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Used-Car Dealer Crackdown (9/22/14)

Honda, GM suspending dealers for violating CPO standards; Cadillac names U.S. sales chief; Paris Auto Show peek.

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Wage parity for new, veteran UAW Lear workers; Camry to get aluminum; Honda refreshes CR-V; Scion embraces Toyota tie.

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Cadillac tipped to call flagship something other than LTS

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Cadillac Elmiraj Concept

Cadillac wouldn't be Cadillac without large sedans in its lineup, and while the XTS has had to hold down that end of the fort all on its own, it won't have to for too long. That's because the luxury brand in the General Motors portfolio is preparing to roll out its new LTS, stylistically previewed by the Elmiraj concept pictured above. Only now, the latest thinking is that the upcoming flagship model may not be called LTS at all.

As Automotive News points out, Cadillac's naming scheme is all over the place at the moment. The ATS slotting below the CTS makes sense (alphabetically), but where do the ELR, SRX and especially the Escalade fit into that naming hierarchy? And how would LTS - as the project has been known until now - sit above the XTS?

Fortunately, Cadillac may be on the case, as two of the division's most recent senior appointments seem keen to rationalize the naming scheme. One is Uwe Ellinghaus, who joined Cadillac as chief marketing officer late last year. Speaking of the brand's nomenclature last spring, Ellinghaus was quoted as saying, "We are aware that this is currently a weakness of the Cadillac brand." And his new boss is bound to agree.

Before recently joining Cadillac, incoming president Johan de Nysschen completely overhauled - or at least approved the complete overhaul of- Infiniti's naming scheme. That reorganization may have left us scratching our heads for the short term, but as time goes by, it's likely to make more sense. Before Cadillac and Infiniti, de Nysschen was at Audi, which ruffled a few feathers of its own when it applied a new naming scheme to follow the A8. But if Ingolstadt's example can teach us anything, it's that a more logical nomenclature, if carried out properly, works out for the best in the long term.

Cadillac tipped to call flagship something other than LTS originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 21 Sep 2014 14:35:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Cadillac's de Nysschen won't budge on raised pricing

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Cadillac Logo

According to new Cadillac boss Johan de Nysschen, it will take between 10 and 15 years to elevate GM's top brand, which was once hailed as "The Standard Of The World," back to prominence in the minds of American customers. And to hear the executive talk of it, the brand is going to have to be willing to see sales falter in the near-term before they recover:

"Either you have to bring your volume aspirations into alignment with reality and accept that you will sell fewer cars... Or you have to drop the price and continue to transact at the prices where you were historically... I think the logical conclusion is that it's better to build off a very solid base in terms of [product] credibility, charge a fair price for the car and realize you have to wait until the volume comes."

In other words, sales will fall before they rise, and the brand has to be okay with that. Notice, too, that de Nysschen speaks of "a fair price" for Cadillac cars and utility vehicles. In this case, "fair" means more than many of the brand's traditional buyers are accustomed to, and roughly in line with the brands and machines Cadillac believes it is competing against. For instance, the newly enlarged 2014 CTS carries a suggested retail price that is over $6,000 higher than it was in 2013, and some trim levels boast an even higher price premium over the models they replace.

Time will tell if General Motors continues to support de Nysschen in his quest to bring Caddy up in pricing and perception to its German rivals, but at least he's being clear about the time frame and acknowledging that they are "leaving their traditional customer base" behind in the process. As the recent former head of Infiniti and a career-man at Audi before that, de Nysschen should know a thing or two about how hard it is to retrench and resurrect a damaged luxury nameplate.

Here's hoping Cadillac's upcoming range-topper is found worthy of direct comparison with the likes of the Mercedes S-Class, BMW 7 Series and Audi A8, models with which it will likely be priced directly against.

Cadillac's de Nysschen won't budge on raised pricing originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 18 Sep 2014 18:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Bugatti Dynamic Driving Experience

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Bugatti Dynamic Driving Experience

Let's say you're rich. Filthy rich - you've got cars in garages of homes you can't remember you own, rich.

As the gap between automotive haves and have-nots continues to grow, ultraluxury automakers are exploiting fresh ways to lure the sorts of well-heeled car aficionados who would rather spend their spare time shipping exotic sleds to private tracks than sitting on a beach in the Maldives.

This rarified air presents a daunting challenge to boutique carmakers attempting to distinguish themselves, especially when they're vying for attention amidst voluptuous Paganis, Koenigseggs, and Brabus G63 AMG 6x6s. When the stakes are this high and the competition this fierce, you need a novel approach to peddle your four-wheeled wares - even if you're Bugatti.

Continue reading Bugatti Dynamic Driving Experience

Bugatti Dynamic Driving Experience originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 16 Sep 2014 11:57:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Rebecca Kon posted a blog post

3 Automotive Infographics You Need to See

In the Age of Information Overload, infographics are here to help us “boil it all down”. Their visual appeal comes from their precision in organizing data and can be a great way to get information quickly without having to read a bunch of text to get to the point.Below, I’ve listed a few infographics that dealerships should take a…See More
1 hour ago
Crystal Hartwell posted a blog post

Gubagoo is a Finalist for Most Innovative Dealership Solution of 2014

 ‘Gubagoo Behavioral Engagement & Analytics Technology (BEAST), and Chat and Call Centers’ selected by dealers as DrivingSales Innovation Cup Award finalist; Gubagoo to present onstage at DrivingSales Executive Summit West Palm Beach, FL and Salt Lake City, UT – September 22, 2014 – ‘Gubagoo Behavioral Engagement & Analytics Technology (BEAST), and Chat and Call Centers’ has been named a finalist for the DrivingSales Innovation Cup…See More
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Black Book posted a blog post

Varying Movement As The Leaves Are Ready To Fall

Welcome to this week’s Beggs on the Used Car Market, with data and insight from Ricky Beggs and Black Book. As we passed through each day with attendance at auctions and watching others online by the editors, it is obvious regarding the interest in the used market while recognizing the overall value movement and the number of no sales, that we are fully engaged in the beginning of the fall…See More
6 hours ago
Amy Eddins Hughes commented on J.D. Rucker's blog post You Know Your Marketing, but do You Really KNOW Your Market?
"Manny, depending on which specific overlay and correlation of data you are curious about, I may be able to provide more color and answer your question more specifically. Feel free to reach out to me directly for a quick conversation. However, any…"
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How Dealers Can Use Social Media at the Dealership

"So you agree, JD, that a picture is worth a thousand words?  Not only do they work on social media, they make a powerful impact in the one-on-one sales presentation.  I learned that long before I sold my first car, and shot a photo of…"
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How Dealers Can Use Social Media at the Dealership

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Do You Recognize A Trend

Smartphones have made an impact and will continue to do so for both your dealership and your customers.
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How can Internet Salespeople and BDC Reps be responsible for selling 24 cars per month each? By setting 3 appointments with their active leads and sold customers. Every day, 5 days per week. Do the math!…
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ADM Blog Posts

Women Walking Out - What is it Costing Your Dealership?

Posted by Anne Fleming on September 17, 2014 at 9:30am 2 Comments

Today’s Women’s Wednesday is a must-read as we focus on the cost to your dealership when women walk out.

 

In the Wall Street Journal last month, it was reported there are now more women drivers on the road than men. The last several years the auto industry has witnessed a big and not so surprising shift in the car buyer demographics particularly in terms of gender.

 

This leaves many dealerships shifting their paradigm in terms of how to re-strategize their business and marketing plan to truly…

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ADP Dealer Services Announces Financing Program with GE Capital as CDK Global

Posted by Ralph Paglia on September 17, 2014 at 9:30am 0 Comments

ADP Dealer Services announces new Financing for Purchases Made by Car Dealers as part of Transition to CDK Global

CDK Global has announced that the company will offer Car Dealers a new Financing Program with GE Capital after they transition from ADP Dealer Services and complete their spinoff from the ADP corporate parent.

I wanted to let ADM Community Members know about a press release that came out today from CDK Global... The company that will replace ADP Dealer Services. After the spinoff…

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Stop Using Public Relations as Advertising

Posted by sara callahan on September 17, 2014 at 7:00am 0 Comments

Throughout history, public relations professionals have assisted companies in gaining exposure and getting the right message to the right audience at the right time. In the past, PR agencies relied on connections with journalists, media contacts and industry publications to relay relevant company news. With the arrival of social media, and digital marketing, PR agencies have had to evolve with the times. It has become a content-driven world, with a whole lot more opportunities to place content.

 

While it is now easier for PR agencies to spread a company’s message, the amount of information news outlets and other publishing platforms receive is quite overwhelming. As such, it is now more important than ever to get your messaging right, so it does not get lost in the noise, or, even worse, turn…

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3 Ways to SUPERCHARGE Your Dealership’s Online Marketing

Posted by Amanda Meuwissen on September 16, 2014 at 8:23am 1 Comment

Recently, Dataium, the world’s largest compiler of online automotive shopping behavior, released a guide on the top 7 ways dealers can improve their online marketing. We’re going to look at 3 that we feel are top priority.

Don’t Forget Mobile

“During major shopping seasons, 1/3 of all dealer traffic came from mobile devices.”

Multi-device research when considering purchasing a vehicle has dramatically increased over the past year, specifically with mobile. We know you’ve already heard more than you can probably stand about the importance of mobile, but now is the time to listen. The truth is shoppers ARE going to your site and checking out your dealership from their phone. Make sure the experience of your website on mobile is just as effective as anywhere else, and look into more mobile friendly content.

Spend…

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In Marketing, New Trumps Used Every Time

Posted by Brian Cox on September 16, 2014 at 5:00am 0 Comments

Bob visits a website searching for a new vehicle. As he filters down to the model he is considering, he is confronted with a seemingly endless list of stock photos with similar prices. Frustrated at the lack of information, he leaves and attempts his search on another site just to get the same results.

 

Suzy is in the market for a used vehicle. After comparing vehicles by prices and mileage, she finds one that fits her needs and her budget. The vehicle doesn’t have a very good description, however, and she has questions about the vehicle’s condition. She fills out the form and asks for more pictures of the vehicle. All she gets in return are repeated invites to schedule an appointment while being bombarded with phone calls from salespeople.

 

Joe is…

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Covert Operations on Your Dealership's Website to Increase Conversion

Posted by Lisandra Ramos on September 15, 2014 at 12:37pm 0 Comments

Agent, you’ve been recruited on a mission to activate your dealership’s website and convert more browsers into buyers. There are three immediate tasks you must complete in order to do so. There’s no time to waste.

1. The Bait

When your dealership’s website opens on a browser, what is the first thing customers see? They SHOULD be seeing the answers to these three questions right off the bat:

  • Where am I?

  • What can I do here?

  • Why should I do it?

The answers to the first two questions, “where am I?” and “what can I do here?” should be blatantly obvious -- they’re usually at the top of the screen (logo and navigation toolbar).  

The answer to question number…

Continue

Car Insurance by City and Region: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

Posted by Ralph Paglia on September 15, 2014 at 10:00am 0 Comments

The Detroit Bureau Reports on Least and Most Expensive Areas for Car Insurance

Motorists Get Slammed with High Premiums in the Motor City

- Written by

It may be the Motor City, but driving there comes at a steep cost – motorists in the Metropolitan Detroit area paying the highest premium for insurance in the country, according to a new study.

On average, a motorist in the Detroit area will pay 165% of the national average for auto insuance, according to research by Quadrant Information Services. Those…

Continue

Does A Great Leader Make A Great Team?

Posted by Kalyn Kasun on September 15, 2014 at 7:00am 1 Comment

I recently read a fantastic article that an HR Professional wrote about her experience buying a MINI. The article itself focused on lessons in leadership she had learned from a sales manager at a MINI dealership while purchasing a new car. In her message she relays that this sales manager had built a better team by listening and allowing his team to build him. There were additional lessons  about how his team created an excellent customer experience in arguably one of the places consumers dread going to the most – a car dealership. Our company works with MINI  so we are aware of their quirky and fun branding style. Staying…

Continue

How to Make Lemonade Out of Lemons: the Easy Way

Posted by Mike Gorun on September 15, 2014 at 5:30am 0 Comments

There are many stories of young kids or teens starting successful businesses. And there are as well the simple stories of kids mowing lawns or washing cars to earn extra money while their friends are out playing. A similar story gained national media attention when a 12-year old decided to open a lemonade stand in his neighborhood. He even convinced a neighbor to allow him to display a sign advertising the lemonade stand in his yard. Most people would applaud this behavior. However, apparently, one of the neighbors wasn’t too keen about it. In fact, this neighbor actually…

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Cadillac tipped to call flagship something other than LTS

Filed under: , , ,

Cadillac Elmiraj Concept

Cadillac wouldn't be Cadillac without large sedans in its lineup, and while the XTS has had to hold down that end of the fort all on its own, it won't have to for too long. That's because the luxury brand in the General Motors portfolio is preparing to roll out its new LTS, stylistically previewed by the Elmiraj concept pictured above. Only now, the latest thinking is that the upcoming flagship model may not be called LTS at all.

As Automotive News points out, Cadillac's naming scheme is all over the place at the moment. The ATS slotting below the CTS makes sense (alphabetically), but where do the ELR, SRX and especially the Escalade fit into that naming hierarchy? And how would LTS - as the project has been known until now - sit above the XTS?

Fortunately, Cadillac may be on the case, as two of the division's most recent senior appointments seem keen to rationalize the naming scheme. One is Uwe Ellinghaus, who joined Cadillac as chief marketing officer late last year. Speaking of the brand's nomenclature last spring, Ellinghaus was quoted as saying, "We are aware that this is currently a weakness of the Cadillac brand." And his new boss is bound to agree.

Before recently joining Cadillac, incoming president Johan de Nysschen completely overhauled - or at least approved the complete overhaul of- Infiniti's naming scheme. That reorganization may have left us scratching our heads for the short term, but as time goes by, it's likely to make more sense. Before Cadillac and Infiniti, de Nysschen was at Audi, which ruffled a few feathers of its own when it applied a new naming scheme to follow the A8. But if Ingolstadt's example can teach us anything, it's that a more logical nomenclature, if carried out properly, works out for the best in the long term.

Cadillac tipped to call flagship something other than LTS originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 21 Sep 2014 14:35:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Google Blog Articles, News and More

Through the Google lens: search trends Sept 12-18

-Welcome to this week’s search trends. May I take your order?
-Can I have a referendum on independence, a totally inappropriate flight passenger with a Hollywood baby on the side?
-Coming right up!

Flag and country
“They may take away our lives, but they'll never take our freedom!” That was Sir William Wallace battlecry for Scottish independence in the film Braveheart. While this week’s events in Scotland weren’t quite as cinematic, the results could have been revolutionary. On Thursday the world watched and searched as an unprecedented numbers of Scots went to the polls to answer the question, "Should Scotland be independent from the United Kingdom?" Turns out the majority of people don’t think it should, and voted to stay a member of the U.K. Party leaders have now promised significant constitutional changes for the entire kingdom. What would Wallace have made of that?

The comeback kings
Everybody loves a comeback and search had its fair share this week. First up, nostalgia for the 90’s brought Surge soda back from the dead. Thanks to a Facebook campaign called "The SURGE Movement," Coca-Cola will now sell its "fully-loaded citrus” soft drink for a limited time on Amazon. And the Chicago Bears denied the 49ers a win in their brand-spanking-new stadium when they rallied to overturn a 13-point deficit in the last quarter to beat San Francisco 28-20.



Airing dirty laundry
Hard plastic-y seats, broken recliner adjusters, zero leg room—flying economy isn’t always the most pleasant experience. And depending on who you’re sitting next to, your easy two-hour flight could turn into a nightmare before you even take off. But the passengers of the world aren’t having it, not anymore. This week, “passenger shaming” went viral on social media as traumatized travelers shared photos of the most absurdly obnoxious unconscientious things some passenger do on flights—we’re talking bare feet, bare skin... well, you should just see for yourself.

But at least those offending fliers were shielded in anonymity. Singer Robin Thicke wasn’t afforded the same luxury, revealing in a court deposition this week that he had little to do with the creation of last year’s song of the summer “Blurred Lines.” As part of his defense against a copyright infringement lawsuit, Thicke admitted that he was under the influence of drugs and alcohol for most of 2013—bringing a whole new meaning to the song’s title.

And the winner is ...
The hipster revolution has finally taken over the United States! Need proof? Searchers don’t. When New Yorker Kira Kazantsev won the the title of Miss America, the Internet discovered that the U.S.A’s new leading lady is a former food blogger. She’s even reported on her state’s crown foodie jewel, the cronut. Miss America wasn’t the only who got to bask in the limelight; boxing world champion Floyd “Money” Mayweather Jr. won his rematch with contender Marcos Maidana by an unanimous decision. The victory brings his undefeated tally to 47… somehow the title world champion is starting to sound like an understatement.

Love on the set!
For Orange is the New Black screenwriter Lauren Morelli, life imitated art a bit more than she probably expected. While writing the hit program, Morelli decided to divorce her husband and start a relationship with Samira Wiley, an actress from the show. Meanwhile, searchers learned that Mindy Kaling considers former The Office castmate and on-screen boyfriend B.J. Novak “the love that got away.” But while not all on-set relationships last, some couples not only make it work but also take their relationship to the next level. That’s the route taken by Ryan Gosling and Eva Mendes, who met while making the movie The Place Beyond the Pines. The power couple welcomed baby girl Gosling earlier this week.

Tip of the week
The NFL season’s just getting started so it’s time to hunker down and plan your football viewing schedule. Just say, “OK Google, show me the NFL schedule” to coordinate your life for the next four months. We’ll see you back in the spring.

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Automotive Marketing News

AutoNation's brand building sets up more growth

Mike Maroone, COO of AutoNation Inc., says the nation's largest dealership group is meeting the goals of a multiyear $100 million branding campaign.

Can Cadillac make it in New York?

New Cadillac chief Johan de Nysschen confirmed to Automotive News last week that Cadillac is considering relocating some functions to New York.

Scion retools its pitch to youth in comeback bid

Once-adorable Scion is entering its awkward tween years, but hasn't hit its growth spurt yet. Nancy Inouye, now in her second year as Scion's national marketing communications manager, says the brand is targeting millennials.

Chevy gears up to roll out tech, trucks

Chevrolet's biggest marketing campaign this fall is in support of a technology: the launch of 4G LTE wireless Internet service across much of its lineup.

3rd parties see their role sticking around

Third-party online shopping sites are likely to continue influencing auto shoppers for the foreseeable future, despite pledges by dealership groups such as AutoNation Inc. to rely less on them for prospects, two new studies say.

J. D. Power Online Automotive Review Articles on Internet Sales and Management Research and Insights for Car Dealers, Internet Sales Managers and OEM Executives

Even used-vehicle buyers are going online

This past year we saw a massive increase used automotive Internet usage (AIU) rate, as 68% of all used-vehicle buyers went online during the vehicle shopping process versus 63% in 2009.  The dramatic rise has narrowed the gap between used- and new- AIU rates. There are many fac tors at work.  One is the poor […]

Automotive iPad apps

This week I decided to check out automotive iPad apps.  These first-generation entries are at times engaging, but ultimately I often found than frustrating and rather limited. Let’s start with one of my favorite usability rants: hot spots.  They’re quick, which is probably why three OEM iPad apps incorporate them.  They’re also dirty – pretty […]

Some reliability perceptions are changing (and that’s not a good thing for Toyota)

It’s no secret that auto manufacturers are creating better vehicles than ever before – safer, more feature-rich, higher quality, and more reliable.  Data from our Vehicle Dependability Study, which surveys owners of three-year-old vehicles regarding the number of problems experienced in the prior twelve months, backs the assertion of improved reliability.  As illustrated below, these […]

The Future of Satellite Radio

As more in-vehicle audio and entertainment options become available to consumers, the question of satellite radio’s relevance has become more prominent. Most vehicle sold today have satellite radio at least as an option, if not standard, and most new car buyers are given a trial subscription, usually anywhere from one to six months. This gives […]

Bringing in younger buyers

The average age of new-vehicle buyers increased dramatically from 46.5 in 2008 to 53.4 in 2010 (Source: 2010 Auto Offline Media Report – Summer) as lower income buyers – who are often younger – were forced out of the market due to the poor economic environment.  This shift has impacted almost every automotive brand, including […]

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