JackSimmonsDD14“How much would you pay for honest feedback?” Jack Simmons, Cars.com Dealer Trainer, asked a crowd of over 60 attendees at his Digital Dealer workshop yesterday, “Leverage Reviews to Impact the Bottom Line.”  The consensus among the group was clear – receiving honest feedback about their stores is priceless.

The workshop, targeted toward internet sales managers, BDC managers and general managers, featured best practices from the dealership marketing pros at Tom Wood Toyota, Maguire Automotive and Greenway Dodge, including strategies for responding to reviews and promoting your reputation to win more shoppers and close more sales.  Among Jack’s tips included:

  1. Monitor: Whether the reviews are on Cars.com, Yelp, Google+ Local or any other review site that may be popular in your region, the first step to successfully managing reviews is having a designated person at the dealership check them on a daily basis.
  2. Ask: In addition to asking for reviews, ask for feedback other ways as well.  Brian Hefner at Tom Wood Toyota includes his name and contact information on signs throughout the dealership inviting shoppers to contact him if their expectations haven’t been met.
  3. Recognize successes: During the weekly sales meeting, Maguire calls out the positive reviews employees receive, helping to boost morale and ensure employees see value in positively representing their dealership.

“It makes sense that building up our online reputation would help us serve customers better,” said Jason Landsford of Access2Autos, an attendee at the session. “Customers that read our reviews are going to want us to deliver that same great experience.”

Reputation management was a common theme throughout the conference with many speakers addressing best practices for online customer reviews.  Check back to DealerADvantage next week for our full recap of the show.

[slideshare id=20881851&doc=dd14jackreputationmanagement-forddfinal-130509150405-phpapp02]