On Tuesday, July 29th Will McGinnis, Stan Sher and I joined Mike Jeffs and Christina DeVore from DrivingSales to talk about what attendees can expect from the DrivingSales Executive Summit.

If you didn’t get a chance to see the Google Hangout live as it happened, you can get caught up on the entire conversation right here.

DrivingSales Executive Summit Google Hangout

It may be mid-summer now, but before you know it fall will be here and that means it will be time for the 2015 Driving Sales Executive Summit – the automotive retail industry’s most progressive event.

Have you registered for DSES yet? Are you are sitting on the fence wondering what kind of insights you might get from the to take back to your store?

If so then you need to hangout! DrivingSales is hosting an exclusive hangout with past attendees (including yours truly) who will share their takeaways that helped increase sales and marketing in their own dealership.

Plus when you join the hangout, you will have a chance to win a free ticket to the upcoming summit!

Reserve Your Seat at the Online Hangout
Wednesday, July 29 2:00 pm eastern time

Participate with some of the most successful dealerships in the country, learn the trends and how to implement them into your stores, and watch your sales skyrocket. This is a unique opportunity to get a sneak preview of experts sharing their top insights.

Come prepared with questions for these experts. Seats are  limited, reserve your tickets now.

See you soon!

Date: July 29, 2015
Time: 2:00pm est
Event: Google Hangout: DrivingSales Executive Summit Sneak Peek & Ticket Giveaway
Topic: DSES Prieveiw
Sponsor: DrivingSales Executive Summit
(866) 943-8371 x124
Public: Public
Registration: Click here to register.

#SocialFail Presentation at the TLS Automotive Social Media Summit

I recently had the pleasure of speaking at the 2015 Automotive Social Media Summit hosted by Thought Leadership Summits. Being able to share the stage with fellow car dealers, automotive vendors and OEM representatives was truly a humbling experience.

In my presentation I told the story of how we at the LaFontaine Automotive Group jumped feet first into the world of social media in 2010, and how we initially succeeded only to fail a few years later.  I then explain how we rebounded by executing a paradigm shift regarding social media marketing in our dealerships in order to succeed according to the new rules of 2015.

The feedback I received after the presentation was overwhelmingly positive, and I was honored to be able to participate in such an outstanding event.

What the rise in “Near Me” Searches means for Dealerships

In a recent post on Think With Google, a compelling study shows how “Near Me” type searches are on the rise. And not just a steady rise either, these searches are up 34x since 2011.

I originally posted this article on DrivingSales.com – an online community where automotive retails professional can share ideas and best practices.

You know the kind of search I’m talking about, right? You’re in a town that you’re not too familiar with and in need of nourishment so you whip out the trusty smartphone and google restaurants near me.

Search for Buick Dealers Near Me

And just like a good Google should, up pops a list of restaurants near your present location complete with reviews, the address, the type of food and the hours of operation allowing you to make an immediate decision on where you’re going to go stuff your face with food.

Google refers to these scenarios like the one I just described as “I Want To Go” moments. A consumer has a need, want or desire and they’re using mobile search to provide a solution now.

Social Fail - It's not you Facebook, it's me.

I’m honored and excited to have been asked to speak at the 2015 Automotive Social Media Summit. Please join me and an amazing group of speakers as we gather for a day to learn and grow with each other.

The Automotive Social Media Summit is a unique event featuring:

  • Real expertise on key topics
  • Exclusive environment for senior executives
  • Strategic and best-practice presentations
  • Extensive opportunities for peer-to-peer learning
  • Limited sponsor and vendor involvement
  • The 5th annual Automotive Social Media Summit is the industry’s only summit focused exclusively on social media.

Hope to see you there!

Date: June 17, 2015
Time: 08:00
Event: Automotive Social Media Summit
Topic: #SocialFail - It's not you Facebook, it's me
Sponsor: Automotive Social Media Summit 2015
Venue: The Ritz-Carlton
Location: 4375 Admiralty Way
Marina Del Rey, CA 90292
Public: Public
Registration: Click here to register.
More Info: Click here for more information.

Time To Change? How The Apple Watch Affects Email Marketing

Are you a tech-obsessed nerd like me? When it comes to the latest phone, tablet, computer, gizmo, gadget or wearable device – I want it and I want it now.

This article was originally posted on DrivingSales.com – an online community where automotive retails professional can share ideas and best practices

I began following the Apple rumor mill intensively back when everyone referred to the forthcoming smartwatch from Apple as the iWatch. And being the geek I am, I felt like I just had to have one of these shiny new watches that did so much more than tell me what time it was and remind me that I was late for a meeting…again.

How The Apple Watch Affects Email Marketing

Honestly because of my excitement, it never occurred to me just how the latest whizzbang-gizmo from Apple might affect human behavior, communication and personal interaction.

Now that the Apple Watch has launched and many of us eagerly await our smart-timepiece to arrive on our doorstep, it’s a good time to take a deeper look to see how this new device could impact our dealerships digital marketing in general and email marketing specifically.

Robert Benchley quote about writing

One of the things I love most about attending conferences like Canadian Digital Dealer or hanging out in online automotive digital marketing communities is that I get to talk to all kinds of awesome people who do what I do.

We tend to share the same challenges in our jobs and they’re great venues for like minded people to connect. We can teach each other and learn from each other all at the same time.

The questions that I’m asked about most often about by my peers usually has to do with blogging in the car dealership. It’s clearly something I’m passionate about, take great pride in doing and am always happy to talk about.


Join the Dealership Bloggers Community on Google Plus

As you may know, I’m a huge advocate of creating unique and original blog content to separate your car dealership from the competition. And over on FamilyDealBlog.com, the official blog of the LaFontaine Automotive Group, we just wrapped up an amazing 2014.

When looking back on the year, it was quite satisfying to see that we published 105 pieces of original content that generated over 56,000 unique visits to the blog.

Not too shabby!

Join the car dealership blogger community on Google Plus

The past year I’ve also noticed there are a lot more dealerships out there who have gotten serious about blogging and are putting out their own quality content.

I truly believe that we’re about to enter a new era of blogging in the dealership as more and more #AutoMarketing peeps discover the true power of The Force The Blog to drive traffic to their websites and through their doors!

Guess Who’s Going To Canada?

The following Facebook conversation that recently took place between myself and Brent Wees, Partner and Client Services Director at Glovebox, is based on true events.

BRENT – Hey man, Canadian Digital Dealer 7 is coming up on February 18th & 19th, we’d love it if you’d speak at the event!

ME – Hi Brent…I think you meant to message Karbaum, he’s over there.

BRENT – No seriously, I’m talking about you.

ME – Seriously? That’s awesome! I haven’t been to Canada since….wait…never mind. Any hoo, I’m in! Thanks for the invite!

BRENT – Hold on…you haven’t been to Canada since what?

ME – It was nothing really…I’m sure he’s forgotten all about it.

BRENT – He? Who’s he?!

ME – Hmm? Oh it’s nothing, I swear. Hold on…just sending a quick tweet …What do you want me to speak about?

BRENT – Well we wanted you to talk about how to Blog for your Dealership like you did at DSES in Las Vegas…but….who are you tweeting? Why?!

ME – Just clearing the air :) Looks like we’re good to go!

BRENT – Right on, the gang at the Trillium Automotive  Dealers Association is stoked you’re willing to take part (and still allowed in the country apparently)!

ME – I’m stoked too Brent. Looking forward to an amazing event!

For those who didn’t get a chance to see it LIVE! at the 2014 DrivingSales Executive Summit, here is the audio recording and slide deck to my Blog to the Future breakout session.

Also don’t forget to check out my Ultimate Bloggers Resource Pack before you launch or relaunch your dealership’s blog. It has everything you need to build your content foundation.

Kick back, relax and enjoy!