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autoretailing 05: Are you getting your share?


    Doing more business with the customers you already have is a major theme of autoretailing 05.

    Lifetime customer value has become a key performance yardstick for an increasing number of the world’s most profitable businesses. It helps them to focus their marketing efforts on doing more business with the customers they already have a relationship with, retaining them for longer and gathering referrals.

    “As manufacturers and dealers develop their lifetime customer strategies, we are seeing greater reliance on CRM databases, call centres and process-driven communications with customers, says Richard Wells, the MD of industry consultant RTS, an autoretailing 05 speaker. The challenge, he believes, is learning how to balance the ‘two Ps’ – process and people.

    Location Clause seminar

    Dealers will be able to open new satellite dealerships outside their traditional franchise territories when the new Location Clause takes effect from October 1 this year. Dr Andrew Tongue and John Whiteman, directors of the International Car Distribution Programme, will host a workshop on block exemption and the Location Clause.

    “There is a great deal of confusion and misinformation about the regulation,” says Whiteman. “We will focus our presentation on the opportunities and threats arising from the new Location Clause – what it means, who it affects and what the options are for dealerships and groups.

    “But we will also take questions on the practical implementation of block exemption insofar as it affects motor dealers – targets, standards, margins and multi-branding, covering sales, service and parts. As an independent, not-for-profit industry research organisation, we have no axes to grind or solutions to ‘sell’ and will focus instead on offering impartial advice.”

    How to sell more finance

    Consumer research commissioned by Black Horse Motor Finance has identified the reasons why some car buyers obtain finance from a direct lender rather than from an automotive retailer.

    It also identified an opportunity for dealers to increase the volume of their point of sale finance sales by up to 30%.

    At his management workshop at autoretailing 05, Mike Bray, development manager at Black Horse Motor Finance, will offer advice aimed at helping dealers to improve their finance and insurance profitability.

    Bray’s tips for conference delegates will include:

  • Combating direct lenders without losing the sale
  • Motivating, training and monitoring your sales teams
  • Using information technology effectively, to identify the most effective salespeople through automated performance reports
  • Helping business managers to understand what makes a deal stick better
  • Improvement techniques that work (with actual examples) and dealer pay plans relating to finance and insurance.

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