No,” “What’s your best price?” “You are too far away,” “Is it on your lot?” and countless other variations. Over the years, we’ll all developed our own ways of handling those objections. Let me share a few of mine. First, let’s take a look at the top five reasons why Internet prospects are utilizing the Internet: Availability Price Convenience It’s a different way to do business, i.e., they don’t like car salesmen Research I have two rebuttals for each of these points, but before I do that I want to drill home the significance of the proactive approach rather than the “reactive” approach. Properly trained, you can overcome objections. However, I’d rather deal with expectations than objections. An expectation is exactly what it sounds like… something that a prospect is expecting. For example, what if you were making a follow-up call with your Internet prospect and after you went through the greeting phase of the call you transitioned with a qualifying question… “Mr. Customer, quick question for you, have you ever purchased a vehicle online before?” … “No?” “OK… What were you looking to accomplish by going online?” Notice that I don’t wait for the prospect to blurt out in the beginning of the call, “What’s your best price” or “Do you have that in stock right now?” Instead, I take the proactive approach and ask him early in the conversation, “What were you looking to accomplish by going online?” Because I already know he is going to respond with one of the five top reasons, I’m already prepared with my response. For example, when I asked my qualifying question, Mr. Customer might respond… “Well, Sean, I was looking for the best price, of course.” My rebuttal could be something like, “Mr. Customer, if I wasn’t able to get you the absolute best deal I would never expect you to buy a car from us…OK?” They usually respond “OK.” With that said, I counter with, “Mr. Customer, what else is important to you in regard to purchasing your next vehicle?” Note that I am in control of this conversation and am leading the prospect down the phone sales path to the goal of the appointment (that is Covey’s second habit…start with the end in mind). In sales we all aspire to the level of exceeding a customer’s expectations. The truth is though that we can never truly exceed a person’s expectation unless we first know what those expectations are. The easiest way to find that out is to simply ask… “What were you looking to accomplish by going online?” The other reason why we don’t just take the first response to that qualifying question is because it might only be a surface response. For example, it might seem like everyone is using the Internet just to shop price. That is so far from the case. Industry stats show that only 18%-20% of Internet shoppers are motivated solely by price. What does that tell you? All of those Internet customers that ask you what the price is… they actually have other wants and desires besides the price. Your job is to discover what those are. So, you should respond with a feel/felt/found rebuttal like: “Mr. Customer, I feel exactly as you do. Price is important to me too. As a matter of fact, most people feel the same way. That is why they are going online… to find the best price… and do you know what they have found? They found that by going to ABC Motors not only are they going to get the best price… they are also going to having an amazing experience in the process.” You might be saying, “Wow, that is way too much for me to remember.” You don’t have to remember all the words, just the concept. From there, it’s simply a matter of putting it in your own words. I am going to now give you two rebuttals for the remaining four top Internet expectations: Availability “Mr. Customer, that vehicle is definitely available. Now that you know you can have it immediately, what other factors are important to you in purchasing your next vehicle?”(If it is in allocation, you can get it through a dealer locate/swap or if you can order it from the manufacturer, it’s available.) **Over 80 percent of Internet prospects wind up purchasing something other than what they requested through an online initiative. Either they are upside down on the trade, can’t afford the vehicle, can’t afford the down payment or monthly payments or simply because the vehicle wasn’t available. So the idea is not to fight them over the phone. Let me be crystal clear, I am not saying to lie and say it is in stock or it’s available when there is no way you can secure the vehicle. I am saying if you can secure the vehicle, then it is available. “We are one of the largest Ford dealerships in the state of Florida; inventory is never an issue here. So what else is important to you in purchasing your next vehicle?” Convenience “Mr. Customer, we make it easier than ever for our clients to purchase a vehicle. We have two options for our online shopper. Option 1: We can offer free delivery to your home or office. Option 2: We can schedule what is called an expedited delivery process that means we handle most of the paperwork over the phone, schedule a time for you to come in for a final inspection, then move you quickly through our finance department. So, besides convenience, what else is important to you in purchasing your next vehicle?” Feel/Felt/Found: “Mr. Customer, I feel the same way you do. My time is important to me. As a matter of fact, most people feel the same way we do, which is why they are using the Internet to make it easier to purchase a vehicle. And they have found that by going onto ABC not only are they going to have a no-hassle, easy experience, they are also going to get a great deal too. So, aside from convenience, what else is important to you in purchasing your next vehicle?” Research “Mr. Customer, an educated customer like yourself makes my job a lot easier. What else is important to you in purchasing your next vehicle?” “Congratulations, your research led you to us. Now, what else is important to you in purchasing your next vehicle?” Hate car salesmen/looking for a different way to do business: “Mr. Customer, it sounds like you had a bad experience before.” You want to be empathetic with the prospect. Remember, if you can get the prospect to like you, trust you, and believe you, he will buy from you. Find out what happened that left him with a bad taste in his mouth and then assure him that is not how you conduct business. Make him understand that you and your dealership are an integrity-based operation. “Mr. Customer, I can appreciate what you are saying but let me say this… there are good priests out there, there are bad priests out there. There are good police out there, and there are bad police out there. Unfortunately, there are less than professional car salesman out there, but you are now dealing with an automotive professional and I assure you that we (ABC Motors) run an integrity-based operation here.” Transition both rebuttals with… “With that said, what else is important to you in purchasing your next vehicle?” I would suggest that you call an Internet sales meeting or if you are a small Internet department, get the floor involved and start to brainstorm. Think of the various objections and expectations that come to you on a daily basis. After you have outlined your top five or 10 expectations, go around the room and everyone should contribute one to two rebuttals for each of the expectations/ objections. After you have a list of 30 to 40, vote on the top three to four rebuttals for each of the expectations/rebuttals. That will be your final word track list. So, if you have the top five expectations and I gave you two for each, if you come up with two more on your own then you will have a total of four per expectation. That is 20 word tracks in your arsenal. Now you need to train and drill them over and over until they are reflex and memory. You tell me how much more effective you would be on the phones if you first knew exactly what to say and when to say it. You would be on your way to becoming a phone Ninja. Sean V. Bradley
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Tweet Attacks Review: Twitter Auto-Follow Software

Tweet Attacks Review

Tweet Attacks is an interesting and unusual piece of software. In the hands of a ‘white hat’ social media user, it’s the best software on the market for building a targeted following on Twitter. In the hands of a ‘black hat’ type, it’s a spam tool.

Have you seen tweets show up as @mentions from people you don’t follow that look something like this?

@billhibbler amazing website that pays u for twitter how amazing!!!

That tweet was probably created by someone using Tweet Attacks. But that’s not the purpose I use it for.


What I Like About Tweet Attacks

What I like about Tweet Attacks is its sophisticated follow and unfollow capabilities. It does more than any other software out there and it does so without using Twitter’s API. So you don’t get banned for overloading Twitter’s system.

You can use this tool to:

  • Follow another user’s followers (like your competitors, other influencers in your niche, etc.
  • Follow another user’s lists (if someone else on Twitter has created a list of Foodies, Musicians, Realtors, Authors, etc., you can auto-follow all the people on that list rather than searching for them manually)
  • Follow users that come up using a particular keyword or phrase using Twitter’s advanced search feature
  • Ignore users that might be spammers
  • Unfollow any user that doesn’t follow you back after a specified number of days

Tweet Attacks will do all this automatically as often as you specify and for multiple accounts. So if you have both a personal and a business account or you’re managing social media for multiple clients, you can automate building their following while you focus on strategy and tweeting interesting content.

You can load up all your accounts, setup a list of tasks and save that task list to a file for later use. Or you can set Tweet Attacks up to automatically run your list of tasks every X hours. Without being aggressive, you can easily add 700-1000 followers a week. Here’s an image from Twittercounter for an account I tested this on and, again, I wasn’t particular aggressive about adding followers.

TwitterCounter Results for Tweet Attacks Review

Added About 10,000 Followers in 3 Months

Tweet Attacks can also be setup to auto-tweet content from your blog or website or any website. Some might use this to tweet quotes from a quote website or news from a feed but that’s not my cup of tea. I prefer to hand-pick any quotes or articles or posts I want to re-tweet but you can load them into Tweet Attacks and have the software tweet them out at intervals you specify. I sometimes do this to keep useful content during hours or days when I’m not on Twitter.

The software is a one-time purchase which includes regular updates. And Tweet Attacks gets updated regularly. New features are constantly being added and tweaked for improvement. When there’s a problem, it gets fixed quickly and support tickets are answered promptly. There’s also a forum where you can interact with other users and swap ideas and experiences. Unfortunately most of the people showing up there are of the black-hat variety wondering why they haven’t gotten rich yet.


What I Don’t Like About Tweet Attacks

Jayson Yanuaria is the creator of Tweet Attacks and English isn’t his native language. He communicates well enough for me to understand him but it would be much easier if he had a native speaker create his user manual and training videos.

The software locks up or crashes about once or twice a month. That’s not really Jayson’s fault, though. Twitter frequently tweaks their site (like the launch of New Twitter). Whenever that happens, it causes problems with Tweet Attacks. The good news is that Jayson usually fixes the problem within 24-48 hours.

One other issue that’s not documented well in the manual you should be aware of. Although the software has a setting so that when you auto-unfollow people that aren’t following you back, you can tell it to ignore people that you’ve followed within the past X number of days (the default is 2 days), Tweet Attacks will only include those you’ve followed using the software. If you followed them through the website, they won’t be protected unless you add those followers to your Tweet Attacks VIP list. You’ll also want to use this list for anyone you follow and don’t care if they follow you back or not.

Bottom Line

Tweet Attacks is the best software I’ve found to date for Twitter automation. Other programs I’ve tried have less features and aren’t updated regularly (or ever) so they become useless after a couple of months.

There are two versions, a Lite and a Pro version. The Lite version does almost everything I need but, unfortunately, doesn’t include the ability to manage multiple accounts and to schedule daily tasks so I bought the Pro version. The good news is that my affiliate link below will take you to a page where the pro version is discounted to $127. The Lite version runs $57.

Click here to go to the Tweet Attacks website. (Affiliate Link)



by Bill Hibbler on December 16, 2010

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Is Your Website Provider Watching Your Back?

As I read through dealer websites, I’m often surprised at how many advertising violations I find. You would think that website providers would make sure that this doesn’t occur, right?

You should never assume that the company that creates and maintains your website follows all the laws and regulations governing advertising compliance. State advertising laws vary and the responsibility for compliance lies with the dealership, not the vendor. Here are some examples of what I’ve run into and issues to look for:

  • Disclaimers - Website providers sometimes include boilerplate factory disclaimers on inventory pages that identify vehicles by a specific VIN and price, such as:
    • “Advertised vehicles are subject to actual dealer availability. Certain vehicles listed may not be available, or may have different prices.”
    • “Pricing and availability varies by dealership.”
    • “Prices do not include dealer charges, such as advertising, that can vary by manufacturer or region, or costs for selling, preparing, displaying or financing the vehicle.”
    • “Images displayed may not be representative of the actual trim level of the vehicle.”
    • “Information provided is believed to be accurate but all specifications, pricing and availability must be confirmed in writing (directly) with the dealer to be binding.”

While these types of disclaimers may be appropriate when advertising a model line, they probably shouldn’t be associated with specific vehicles. Advertised vehicles that are identified by VIN are subject to prior sale, but they certainly should not be subject to “different prices”. You should also determine which charges are allowed to be excluded from an advertised price in your state.

  • Check to determine if all necessary disclosures are present on your site. For example, “advertised prices exclude tax, government fees, etc.” Again, do not assume that your website provider is utilizing language that is acceptable in your particular state or including all of the required disclosures.
  • Be sure that all disclaimers are clearly and conspicuously displayed and not buried away in a difficult-to-find link elsewhere on the site.
  • If payments, downpayments or interest rates are advertised, make sure that all of the proper Truth in Lending and state disclosures are included.
  • Ensure that lease programs are properly disclosed. Many factory national lease programs contain generic information that may not be sufficient or appropriate in your state.
  • Some states require that vehicle history, such as prior rental or demonstrator, is disclosed on vehicle advertisements. Does your website provide a way to include these disclosures?
  • Ensure that vehicles are promptly removed from the website after they have been sold. Some sites are linked to the dealer’s DMS and will remove sold units automatically, while others require vehicles to be removed manually. Sold units should always be removed promptly to avoid potential bait and switch advertising claims.

It’s never a bad idea to have your website thoroughly reviewed by a compliance professional. Remember, advertising violations can be easy for regulators to spot and difficult to defend against.

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While most people think of Twitter as a marketing tool, which it is, it can also be used to replace or augment other business activities.  Businesses can even save costs by using Twitter for some of their activities.  In this post, we are exploring some of the business areas where Twitter can help you bring down costs.  These will be especially useful for small businesses which don’t have a lot of money at disposal.

twitter money

1. Order taking – Twitter can be easily extended by businesses as an order desk.  Create an ID especially for booking orders for your products and services.  Use any of the desktop Twitter tools or, even better, use one of the available mobile applications to track orders.  No need to employ someone to manage your order desk 24/7.

twitter order taking

Who is doing this: The Coffee Groundz that started booking orders on Twitter in 2008.

2. Polls and Surveys – Use Twitter for getting people’s opinion on your business and activities by letting them poll or participate in surveys.  You can use PollDaddy’s twitter polls which is a free service or twtpoll which is a paid service but provides advanced options.

twitter pollstwitter poll

Who is doing this: CNET, CNN, Yahoo, United Airlines to name a few.

3. Emotional Intelligence – Twitter users often share their experience, feedback and opinions about products and service they use.  Businesses can now track what is being shared about them on Twitter without spending a fortune.  There are free tools like TwitScoop and TweetBeep for tracking tweets that mention your brand.

Here is the result when I searched for Dell.

twitter reactions

An extreme form of emotion expressed on Twitter is Unfollowing someone.  If you are already using Twitter for your business and want to know which of your messages made you lose existing followers, you can use TweetEffect that tracks the change in the number of your followers with every Tweet.  Good tool to measure the impact of your tweets.

twitter emotional intelligence

twitter trending

Who is doing this: Actually anyone can do this and you can gather emotional intelligence not just about yourself but others also.  For example, using TweetEffect, I tracked the changes in President Obama’s followership and found some interesting relationships between the Tweets and followership that you can see in the images above.

4. Customer Service – Another area where Twitter can be very useful.  Provide a Twitter address where customers can send you a direct message whenever they need help with your products and services.  Track and respond to customer queries and support requests through any of the free Twitter management tools.twitter customer service

Who is doing this: I know of Comcast and JetBlue.  Please let us know through comments if you know anyone else.

5. Competition Analysis – Want to know what your competition is doing, what is the buzz about your competitor on the Internet, what are some of the areas that have your competitor’s customers unhappy and so on.  You can track all these things through Twitter.

twitter stats

Use TwitterStats and TweetVolume to find out how many times people mention your brand and your competitor’s.  These two only provide quantitative analysis.  If you are looking for qualitative comparison, you will need to make use TwitScoop and TweetBeep.

Who is doing this: Anyone, just that nobody wants to do it publicly and that’s why I don’t know of any name.

6. News, Announcements and PR – No need to hire an expensive PR agency to announce and distribute your company’s news.  Use Twitter to distribute news and make announcements.  Send a message to @MicroPR and it will be distributed to all the media professionals and bloggers who follow them.  You can also use #Twitpitch hash tag to pitch your company, product or service.

google twitter

Who is doing this: Google uses Twitter to share the news stories and important announcements related to all its products and services.  Dell also shares announcements @Direct2Dell.

7. Raising capital and donations – This is something that most non-profits can make use.  I am not too sure of the legal issues involved in companies pitching for private investments through Twitter but know of at least one example of such request.  Jason Goldberg, the founder of Social Median, that was recently acquired by Xing, posted a message on Twitter soliciting angel investment.


8. Hiring Talent – If you are looking for talented people to join your business, chances are you will find them on Twitter.  Just post your requirement as a tweet and you may end up getting references from your followers or direct messages from interested parties.

hiring on twitter

Who is doing this: Sodexo USA, a company involved in food service and facilities management has a dedicated Twitter account named Sodexo Careers.

9. Special Offers, Discounts and Coupons – Use Twitter to notify people of discounts that you are offering without advertising costs.  If you wish to provide coupons to your customers, use twtQpon to create and distribute discount coupons.

twitter sales offers

Who is doing this: Dell Outlet offers deals and discounts through Twitter.

10. Manage company events – Want to invite people to your company’s event or a webinar.  Use Twitter to promote your event.  In case you want to be more organized, use CalTweet or VeVite.  These tools allow you to set up an event on Twitter, invite guests and have RSVP responses mailed to you.

Know of any other areas where businesses can save money using Twitter for managing their activities, please care to share.

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Toyota Turns To Twitter To Repair Its Image


Toyota has been dealing with negative backlash from the massive safety recalls of its vehicles; and is even suffering in terms of sales. So what does the company do to repair its image? Turn to Twitter, of course! The Japanese auto giant has launched a branded channel on TweetMeme, in partnership with Federated Media, which aggregates and organize Twitter conversations regarding Toyota.

Called Toyota Conversations, the site brings together the top stories being Tweeted about Toyota, from news articles to press releases. The site also shows visitors the most popular videos and images being shared about Toyota on Twitter. And the channel includes a Featured Tweets from Toyota’s Twitter account and press room as well as AdTweets, which are Tweetmeme’s retweetable ads for Toyota.

You may notice after taking a look at all of the top stories that are being aggregated on the site, that most of the news is positive. That doesn’t seem to match the general tone of the media writing about Toyota, which has been quick to criticize the car company for its manufacturing mistakes. If you take a look at Twitter sentiment app Tweetfeel, the sentiment of Tweets mentioning Toyota lean more negative. Tweetmeme channels can be set up to pick up only certain news sources. It looks like Toyota picked the friendlier ones.

That being said, it’s definitely interesting to see such a high-profile company taking to Twitter to try to reform its image by engaging directly in a dialogue with consumers. As we’ve seen with the recent Southwest/Kevin Smith incident, Twitter is influencing public relations in unprecedented ways. Now more than ever, brands are flocking to Twitter to not only monitor and track what’s being said about their company on Twitter but to influence and participate in the conversation.





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Older SocNet Use Dramatically Rises

Older SocNet Use Dramatically Rises

pew-socnet-changes-generation-dec-2010.JPGWhile overall social networking use by online American adults has grown from 35% in 2008 to 61% in 2010, the increase is even more dramatic among older adults, according to new data from the Pew Research Center. In particular, the rate of online social networking approximately quadrupled among Older Boomers (9% to 43%) and the GI Generation (4% to 16%).

Millennials Still Lead in Social Networking

Despite the dramatic uptick in social networking among older adults, members of the Millennial generation still enjoy a healthy lead among all age groups in social network use, with 83% of online adults from 18-33 engaging in social networking. This increased about 24% from 67% in 2008.

Gen X has the second-highest social networking rate, 62%, up 73% from two years ago. The rate among Younger Boomers increased by a factor of 2.5, rising from 20% to 50%, while it tripled among the Silent Generation, going from 11% to 34%.

8 in 10 Adults Go Online

pew-socnet-generation-dec-2010.JPGOverall, 79% of US adults 18 and older can be classified as “online.” As would be expected given their much higher social networking rate, Millennials are most likely to be online with 95% participation.

Online rates drop with each succeeding age bracket. Eighty-six percent of Gen X and 81% of Younger Boomers are online. Even three-quarters (76%) of Older Boomers are online, meaning a solid majority of working-age adults are online.

However, adults in their retirement years are online at notably lower levels. More than half (58%) of the Silent Generation are online. This figure sharply dips to less than one-third (30%) of the GI Generation, age 74 and older.

Other Findings

  • The percentage of all adult internet users who watch video online jumped 14 points in the past two years, from 52% in May 2008 to 66% in May 2010.
  • 51% of all online adults listen to music online, compared with 34% the last time this question was asked, in June 2004. While Millennials used to be by far the most avid listeners, Gen Xers and Younger Boomers are catching up.
  • As of May 2010, 53% of online adults have used a classified ads website such as Craigstlist, up from 32% in September 2007.
  • Searching for health information, an activity that was once the primary domain of older adults, is now the third-most-popular online activity for all internet users ages 18 and older.
  • Only half as many online teens work on their own blog as did in 2006, and Millennial generation adults ages 18 to 33 have also seen a modest decline in blogging. However, an increase in blogging among older adults has resulted in a small overall blogging increase from 11% of online adults in 2008 to 14% in 2010.

Youth Favor SocNets, Facebook

Results from the recent Harris Interactive “YouthPulse 2010″ indicate that three-quarters of 8-to-24-year-olds use a social networking site and about two-thirds (68%) spend time on a social networking site daily. Facebook is the most popular social networking site in this demographic, with 86% of 18-to-24-year-olds using Facebook and 71% of 13-to-17-year-olds doing so. More than one-quarter of 8-to-12-year-olds (28%) use Facebook, as well.

About the Data: The Pew Research Center conducted a tracking survey of 2,252 adults 18 and older between April 29 – May 30, 2010.

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I would like to start off by saying “Happy Holidays". I hope each and every one of you has a wonderful holiday season.

The "Holiday Season" is in full effect and the end of the year approaching quickly, I am hoping all of you are using this time of the year to your benefit. This is the best time of the year to set and close more appointments than any other month of the calendar year. Customer's are in "Shopping/Buying" mode during the holidays so use this mentality to your advantage!!

With that being said, my question to each "Phone Ninja" out there is this.....


-  What issue/objection are you hearing customers say most and trying to overcome? 

-  How and what rebuttal have you been using to overcome these objections?

In order to make this a little more interesting and to generate some feedback, I would like to make this a little contest. We are going to judge who came up with the best, well thought out rebuttal and give away a holiday prize!   

So please take a moment and think of each call you have taken and decide what is the most common objection you’re dealing with on a daily basis and how have you effectively overcame this objection. Is it the customer who is waiting till tax time to purchase a new vehicle?  Is it the customer who has to wait till after the holidays to see how much money they have left to put down on a new vehicle? 

I look forward to hearing from everyone and seeing how and what you said to help your customers and set more appointments. Once again Happy Holidays!

Thank You,
Kristy Ehmann
Dealer Synergy

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Automotive Social Media Marketing Statistics, Facts and Figures / Re-Post from Ralph Paglia of Automotive Digital Marketing...


Automotive Social Media Marketing Statistics, Facts and Figures published by reliable resources for December 2010


  • Social network usage by Americans aged 65 and up grew 100% in 2010 from 13% to 26%, and is expected to continue to increase (Pew Research Center)

  • Facebook passed Yahoo in August 2010 to become #2 video site in America (58,600,00 users) behind #1 YouTube (146,300,000 users) (comScore)

  • Twitter now gets more visitors than MySpace, becoming 3rd most trafficked Social Network. had 96 million unique visitors in November 2010 up 76% from November 2009. #1 visited social network is Facebook with 598 million unique visitors. (comScore)

  • 29% of Twitter users 18-24 years old use Twitter to follow their favorite companies and brands

  • 60% of web users visit social networks (PC Advisor)

  • Two thirds of comScore’s U.S. Top 100 websites and half of comScore’s Global Top 100 websites have integrated content sharing with Facebook.

  • The average Facebook user is connected to 60 pages, groups and events (Facebook press office)

  • Twitter adds more than 300,000 new "Tweeps" (users) every day (Twitter)

  • There are more than 600 million searches on Twitter every day (Twitter)

  • YouTube receives more than 2 billion video views per day (YouTube press center)

  • 77% of Automotive Internet Users (AIU) read blogs (Technorati)

  • 60% of bloggers are aged 18-44 (Technorati)

  • Male/Female distribution ratio of Twitter users is 47/53%

  • 51% of active Twitter users follow companies, brands or products on social networks

  • Women aged 55 and up are the fastest growing Facebook demographic in America

  • Two-thirds of bloggers are male:
  • 65% are age 18-44.
  • Bloggers are more affluent and educated than the general population:
  • 79% have college degrees / 43% have graduate degrees
  • 1/3 have a household income of $75K+
  • 1/4 have a household income of $100K+
  • 81% have been blogging more than 2 years.
  • Professionals have an average of 3.5 blogs.
  • Professionals blog 10+ hours/week.
  • 11% say blogging is their primary income source.



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I am proud to be a salesman, because more than any other man, I and millions of others like me, built America.
The man who builds a better mouse trap - or a better anything - would starve to death if he waited for people to beat a pathway to his door. Regardless of how good or how needed the product or service might be, it has to be sold.
Eli Whitney was laughed at when he showed his cotton gin. Edison had to install his electric light free of charge in an office building before anyone would even look at it. The first sewing machine was smashed to pieces by a Boston mob. People scoffed at the idea of railroads. They thought that traveling even thirty miles an hour would stop the circulation of the blood! McCormick strived for 14 years to get people to use his reaper. Westinghouse was considered a fool for stating he could stop a train with wind. Morse had to plead before 10 Congresses before they would even look at his telegraph.
The public didn't go around demanding these things; they had to be sold!!
They needed thousands of salesmen, trailblazers and pioneers - people who could persuade with the same effectiveness as the inventor could invent. Salesmen took these inventions, sold the public on what these products could do, taught customers how to use them, and then taught businessmen how to make a profit from them.
As a salesman, I've done more to make America what it is today than any other person you know. I was just as vital in your great-great-grandfather's day. I have educated more people, created more jobs, taken more drudgery from the laborer's work, given more profits to businessmen, and have given more people a fuller and richer life than anyone in history. I've dragged prices down, pushed quality up, and made it possible for you to enjoy the comforts and luxuries of automobiles, radios, electric refrigerators, televisions, and air conditioned homes and buildings. I've healed the sick, given security to the aged, and put thousands of young men and women through college. I've made it possible for inventors to invent, for factories to hum, and for ships to sail the seven seas.
How much money you find in your pay envelope next week, and whether in the future you will enjoy the luxuries of prefabricated homes, stratospheric flying of airplanes, and new world of jet propulsion and atomic power, depends on me. The loaf of bread you bought today was on a baker's shelf because I made sure that a farmer's wheat got to a mill, that the mill made wheat into flour, and that the flour was delivered to your baker.
Without me, the wheels of industry would come to a grinding halt. And with that, jobs, marriages, politics and freedom of thought would be a thing of the past. I AM A SALESMAN and I'm proud and grateful that as such, I serve my family, my fellow man and my country.

Facebook appears to be on the verge of launching a new design of its Fan Pages. This change seems to include the site’s location-based Places checkin functionality, enabling “likers” of the page to check in to it. Although

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is said to be giving a sneak peak at the new Profile Pages design on 60 Minutes tonight, it seems that more change is in store; you can already see the new Pages design in action on select pages, such as Ellen DeGeneres’s Fan Page. On Ellen’s page, you will notice a count for the number of checkins the Page has. According to Facebook spokesperson Meredith Chin, the Ellen Page is a merged page that includes the functionality for checkins available shortly after the feature launched a few months ago. Basically, your brand page will then take on the Places page designs, which appears to be the inspiration for the new profile pages that are to be released as well.

“As long as the address of the official page and the place page match, it should show you a prompt and ask you if you want to merge them,” Chin said.


You can see screenshots of the new design below.

Current Pages Design -----------------



The current Pages design, similar to Profile Pages, has the Page navigation tabs (Wall, Questions, Photos) at the top.

New Pages With Checkins

The new Pages design includes checkins, profile information (which includes some basic information about the page and the Wall postings below it), a narrower left column and more.


New Tabs

The new Pages also feature the navigation tabs on the left-hand side.

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First, let’s look at the media advertising landscape for 2011; then determine how your strategy fits into that and more importantly, how you are going to maximize your advertising ROI within these parameters.


According to Carat, a leading independent media communications agency, total ad spend in the US is expected to increase by 1.7% in 2011. “All media are expected to return to growth, except for the newspaper sector, which, along with magazines, is expected to be the weakest performer. The two biggest areas of growth are internet and television, followed by radio, outdoor and cinema… Online continues to capture a bigger percentage of the media spend in 2010 at 11.3%, increasing to 12.1% in 2011”.


The trend towards mobile smart phone devices to reach people on the move cannot be over-emphasized.


Now, given this landscape let me ask you the following questions:

  • What is your advertising strategy for 2011?
  • Do you have a plan to minimize advertising leakage or waste?
  • Do you have an integrated multi-media advertising strategy across ALL your media channels to maximize advertising message, leads and conversion?
  • Do you have a rigorous tracking mechanism in place know which channel provided the best ROI, and more importantly, to quickly adapt to changing response, leads and conversion patterns?


Despite the changing demographic and ad spend landscape many automobile dealers continue to devote the majority of their ad budgets to TV, newspapers and radio. It is true that the internet is getting a larger share of today’s ad budget, however, there is NO INTREGRATED strategy yet in place to minimize advertising leakage or waste.


Every month, the average automobile dealership spends about $50,000 in advertising and the average dealership will use a combination of  TV, newspaper and magazines, radio, direct mail and the internet to advertise.  The critical question is WHETHER all of these channels are integrated in a way where EACH channel provides input into the other that validates the dealer’s brand message.


In my opinion, the most ROI effective, integrated advertising strategy MUST encompass the following and include an appropriate, affordable, easy to implement online platform to enable seamless execution:


  • TV: You are already spending money here so make sure you include your toll free #, website info and provide an incentive for your watchers to respond to your shortcode keyword.
  • Newspapers & Magazines, Radio & Direct Mail: A contact phone #, website and shortcode keyword are critical here. Note that a response to your shortcode keyword will allow you to direct your customers by smart phone to your mobile website, YouTube and  Social Media sites.
  • Your Online Website: Must be well planned, easy to navigate and SEO optimized. Do not forget a call to action to your shortcode keyword.
  • SMS Text Marketing Platform (Opt-in): If you do not have this, you are missing a HUGE part of your potential audience. For people on the go, you can push through instant coupons, discounts, contests and gratification.
  • Automated Submission Of Ads On YouTube & Social Media: Your presence in this space without a lot of effort and resources is key. Tie in with the other strategies produces maximum results.
  • Automated Mobile Website Capacity: This is critical in today’s smart phone environment and to reach the Y generation.
  • Tracking & Measurement: Having a separate shortcode keyword for each advertising channel will allow you to track responses, leads, conversions and ongoing customer lifetime value. This will also show you over time which channel represent you most effective ROI and potentially reduce your ad spend.

 Once you have your prospects and customers’ keycode contact #, you can now send your prospects periodic new sales specials and coupons, and for existing customers, reminders and/or coupons for maintenance and other services.


Now, you are wondering HOW you could do all that without substantial incremental expense. First, doing this for 6 - 9months should show you which channels have the smallest or even negative ROI for possible elimination. Second, the potential incremental sales from this strategy should more than make up for any additional expense with this strategy.


You can position your company today to capitalize on the new advertising landscape by incorporating these multi-media advertising strategies to improve your ROI. Many of your competition are already doing it.


If you want to find our how other automobile dealerships are using this strategy, please contact me.

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Dont Be A Hunter!

Wow that sounds weird doesnt it? I mean I am smack in the middle of "huntin country" in central Pennsylvania. I have gone hunting for over 5 years and can tell you that although I did have fun with the guys I went with, I left the feeling that I had just wasted an entire week of my life doing nothing. Maybe I did it wrong. I woke up at 4:00am to get to the woods at 5:00am to walk a couple of miles to get to my ideal "spot by sun up. Now this just isnt a walk thru the meadow there are trees and rocks and streams to contend with plus its completely black out and cold as the dickens! Then when I finally get to my spot I sit there and wait and hopefully a deer walks by so I can blast it. In over 5 years I have done this method and have been told by my family experts that it works. They kill deer every year without fail so I listen to them. I have not even seen a deer since my first year out.

This may (or may not) work in deer hunting. It will not work in car sales! I guarantee that if you only wait on the floor traffic of your store you will starve to death. Customers want to be more important than being a floor up. Truth be told they are.

For at least the next six months I am going to put my money where my mouth is. I have taken a new job at a new dealership as a salesperson. I am not going to have any "power" that management has. I am just going to do what I have said to do with social media, and my service lane. Because by the way I am at a new dealership where my wife is from. I have no contacts here! No established clientele! I hope you guys take this journey with me and help me along the way. I am no where near an expert. I just think there is something to social media and i think you can make a good living just by utilizing it. If you have any tips for me please comment below or send me an email at .

here is my first question for you. If you went to a store that had ZERO social media presence what would be the first step you would take?

Thank you all,


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What is your process for handling Trade-In Leads?

I don't know if anyone feels the same way about Trade-In Leads, but I think they are amazing (other than your own website leads of course)! They give you an opportunity to assist people by addressing concerns about their current vehicle rather than complete focus on their replacement vehicle. As we all know, when we receive a new or used car lead from our website or 3rd Party Lead Provider, the main objections we receive are Price, Availability, Convenience, Better way of doing business, or just Researching online at this time. When we receive Trade-In Leads this gives us an opportunity to build value and establish a relationship with our customer's by pacing the conversation about the customers vehicle rather than sole focus on the replacement vehicle. Typically if a customer does a trade in lead, there primary concern is wondering how much they will receive for there vehicle, because they want to receive "top-dollar" for there's and pay "bottom-dollar" for ours right! Well here is what is so great about trade-ins, by building value on how important there vehicle is to your lot regardless if they by a vehicle from you or not is what will set you apart. Asking series of questions like: Where did you purchase this vehicle? Was it new or used? How would you rate the overall comfort of your vehicle? What was the primary use of your vehicle? What did you like most about your vehicle? How would you rate the exterior of your vehicle on a scale of 1-10? And the list could go on and on! You can really have fun with these leads and build some good rapport with your customers. Another good practice is to tell the customer your process for evaluating trades. If a customer from 100-200 miles away says why should I consider trading at your dealership? Then you should respond with a thorough process that separates you from your competition.

I am sure most of us would agree that we would rather trade for a vehicle with a customer story behind it than to purchase at auction. With more and more customers selling their own vehicles via ebay, craigslist, and other 3rd Party Providers, you must be ready to explain to them why trading with your dealership is better than selling it themselves.

OUTSIDE OF THE BOX IDEA: Grab your Flip-Cam! Try this if you have not already, maybe have some of your customers that trade-in there current vehicle and purchase there replacement vehicle not only do a Video Testimonial but also have them do a Walk-Around on the vehicle they traded in! This gives your new customers that are interested in this particular trade-in the absolute best source, the previous owner! Let your previous owners sell the vehicles value for you, it's well worth the try. We all know how powerful Video can be!

I would like to personally thank Sean Bradley and Andy Fedo on this subject, because by role playing and "synergizing"(not a real word I don't think but great for this website) with each other they were able to help me realize how important it is to really address concerns and expectations about the customers current vehicle rather than sole interest on there purchase request. Sean and Andy also helped me realize how important it will be to make a check-sheet for these leads and train, drill, and rehearse this with the Internet Sales Coordinators and the entire dealership.

All in all, have fun with your trade in leads; build relationship and value by learning more about their vehicle. My suggestions for great providers of these leads would be Trade In Marketplace, BlackBook, or KBB. If I can offer any assistance to you or if you would like to throw some suggestions my way then please do not hesitate to contact me.

Good Selling

Durran Cage

Internet Sales Director

Gary Mathews of Jackson

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