Steve Mitchell

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Steve Mitchell has had a passion for automobiles, and used it as a creative director for ad agency automotive marketing. Most recently, he was the manager of interactive marketing for Mitsubishi Motors, NA. He earned bachelor's degrees in Marketing and Television from the University of Texas in Austin and a Masters of Theology study from Dallas Theological Seminary in Dallas.
marketing

Benefits of effective seasonal fixed ops marketing

For dealerships, January through March new and used car sales are usually at the lowest levels of the year - pandemic shutdowns notwithstanding. This year poses an even bigger problem with layoffs of critical members in the service and parts area. These are challenging times. And as in any other year, many OEMs and automotive dealers will cut marketing budgets because it's low on the priority list if it's not aimed directly at car sales. Do you still cut marketing for service and parts growth? If you're thinking about cutting marketing and incentives to current owners, that's misplaced thinking. It…
geofencing

How dealerships can use geofencing strategies to target customers

As dealerships enter into their next quarter of the marketing plan, many think creating a new marketing campaign is not in the budget. Especially now. However, you can add something new by using geofencing to reduce your overall marketing cost significantly and still get some great results. Much of your cost savings and leads will come from a targeted and personal message tailored to a specific individual who is in-market and has accepted a request to hear from you. They're local, nearby, and they're likely to buy from you or at least seek more information. What is Geofencing? Gartner defines…
service

Low-budget marketing tips for your service department

It’s widely accepted knowledge that only 45 percent of customers remain loyal to their dealership’s service department within the first two years of vehicle ownership. Like any relationship, work is required to keep things fresh, growing, and long-term. The often-attributed quote of Theodore Roosevelt says, “People don’t care about how much you know until they know how much you care.” Marketing is relational, so let’s look at some low-cost marketing tips that will help you care for and grow your relationship with current and future buyers. Manage Your Service Reputation You may know your CSI score, but do you know…
marketingvideo

Why now is the time to lean into your dealership’s marketing strategy – John...

On today's show, we’re pleased to welcome back John Fitzpatrick, Co-Founder and CEO of Force Marketing to discuss the latest updates and news in the automotive industry with regards to marketing trends and strategy. Labor Day was a key moment for the auto retail industry to fully realize its recovery potential. The feedback that Fitzpatrick is hearing from Force Marketing clients is that the holiday was as good or better for many dealers than in the previous year. Dealers feel that the consumer demand is on par with 2019 and even higher in certain localized markets. Force Marketing data supports…
David Longvideo

Hansel Auto Group’s David Long on inventory challenges, CA wildfires, and COVID-19

As dealers get back into the swing of things in the wake of the pandemic, some are adopting new business models and strategies while others are unfortunately taking a hit. Today, we’re checking in with David Long, executive general manager of the Hansel Auto Group and veteran of the retail automotive industry about what’s working for his business along with some challenges that he’s faced. In this segment, Long and anchor Jim Fitzpatrick discuss the state of the automotive industry including new vehicle inventory challenges, residual COVID-19 obstacles, and how wildfire season has affected California dealerships. For Hansel Auto Group,…
Carlock Automotivevideo

Carlock Automotive COO Joe Seppa discusses his group’s recent expansion

Experts have said the auto industry continues to see growth through the pandemic and Carlock Automotive Group is proving them right with their latest announcement of expansion. The group announced its acquisition of three new dealerships in Tennessee earlier this fall, and today we’re talking with the group's Chief Operating Officer Joe Seppa to find out more. Volkswagen North Nashville in Madison, Mitsubishi in Madison, and Volkswagen Cool Springs in Franklin are the latest stores to join the Carlock family dealer group. All three locations were previously owned by Hallmark Automotive and the deal was finalized on Aug. 14. According…
marketing

Benefits of effective seasonal fixed ops marketing

For dealerships, January through March new and used car sales are usually at the lowest levels of the year - pandemic shutdowns notwithstanding. This year poses an even bigger problem with layoffs of critical members in the service and parts area. These are challenging times. And as in any other year, many OEMs and automotive dealers will cut marketing budgets because it's low on the priority list if it's not aimed directly at car sales. Do you still cut marketing for service and parts growth? If you're thinking about cutting marketing and incentives to current owners, that's misplaced thinking. It…
Beijing

Beijing Auto Show foreshadows automotive retail future

The 2020 Beijing International Automotive Exhibition kicked off on Saturday, Sept 26 as the first major auto show since the coronavirus pandemic began after initially being postponed from its original April date. Huge crowds were present in the exhibition center as the event got underway despite the heightened awareness of health, a clear signal of a desire to return to normalcy. The Beijing auto show’s floor was markedly less packed with vehicles on display as carmakers pulled back on marketing efforts and new model releases have been delayed or cancelled. Although nearly 800 vehicles are on display, it’s about 200…

Why minorities often don’t consider careers in the automotive industry

Welcome back to Diversity in Automotive brought to you by TrueCar and CarNow. One of the critical concerns that dealers grapple with on a consistent basis is employee turnover. Automotive recruiting efforts are strong, however, employees who enter the car business still end up leaving. Why? In today's segment, host Cory Mosley is joined by an esteemed panel of automotive retail professionals. This panel includes Elgie Bright, automotive department chair for Northwood University, Brandon K. Hardison, owner of Champion Strategies, and Kerri Wise, vice president of communications for TrueCar. The panel first tackles why members of the minority community may…

Electric vehicles make big waves in this week’s automotive tech headlines

Welcome to another edition of The Friday 5 with Steve Greenfield, Founder and CEO of Automotive Ventures, an auto technology advisory firm that helps entrepreneurs raise money and maximize the value of their companies. In this episode, Greenfield takes a look at Carvana's performance, the latest news out of California, and dramatic events from the makers of electric vehicles. Carvana There’s no doubt that COVID-19 has accelerated more consumers to online car buying, and, in parallel, investors’ interest in technologies that enable consumers to either buy or service their vehicles online. This week, we received a couple of interesting signals…

What the auto retail industry has gotten right and wrong about...

Welcome back to Diversity in Automotive brought to you by TrueCar and CarNow. When we talk about the issue of diversity, a lot of times, based on the marketplace, people tend to think about diversity as it relates to color. However, gender and sexual orientation often get ignored. In today's segment, host Cory Mosley is joined by an esteemed panel of automotive retail professionals who are part of the LGBTQ community. This panel includes Danny Zaslavsky, the dealer of Country Hill Motors, Richard Herod the dealer of White Bear Mitsubishi, Hollyanne Peck the Director of Marketing at CarNow, and Tim…

Modifying your dealership’s sales approach through COVID-19

Over the last six months, David Lewis has talked with hundreds of dealership personnel. The majority seem to be in agreement that the changes currently being made to the sales process will be around for a long time. On this edition of Straight Talk, our host, David Lewis discusses how the COVID-19 pandemic has compelled dealers to change their sales process and strategy. From his perspective, Lewis believes that a lot of the changes are positive and should be adopted by all dealerships. Lewis' method of selling has always been about inspiration, not high pressure. He believes that by lowering…