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It's that time of year again. Yes, one of my favorite blogs of the year. I have always enjoyed writing about my experiences at conferences and conventions. This blog is going to be great. Why so great you ask?
Wait for it...
Wait for it...
Wait for it...
Boom...here it is.
This has been my most productive and educational NADA convention out of the three that I have attended. I realized this year the importance of spending a whole Friday on this trip and even a whole Monday (which I missed out on). I met some really great people and have connected with some great vendors. This time I had a chance to attend more workshops and pick up some great new ideas to better myself as a business professional. Let's get started...
I was talking to Jim Ziegler on the phone today and he told me that I have come a very long way. I had responded to him by saying that I have just begun and I am still on my way. Love me or hate. Believe in me or don't believe in me. It does not matter to me. I am out to bring greatness for our industry and will be a leader. I appreciate Jim for friendship and support.
NADA 2012 has proven to be the ultimate convention to be at. It all started with my arrival on Thursday. I had traveled with my very close friend and colleague, Mark Rodriguez (Auto Client Care). Mark is a very dear friend who has collaborated with me on several consulting projects. His specialty is phone training for sales, internet sales, BDC, and fixed operations. He is an excellent trainer and has been constantly evolving with technology which allows him to bring value to dealerships. Mark is a top rated speaker for the Greater New York Dealers Association. Mark and I will be collaborating on a workshop for NJCar on March 13, 2012 that is titled "BDC Boot Camp".
We arrived in Las Vegas and visited our dear friends, PCG Digital Marketing at their Digital Marketing Strategies Conference. We got see some great people like Glenn Pasch, Cory Mosley, Jim Ziegler, and many others. We had some lunch and decided to do some gambling. I won $800 and decided to be generous. I treated my buddy Mark to a show, Cirque Du Soleil "Love". This was an amazing time and it proved to be one of the best shows that I have ever been to. I made it to the PCG reception and catch up with friends, Elise Kephart, Lizelle Landino, Jody Devere, Gene Kocibua (one of my clients), Brian and Glenn Pasch, Eric Hoopman (Dealerfire), and many others. Towards the end of the night I joined my VinSolutions friends at Sean Stapleton's suite for the VinSolutions party. It was great networking and a great time to catch up with friends. I got to see my friend's Larry Bruce, Dan Moore (Smart Web Concepts), Arnold Tijerina, Eric Sietsma, and many others.
On Friday, I picked up my badge and attend workshops that were led by some great industry friends. I started the day with seeing my friend Jared Hamilton (Driving Sales) who taught a very powerful workshop on management reporting. We continued the day with a workshop by Jennifer Suzuki (eDealer Solutions) on handling incoming calls. The convention day ended with a workshop by the always amazing Todd Smith (ActiveEngage). The parties that were attended were the ADM Member Reception hosted by Ralph Paglia and Brian Pasch. I had some productive business meetings, networking opportunities and a great time speaking with friends (old and new). After this party, my friend Gene Kocibua and I went to another hotel to go to the Tier10 VIP Marketing party. A thank you to Sean Wolfington for having us at the party.
Saturday is when the action began. I spent the full day visiting booths and seeing my friends from the industry. I got to meet my new friend Ken Engberg (DealerTrack) as well as many other people. It was great to see Fran Taylor, Rob Fontano, my DealerOn friends, PCG Digital Marketing friends, and many others. I had some incredible business development meetings with some great people. My business, Dealer eTraining has really started to show signs of growth and opportunity as dealers expressed interest in my service and vendors saw the value of what I can do for them. I must have spoken to over 200 people that day. That night was another time to network and go to some great parties. I had met Paul DeMoret (http://scan123.com/) and had dinner with him and my friend Mark Rodriguez. We went to the eBay party and saw Vanilla Ice perform. I played some more Blackjack and won some money.
In this event I reunited with my old Dealer Synergy friends. Sean Bradley has taught me well with my time with him. He was a great influence for me to do what I am doing. It was amazing to see him.
We finished off Saturday where I continued to have big meetings and business development opportunities. The parties that I went to were hosted by PCG Digital Marketing/KPA/Colorado Dealer Association for Super Bowl and DealerTrack for their beautiful event. The following morning we department back home to continue a productive week.
I have been spending my week making this dealership that I am representing bigger and better. I am also spending the week catching up with my connections and developing relationships that will help our industry continue to grow.
How was your NADA 2012 experience? Please share your thoughts.