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Evaluating Facebook Marketing Behavior: Are You a Hypocrite?

Posted on: September 20th, 2012 by credit

By observation of some dealership marketing experts, Facebook is one of the misused tools in social media marketing. Many dealers are not generating more finance leads and car sales leads through Facebook because they are doing it wrong. The novelty of social media being a marketing platform perhaps contributes to the way many dealers misunderstand social media. Go and evaluate your Facebook marketing tactics for your dealership now. Check out the list below:

Like Me Back…Please.”

You are begging for likes if you like a page and send a message to the owner of that account to say, “Like me back…” This is definitely not a good marketing tactic for your dealership. Think about it: Why would your so-called prospects like you back? Were you helpful to them? Did you do something great for them? Demanding likes is not acting like a professional marketer. Think again: If your prospects grant you likes without you asking them, because they sincerely like you and your dealership, they could even become finance leads or car sales leads or even sales eventually. Being sincere in your marketing efforts in Facebook will earn you sincere potential customers as well who are genuinely interested in your dealership.

Being Talkative for Attention

There are several articles online that talk about dealerships’ vanity in social networking sites. There are dealers who want to get as much attention as they want. Even if you don’t admit it, you are vain if you babble in your status updates. Irrelevant questions, photos, videos, and even quotes are considered as just babbles because you don’t actually care about people’s responses. You just want to get noticed by creating some noise. As a dealership, you don’t need to hoard attention just so people know that you exist in Facebook. You can do this with more appropriate, professional, and ethical marketing strategies.

Sending Personal Messages Randomly

This is a big mistake. Your prospects would hate you and your brand for sending them all-promotional and spammy messages. First, your recipients would be alarmed with the fact that you were able to contact them even if they did not contact you. Second, they treat such messages as nuisances. And third, this will just lose than earn you prospects. Instead, decide on your target market and reach out only to them. You are a dealership so you must cater to car shoppers, car enthusiasts, and people seeking car financing. Do not just select your market randomly. Be intentional when reaching out to potential customers.

Facebook and social media in general are not used so a business can be more popular. Social media marketing experts say that social media is for businesses to establish relationships with prospects and existing customers and not get famous or to sell. Consider what the experts are saying and you’ll see significant improvements in your Facebook marketing efforts.

When Will Dealership Blogging Start Generating More Leads?

Posted on: August 24th, 2012 by credit

The answer is simple: when you already know how to do it right. Sometimes, even if you read about experts’ advice on dealership blogging, you wouldn’t still figure out how to do it right. You may sometimes need to experience mistakes to learn best. Experience is really the best teacher and can make you your own expert.

The dealership blog is just a part of your dealership website which is supposed to bring you more auto finance leads and sales. Realize that your blog alone is a powerful tool that can drive massive traffic to your website. However, many dealers struggle with formulating concrete and sustainable strategies to experience the full benefits of their blogs. This hints the need to provide the following tips:

Talk about the industry. You are a dealership and obviously, you’re part of the once-again thriving automotive industry. Your blog should therefore contain relevant information that your readers—basically car shoppers and people seeking auto financing—might find helpful and interesting. Things like automotive news, trends, car buying advice, car reviews, car maintenance tips, and the like are some interesting topics to write about on your dealership blog. It is a blogging sin to write irrelevant content.

Be compelling and engaging. A content marketing study found that dealers usually struggle with writing compelling and engaging content. It is really a challenge but it is not impossible. You can start by writing striking and attention-grabbing headlines. You can engage your readers when your content is something that answers their questions, stirs their thoughts, or provides solutions to their problems. Compelling and engaging content does generate auto finance leads.

Know SEO. This is the technical part of blogging that you must understand. SEO or search engine optimization is the process of improving a website’s visibility in the world wide web. To make your dealership blog drive more traffic to your website, use relevant most searched keywords in your articles. If you are just starting with SEO, you can use SEO tools to help you understand how SEO works in blogging.

Make commenting available and respond. Your blog is also your medium to reach out to car shoppers and auto finance leads. Let the people’s voice be heard by making commenting available. Always respond to them smartly and kindly, even if there will be some readers who would contradict what you wrote. In this way, you are building good reputation for yourself as a dealer and able to establish relationships with prospects in there.

Display social media buttons. Tell your readers to share in Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+ what they just saw in your blog by providing social media buttons near the comment box. If your readers do share your content, you’ll earn more readers and potential customers in effect. You can also tell your readers to visit your social media pages.

Auto Loan Delinquencies Low, So What?

Posted on: August 22nd, 2012 by credit

The rate of auto loan delinquencies in the United States has dropped in this year’s second quarter according to the report by credit bureau TransUnion. Delinquency rate is down to 0.33 percent from 0.36 percent in the first quarter of this year. On a year-on-year comparison, it has dropped by 25 percent already since last year.

However, analysts from the reporting body TransUnion and another credit bureau Experian Automotive both said that the delinquency rate on auto loans will not continue to drop until the next quarter of this year but assured that it will still remain to be low.

The study found that borrowers have learned to put their car payments on top of their other credit obligations since the recession. This is because auto loan borrowers deem their cars as necessary and important for them to continue running their daily errands.

So, as a dealer, how should you respond to this recent trend in the auto lending aspect of the industry? Here are some ideas:

Stay online. If you are satisfied with the results you’re getting from your lead generation and general F&I efforts, keep being on the lookout for more finance auto leads in the Internet for they are surely coming in. The results of the TransUnion report might be telling you that borrowers are getting late in their payments less so there is really nothing to be so afraid of in dealing with them. In fact, an analyst from the credit bureau himself said that loans are gearing toward nonprime borrowers more. Stay where you are getting your finance auto leads from and focus on closing these deals.

Don’t play favoritism. Subprime leads are indeed hot in the industry now but it does not mean that you should only fix your eyes on them. Consider all kinds of borrowers and make sure you are not giving too much attention to one in expense of another.

Review your strategies. Do not be so satisfied if your lead generation and sales tactics are working well. Be reminded that you should review your plans and strategies regularly and see if they are still in-tune with the current behavior of consumers and the competition in the industry. Perhaps you can think of new tactics considering that borrowers now are more responsible with their car payments.

The decline in auto loan delinquencies is good news for the whole automotive industry. It encourages auto lenders to accommodate more borrowers and makes auto loan approval easier for borrowers. Keep track with the trends and find out where they might be pointing you.

The Smart Choice: Investing in an Auto Finance Lead

Posted on: July 20th, 2012 by credit

In today’s hard financial times, it is getting harder and harder to sell expensive things such as cars. After all, people will not part with a huge amount of money just on a whim. Nevertheless, car dealers need to make an income and they have quotas to fill so they should not rely only on customers that actually visit the dealership. This is where the auto finance lead enters the picture.

Investing in Auto Finance Leads

An auto finance lead is a collection of information about people who have shown interest in buying cars recently and in the past. Because of the crisis that gripped the automotive industry back in 2008 which was followed by a worldwide recession, auto dealerships suffered a dramatic decline in sales. However, things are looking up because they are now investing in auto finance leads.

These are very useful because the leads often translate into a sale. The leads are real people who truly want to purchase a car. Using sales leads is seen as a good investment because car dealers are able to attract customers right away. They can do away with expensive advertisements in newspapers and billboards that do not produce a good return of investment. Furthermore, they do not have to come up with fresh ideas for their marketing efforts just to be able to attract customers. Planning and implementing different marketing strategies are often time consuming and the results are not always guaranteed.

Niche Marketing: Special Auto Finance Leads

Car dealers should not disregard people with bad credit or no credit. They can generate a lot of business if they invest in special auto finance leads. This type of auto finance lead, also known as subprime auto sales lead, is a collection of information of people with bad or no credit. The credit ratings of these people are low due to not paying bills on time, having credit card debt or they have yet to establish their credit history. Nevertheless, just because they have bad or no credit does not mean they are unable to finance a car. Most of these people work hard to improve their credit rating so car dealers should tap into this particular market segment.

Car dealers should exploit all the possible options if they want to reach their sales quotas. Investing in an auto finance lead is a good business strategy because they are able to contact potential customers in different key demographic areas. Today, selling cars is not about making offers only to the people who visit the dealership. It is about investing in different types of auto finance leads and taking advantage of the tools that can help them in their business.

Trigger Leads are Advantage, But Not All the Time

Posted on: June 26th, 2012 by credit

Trigger finance leads are information of people who have pulled out their credit reports from credit bureaus for the purpose of applying for a car loan. The very act of pulling out the credit report makes a person a trigger lead. Credit bureaus sell these leads to lenders and dealers but with only limited information. Typically, credit bureaus only provide the applicant’s name, telephone number, address, and some information relevant to the lender’s or dealer’s criteria.

If you noticed, only the telephone number of the applicant is provided by credit bureaus. They do not provide the mobile number and email address of the person. This what makes closing trigger leads highly competitive, but at the same time exciting. Your sales staffs would not have any other choice to reach the leads but to call them up—immediately. Otherwise, your competitors will get to them first. Your sales team, therefore, must be aggressive enough to get the attention of your trigger finance leads. If they get this right, you have a sure sale. However, trigger leads could also be nuisances in another perspective.

Remember that you’re not the only dealership who knows about trigger leads. Apparently, your competitors know about them too and they could be more aggressive than you are. The problem is when they try to get in the way while you try to convert your hard-earned leads into a sales. Think of this scenario: You are wondering why a prospect who has just called you and was so interested in your offer suddenly never called again. You would then find out that a competitor reached out to your prospect as they found out that he just pulled out his credit report. That would be devastating. So, how are you going to stop loosing your leads to your competitors who have become like almost experts in closing trigger leads?

One, talk to your leads upfront. Respond immediately after they have sent their query in. Warn them about other dealerships who might call them up and try to convince them to get their offers. In many cases, people blame lenders and dealers for giving out their information to other companies whom they haven’t talked to. You should avoid this from happening to you by informing your leads about such dealers and telling them not to entertain them.

Two, keep them interested even at your first contact with them. It is not that easy to do but you have to work toward making them satisfied with your offers that they would not want to consider other options. Lastly, be aggressive in closing your finance leads. Always keep in mind the various types of competitors you have around you. Train your sales department to be competitive in this area.

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