We just started a Business Development Center....... HELP!

Our company just started a Business Development Center.  I am the manager, and only one right now... LOL... 

Would love some help and ideas...  would love to hear how and what others are doing....... 

Looking forward to hearing from you... thank you.

I have had lots of great feed back and great ideas and am most appreciated.. thank you., and to my surprise, much of the feed back has backed up what I was trying to do, but was over ridden.......   Now.......  to try to convince who I need to convince to try it my way again... however allow me to  and back me up to implement it...... 

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Comment by Donna L. Bolser on April 21, 2012 at 11:35am

I appreciate all the comments and they have be helpful.  I believe I am headed in the right direction based on all the feed back...  I am pleased to say that there have been lots of impovements with our companies internet advertizing based on efforts that I had implemented....  such as simple things as of taking photos of the exterior and interior of New vehicles....  which makes the feeds to Auto Trader and Cars.com better.........  Got rid of stock photos........   As for dispearsements of Leads that come in... well  still working on that.....  and my efforts regarding that must be working as well as there where two sales yesterday that we started by internet leads........ 

Comment by Brittany Walker-Cooper on April 21, 2012 at 12:01am
They will come around, show them that BDC processes will work, and I promise they will start listening. Just be patient :)

What exactly is the biggest problem your having?
Comment by Donna L. Bolser on April 20, 2012 at 11:49pm

WE DO...... we have the Alan Ram Train............  problem is I believe... I am the new one...  I get results out of the new sales consultants............  and a few of the older ones that understand internet.......  as for the rest of the sales consultants..............  well..............  I am dealling.................. trying my best to get them to the year 2012 and internet and the mind thought of customer......... hard to change old schooled to fresh learners...

Comment by Brittany Walker-Cooper on April 19, 2012 at 4:12pm
Oh, and if your a C.J.D. Store, you should have Alan Ram's "Proactive Training Solutions" available to you. If so, its a great product!! I would have been lost without it when I started in the industry.
Comment by Brittany Walker-Cooper on April 19, 2012 at 4:06pm


I'm going to be short because I am short on time;

The best advice I have ever been given regarding this exact subject is, "Show them, don't tell them"

The Automotive Industry is fairly new to the concept of a "BDC", at least most of us are. And the men (and women) that have been here for 10, 20, 30+ years don't like change. Your department is their worst nightmare, because they don’t understand that you are there to help.

 Take everything SLOWLY, very SLOWLY. Take each little piece of responsibility and perfect it, then go to them and ask for more. It will take time and patience but understand that they are just afraid of the unknown. You'll do great!

Comment by Scott Rainville on April 10, 2012 at 8:15am

@Kevin W. Kelly - That's a great suggestion. I did not see any predatory SEM on Google search for the dealership so it may a more accommodating market.  I wish more people felt the way you do.  I get tired of seeing the same email addresses without phone numbers being recycled every 90 days lol.

Comment by Scott Rainville on April 9, 2012 at 8:05pm

There is a lot to do.  Start with your tools-make sure you have a CRM and set up a process to keep you on track.  Mystery shop your competition.  You want to communicate a little more often than they do so use that as your guide.  How quickly did they contact you? How many are providing price?  How do they differentiate themselves (free oil changes, tires for life, etc)? Did they answer your questions fully?


Once you have down what to say and when, take a look your lead sources.  Start with your website, talk to your Dealer.com rep and see what ideas they have.  You have some specials pages that are blank.  I noticed a header on your AutoTrader page that talks about your differentiators but I did not notice it on your site in the short time I was there. 


Some of your AutoTrader vehicles have a good description while others do not.  Your AutoTrader rep might help you catch up your current inventory if you ask.  It will be easier to keep up once the old cars are done.  Ask your vendors for anything they can supply, sample templates, scripts, ads, etc.

There are a number of conferences throughout the year you could attend.  Digital Dealer is a good source.  If your dealership is a member of NADA and attended the conference this year you might be able to download many of the presentations and notes.  If you are part of a 20 group you could reach out to some of those folks. 

Good luck and stay positive.  There is an overwhelming amount of information to process at the beginning but it does get easier with time!

Comment by Stan Sher on April 7, 2012 at 12:15pm
While I am a consultant and trainer which makes makes me a vendor the conversation that I am looking to have is not pitch you. The conversation is more to ask you questions and give you some advice for free. I am not a pitch man and I do not cold call on dealers as vendors usually do. I pick up my work by referrals and by dealers calling me because they read my articles. Your best lessons come from networking and reading all of the content on these sites. When you talk to someone who has been in your shoes multiples times that now helps people in your shoes all of the time you can have a lot of great takeaways.

1. First thing is you need to learn how to be an effective manager of our department. This includes dealing with struggles, dealership politics, personnel, and measuremt of metrics.

2. You need to have the best skills of anyone in your department in marketing and the sales aspect of it. This is where you need to get the proper training and structure setup.

3. You need to hire the right people and get them on a training regiment. Dealers do not spend enough on training and getting better. The ones that do often are the most successful.

4. Strengthen communication with your vendors. Know the value of the products and maximize the usage to be effective. This includes to always be on the lookout for new relationships and partnerships that can take your business to the next level.

5. Most importantly is to have good communication with your management and work with them to show them what works and what needs to improve. Make the improvements as management allows it.

Again, I have a lot to share with you so if you would like to talk let's talk. I was a very successful Ecommerce and BDC director.
Comment by Bill Sinko on April 7, 2012 at 8:53am


Coordinating the e-commerce strategy for most stores is always a challenging task, but highly rewarding as well. Top-down support for dealership-wide changes will remove most of the road-blocks that we, as BDC Managers normally face when guiding a paradigm shift in the way Dealers provide products and services to their customers. Managing personnel through this shift can prove to be a challenge and that is why we have spent so much time perfecting the services we provide and the vendors we choose to recommend to produce results. We have designed our services around the three most important components for Success….People, Process and Technology. Would love the opportunity to help as we are BDC EXPERTS!


Comment by Stan Sher on April 7, 2012 at 8:40am

This is my expertise and I would love to talk. When is a good time for us to talk? Thanks.

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