“It’s not about me,” said Shaun Kniffin, Director of Marketing at Germain Auto Group. “It’s about the people we can help in our community.”

For the fourth year in a row, Kniffin, who goes by “NIFF” at the dealership, set out to conquer the grueling 180 mile Pelotonia bike race, a local charity event supporting cancer research in the Columbus, Ohio community. With more than 6,700 other cyclists and the enthusiastic support of his friends, co-workers and customers, Kniffin’s creative fundraising efforts helped raise more than $8,500 for the cause.

Germain Auto Group Shaun NIFF Kniffin

In a compelling show of team spirit, Germain rallied around Kniffin to help him reach his fundraising goal by engaging friends and customers through an eye-catching social media campaign. Five of the group’s local stores ran social promotions that asked customers to “Like” their dealership’s Facebook page through a series of engaging posts rooted in pop-culture comedy, including this hilarious video spoof. In exchange for every Like, the group pledged to donate $1 to Pelotonia.

In just five weeks, Germain raised $1,100 for cancer research and connected with a unique new group in the community. The new connections not only expose potential customers to Germain’s great brand message, but also allow the participating stores to sustain relationships by sharing engaging social posts, like asking fans to help name one of store’s new mascots.

Shaun Kniffin Germain Auto GroupThis year Shaun rode in honor of the mother of one of Germain’s sales associates who passed away this year after battling cancer for 11 months – a heartfelt statement that was deeply appreciated throughout the Germain organization. With the support of his team, Kniffin hopes to build on this year’s involvement by fielding an all-Germain team for next year’s ride, complete with an official dealership jersey.Though the ride may be over, Germain continues to build relationships in the community by raising money and awareness for local charities, as well hosting their own customer-facing philanthropy events. Their renewed effort to support important local causes not only helps promote the dealership’s positive brand to potential customers, it aides those in need within their community.

How do you and your dealership give back to the local community? Share your story with us in the comments below or send a note to DealerADvantage@cars.com.


Learn more about Pelotina

MileOne: Building stronger relationships through community philanthropy