LAS VEGAS – Build your brand and they will come.
That’s the advice of Tracy Myers, dealer principal of used-car dealer Frank Myers Auto Maxx.
He advises dealers at the DrivingSales Executive Summit presented with WardsAuto here to develop a personality, write books, make speeches and do radio shows to build their brand’s standing with car buyers in their communities.
Start with “a great website that positions you as an expert and trusted advisor in your market,” Myers tells retailers.
The website should offer gifts in exchange for contact information, he says, pointing to a special report on obtaining credit distributed by Frank Myers Auto Maxx that led to 850 sales leads.
He also suggests creating a personality for the dealership that will resonate with consumers. His ads and website features caricatures of every member of the sales team wearing a unique hat. Customers are given their salesperson’s hat when purchasing a vehicle.
Myers, author of “You Are The Brand, Stupid!,” tells dealers to write their own books to hand out as “200-page business cards.
“They’re really easy to do, even if you’re not a writer,” he says. If a publisher can’t be found, there’s self-publishing, but Myers advises to do some research first. “Just make sure the quality looks good. It’s better not to do it if it doesn’t look good.”
He also says to “make a splash in social media.” His dealership’s efforts translate into seven to eight vehicle sales a month, Myers says. “Make it easy for people to get to know you.”
Asked how dealers are supposed to find time for all this branding activity, Myers says to “get up earlier and go to bed later.”
But he also says to look for ways to repurpose content across several platforms to maximize the effort. He turns his weekly hour-long radio show into multiple podcasts he posts on iTunes, for example.
“Host your own radio show in your market, record it and turn it into a CD you can hand out,” he says. “Then transcribe it into a blog posting and (ultimately) turn it all into a book.”
But Myers says not to bite off too much at once.
“You can’t do all these things tomorrow,” he says. “It’s too overwhelming, it’s too much. This happened for us over a number of years.”
But just remember, Myers adds: “People buy from people. If they don’t come to the store, you can’t sell them a car.”