The BIG Week Ahead, Sales Process Shift, Retail = Personal and Pizza

January 23, 2023
It’s a big week for the Retail Auto Industry as the 2023 NADA Show is coming in hot and we’re making sure no one is left out! We’ll give you the plan as we also talk about the return of salesmanship, as well as how some retailers are dropping gems for Dealers to pick up.
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  • Let’s talk about the NADA schedule for everyone who can and can’t make it this year. ASOTU coverage will be comprehensive on the ground.
  • Why is it so important to the industry? Dealers, Partners, Make Meetings, etc
  • Wed - Arlington ASOTUx Venue
  • Thurs - JD Power, AN Retail Forum, ATA, NADA Party, AWA Awards
  • Fri - Ribbon cutting, floor open, education,
  • Sat - New Chair, Time Dealer of the Year
  • Sun - Wrap ups and recharge

  • Industry veterans sound off on the quickly evolving changes to the sales process, namely, a return to ‘selling’ as the effects of returning inventory are quickly setting in.
  • Adam Robinson
  • Daniel Goaver
  • David Kain

  • For our last story today we could tell you something about Hertz EV partnership in Denver, or that Tesla Superchargers are moving one step closer to being available for all EV drivers, but instead, we think it’s more helpful to start your week off and end this show with talking about what some progressive retailers are doing
  • This week at the NRF Big Show, Shawn Wilkinson, e-commerce program manager for personalization at Dick’s Sporting Goods, talked about how he led the e-comm department to launch a project of customizing emails to match the interests of the people who were browsing and not converting: aka, intentional personalization
  • Emails had been very general and he implemented a policy of numerous, small tests to see what worked
  • “Art of the Possible” initiative which involved numerous ‘scrappy’ tests to see what worked and then doubled down on those
  • Get cross-functional buy-in within the enterprise;
  • Think of a mission statement and vision;
  • Set clear KPIs to measure success, iterate and demonstrate the value of the program to get further executive buy-in.

  • Home Improvement Retailer, Lowe’s might just be the next desired location for your kid’s next birthday party as the chain is testing its “Build a Birthday” concept at 10 locations in Arizona, California, Indiana, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Utah
  • Modeled after its successful Saturday workshop program
  • Kids as young as 5 and parties as large as 20
  • “Parents will have the option of having Lowe’s provide pizza, drinks and desserts from Domino’s along with party favors such as t-shirts, water bottles and backpacks.“

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Kyle Mountsier, Paul Daly

Paul Daly  00:27

Don't know how we're gonna contain it this week. I mean I've never felt more energized on a Monday nada we were going to talk all about it and a shift in sales and retailers leading the way with some really fun ideas today. Like Oh, this feels like like the Monday of Monday

Kyle Mountsier  00:44

like okay, Christmas New Years Those are good each and everything but like the Eagles one Bengals one nada show

Paul Daly  00:53

we like let's if you don't know Kyle is a Bengals fan grew up in Ohio or spent a lot of his youth in Ohio. I'm an Eagles fan if you haven't heard that yet. But we are like one game away each from having an Eagles Bengals Super Bowl, which would be amazing. The only thing that I lament over is that we won't be able to watch it

Kyle Mountsier  01:12

together. Right? Yeah, yeah. Because Syracuse in Nashville don't have one direct flights yet.

Paul Daly  01:18

Natural. They do. But it's do but it doesn't want it's a thing. It's a thing. Well, I'll be watching the championship game in the airport and a BA. Hey, look in his nada week, you're gonna hear us talking all about it. We're going to talk about why it's important. But we got three days. Wednesday is Nick. I mean, Thursday is actually kind of the kickoff we're landing. We'll be there on Wednesday. We got some trouble to make him Michael Cirillo. When we land, we made him pick us up from the airport. So he got that job. But, but we thought like for the for the show today, because you're gonna hear a lot about it. And we thought it would be good to like, let's talk about the schedule. And what we're doing. And let's talk about why na da is important. First and foremost, you need to go to a so to na Because we know that everybody can't go actually most of you can't go only 25 30,000 People are going to be there. And as you know, there's like a couple of million in the greater retail just organization, beaming majority of people are going to be home. But we still think it's super important that everyone is understands what's going on that you are able to get a feel for what's going on and why and hear and see a lot of the things that are going on. So we are bringing a big team like 15 people, we're gonna give you the most comprehensive and ADA show coverage from the floor, right? There's gonna be lots of articles and stuff everywhere. We're going to be on the floor full schedule of live streams, lots of content across our social profiles, our daily email is going to have some summaries in it. So bottom line is you don't have to be left out of nada any longer.

Kyle Mountsier  02:48

Yeah, and I think the question there and you kind of you pose this right at the beginning is why do I not want to be left out of nada. And I think that that's that's a really kind of important level set for us. Because, yeah, nada, tons of parties engagement, being with people, there's an element to just simply being with others in the industry that helps you recognize like, Oh, they're doing this thing across the United States. Similar to me, maybe a little bit different. There's that like rubbing shoulders with people. But I think it goes a layer deeper. And that's what I'm really, that's what I think we're hoping to bring that energy that layer deeper. Because when you're with people that are that are headed in the same general direction, there's not just the rubbing shoulders in the party's in the hanging out. But there's like these unique, it's like, it's like a massive water cooler moment for the industry. And I think what's interesting is like, a lot of people come to events, hoping, hoping especially industry partners hoping to go this is what I have to offer. And I think what the actual bigger benefit is if everybody comes in says, What do you have to offer? What happens on the other side of that is probably a lot more inventive and innovative than anything that would be heading into it. Right? So there's actually production out of being together instead of just, you know, an acceptance of someone else's like ability to convert or, or, you know, productize something or, or share their the way that they do things, but there's actually an invention out of the conversation. And I think that that's what like we're hoping to bring to the larger ecosystem of auto without a doubt.

Paul Daly  04:29

I mean, if you if you're new and I know our audience has a lot of newer folks to automotive, right, so we want to tell you for a second nada is just the largest show in the year, but it's it's where every bite like dealers are during the 1000s and 1000s of dealers there. There's going to be the biggest trade show floor which means all the industry partners are a big majority of the industry partners are going to be there. There is a robust education day and a half where some of the thought leaders in the industry are going to be teaching on topics in spring discussion, the OEMs are going to be there. So all of the manufacturers are there. And they have a lot of what they would call make meetings, which is, you know, like a make like Subaru is a make of a vehicle. So they will all the Subaru dealers will get together in one room with the CEO and the executives and they talk about their plans. And they talk about, you know, like some new technologies press isn't allowed in those meetings. So we won't be in those meetings, but we'll be talking to a lot of dealers. And so this is, you know, on social media, you'll see a lot of pictures of like a group selfies, hey, here's a party. But don't be mistaken. It is so much more than that. Actually. It is like Kyle just said it's the moment where people, you know, he said a water cooler moment where people kind of just gather around and just kind of talk about what they're seeing how they're feeling what they saw, like how things can work together. So it's super important. Here's a quick schedule of a lot of people show up especially vendors on Wednesday, Thursday, there are three big forums. JD Power is probably the largest the JD Power event, Kyle is going to be covering that on the ground. The Automotive News retail forum. Again, another group of very high level other high level conversations in like these mini events go on on Thursday, there's another one called Auto Team America. I'll be covering that with part of our team. And so we're gonna bring you like a variety from

Kyle Mountsier  06:11

and then the fourth the AWA Awards, the past event, so there's like four big events happening that you could just bounce around all day

Paul Daly  06:19

at an Awa Yeah, so like JD Power starts in the morning. Audit Team America starts in the morning retail forum starts at noon. Awa is cool, because it's an evening event. Right? So even if you go to some of the other ones, you can still get to the NWA event and still get tickets in that that's probably like one of the most personal ones to go to, I would say Awa for sure. So Friday is the ribbon cutting Friday morning trade show floor opens, education begins. And that thing is just going to go off like a bang. Lots of people in there. Well, Thursday night, there's a party then at a party with

Kyle Mountsier  06:50

we, we had this conversation. We're like last year, they had a whole bunch of like this big drum line neon lights, the whole nine yards. We're like, what are they going to do this year, cowboys on

Paul Daly  07:00

horseback riding to the show floor. They're not probably not going to do that. But that would be amazing. That'd be amazing. The original horsepower, Saturday is kind of more of the same. Saturday is the only full full day start to finish of the show. And, and so Saturday is gonna be full of again, lots of trade show lots of main they call them super sessions where they bring in some celebrities to talk. But they also award the new time Dealer of the Year Award, which is a lot of fun. They pass the torch to the new chairman of the na da. And then Sunday, everyone's kind of just dragging themselves back together and back to the airport. So that's how that works out. So if you go to if you go, we'll be right like everybody's like, yep, yep. Hey, a little pro tip if you're going bring chapstick, because last year for some reason at the convention center, I don't know it was the driest they're ever granted. We were in Las Vegas. So as the desert, but it was hilarious. Dude, my lips are so chapped. But you walk around and everybody's lips are so chapped. Yeah. So I'm actually packing chapstick. So yeah, there's a schedule if you go to a so to nada or link up in the show notes, you will see our full schedule and also follow the social profiles. Follow us on LinkedIn. Check us out on Instagram because we're going to be doing stories on the ground. It's not just Kyle and I, we have our whole team dispersed and we're just going to bring you as much of that as we can. We're going to try to pretend we are industry veterans. Speaking of industry veterans, segue, a stretch for about a minute. All right, this is a fun one.

Kyle Mountsier  08:31

I worked at works for 17 years, like that's pretty strong. Not gonna call

Paul Daly  08:34

that call that combined. We have 765 years of experience. I love that company say that actually, I hate it. I hate it. Like maybe we just have 765 new people. industry veterans lead story in auto News This Morning industry veterans are sounding off on a quickly evolving, quickly evolving changes to the sales process, namely, a return to selling as the effects of the growing inventory are actually starting to set in QA. We've talked about this a many times over the last 60 days. It's coming up in this article here. And basically, the point is this. We're getting calls from our dealer, some of the ones we consult with are just some of the ones we're friends with him are like my salesmen have forgotten how to sell. Right, because largely when inventory was low, you would win a deal just basically on merits of having the vehicle in stock. And even when the vehicle is in stock when the person is like okay, I'm gonna buy this. They actually bought it according to just like the layout Terms Conditions, pricing and all that there was no negotiation, it was just basically order taking. Now that inventories coming up. I had one dealer say to me, somebody said this to one of my new salesmen, they said I have to go home I have to talk to my husband about this or my spouse about this. I don't know what it was. And, and the salesperson was shocked, like playback.

Kyle Mountsier  09:52

Okay, so here's let me just say this like, I mean, I was a salesperson once right. And once the salesperson And once the sales person always says yeah, and sometimes we forget, like there's another person on the other side of this this counter, that's the salesperson that if they pay attention to any level of industry news, they're just getting told that they've stopped learning how to sell. Now, I'm guessing most of the ones that are paying attention to some sort of industry news, or not the ones that multisensor are talking about. But I would say like, to the salesperson generation, if you're listening, or if you're watching the news, or if you're engaged with any of this, recognize that like, this is a massive opportunity to prove your value, and approve your your ability to self regulate your training, and end to end to grow quickly. Because like, if there is this, it's like this critical moment that dealers as a whole had at the beginning of the pandemic, or when inventory hit, when, like the ones that were dialed in, sprung forward. And so I'm looking at this is like the opportunity for the savvy salespeople, the ones that have dug in the ones that haven't forgot to sell, that have done social media that have engaged with training on the on new products, that they actually have the opportunity to spring forward. And not just that, but pull others along, communicate to your teammates, like what the importance and the value of training and learning and understanding the moves in the market. Because if we do that, like, we don't have to have this, you know, three, not, you know, six, nine month kind of law where it's like, Oh, everybody doesn't know what to do. Yeah, don't know why to rely on like the training manager or the lead manager to get you ahead, like, take it upon yourself. And I think that that's, that's like my encouragement in all of this, because I understand like, as general managers, as General Sales Managers, as even service advisors that are looking at their service teams, kind of like in a new ecosystem, that we're gonna that those people that those leaders are going to commit to training, I think more and more over the next year in in in these dealerships, but my encouragement to the salespeople to not just like, wait for that to come to you, you know, you know,

Paul Daly  12:09

I do know, and as you're saying that, like yes, whenever there's a transition, huge opportunity for the people who are going to lean into it. We also if you think about it, it has been a largely negotiation LIS set period of time for dealers, especially in the new car realm. We have an opportunity to reset the expectations of a sales process. Let's go right the time is not like going through a couple of people in this article, you should click on it and go check it out. It's like a it's like a friends and family list for a soda we got Adam Robertson, Adam Robinson, Daniel Grover, David Kane all taking a little bit of a different perspective some talking about the retention rate has been as good as it's been since nada started measuring it it's down to like 34% turnover rate. You know, but they were talking about the new salespeople don't know how hard it was and like you said, like, you know, you're telling stories about what we actually have to do we actually have to work to Kyle I think you're right on the money like flipping the script on that and be like, here's how we serve people better. Let's pay attention to what's going on in the industry. Let's empathize better, let's understand better and and move forward with that. Like this is a real big opportunity. Let's stop talking about the fact is going to be hard. Everything that's worth it is hard. Let's go retail speaking of retail, got it. Alright, this is a two part. Last story and for Leicester we could tell you something about Hertz's Evie partnership in Denver Tesla Supercharger is being rolled out for everyone. But no, we're not going to do that. We think it's more helpful to start the week out by talking about what some progressive retailers are doing outside automotive industry because we feel like this has so much potential inside automotive. I hit the first one Kyle, I know you love the second one. So we're gonna give you the second one. This week at the NRF Big Show. That's the National Retail Federation shows like the NADA for retail Shawn Wilkinson EECOM, director or program manager for Dick's Sporting Goods, talked about how he led their Econ department to launch a project of customizing emails to match the interests of people who were browsing, aka intentional personalization, something we've been talking about a lot something that trend is going that way. I did a little poll on retail wire, who thinks it's like 80% of the retailers feel like personalization is gonna be a massive part of success. So basically, what he did is that when when someone was browsing on the site, or someone interacted with them in some way, they would get a really kind of general email that because they were browsing the new they sent him an email, it was kind of general, it kind of sucked. No one responded to it. He said, Well, let's see what is what's going to work. So basically, he launched an internal initiative called art of the possible which he said we're going to be scrappy. He branded his internal initiative. And basically what he said is like we have 30 days to test stuff tested, small scale, it doesn't have a have to be a big grand thing, he said. And the goal of it listen to this is to get cross functional buy in within the enterprise. Let's get the other departments involved and get them to say, yeah, that works. So then they support it. And then he added actually had a little mission statement for this. And he just set some basic KPIs to measure and they just started testing and it was hugely successful. So basically, like, what you're

Kyle Mountsier  15:14

trying to tell me is that internal branding and commitment to have so many lessons translates to external efficiency and customer engagement. Can someone put that on a shirt? I know that's a little bit too long. But that's like that's,

Paul Daly  15:31

that on the shirt? People would probably read it because it'd be so many words out of what is this happening on this important run on sentence of this man shirt? I need to read it?

Kyle Mountsier  15:40

No, this is huge. Well, because one I love this is this is what I love. And I talk about it, you know, we talk about it in terms of levers a lot. And like pulling little tiny levers, micro moments, micro changes with measurable outcomes, and like understanding these things on a micro can can then expand to macro, especially if you can get buy in from the team. So like wholesale changes are sometimes good. But I think that the better changes come from like micro tests that are then you know, raised to the organization to produce efficiency externally. And it's like, dialed in from just a business mindset. And there's every single vertical can take that one to heart

Paul Daly  16:26

fail fast. Belfast. Well speaking, I don't know I can't say speaking, speaking and trying new things. It's an in the middle of a story segue. Go ahead, Kyle talking about talking about lows for a minute.

Kyle Mountsier  16:37

So lows is about to be the next desired location for your kids next birthday party, they are trying their new build a birthday concept and may may or may not have stole that from someone at 10 locations in Arizona, California, Indiana, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Utah. Basically what they're doing is if you've seen Lowe's, they've had this Saturday workshop program for a long time. But now they're moving into the kids zone. So they're taking kids as young as five and parties of up to 20. Basically, they're going to provide everything the pizza, the drinks, the whole nine yards, T shirts, water bottles, backpacks, so this whole like birthday experience, to do some building to do home improvement to to get the buy in on Home Improvement early and at a young age. And I

Paul Daly  17:27


Kyle Mountsier  17:30

we could go for another 22 minutes. We could.

Paul Daly  17:33

I mean, it does, it does so many things. Number one, it gives you something creative to do with kids and a birthday. And they had the Saturday workshops where they set it up and you make a little race car, a little house or something like that. But they partner with Domino's. So like oh, here's the party packages, you can just get your pizza and stuff delivered. They like kids love to do stuff with their hands. They kind of love to go in the big store. They get it and Lowe's is just like oh recording the next generation of consumers. And I of course, Kyle you and I always think about this to dealer like how do we tie this back to automotive? It's like imagine wine. Imagine if kids thought the car dealership was a cool place to be like, imagine where you took care of the parents like your parents. We got we know how to throw a party around here. Right? Right. We're gonna have pizza, like, come on now. Like, how much how much space is like kids would like love cars and big things and tools and things that move it like, it just seems like a real ground ball. I hope Patrick a match listening.

Kyle Mountsier  18:29

Imagine like, oh, I can so imagine this. This is I wish I would have thought of this back when I was a dealership because this is an unbelievable idea. And if anyone wants to just jam with us, you can hit us at Kyle at a and politician, right. And we'll hang out and talk all about this all day. Because how

Paul Daly  18:47

can we get a dealer to actually do this? Yeah, and like, look, the kids are gonna come in, you're gonna park all the minivans in the front row and everyone drives in and you're going to sell some cars, and you're going to make some kids real happy and have a lot of fun. So that's all the time we have for fun today. We got a lot of nada, show prep. We're leaving in just a couple days go to a so to na Check it out. Follow the socials because we're not going anywhere without you. You get to come with us.

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