A Day Late, A Mile Too Far

Speedometer and high mileage

We all know new and used owners are holding on to their vehicles much longer than ever. That is good news for the profitability of most dealerships’ service departments. But with the right message to customers in your service lane, it could be great news for the dealership. The right message is educating owners to what more years and more miles mean to a vehicle’s trade value.

CarMax released a consumer survey stating half of the respondents felt they had a good idea on their vehicle’s trade value while 35% were not sure. Over 40% proved to be mistaken in thinking an 11-year- old vehicle brought about the same as a 10-year-old vehicle.

As a long time devotee of mining the service lane for owners who could be enlightened to the benefits of trading a vehicle before it ages another year or passes the next mileage standard, the time to consider more effort to this pursuit is now.  My focus would be on targeting vehicles that will round out your used inventory based on your anticipated off-lease vehicle return.

Engage your service customers in a “Did You Know” presentation to enlighten them on what more months and more miles mean to them as far as trading now compared to later. A chunk of change can change a mind, it always has.

Acknowledgements to:

Auto Remarketing “Untapped potential vehicle trade-ins” August 30, 2016

About the author

John Paul Strong: As owner of Strong Automotive Merchandising, a company that increases traffic up to 1,000% for dealerships, Strong lives by the simple concept that your attitude affects your success. Without a positive mind set he would not have been able to grow the company over the last decade from just 10 to over 80 full-time employees. The rapid growth is thanks to his ability to keep the company on the forefront of technology, market changes and an infectious talent to motivate and keep employees striving to fulfill their potential. His beginnings in direct mail gave him the tools and skills to develop incredibly successful marketing plans. From there he moved on to traditional forms of media and has now mastered the dynamic world of digital and social media advertising. With over 150 dealers to please, Strong takes a hands-on approach and personal attention to detail in all aspects of marketing strategies. His expertise in plan development gives him a keen sense on how to maximize a dealer’s budget and ultimately increase their bottom line. Strong is a passionate speaker in the automotive industry. He has authored two books on creating next day traffic. He graduated from the Executive Education Program at the Harvard Business School. Strong received a B.A. in Communication Studies from the University of Montevallo. He lives with his wife and three children in Homewood, Alabama.


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