Automotive Digital Marketing

Professional Community for Car Dealers, Marketing, Advertising and Sales Leaders

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This group is dedicated to dealers who use, or are interested in using the program for dealership reputation management that leverages User Generated Content (UGC) posted by actual customers. Call at 877-721-6910 x2

Location: 216-712-6712
Members: 81
Latest ADM Activity: Jul 19, 2013

Actual Dealership Reviews

Here's a screen capture of a review for the Ford dealership where I purchased a new 2009 Ford Edge:

I have linked the above screen capture image to the actual report within

Ralph Paglia

Automotive Marketing Discussion Forum

Mark Dubis, President - Latest ADM Activity

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Comment by Mark Dubis on March 9, 2010 at 10:28am
check out our new blog.
Comment by Mark Dubis on September 25, 2009 at 5:34am
CarFolks is a sponsor at the upcoming Synergy Session in Atlanta on Oct 5&6 and we have a number of FREE passes to this $420 registration fee event. Register at and enter the discount code: carfolks to get your FREE pass. This is for dealers only not vendors or other affiliates. Ken Karg from CarFolks will be giving dealers the latest information on boosting CSI and leveraging your performance for marketing purposes. Don't Miss This Event.
Comment by Ken Karg on March 30, 2009 at 12:22pm

Ralph, Thank for opening a discussion on social networking. As we know most dealer and sales people do a great job most of the time. And it is terrific that CarFolks acknowledges this high performance. More importantly the advantage for a dealership is the ability to address any negative comment and work customer to fix the situation and create an advocate. is designed to allow this interaction within the rating site and lets the world see exactly what customers think of dealerships and the individual team members at those stores. Social proof is a powerful tool and the use of this application is bound to grow rather quickly.

Comment by Mark Dubis on March 28, 2009 at 7:30pm
Thanks for sharing your comments. Also we updated our Toll Free Phone number and its now 877-721-6910 ext two for sales information. Dealers are recognizing that their online reputation is becoming very important now. Dealers and sales people using CarFolks and other online ratings sites will really have an opportunity to stand out from their competition. I invite dealers to contact me with any questions or for help setting up their personal pages.
Comment by Ralph Paglia on March 28, 2009 at 2:02pm and CF Media Group, Inc. has been getting a lot of press in both consumer and trade publications. We are starting to get many requests from local newspapers and television stations to share our story, and they are asking to speak with local dealers about our neighborhood. If your dealership would like to be part of these stories please call 877-292-6892 and ask to speak with a team member about upcoming opportunities in your local market.

LAKEWOOD, OH, March 27, 2008 - Buying a car today can be a daunting task. Many people feel that the salesperson they ultimately deal with may apply too much pressure or sell them a product they aren't ready to buy. James Hartley at Holloway Mercedes Benz in Greenland, NH has a strong reputation for providing the highest level of customer service and support for his customers. Today, those customers are talking about the professionalism and courtesy online at

James Hartley posted his profile on complete with his photo and information about his experience. Then he invited his past customers to to share their experience of working with him at his dealership. Essentially they rated his performance during the sales transaction. After completing the rating process, their comments can be viewed by the entire local market, and the connected world.
Comment by Mark Dubis on January 21, 2009 at 6:37pm
For those that may have missed our recent announcement, we have put on hold the plans for charging fees for individual pages on CarFolks, so if you are a sales pro at the dealership and haven't set up your page on CarFolks, the time to do it is now. Read the Release.
Comment by Mark Boyd on August 22, 2008 at 3:53pm
Great idea one the VIP angle Scott! Thanks

Comment by Philip Zelinger on August 21, 2008 at 3:06pm
Hi Mark - and fellow ADM supporters of CarFolks.Com,

Coincidentally, I just replied to a forum started by Sarah on the value - or not, of social networking sites which might apply to this group of likeminded professionals. Rather than cutting and pasting it here I suggest that you should check it out there and agree with me - which I know that you will!

Also, Mark Boyd and Mark Dubis have been regular guests on our "Automotive Advertising Experts" shows as well as the subject of many posted blogs and press releases on I am sure that their conversations will provide many best practices that would be of interest to members of this group. After all, what are friends for!
Comment by Scott Rainville on August 21, 2008 at 2:30pm

I have been an avid follower reputation management sites both inside and outside of the car industry. Car dealers are easy targets. Can customer reviews overcome a bad rep? One only needs to look at how eBay has implemented seller ratings to see how enough positives can overcome a negative. The challenge is how to use it sell more cars.

Interestingly enough, I saw a piece on using product reviews in emails just this morning. Here is the idea that caught my attention:

"Segment out product reviewers. A tip of the hat to Pappas of Radcats USA for this idea. At eTail he suggested that marketers segment out those customers that review products and treat them differently. He wasn't aware of any retailer doing that, but supposed that targeting these brand influencers could be powerful. At the Email Evolution Conference in February, Lawrence DiCapua, Pepsi's senior marketing manager, said that the company identifies email forwarders and treats them differently, rewarding them with a VIP program within the Pepsi Extras loyalty program, along with others who show acts of evangelism. So targeting product reviewers is just one more way to identify and segment out mavens in the hopes of using their influence to your benefit."

This is a great idea - create a VIP club for these customers and stay in front of them. These people have bought into what your selling today but you need to work at keeping them onboard and treating them the best that you can. Send them advance notice of events, video links of new products. Become their advocate in the auto industry by sending articles on auto insurance and ways to get the most from their vehicle. It sure beats the anniversary letter...good luck to all...Scott
Comment by Mark Dubis on August 21, 2008 at 12:08pm

Air Your Clean Laundry for the World to See

Since I’ve been involved with a dealership review website,, it has garnered the attention and curiosity of auto retailers and the public. As sales professionals and dealerships signed up to leverage the power of word of mouth advertising and build and protect their online reputations others have been skeptical about websites that review dealerships.
One notable objection came from an editor at an industry monthly magazine. The editorial director of the magazine in his article entitled, Ain’t Buying It, agreed that dealers needed to monitor what was being said about them online and referenced an incident he highlighted about a Mid-West dealership that got “slammed” on an enthusiasts blog for not selling a vehicle on eBay for the agreed upon price. 

He then goes on to question whether dealers should make it easy for their customers to air all of their laundry for the world to see.  He continues, “Even great dealerships are going to get burned.”

While I respect this editor and his perspective, in the real world where dealerships operate every day, we often have little control over our customers and what they say about us and our people.   The Internet has made it too easy to complain about any transaction and very often criticisms about dealerships are often unwarranted.  Dealerships who work hard every day to take care of their customers do not like to see attacks about them online. And in fact they rarely do see negative reviews. But aren’t there some dealerships who still employ illegal, immoral, or unethical practices?  Don’t they deserve to be pointed out to consumers so shoppers can make a more informed decision on where to do business?  Don’t the professionals in this business want to improve the perception of auto retailing?

The trend online is to review everything.  Vehicles have been reviewed for the last 50 years, and restaurant, hotel, and travel review sites have been some of the most popular sites on the web over the last few years.  Consumer Reports has been extensively reviewing all manner of products and is a major consumer influence in buying decisions.  So whether you like it or not, whether you agree it is fair or not review sites are here to stay. 

So the question is no longer, how do we stop review sites?  But how do we make them operate in a more open and fair-minded fashion?  A survey last year by Cobalt Group, Yahoo and Polk said that 72% of online auto shoppers were likely to use a dealership review site, and 58% said they would post comments on dealership review sites.  Whether you believe those numbers or not, it is very clear that dealerships need to have a strategy to strengthen their customer service, engage their customers, and provide a forum for all of their customers to provide feedback on their dealership experience.  Dealers ignore this at their own peril.

If your dealership is ready to build and protect your online reputation find a site that will help you make it easy for your happy customers to leave good feedback.  Look for one that promotes your staff too.  If you give your team members credit for a good job by highlighting their customer focused performance you will most certainly retain your valuable employees.  A site with social networking aspects will also provide opportunities for you to connect with prospects and stay in communication with your existing customers too.

If you are doing everything right every day then you and your team will have little to fear from online attacks.  Believe me the word will spread the word about how you treat your customers.


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