Dealer Marketing Magazine was recently contacted by Brian Hall, president of Blue Sky Marketing Group about some new technology he had seen in our August issue, because he wanted to share his experience with this new technology. After listening to his story, we decided to do an interview as a follow up to the August article about AutoFerret.com’s new AVA technology.
DMM: What does BlueSky do?
Brian Hall: In a nutshell, we provide new customer acquisition and conversion programs for auto dealers throughout the United States. BlueSky Companies, Inc. is the parent company for BlueSky Marketing Group, Inc., and BlueSky Financial Services, Inc., a nationally licensed auto finance company.
DMM: How did you end up testing this new technology?
BH: Knowing that life happens and things come up, we understand the common problems dealers face with the process of working leads. Over the past twenty years, we’ve developed many different systems and processes to help dealers convert leads to sales. When I read the article about AVA in the August issue of Dealer Marketing Magazine and another article in Auto Dealer Monthly again in September, I contacted Ben Brigham at AutoFerret to learn more about the program and to determine if his technology might have an application in our auto finance lead program; specifically, we wanted to see if it could engage a consumer and schedule phone appointments for our dealers. After looking at their demo, I was impressed but remained skeptical: it was hard to believe that it could really do what he claimed it would do. We decided to pilot the AVA technology with a group of our dealers and by day two of the test, we were believers. AVA had increased the response rate on leads by over 200%. More importantly, it has maintained (actually increased) that response rate throughout the pilot.
DMM: How are you using the technology?
BH: Initially, we plan to use the AVA technology as a virtual business development tool; however, there are many other potential applications I see within the automotive industry. As it relates to assisting auto dealers in converting leads to sales, we discovered that in most instances, AVA was not only successful in engaging consumers to work with our participating auto dealers but was also able to make first contact – an important metric in winning a consumer’s business. The task for AVA is to quickly and effectively “bubble up” a dealer’s hot prospects by engaging consumers, scheduling phone appointments and then notify dealer staff via email and/or text messaging. Further development will include follow-up processes designed to provide auto dealers with meaningful information to better manage their business.
DMM: What are your next steps?
BH: We are in the process of finalizing the first release of the AVA technology and plan to offer it to our auto dealers this month.