ASOTU CON Sessions Episode 12: Kristen Limbert and Molly Meyer

October 18, 2022
Kristen Limbert and Molly Meyer sit down with Michael Cirillo to chat at ASOTU CON 2022.
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Kristen Limbert and Molly Meyer sit down with Michael Cirillo to chat at ASOTU CON 2022.

Kristen Limbert is the Sales Director of Enterprise/Major Accounts for Naked Lime and Gubagoo.
Molly Meyer is the Head of Marketing at Gubagoo.

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Paul Daly: 0:03You're listening to the ASOTU CON Sessions by Effectv recorded live in Philly.Michael Cirillo: 0:10

All right, I'm sitting down now with Molly and Kristen from Gubagoo and Naked Lime on ASOTU CON Sessions on behalf of Effectv. Thanks so much for joining me today.

Kristen Limbert: 0:19

Thank you so much.

Michael Cirillo: 0:22

I'm excited to dig into this. When did the merger of Gubagoo and Naked Lime happen and give me give me some of the nitty gritty on that?

Molly Meyer: 0:32

Well, I wouldn't say merger, but we are sister companies, when Reynolds and Reynolds acquired Gubagoo. Last year, we became a sister company. So we are two brands under the umbrella that is the the powerhouse Reynolds.

Michael Cirillo: 0:48

Got it? And should we be talking about Ryan's hair routine? Because he has fabulous?

Kristen Limbert: 0:54

It's fabulous. We have enough time? How are we're limited?

Molly Meyer: 0:58

I see it on Zoom every day. A lot of people jealous. I know.

Michael Cirillo: 1:02

That's awesome. And so I mean, a lot of people in the industry obviously know Gubagoo is the chat company Naked Lime is the web marketing agency. How does that are you perfectly integrated? Now? How does that how does that work? That goes, well,

Molly Meyer: 1:17

we're starting to the biggest integration that we have today. And it's just like the the, the foundation, the starting places. So Naked Lime is a lot of marketing, inbound, communicating to very targeted audiences is a database is like the foothold and the foundation of our product. And with that comes a whole lot of information about who you're communicating to make headlines sends out an email, for example, to a targeted segment of people who have this thing in common, this message goes in front of that group. Google engages with those customers once they hit the site. So what we can do with our integrations is no who click through an email who landed on the website, Google can greet with our, with our chat, greeter, greet you by name, they know why you came to the site. They know you clicked on this deal, or you drive this car and you're looking to book your service appointment or you're looking to do you know XY and Z, that naked line, you know, that message that they crafted. So there's a pretty nice consumer experience gets given the data and the purpose behind the website visit that really power is a pretty engaging Hello, when you when you enter the site.

Michael Cirillo: 2:38

I'm always actually fascinated by how quickly things have progressed, by way of consumers and technology. Because at first everything you said, And admittedly, maybe this is the old Italian and me but I'm like, creepy, creepy. But look how quickly we progressed. Because then I quickly arrived at, oh, I love when they just have all of that stuff figured out.

Molly Meyer: 2:59

When I get a coupon printed out at the grocery store after I self checkout. That is for something I want to buy next week. I'm happy and when it's something that I could care less about. I feel like it's a waste of paper.

Kristen Limbert: 3:11

Nice because it makes it easier for you as a consumer. And if you don't think too much about how it's happening behind the scenes, then it's not so creepy. Right? Well, and

Michael Cirillo: 3:19

not only that, I mean, I had a conversation years ago with a gentleman named Rand Fishkin, he's he's kind of one of the foremost SEO guys he started a company called Moz. He's exited since but he he was talking to me about how the internet, Google in particular in this case, but based on what you've been sharing, I mean, it's now extended to very granular levels, but he's like, what people don't understand is it's not creepy, when you understand that the internet is the perfect listener. All it's doing is listening, right? And it's just on, it's listening, and it's paying attention. And then it's delivering you back. You basically the internet is everything we want our spouse to be

Molly Meyer: 4:01

just thinking the same thing. Like if I got that listening other places in my life, boy, oh, boy,

Michael Cirillo: 4:07

to just have the right slippers by the side of my bed when I wake up in the right position. And you know, like all those sorts of things. So I think that's incredibly fascinating that that's how quickly we've progressed. So from your vantage point, being in the mix day in and day out, where do you see things going from here? I mean, we're living in Star Trek times is really how it feels

Kristen Limbert: 4:27

right. So the crazy thing is, you know, being in the automotive space for 13 years now, me personally, it seems like the past few years, it has progressed so much quicker than it did combined 10 years prior, right. So it is really fascinating to see the true innovation that's happening. Obviously, there's been new technology and things that have come out over that period of time, but but where we're seeing things now people are kind of taking a step back and thinking, Okay, why are we doing this? Why is this important? What problem does this solve? Instead of just looking at these fancy gadgets? So I think people are really starting to focus on how do we truly automate this and not keep these different pieces siloed and then present that consumer experience that really takes it to the next level. So that's where I'm seeing kind of all these dots actually getting connected people having a bigger conversation, looking at it from a bigger picture.

Michael Cirillo: 5:19

I love that. It, it really brings into focus for me that without the data, in a data driven world, you are running so blind, like, on mass, right? We're an industry that kind of loves bouncing on the buzzword trampoline, and its chip shortage, inventory shortage. Right, but you both have a unique vantage point of being able to see that even through shortages, consumers are moving in a very interesting way, what perhaps is something that stood out to you, especially over the last couple of years about how consumers are moving towards a purchase.

Kristen Limbert: 6:01

I think the big thing that we saw was there's just constantly shift. So to your point, it's not like consumers stopped engaging and stopped doing business. And it just we saw, obviously a huge shift towards fixed operations. So dealers trying to maximize every app that that they had from whether it is their database, you mentioned data, data is a huge buzzword for everyone, but it's very near and dear to my heart, because there's a huge difference between good data and bad data, right? So, but we saw dealers are really leveraging the data that they had, they have access to more information than they know what to do with. So using that to try and bring in consumers from a service standpoint, from fixed operations standpoint, and really maximizing those at bats. But customers didn't just stop, stop engaging and stop doing retail just shifted what they were focusing on and, and how they were engaging with the retailers.

Molly Meyer: 6:53

I think, too, that you know, I mentioned the grocery store thing, getting something that wasn't tailored to me or you know, YouTube ad that has nothing to do with my viewing habits. The frustration wasn't really there in auto consumers are used, there's a grace, like there's a grace period between the experience the Amazon experience that you got and online retailing versus you know how you purchase a vehicle. And that grace period is shrinking and shrinking, or maybe not existing anymore. So the consumer expectations are so great. And every other shopping experience of their life, I think today and in the future, they will, it will be the same expectations in this space as well. versus, you know, maybe giving that that grace period where Buying a car is different. It's much more complicated, which it is. But as we've seen with tech today that that expectation exists in buying a vehicle as well.

Michael Cirillo: 7:51

This fascinates me because and go with me for a while go well go. I love how what you're saying about expectation. There's a lot of talk about expectation, but I think sometimes we can convince ourselves that it all happens so fast. Now go with me down this wormhole. It took us 1500 years to go from a chariot and horse to a horse and buggy. Somewhere in a 1500 year time span someone was like, you know, it'd be good. If we could fit more than one person in this thing.

Molly Meyer: 8:30

There was a back on this chariot, someone fell.

Michael Cirillo: 8:33

So then on the back of that, in the last 200 years alone, we came up with stealth aircraft. So yes, things progressed quickly. But also No, they didn't. So stop being so stinking surprised that things are accelerating as quickly as they are because we're basically, you know, I'm no rocket surgeon. But to my estimation, we're coming out with about 100 years worth of innovation in tech every five years. So it's it should not be a surprise to the dealer community to business owners, how much access we have to data that it's going to evolve even faster at a rapid pace. But also 100 years ago, everyone was still boiling all of their food. So calm down. We've had time to process this jump on the train. What are your thoughts on that? Is that Mike? Is that too controversial? Did I just get us canceled? What's what's what's, what's your thoughts?

Kristen Limbert: 9:29

I think you're right. And to take it a step further. You know, I think II in the automotive space, like Molly was saying there was kind of a grace period where, you know, maybe this is a controversial take. But automotive has never been on the cutting edge of technology. Right? It has always felt like it was a little bit behind trends in the curve. And I feel like because it was this little bubble, and now that consumers expect so much more because of just how they engage with other retailers. But even dealers themselves if they look at how they're engaging with people that they do business with, they have those same expectations that their consumers do. So is it really that different of a thing? Or are they just looking at it differently now?

Michael Cirillo: 10:11

It makes me think about your coupon statement, and how we move how we actually move to a purchase. I mean, everything is happening. So naturally, now that we're not even as customers to your point, we're not even thinking about all of the touch points we actually had in making a purchase decision. We do it in everyday life, right? Maybe it's grocery shopping, or maybe it's replacing a washer and dryer, or, you know, we don't realize as we thumb through the Sunday paper, the Friday paper with all the coupon packets, what we're actually doing, and then moving online, and checking out retailers websites, and having a live chat conversation or a FaceTime conversation, and still driving to shocking how many times I still find myself driving to Best Buy, despite an Amazon having same day delivery, you know, there's, but it's all happening in life. So we're not thinking about how organically how simple and natural, it's happening. But to both your point, that's, if we as retailers can understand that we do that for ourselves, we should be understanding that that's exactly what our consumers are doing as well. So let me ask you this, then what what then separates in your opinion, dealer, a, from dealer B, down the street from one another? How do they really stand out? When we basically have all the same access to data and, and marketing abilities and whatnot,

Kristen Limbert: 11:40

I think you said the right word is access, we hear a lot of people talking about access, being able to access the data, people want automation with the data that they have. I don't think that's really the problem. I don't think the problem is access, whether you're doing that through your DMS, you're doing that through your CRM, however you're accessing the data, there needs to be a buffer between the data that you are accessing, and what you're doing with that and how you're using it. Because if you look at your DMS as a transactional catalog, which it is, and you're using that as your source of marketing, so let's say hey, we want to increase customer pay on our rows, well, let's send out these five coupons to every let's blast this email out through our CRM and send this to everyone in our system. That's the access you have no, there's no real huge limitation to access for that. The problem is, half of those customers don't own that vehicle anymore, or you're sending it to my old, you know, college email address about the old sedan that I bought from you. But I have an SUV now. And it's I have a different Gmail address and my married name versus my maiden name, I think the bigger thing, what is differentiating dealer a from dealer B is what they're doing with that data, leveraging good data, understanding that they need to clean up that data, or it's not going to be relevant to the consumer. If you really want a good consumer experience, you have to know who that customer is, where they are, what they're driving, what they're interested in, etc, etc, etc. And if you're just using an accessing the deal data that you already have, you could be pretty, largely missing the point or missing the target, if you will.

Michael Cirillo: 13:15

So what you're saying is, despite the doom and gloom narrative of technology, replacing people, this is still very much a people business.

Kristen Limbert: 13:25

Oh, 100%. I think technology helps the people, right?

Unknown: 13:31

I'll add to that point, exactly. Right, Gubagoo got their start. We're a messaging company, we empower buyers and sellers to communicate real time and connect over any channel that they want to connect on. That's another way where technology can assist and make you connect faster, quicker, consumers can get their instant gratification where they can get an answer in real time super fast. But there's also a place for a dealer dealer a verse dealer b in this case, to bring their own personality and their own dealership brand, and their own style of doing business into a communication online like that, too. We have seen a Naked Lime, lots of dealers wanting to show how they're different from dealer B down the street, in their marketing message and the images that they use, what types of graphics, they have a dog and everything that that you know, all over their website, or their they have this charity that's near and dear to their heart, and they talk about it a lot. You can do that when you're communicating with a customer, a real customer on the other end of a computer or phone via chat or a Facebook message in the same capacity as you choose to do with your marketing materials. So there's a place for humans definitely still,

Michael Cirillo: 14:47

it's one of those simple foundational points of marketing that I wish I hope I pray, please Jesus, help our industry. Understand that there is such a thing as market segmentation. And

Molly Meyer: 15:03

Kristen's very excited. I was just

Kristen Limbert: 15:06

speaking my lovely.

Michael Cirillo: 15:07

Well, my example. So years ago, I remember sitting in front of the television with my wife. And I wasn't paying attention to the commercial at the at the time, but I see her gradually getting closer and closer to the TV screen like a mosquito to the blue light. And it was a Sketchers. Shoe commercial about how they were releasing a new like tone year, but kind of shoe. Right audience segmented, wrong audience repelled. Right. And to your point about what is our brand message? What are the charities that we care about? How do we do we jump in line and do commercials where the owner dresses up like a pickle and says, I'm in a pickle like everybody else? Because I hope, I hope I hope that it sinks in that whatever path you choose, will attract customers, and it will repel customers, and you can't be worried about the ones you're repelling. You should only be concerned about are you attracting more and more of your tribe not to use the buzzword. But you know what I mean? So thoughts on segmenting the market based on brand.

Unknown: 16:18

Here. I mean, you're dead on it's not all consumer looks metaphorically speaking looks the same, right? So you have to figure out how to align with your consumer base. And maybe that's five different messages that you're sending out to those specific targets. Because that aligns with them. It's relevant to them. That's how as retailers, we connect with businesses that we do business with. It's someone that you align with someone that is hitting the mark, like the Skechers him and that's not for you. But she saw that she liked it, it aligned with her. So it's it becomes this. Not everyone, the same message can go out to everyone. And you have to figure out where are you sending the right message, and really targeting what you're sending out. Because Relevancy is key. Your marketing is amiss, if it's not relevant to who you're sending it to, no matter how flashy the content is, if it doesn't align with who's receiving it, or doesn't get to them, period, you've missed it.

Michael Cirillo: 17:16

And it's relevant to what you were saying about Gubagoo, you know, when they first when you guys first launched years ago, you know, I remember it was just like the chat pop up, like that was the channel but now you're saying we want to connect with you in real time, wherever you want to be connected. Inherent in that statement is while there's segments, there's already affiliate affinities for certain platforms, different ways of communicating. What are you finding are the most popular channels like the highest trending channels that people you've noticed an uptick in people reaching out to dealerships,

Unknown: 17:53

it website is still first and foremost, that is absolutely still where most people engage in a chat. They landed on the site for a specific reason they're in the market for a vehicle or they're looking to schedule some kind of a service appointment, they have a need, right, and they know where to go to start that to solve that need. So we definitely see website still as a top Facebook Messenger is becoming more and more popular. Not only because you can, like you're already on this platform, or you already have this app, we know that. But you can reengage on the dealer's end, when a chat closes off of a website, that customer is gone. For the time being. We see more and more engagement on Facebook, from the consumers and and from the dealers. And because the dealer can reengage at least with with our platform and tool, a dealer can re engage with that customer, because the conversations not gone for seven days, in this case. So we see reengagement growing on the Facebook platform. But you know, we're international too. So Gubagoo sees a lot of WhatsApp, communication, especially overseas. And Apple messages for business is probably the other one that that's growing a little bit more strongly. A lot of Apple. You know, once you're in the Apple family, you're in the Apple family, and they want you to use Apple apps when you're on an Apple device. So they're really making that choice easy for people who use Apple devices.

Michael Cirillo: 19:27

I love that you bring in the overseas perspective, because I think oftentimes, especially in North America, we're plagued by this thought process that the way it is here is the way it is everywhere. But the fact that you know, I have some overseas colleagues, and they're like, you still send SMS messages. What What kind of paganistic weird Are you like, we use whatsapp WhatsApp is what the billionaires in Europe you know, it's like that kind of thought process. So I think it's interesting. You bring that up? Yeah.

Molly Meyer: 19:59

Oh, that's great. Are you true especially about tech, there's a lot of tech that comes out in like Scandinavia or Europe or other places in the world Asia and in the US is often a later adopter compared to some of those companies, especially, you know, US consumers like we are.

Michael Cirillo: 20:16

Well, I mean, I still put my faith in, we came up with the airplane and that helped us. If we didn't do that, we'd probably still be riding horses.

Kristen Limbert: 20:26

Right? Shout out to Ohio.

Michael Cirillo: 20:30

Man, this is so much fun. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. This is awesome.

Paul Daly: 20:39

Thank you for listening to this ASOTU CON Session by Effectv if you want more content like this, you can check out our other podcasts we have a daily show called The automotive troublemaker Monday through Friday, here on podcasts also live streamed on YouTube, and LinkedIn and Facebook. We also have a long form podcast called Auto Collabs, Auto Collabs. And if you just want to go a little deeper into this community, you should sign up for our regular email we put our heart and soul into it. You can get it for free by going to asotu.com. We'll see you next time.