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Buy a car or save for college? Why not both?Nov. 13, 2017
Fullerton Automotive is helping families juggle the costs of cars and college by offering customers a free one-year membership in a tuition-discount program. The perk generates sales referrals, strengthens customer loyalty and gives buyers the chance to shave thousands of dollars off the price of higher education.
Mich. car dealer's 'epic' off-road store creates path to productivity, savingsSept. 4, 2017
Second-generation car dealer Aaron Zeigler went to buy a snowmobile and instead bought the store. Zeigler then used his experience as an auto retailer to build a dazzling motorsports facility that features greeters, an indoor service lane and a menu-based F&I system. The strategy has created group-wide cost savings in service, allowed staffers to work on both sides of the business and spawned a leadership training center.
An inside look at an employee-owned dealership groupJune 5, 2017
Staffers own 30 percent of Van Horn Automotive Group as part of an employee stock ownership plan. Van Horn leaders say the retirement program has created a more-loyal workforce while giving the company an advantage in recruiting talent and adding stores. And the first ESOP financial statement sparked an “aha moment” for many worker-owners, who now realize every dollar they spend has a direct impact on their pensions.
Dealer Terry Lee: People 'love to buy, hate to be sold'May 1, 2017
Honda, Hyundai and Genesis dealer Terry Lee says many car shoppers are like boxers: They walk into his dealerships with their guard up. But Lee's sales team is trained to remove their gloves and adapt to the way customers want to buy. As a result, sales are increasing and Lee is on the hunt for other brands to fill his 72-acre 'destination' development in suburban Indianapolis.
How a Chevy dealership became an oil-change juggernautApril 3, 2017
Nurse Chevrolet Cadillac in suburban Toronto has transformed itself from the 'king of the three-hour oil change' to a 29-minute-or-less lube, oil and filter destination, thanks to a NASCAR-like pit crew. The change has drawn more customers, accelerated the careers of workers and lifted the store's bottom line.
A front-seat look at Toyota's tough test driveJan. 6, 2017
For three days in November, Automotive News Asia Editor Hans Greimel joined the Argentina leg of Toyota's Five Continents Drive, the automaker's audacious seven-year gambit to reboot its mindset toward making better cars for a new era.
‘It’s about giving back’: Mixing purpose and profit at a La. dealership groupFeb. 13, 2017
Louisiana-based dealer Troy Duhon thinks doing good is good for business. His 22 dealerships funnel $25 from each sold vehicle back to local communities, and employees get paid days off for volunteer work. While such efforts have blossomed into a global foundation, they've also helped create loyal employees and customers, leading to a more-profitable dealership group.
How a Houston Ford dealership creates 'magic' through selective hiringNov. 14, 2016
AutoNation Ford Gulf Freeway's committee-based hiring system holds managers accountable for engaging, training and promoting employees so that 'everybody rocks.' The effort at the Houston store has created a workplace where sales are soaring and 40 percent of staffers are previous customers.
Sales staffers pump iron to slash stress, move metalSept. 5, 2016
Advantage Chevrolet sales employees are lifting forks and weights during extended lunch breaks. The Chicago-area dealership encourages staffers to hit the gym to help reduce stress and improve productivity during long workdays. The program has helped one manager lose nearly 40 pounds following a life-saving surgery.
Hard-charging boss lifts sales, retention at Mercedes storeJune 6, 2016
Sean Fortier's drive to win and hands-on approach is boosting used-vehicle sales and lowering employee turnover at Mercedes-Benz of Calabasas near Los Angeles. The 37-year-old ex-military man is also committed to leaving a legacy by mentoring and inspiring his staff.
Ford store turns to texts to speed communication with service clientsMay 2, 2016
Gorno Ford boss Ed Jolliffe admits communication in service "has always been an issue." So Jolliffe's nephew and his childhood pal built software that allows service staffers to conduct business with customers via text messaging. More than 70 percent of clients at the Mich. store use the speedy program, which has cut service downtime, eased billing disputes and spawned a new company serving 100 dealerships nationwide.
Ford store's speedy replies turn online leads into a sales boomApril 17, 2016
The 'quickest response wins.' That strategy has helped Keller Bros. Ford in Lititz, Pa., significantly increase its combined monthly new- and used-vehicle sales in just two years. The growth is credited to staffers who are jumping on internet leads and personally replying to shoppers within an average of five minutes during business hours and 20 minutes around-the-clock.