Ryan Everson, 30
Digital marketing director, Garber Automotive Group
Ryan Everson got his start in auto retailing early.
Two of his uncles open-ed three buy-here, pay-here stores in Michigan in 2003 and recruited Everson at age 13. He was a jack-of-all-trades, creating a group website that was synchronized with a Microsoft Excel inventory feed, while formulating why-buy messaging. He also took photos of inventory and worked as a deal clerk and Internet marketing manager, among other things.
He worked there throughout middle and high school and knew then that the car business was a match for him. He went on to attend Northwood University with a focus on automotive marketing.
Everson said he loves being able to look at industries outside the automotive space and then take some of those innovative ideas and apply them.
He now heads digital marketing for Garber Automotive Group, which is based in Saginaw, Mich., and has locations in seven states. The group has an in-house digital marketing agency that keeps up with the latest trends.
Everson has been with Garber since 2011, starting off at the company’s RightWay Automotive Credit arm. He designed a website for RightWay and digital campaigns that kick-started record growth.
Everson said his team’s efforts generated 155,266 unique website leads, and RightWay’s centralized business development center was able to convert 9,772 website leads into used-car sales.
In January, Everson developed and launched a Facebook app that gathers organic content from customers, which he said “further exploded our website lead volume.”
Garber is focused on growing its dealership footprint but needs good people to support this growth. So Everson’s team launched a custom website, GarberCareers.com, in October.
“We list every position in the company on there, even general manager positions, because we like to build a bullpen of candidates,” he said. “Even if there isn’t an opportunity right now, at least we can start the relationships, so when something does open up, we can bring them on board.”
— Vince Bond Jr.