Trend Motors Volkswagen in Rockaway, NJ., is three years into its drive toward a paperless sales process. To accelerate his plans, General Manager Frank Maher signed up with DealerSocket, knowing that to deliver the digital buying experience customers want, he needed consumer and deal data flowing across a single digital ecosystem. DealerSocket not only had all the pieces, Maher says, it also had a knack for staying ahead of the curb.

"I made the right decision moving to DealerSocket. They're always staying ahead of the curve, adding new ideas. There's also a lot of add on tools that can be connected."

Frank Maher, General Manager

Trend Motors Volkswagen

Texting to a Better Customer Experience

Using text messaging to deliver customer convenience is a top priority for Maher and his sales team. “You know, my own children would prefer to text me from their bedroom than to come downstairs and speak with me. It's just the world we live in. You have to adapt.” That’s what led him to customize the dealership's opt-in message with the inclusion of “For your convenience” and the salesperson’s name.

In the two months since personalizing its text opt-in message, the dealership has realized a 36% increase in text messages sent and 51% increase in those received. "A lot of the things we've changed, like the opt-in message, have come from a salesperson's suggestion," Maher says. "The CRM is their No. 1 tool, so we listen to what they have to say."

Capturing Lease Retention

Maher’s deep understanding of lease maturities led him to activate DealerSocket’s RevenueRadar® data mining tool. The 200-unit-a-month dealership’s 68% to 72% lease penetration also made the decision a no-brainer.

“Our DealerSocket Strategic Growth Manager quickly got us on the right track with RevenueRadar. He showed us how to drip opportunities in at a manageable pace, so we get to optimize the opportunities that are sitting there, right in front of us. It’s really a great tool.”

The importance of leasing is also why Maher is excited about the new integration between DealerSocket’s CRM and Volkswagen’s Maturity Manager, a dealer portal VW Credit created to facilitate end-of-term transactions and initiate maturity programs. “It's much more cost-effective to keep or retain a customer that we already have than to try to find a new one. So, having that integration working with the brand and pulling that information into the CRM — the platform my salespeople already use to reach out to those customers — is a great idea,” he says.

“It's much more cost-effective to keep or retain a customer that we already have than to try to find a new one. So, having that integration working with the brand and pulling that information into the CRM — the platform my salespeople already use to reach out to those customers — is a great idea."

Frank Maher, General Manager

Trend Motors Volkswagen

Moving Off Paper

Ensuring all these integrations and add-ons are optimized to the store's process is critical, which is why Maher is especially grateful for his DealerSocket Customer Success Manager (CSM).

“She’s a Rockstar. She changed our perspective as far as what we can do with DealerSocket,” Maher says, also crediting his CSM for getting the dealership to switch from a paper log to the CRM's Desk Log to track customer interactions. “The Desk Log has become a bible for us. Every day it's up on my desktop. Right now, I can see how many units have been sold today, who's come and gone, what the notes are, and we have accountability for the sales associates to check in the visit, check in the demo, the write up, that it went to F&I, and that it's in. So, we can see everything that occurred, along with upcoming appointments and those that have been confirmed or canceled.”

Connecting Online with Offline

Having his DealerFire website perfectly synced with his CRM is key to Maher’s overall strategy. “Part of the reason I went with DealerSocket over the other vendors was to have continuity. I knew if I had the DealerFire platform that the triangulation between my website, CRM, desking tool, and, when I’m ready, PrecisePrice, would make for a much better experience for customers,” he says.

As a next step, Maher plans to use digital retailing to build upon existing foundation. "As for digital retail, you want to jump in both feet first. But that’s how you set yourself up for failure. We're tackling it one item at a time, and DealerSocket is allowing us to do that."

"Part of the reason I went with DealerSocket over the other vendors was to have continuity. I knew if I had the DealerFire platform that the triangulation between my website, CRM, desking tool, and, when I’m ready, PrecisePrice, would make for a much better experience for customers."

Frank Maher, General Manager

Trend Motors Volkswagen

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