“We knew that our approach had to have a real benefit for our customers or we would not enjoy prolonged success” said Richard Bustillo, General Manager of Rick Case Honda who has been with the dealership since 2008. “We also knew that whatever we did had to produce these benefits without compromising the profitability of our store. Our retention rates and gross profit numbers were already good and we were already mining our own customer base. We just weren’t expanding it. I wasn’t satisfied because I saw an opportunity to do both.”
Like many dealerships, Rick Case Honda experimented with multiple vendor combinations trying to find a winning formula but after investing in conventional email blasts, mailers, and service reminders that targeted current customers, they realized that they were not getting a satisfactory return on their investment. This led Mr. Bustillo to make a bold decision. After seeking the counsel of several of America’s most successful dealerships, he decided simplify his “multi-vendor”, multi-department approach and focus on a single, integrated marketing strategy. The results, he says, were staggering!
In November of 2011, Mr. Bustillo teamed up with Budd Blackburn, owner of Team Velocity and brought a different kind of marketing company onboard with Rick Case Honda. Unlike other marketing companies that specialize in a single aspect of marketing, Mr. Blackburn’s company uses a 360 degree sales and service marketing program designed to Attract, Sell, Service and Retain customers. This process helps Richard and his team to minimize the wasteful spending and confusing messages that often occur when multiple departments independently market to the same customer and create a consistent, visually engaging dealership experience for all Rick Case Honda customers.
This strategy revolves around conducting comprehensive research that targets the right customers, thus preventing the dealership from sending irrelevant coupons and offers to the wrong consumer. This not only saves the dealership thousands of dollars each month but ensures that every dollar spent results in increased profits and market share.
“We no longer look at our customers as “Sales Customers” or “Service Customers”, said Bustillo, “they are all Rick Case Honda customers. Unifying our efforts allowed us to get very good at doing one thing many times versus doing several things one time.”
In addition to utilizing the right marketing company and targeting the right customers, Mr. Bustillo holds monthly kick off meetings and makes sure all of the staff, from the porters to the receptionists, is trained on the program. Rick Case Honda in Davie also has their store covered in vibrant, point-of-sale banners, brochures, and hang tags that constantly draw attention to the dealership’s current campaign. Everywhere a customer turns, there is something pitching service, sales or encouraging them to exchange their current vehicle for a new one. Standing amidst a sea of white, blue, and black Vehicle Exchange Program merchandise, Bustillo quotes, “Like Grant Cardone says, if you want massive results, you need to take massive action.”
“WE WERE SERVICING AN AVERAGE OF 3,000 CUSTOMERS MONTHLY WITH AN AVERAGE SPEND OF $350 PER RO. SINCE NOVEMBER, WE HAVE INCREASED OUR ACTIVE CUSTOMER BASE BY OVER 1,200 CUSTOMERS. AT $350 PER RO, THAT IS WHAT I CALL ROI!” – Richard Bustillo, General Manager
“We began to not only market to our active customer base but also market to sold, lost and conquest customers as well,” he explains. When putting our ads together, we placed multiple offers for both the sales and service department and started to see results immediately. “We also implemented a dealership-wide program that had real benefits to the consumer. This gave lost customers and new customers a number of compelling reasons to come into our dealership and take advantage of everything we have to offer.”
In just five months, Rick Case Honda of Davie has experienced tremendous success with Team Velocity’s integrated marketing strategy. Their increase in new car sales volume has put them in the top five for Honda. Overall used car sales are up 50%. Sales from the service drive are up over 60% (from 45 to 105 units per month) and total RO counts are up by over 30%, when compared to the same month last year. “We were servicing an average of 3,000 customers monthly with an average spend of $350 per RO. Since November, we have increased our active customer base by over 1,200 customers. At $350 per RO, that is what I call ROI!” says Richard Bustillo enthusiastically. “When you factor in the lift our used car department has received from our increase in low mileage trade-ins and the $1,300 RO associated with reconditioning those vehicles to make them CPO units, this gets really exciting.”
Rick Case Honda of Davie’s new cost-efficient sales and service strategy has helped to attract, sell, and retain customers in every department of the dealership new vehicle sales, pre-owned vehicle sales, F&I sales and service sales are all up and in addition to all of the obvious benefits that come with such success, Rick Case Honda is experiencing higher CSI scores and adding over 200 positive reviews to their social media efforts every month.
When asked to comment on his recent success, Bustillo responded “It really came down to 2 choices. We could continue with our non-integrated solutions where 5 units of effort equaled 5 different results or we could go with an integrated solution that allowed us to invest 1 unit of effort and get exponential returns. We could spend our time juggling to make each individual month or we could minimize distractions and spend our time focused on building the future. We chose option number 2.”
Time will tell if integration really is the future of automotive marketing but it’s hard to argue with the numbers today. Based on the results Richard Bustillo and his team are experiencing with Team Velocity, the future looks very promising for Rick Case Honda of Davie.
The Bottom Line: Rick Case Honda in Davie more than Doubles Used Cars Sales in just Five Months
WHAT THEY DID:
1. Conduct in-depth market research to identify customer trends and establish their ideal market.
2. Communicate consistently to customers (old, lost and new) with tailored messaging that grows the dealership’s customer base.
3. Target owners driving off-brand vehicles with tendency to switch to Honda.
4. Display consistent messaging and point of sales advertising in all profit-yielding departments of the dealership to attract, sell, service and retain more customers for less cost.
5. Monitor inbound calls to ensure customers are handled properly so marketing strategy provides results.
RESOURCES THEY USE:
1. DMS: ADP
2. Targeted Marketing Company: Team Velocity Marketing www.TeamVelocityMarketing.com
3. Call Monitoring: BDC/CallRevu
1. Conduct research and analysis of customer database along with leading industry data and trends to define ideal market.
2. Communicate consistently with customers throughout life cycle of their vehicle and provide offers that are appropriate based on customer needs.
3. Identify and target customers and prospects that have the highest statistical probability of doing business (buying/servicing) with your dealership now and in the future.
4. Implement a marketing strategy that affects all profit centers with combination messaging to attract, sell, service, and retain more customers profitably for less cost.
5. Monitor all inbound calls to guarantee customers are handled with exceptional service and professionalism and that inbound leads are handled properly so your investment yields results.
“Every communication is custom and promotes sales and service offers based on each customer profile.”
– David Boice, President of www.TeamVelocityMarketing.com,
the targeted marketing company used by Rick Case Honda