Interview with Ben Hadley automotive industry consultant

Interview With Ben Hadley

This Zoom video call is a discussion between Todd Smith from 360Converge and Ben Hadley automotive industry consultant who specializes in helping dealerships operationally change when implementing Digital REtailing processes. We cover the current state of the industry and how dealerships need to find alternative metrics to measure the performance of the dealership. The lead count is a poor indicator of sales and success and Ben discusses finding another Atomic Metric to help steer the dealership toward profitability.This was a great conversation with lots of insights so don’t miss out.

Video Transcript

Captions
00:00
here okay hey this is Todd Smith with
00:03
360 converge doing our little
00:06
perspectives thing and I got Ben Hadley
00:09
with me today welcome Ben I’m glad I
00:12
finally got to catch up with you I
00:13
always love talking with you I always
00:15
seem to walk away with a little extra
00:18
knowledge that I always appreciate so
00:20
with that being said for some of the
00:23
people who maybe watch this don’t know
00:25
your whole background you want to spend
00:27
a minute and kind of sum up you know
00:29
your automotive life so yeah sure I’ll
00:32
do it in 280 characters or less so I
00:37
started at dealer calm left there after
00:41
seven years I went to a company called
00:43
Claire boy doing multi-touch attribution
00:44
models for two years and then most
00:48
recently found myself at a company
00:49
called prodigy doing digital retail
00:51
really from the reverse really focused
00:54
on in-store also doing online and then
00:57
it kind of led me to this world where I
00:59
realized wow there isn’t a lot of
01:02
dealers approaching digital retail with
01:06
the right mindset they’re really
01:07
thinking of it as a marketing product
01:09
instead of an Operations product and so
01:12
I decided to venture out on my own and
01:13
now I’m consulting with digital
01:16
retailing companies helping them make
01:19
sure that that expectation is has
01:21
changed as early as possible in the
01:23
dealers month right okay so look I think
01:25
you have like a really great breadth of
01:27
experience right from dealer with all
01:30
web digital marketing all that that
01:33
dealer was really good at and like
01:35
pioneered a lot of stuff I think Rick
01:37
Gibbs and that whole team did a great
01:39
job
01:40
Marc and them and you know Steve at
01:42
Claire boy I think he really tried to
01:44
push into measuring and managing your ad
01:48
spend with attribution modeling and
01:49
stuff I think it’s not as pressing stuff
01:51
there and I think with prodigy I think
01:53
that’s very interesting your experience
01:56
lies that hey it’s not necessarily just
01:58
the technology it’s the processes you
02:00
have in the dealership and execution
02:03
that are going to be really impactful
02:05
for creating less friction so I think
02:08
let me dive in I have a couple questions
02:10
if that’s cool with you
02:12
so digital retailing is the new
02:15
Cinderella obviously savior of the auto
02:19
industry which I don’t believe in that
02:22
just to be clear but I think it’s an
02:26
integral piece potentially now moving
02:29
forward with people and all that so
02:32
you’ve installed lots of stores with
02:35
this type of stuff like what are the top
02:38
let’s say to three things the dealers
02:41
that are usually in their blind spots
02:44
when they put a program like this and
02:46
they just don’t recognize em hmm
02:49
yeah so I think the first is that
02:51
transition from marketing to sales
02:55
operations so God you know I always say
02:59
look digital retail is closer to PayPal
03:03
than it is to I’ll use like a an auto
03:08
example like Auto Trader
03:09
right hundred traders pure marketing but
03:13
PayPal if you went to another like a
03:16
traditional shopify ecommerce website
03:18
and you said let’s look at your your CRM
03:23
let’s look at HubSpot let’s look at
03:24
Salesforce you wouldn’t see PayPal as a
03:26
source right nobody would go PayPal sold
03:33
me so many widgets good job PayPal they
03:36
go PayPal made it really easy for my
03:38
customers to Dreamz act with me yeah
03:40
PayPal really helped them speed up the
03:42
transaction or created efficiency some
03:44
way but they would never say good job
03:46
PayPal for selling me so many whatever’s
03:49
yeah and the problem is is that like
03:51
anything that has had a digital or even
03:56
the word digital in the name has almost
03:59
by default been sent to an internet
04:02
manager in a lot of times internet
04:05
managers are looking at the world from a
04:08
compensation lens of leads yeah and so
04:12
they filter these products in and they
04:14
think cool leave volume though that’s
04:17
what I care about
04:19
mmm-hmm lead volume is is you know
04:22
essentially the atomic metric unit of
04:25
marketing
04:26
right right and so as I think about it
04:30
I’m like well if we’re moving from
04:32
marketing to operations and we’re moving
04:35
from the optimization of selling to the
04:40
optimization of buying or the movement
04:42
of the optimization of shopping so the
04:44
optimization of commitment then are we
04:48
measuring it correctly because lead
04:49
doesn’t really speak to buying we
04:52
doesn’t really speak to commitment we
04:54
lead speaks to just getting them into
04:56
the door right so I think the first
04:58
thing a dealer needs to work on is
04:59
changing those kind of metric units that
05:02
they’re using to measure the value of
05:05
the product okay that’s that’s
05:09
insightful so and I love that so what
05:12
would be the second one you would think
05:14
that that stands out to you so the next
05:17
thing is reduce it like I would say
05:19
going wide instead of going deep so
05:25
especially in today I think I think we
05:28
for anything we’ve learned from 2008 to
05:35
12 where I’ll say like the internet
05:38
department was kind of taken in in
05:41
adopted nationwide yes I think the
05:45
lesson there was we thought hey uh why
05:50
don’t like I think the thought was
05:52
actually we don’t know what to do with
05:54
these weird auto-buy tell faxes so like
05:57
give it to Gary cuz Gary has an iPhone
05:59
or a you know blackberry at the time
06:01
yeah I think that was the actual thought
06:04
but like I’ll give it a little bit more
06:06
credibility than that I’ll say there was
06:08
a deliberate concerted effort to think
06:10
through and say well these things are
06:13
strange let’s get some really high touch
06:15
experts to deal with them right okay and
06:19
lo and behold like 20 years later or
06:22
whatever it is 12 years later we still
06:24
have them and we know 99% of your
06:27
customers come from an Internet source
06:30
of some sort right or use the internet
06:34
so it’s almost like why do we have this
06:37
SWAT team of people
06:39
when every per with yeah what’s still
06:42
and I think the same trap exists with
06:44
digital retailing I hear a lot of people
06:45
going out and saying just start it with
06:47
one or two people they’ll be your SWAT
06:50
team and them I think the the worry is
06:54
that in like 10 years
06:55
you’re gonna have one or two guys that
06:58
do a digital retail thing and it’s like
07:00
yeah but a lot of people are using it
07:02
now you know it’s over the 50% threshold
07:04
right like why are we treating it but it
07:07
doesn’t make sense everybody should have
07:09
some baseline knowledge yeah in the
07:12
shopping or selling experience despise
07:14
it interesting I mean you’re I I believe
07:17
you’re absolutely correct in that that
07:19
you know I was even starting a question
07:21
like why do we have Internet departments
07:23
if everyone’s an Internet shopper I
07:24
understand it back in ninety five six
07:27
seven yeah it was a very small unit of
07:30
customers that even had computers right
07:33
until only Dell Gateway started just
07:35
ship and like Walmart had that I think I
07:39
wrote an article about this I remember
07:40
in the late 90s I said the second that
07:43
Walmart shipped the sub $500 PC for
07:47
Christmas time was the time when the
07:51
internet was going to be an impactful
07:53
piece of just our everyday you know
07:56
habits right yeah yeah yet and
07:59
everything good I think I got an e
08:01
machine from them yeah or thereabout by
08:03
HP and that was like the sub 500 yeah
08:06
like I said it has to happen and not to
08:10
make it like what everyone uses and I
08:12
think the iPhone and Android just
08:17
accelerated all that like totally a
08:20
hundred x right so yeah so interesting
08:23
it up so it philosophy wise it’s really
08:26
driven by or process and I think
08:30
changing how we do certain certain
08:33
things and me is that behaviorally
08:35
driven like hey this is my swimlane has
08:38
been my swimming for a long time and I
08:40
don’t want to change my swim lanius I
08:42
just want to add this extra piece to it
08:44
is that a core problem do you think
08:47
verse stepping back and being more of a
08:50
change agent and then
08:52
restructuring your organization because
08:54
let’s be honest if anytime is the
08:56
perfect time to restructure your
08:58
dealership organizationally it’s right
09:00
now that we have a global or national
09:03
pause button it got hit so it’s like I
09:05
feel it’s like that movie where like you
09:08
know they hit the pause button but the
09:10
one guy can still walk around and see
09:12
everything and go I see just rearrange
09:15
these things yeah I’m gonna move this
09:17
guy over here and then all of a sudden
09:19
they turn it back on and all the action
09:21
happens right yeah I think um I you know
09:24
it’s it’s almost pure necessity at this
09:28
point I mean I wouldn’t say digital
09:31
retailing is no I I don’t right I guess
09:34
what I would say its retailing how work
09:36
obviously yeah restructuring how you do
09:39
your business is completely changed and
09:42
in like I guess one of the things that
09:49
that worries me is is that another I got
09:55
another to my list of two there a third
09:58
would be that there’s
10:01
there’s probably a lot of dealers that
10:06
are adopting digital retail right now as
10:09
an emotional response to what’s happened
10:12
right I that’s true not a business
10:16
thought it’s like I gotta stay in
10:18
business somehow so give me whatever I
10:20
need so just throw this at the wall and
10:22
see the sticks let me take my magic pill
10:24
blue pill I’m ready exactly yeah it
10:29
almost I think would be more productive
10:32
while you’re looking through the
10:35
ecosystem of digital retail providers to
10:37
figure out what’s the best fit for you
10:39
in order to figure out the best fit
10:42
again if we’re changing our value or the
10:46
way we measure the value then it almost
10:48
becomes more important in my opinion to
10:51
create a process by which you can sell a
10:55
car deliver car do a hat home test-drive
10:59
regardless of any of the software yes
11:02
and then as soon as you start evaluating
11:04
the software you’re actually going to
11:06
start going well this one actually helps
11:08
us with the pre-existing step of moving
11:12
from A to B yeah like this one helps me
11:15
do a walk around right right
11:17
this one helps me do video conferencing
11:19
this one helps me do communication this
11:21
one helps me do it because I think
11:23
really what you’re gonna find is you’re
11:24
not so much reinventing the wheel you’re
11:26
just moving the wheel right we’re just
11:29
taking a lot of the same steps that we
11:30
normally do and then trying to digitize
11:32
them in some different way yeah I look
11:35
at that as I always feel you should lay
11:39
out your processes first and then decide
11:41
what technology you can do to remove
11:44
friction along the process don’t rely on
11:47
the technology and then try to craft
11:50
your business around it and my
11:52
experience with that was really around
11:54
CRM when we had the first CRM that I did
11:58
and I would go into dealerships and they
12:01
would always say and I’m sure you
12:02
experienced this at dealer and
12:04
everywhere you went where you walk in
12:07
and you sell the product and then they
12:09
go okay who is your best user what does
12:12
they do I want
12:14
down here and yeah and I would always go
12:16
look that is years in the making to get
12:20
to the that process you can’t just jump
12:23
into someone else’s process and fill
12:25
their shoes and fill their pants well so
12:28
you need to you need to map your own
12:29
process and then a guiding path if you
12:33
want to get their food great because
12:36
your people will just repel I had gotten
12:39
to a two-hour debate about this
12:40
yesterday okay this is funny
12:42
it’s it was I my hypothesis was like you
12:48
know there is obviously a lot of
12:50
friction between OMS and dealers yeah
12:52
they’re enough right and on one hand of
12:56
the equation you’re like hey you’re kind
13:00
of able to buy this business model out
13:03
of a box right like you go to a
13:06
franchise and you say hey I want to open
13:08
an X brand and they go okay yeah and
13:11
then they kind of give you this
13:13
blueprint and they’re like here you go
13:15
and then like the friction really
13:17
happens when you start disagreeing with
13:19
the blueprint right yes yeah I spent
13:22
three million on a remodel and right
13:24
your overpriced tile no your blue arch
13:27
like come on man I just yeah
13:30
I really need the new bowtie for a
13:32
190,000 yeah it’s great but there is an
13:38
interesting I think dynamic that emerges
13:42
when when you’re buying a blueprint
13:47
versus developing a blueprint right so
13:52
like on a pure development standpoint
13:54
it’s interesting to me only because when
13:57
you look at classic startups
14:03
both of which we’ve been a part of right
14:06
yeah they’re actually probably your best
14:09
guiding indicators and your best mentors
14:12
in this time because as you’re kind of
14:14
like saying I’m gonna restructure
14:16
everything you certainly can’t call up
14:18
the OEM and said hey help me with this
14:21
thing they’re like we don’t know either
14:23
like this is new territory for us the
14:25
interesting thing though is like ass
14:27
any startup in any space but it’s
14:33
particularly not oh and you say hey do
14:37
you guys do remote selling and go yeah
14:39
most of our team sits in our office does
14:43
webinars like this yep you’ve been on
14:45
them before right
14:46
what about remote contracting you guys
14:49
solved yep we use hellosign we use
14:51
DocuSign whatever like literally that
14:54
process has been what we have gone
14:56
through on my phone
14:58
exactly so you have these experts
15:02
actually that I already know that
15:03
blueprint pretty well and that have
15:04
created that blueprint yeah and you know
15:07
I think I think that would be where I
15:09
would guide dealers to find a resources
15:11
maybe contact some of those people that
15:14
you’re like Tim that was a really easy
15:17
buying process to get that CRM to get
15:19
that chat product to get that whatever
15:21
because they’re probably gonna be really
15:23
helpful for your customer that would
15:25
really be a easy buying process not from
15:28
their product but from mapping out that
15:29
same exact process right experience
15:31
right products can be plugged in in any
15:34
of this right it’s really experience
15:36
management and how that’s gonna operate
15:38
so yeah that that’s really interesting
15:41
did you ever hear the the two horse’s
15:44
ass story that it goes back to the first
15:47
part of your answer of the the previous
15:50
question was like you know why do we
15:54
have just this Internet which is like a
15:56
bolt-on of the existing sales team and
15:58
then as digital retail I’m going to be a
16:00
bolt-on of a bolt-on and you know we
16:02
have this thing so two horses asses
16:05
right so back in the day when we had
16:08
this is a crazy story I the guy who you
16:12
know like I know you’ll bear with me so
16:16
to me I’m in man I’m in fact so back in
16:19
a day they would take a like a carriage
16:23
right horse-drawn carriage and they
16:26
would put two horses next to each other
16:28
and that was the width of as big as they
16:31
could make the wagon right so wagon
16:35
wheels were ex with if you line up the
16:39
wagon wheels they lie
16:41
to the modern train track it’s literally
16:45
the same width which lines up to rocket
16:49
technology because Rockets had to be
16:52
able to be built and put onto a train to
16:54
be able to transport them it all goes
16:58
back to a beginning point oh yeah got it
17:02
so from our most advanced stuff of
17:06
rockets to our beginning of
17:11
transportation yeah to horses asses yeah
17:15
I mean so that interesting because I
17:18
would say that to horses asses in Auto
17:21
would probably end up being website
17:26
right cuz I think about well maybe not
17:33
yeah because for that go to just how we
17:36
would sell cars in that that process
17:39
right and everything has been bolted on
17:42
to the process instead of reinventing
17:44
the process nobody so this is yeah this
17:47
is what this is I think we’re yeah this
17:49
is what I’m saying I don’t know if I I
17:51
don’t know if I was when I said Internet
17:54
I’m not sure if I think that it’s deeper
17:59
yeah exactly
18:00
yeah but it goes to think as we do this
18:05
you know like this is why it got is hard
18:08
you know like to just reinvent the wheel
18:11
they couldn’t say well look we could we
18:13
can make trains twice as wide right they
18:15
could carry twice as much Freight they
18:16
could do all this yeah you know so
18:20
things link together it’s easy to look
18:22
backwards right but don’t look you know
18:24
and so the interesting thing so
18:26
questions then out of this right so I’m
18:29
a huge believer in processes I feel
18:31
dealerships aren’t really as the best
18:35
dealerships have pretty good processes
18:37
in place yeah but a lot of stores are
18:40
really driven by personalities and
18:42
managers who can control X right I can
18:46
get my hands around this I’m a really
18:47
good manager so I can control that but
18:51
in the age of digital retailing I felt
18:54
like this was throwing
18:55
on an already open flame by throwing us
18:59
in Kovac right because you can run and
19:02
get all the technology one doesn’t mean
19:03
you’re gonna sell any more cars then I
19:07
started to think of the weird things
19:08
that are gonna happen as you said remote
19:11
salespeople how do I manage them they’re
19:13
not there’s no Auto specific tech to
19:16
manage my people we’re how do I move the
19:18
cars all over the place think about the
19:21
loss of time of taking a car to a
19:24
customer bringing it back gas new
19:27
increased liability of vehicles now on
19:29
the road
19:29
yeah insurance policy changes because
19:32
that changes you know because before
19:35
sales people were really in the
19:36
dealership they’re on a prescribed
19:38
test-drive route per se now I’m driving
19:41
30 minutes to someone’s house to take
19:43
him a car yeah when I was I was talking
19:46
to a progressive insurance I don’t know
19:50
two months ago and conceptually made a
19:53
lot of sense to have you know there’s a
19:57
few digital retailing products on the
19:59
market that essentially have access to
20:02
GPS on either a mobile device or to you
20:06
know I prodigy we had an iPad that the
20:08
salesperson actually brought with them
20:10
Graham and you know the whole
20:13
interesting progressive was you look
20:16
you’re already doing safe fire or safe
20:18
driver programs at a consumer level this
20:21
would be a safe driver program at a
20:23
dealer level so whether it’s a service
20:25
technician or it would be the test at
20:29
home test drive
20:30
yeah right we could track them we can
20:32
monitor them hey they never went over at
20:33
55 miles an hour they only drove for 15
20:36
minutes so you could adjust underwriting
20:38
cost base around that those like like
20:40
kind of having a ecosystem of safe
20:42
buyers I think that’s a huge I mean look
20:45
I think I think digital retail is
20:47
actually like website is I guess like
20:53
course versus train so like yeah similar
20:58
tracks but there’s gonna be a giant
21:00
vertical created just off of it yeah and
21:04
I think there’s gonna be a lot of
21:05
support products that plug into it it
21:08
feels a lot like
21:09
website did 2008 to 2012 yeah I think
21:12
like I started thinking like its remote
21:14
employee management logistics like
21:16
logistics software like being able to
21:19
just manage okay where are my cars like
21:22
where are my people what are they doing
21:23
like and yeah both agreed a lot of that
21:26
can be tracked through an iPhone I mean
21:28
gosh I can get down to less than three
21:31
meters of where you’re at right this
21:33
second and where you live where you work
21:35
because your phone rests at those
21:37
locations and then totally accelerometer
21:40
can kick in and go up
21:41
he’s going over 25 miles an hour for two
21:43
minutes so he’s either the fastest
21:45
freaking bike rider and the planet
21:47
Hussein doesn’t like to pay for it or he
21:50
smells like a car yeah I think I well
21:54
you know that’s I always asked the
21:57
others like because I think there’s a
21:58
lot of friction in trying to adjust the
22:00
measurement because the immediate
22:02
criteria for a new product in terms of
22:05
software for a dealer hazard has usually
22:07
been what’s the ROI on it yeah you know
22:09
it’s like oh okay I’m listening lads
22:11
it’s too long what’s the other way right
22:14
and you’re like so I am always you know
22:17
like well what’s the ROI on your phone
22:19
that’s always my my response back that’s
22:22
a good one because we know if we took
22:26
the phone out of the dealership sales
22:28
would go down right we know that if you
22:33
have a better process than your neighbor
22:35
right your competitor on the phone that
22:39
your sales will do better right yeah and
22:43
we also know that like there’s a billion
22:46
different phone companies out there
22:47
called trucking that you know so and so
22:48
forth that you can use that feel a
22:50
little bit interchangeable but you maybe
22:53
don’t change because it’s like a pain in
22:56
the butt to go into your CRM and like
22:57
read redo everything so like once
22:59
there’s like settled software it kind of
23:01
feels very similar to a lot of other
23:02
things like CRM like digital retailing
23:04
eventually well like website and so to
23:08
me it’s like like but no one asks that
23:12
question right no one no one says like
23:14
what’s the ROI unlike my actual phone
23:17
system because we recognize it doesn’t
23:19
meet that criteria and this is why I
23:22
keep on going back
23:23
– look let’s change the value criteria
23:26
like we no longer need to like I don’t
23:31
even think we should care about Leeds
23:32
period I think that’s over I don’t even
23:36
know why we keep on trying to battle up
23:38
a hill that just grows more and more and
23:40
more you know it’s like the consumer has
23:43
spoken out loud and said I’m not gonna
23:46
do this first thing last name email
23:48
address like it’s just it’s not
23:51
happening right and we’re still like
23:54
beating this drum and it’s crazy to me
23:57
you know so it’s like I think if we also
23:59
change the way we measure right so we’ve
24:01
changed with atomic unit we pay
24:04
attention to all right build our
24:05
businesses off of and we no longer make
24:08
it out of leads and we say how about
24:09
data instead or how about retention or
24:14
whatever any other type of not maître
24:16
metric now all of the sudden you’re
24:21
actually solving that consumer need
24:23
because they’ll feel it eventually if
24:25
that trickles down to them right where
24:27
you’re like no longer calling every five
24:29
minutes to try to get the lead or the
24:31
appointment then when you want to come
24:33
in to test Ives is brand-new 2019 84
24:37
months no money out of pocket represent
24:39
interest deferred for 90 days where do
24:42
you need four months man what else do
24:44
you need I know it’s like no no I think
24:47
you start with the measurement first
24:48
that unit that bleeds out to everything
24:51
else right everything else then changes
24:54
that’s a good point
24:56
so like Carl stole back in a day his
24:58
philosophy was customer for life you
25:01
remember that whole that one and I
25:03
remember going to that Cadillac store
25:05
and seeing and experiencing it and it
25:08
was very much more like McDonald’s in
25:11
the sense of like super clean very
25:13
organized very system driven and that it
25:18
was all customer relationship right it’s
25:20
experience and though you know it’s it’s
25:22
that’s the one thing that is it’s funny
25:25
it hangs on my head all the time the
25:30
word experience because that’s what like
25:34
people want to pay for now
25:36
like the millennial generation
25:38
everyone’s like I want to pay for the
25:40
experience right that’s why electric
25:43
shows or whatever I don’t know what that
25:45
emusic stuff goes on them
25:47
yeah not I’m just too old man so okay
25:51
I’ll take you okay yeah great just what
25:53
I need I’ll just show like hey man you
25:56
brought your dad that’s like so
25:59
interesting though of that it’s
26:02
experience right so how do you like that
26:05
would be my thought as a dealer right
26:06
now it’s like how do you create the best
26:08
experience right it’s yeah you’re gonna
26:10
you’re gonna sell cars but how are you
26:13
going to differentiate yourself through
26:16
yeah variance right I think um man
26:19
there’s so much fun back there I think
26:21
there’s like in terms of well let me
26:26
tell like my favorite story of
26:28
experience and I’m looking forward to
26:30
going back there once this this world
26:32
gets a little bit more normal and I can
26:34
go back to a restaurant there is a
26:37
there’s steakhouse in Chicago called
26:40
maple and ash in like I don’t know I
26:45
want to say like five months ago six
26:47
months ago one of my clients was like
26:50
and this is like 9 o’clock at night I
26:52
worked from 7 o’clock to 9 o’clock and
26:55
he’s like let’s go to a steak house and
26:59
I’m like oh yeah you know I don’t know
27:03
it’s I travel a lot in my normal life in
27:07
I think I’ve ate at every single Ruth’s
27:11
Chris and like Gibson’s that you could
27:14
so like Steakhouse just to me is like
27:16
yeah let’s do I would rather do Shake
27:18
Shack
27:19
you know um and so he’s like no no it’s
27:22
great you’re gonna love it I was like
27:23
I’m so we go to this place called maple
27:26
and ash and we walk upstairs it’s got
27:29
this like nightclub atmosphere and like
27:31
oh that’s cool like that’s like
27:33
interesting you know it’s a little
27:35
different and then we go sit down and I
27:39
have a been trying for years to get a
27:43
drink named after me so it’s called the
27:46
Hadley
27:47
Aperol miletti Smith & Kross rum
27:50
third a third dessert on the rocks okay
27:53
it’s like a Negroni went to Jamaica and
27:56
got a tan it’s delicious this is really
27:58
good
27:59
in show description flora man it’s great
28:02
yeah so we sit down and I open up the
28:06
menu and I’m looking through all the
28:09
items or whatever in like in the biggest
28:12
boldest letters there’s an item called I
28:14
don’t give a [ __ ] and I’m like what like
28:18
this is amazing like yeah like these
28:20
guys get me like what so I I call over
28:24
our waitress and she’s like um I’m like
28:27
what is this and she’s like oh
28:28
essentially what the chef is gonna do is
28:32
they’re gonna send you a bunch of 13 to
28:35
15 off menu items and they’re just gonna
28:38
guess what you like so they’ll give you
28:40
something and you say that was awful and
28:43
then we’ll learn and they’ll give you
28:45
something else and so on and so forth
28:46
and it’s the easy button
28:48
it’s the you’ve been working for 13
28:51
hours a day button in Chicago and you’re
28:55
away from your wife and you just want to
28:57
like not think and you just want someone
28:59
else to do the thinking for you but it’s
29:01
the best it’s also I think one day
29:04
though like when my wife is like I don’t
29:06
know what I want like cool I know where
29:08
I’m taking you
29:09
yeah exactly know where I’m going I’m
29:11
playing right now to go eat going to
29:13
Chicago and so I’m like amazed I’m like
29:17
this is like that’s like a great example
29:19
of turning experience into brand and
29:23
turning experience into something very
29:26
tangible yeah right we’re like actually
29:29
the lack of experience in other words
29:31
like going experience- I didn’t have to
29:35
think I didn’t have to do is actually
29:38
like creating value to me then it gets
29:42
better because I ordered a hadley right
29:45
yeah and the waitress goes cool what’s
29:48
that I give her the story and she’s
29:50
great because the bartender comes back
29:52
gives me one like five minutes later
29:54
it’s on right so another waitress is
29:58
walking by and I flag her down and I’m
30:02
like excuse
30:03
and I lift up my glass is empty and
30:07
she’s like yes sir and I was like oh
30:09
could I get and she looks as she goes oh
30:12
maple and ash whiskey so like she called
30:16
it you know and I go oh no it’s not
30:20
because I guess that was like their
30:21
drink yeah I go no no and she goes
30:24
before I could finish my sentence she
30:25
goes oh no sorry mr. Hadleigh sadly you
30:28
want to know their Hadley I go wait a
30:30
second what the hell I just happened I
30:32
never talked to this woman before ever
30:34
right right ever before and she knew
30:37
what a Hadley was so I go miss please
30:41
explain what’s going on here and she’s
30:43
like what do you mean how did you know
30:45
what drinketh this is I actually
30:47
invented that drink in Chicago two years
30:49
prior so I was like is it spreading
30:51
people knowing yeah is it happening she
30:55
goes uh she goes oh well your other
30:59
server you know after she learned what
31:03
your preference was she went back to the
31:05
bartenders she told all the bartender’s
31:07
what your preference was who you were
31:09
and then she went to all the other
31:11
servers in this in your section and she
31:14
told you then what your preference was
31:18
so you could stop literally any of us
31:20
there’s like four servers or you could
31:23
go up to the bar and circumnavigate or
31:25
either of us and everybody would know
31:27
what a half Li is and I’m thinking in my
31:30
head like oh my god you’re a steak
31:34
restaurant your steak isn’t even that
31:36
great but that is insane right steak is
31:40
almost a commodity but you want so like
31:43
compare that to a dealership right yeah
31:45
I walk in some guy normally right in
31:49
real life in like physical life I walk
31:51
in I have a meet and greet with someone
31:53
right hey what’s your first name what’s
31:55
your last name
31:56
but then badly oh great
31:59
we’re gonna introduce you to some guy I
32:01
go well I actually had an appointment um
32:03
right I filled in test drive online oh
32:07
yeah yeah Joe was supposed to meet me
32:10
oh shoot Joe’s on lunch but let me still
32:13
introduce you to Steve
32:14
okay sure hi Steve
32:17
Hey what’s your name I’m Ben Hadley Oh
32:20
awesome great to meet you
32:21
we go do a bunch of stuff we build
32:23
rapport feels great whatever I buy a car
32:25
and then he goes hold on a second let me
32:27
introduce you the F&I guy he wants to
32:30
say something cool if an eye guy comes
32:32
in hey what’s your name
32:34
yeah I’m first name last Ben Hadley
32:36
again that’s after I probably did first
32:38
name last name like six times online
32:40
right yeah in so like it’s not even that
32:45
hard like the problems we have are
32:49
problems we created in the process in I
32:53
almost think like the first thing I
32:56
would do at a dealership today is
32:59
download like slack or whatsapp or
33:02
create a Facebook group or some sort of
33:06
mutual chat service because all that was
33:08
really happening at maple and ash is
33:10
that they were saying here’s a customer
33:13
here’s their preferences everybody needs
33:16
to be aligned to the cup of the
33:17
preference right and they’re lying to
33:19
the customer to deliver the experience
33:21
exactly yeah and that to me is like one
33:26
of the biggest worries in the digital
33:28
retail world is like we weren’t even
33:29
doing it really great in physical world
33:32
no I listened so like now you disconnect
33:36
people and I’m like oh man this could be
33:39
I would see it all the time like here as
33:41
a lead comes in digital retailing
33:42
customer abandons process now comes in a
33:45
traditional lead in the CRM I call you
33:47
up and let’s say you’ve already gone
33:48
through I selected the vehicle I nailed
33:50
down payment let’s say I even did the
33:52
trade yeah and I called you and say hey
33:55
when you want to come in for your
33:55
appointment
33:56
I don’t even acknowledge what you did or
33:58
I just show up and I’ve already done
34:01
some of the work online you have to
34:02
restart it up in most cases unless your
34:06
dealership totally embraced digital
34:10
retailing holistically throughout the
34:12
entire organization that I had we’re
34:15
gonna pick up where you left off like
34:17
Todd Caputo they like walk you over to a
34:20
giant kiosk touchscreen and they’ll just
34:23
pull up your account say oh here you are
34:24
Ben and here you got this let’s finish
34:27
it out and you literally finish the
34:29
experience yeah I mean that’s
34:31
a great example of what I mean go wide
34:33
like to me he’s nailed it he’s done a
34:39
great job of saying like this isn’t a
34:40
SWAT team this isn’t like specific
34:42
people now this is just the way we do
34:44
business in the modern era and you know
34:48
it’s not like in a SAS company or
34:52
startup that you have like some people
34:56
on the sales team only use zoom and
34:59
other people only use like a phone or so
35:03
you know I mean it’s like it’d be crazy
35:05
to like set up a business as siloed as
35:07
we had set it up yeah and to a dealer
35:10
you’re like actually look software
35:13
services they go out they try to get
35:15
monthly recurring revenue what are you
35:17
doing you’re going out not getting the
35:19
recurring revenue but the customer feels
35:21
that monthly payment right as a
35:23
recurrence and so like the emotions feel
35:27
very similar right like the motion feels
35:30
like yeah whether I’m selling you know
35:32
giant truck where I’m selling you know a
35:34
$3,000 a month CRM or whatever it is
35:37
that’s gonna be a very similar
35:38
experience it’s and it’s telling to me
35:42
that a lot of digital retailing
35:44
platforms haven’t actually put Buy It
35:49
Now buttons on their own websites right
35:52
so you know like there’s a part of me
35:56
that thinks okay we should if we’re
36:02
really in the mode of like
36:04
transformation then like we should be
36:08
eating our own dog food you know always
36:11
right and it seems wild that you could
36:14
like pitch someone and say guess what
36:16
everybody’s gonna buy stuff online but
36:20
if you want to buy our software you
36:21
gotta leave a lead yeah you know that’s
36:24
actually highlights how much process is
36:27
still a part of this because a lot of
36:29
those websites you’ll go to the digital
36:31
retailing sites you’ll go to and I’m
36:34
talking about that actual company’s
36:35
website yeah you’ll submit a lead and
36:38
then they have killer processes behind
36:41
it that’s where I say guess what you
36:43
don’t you don’t need
36:44
did you retelling to have a killer
36:46
process you know like do that first
36:49
supports like the people first processes
36:53
and then tech it should be like a
36:54
layering it’s like wearing your
36:56
spacesuit right you first need a super
36:58
smart astronaut right then you know then
37:02
put them in spacesuit and then you know
37:04
you put them in a rocket right so yeah
37:06
but like this is what’s crazy sorry cuz
37:08
I’ll rant forever if nobody stops me but
37:11
like I mean McDonald’s is run pretty
37:13
well right yeah with $8 an hour people
37:17
yeah what the hell process oh I’ll give
37:20
you a McDonald’s story why can’t we do
37:22
that like our guys are making way more
37:24
money and like you’re kind of like we
37:27
should hold a higher expectation to
37:28
process than McDonald’s right yes but
37:32
McDonald’s figured out a long time ago
37:34
that the money was actually in the
37:36
process not necessarily the products
37:39
they they were going to make it at
37:41
consistent deliverability to keep
37:43
bringing back right Barrois yeah and I
37:47
will tell you that McDonald’s is being
37:49
probably one of a great example of the
37:52
most systematically organized
37:54
organizations where you fit the process
37:59
piece not your personality and then as
38:03
naturally processes are built around
38:05
those around you
38:06
yeah yeah and that our business is just
38:08
if our business is going to be
38:10
consistent and scalable it has to do the
38:13
work of consistent and scalable
38:16
businesses right yeah I think of my
38:19
favorite is like in terms of people
38:23
realizing you’re actually buying a
38:24
process you’re not buying a product as
38:26
Amazon because they actually end up
38:29
selling us the process yes right like
38:33
you go oh okay they can they’re gonna
38:35
start with books and they’re only
38:38
selling stuff that they have right the
38:41
only stuff in their warehouse I’ll just
38:43
start she chose books because you could
38:46
drop ship them that’s a book it had the
38:49
highest SKUs and he didn’t he could
38:52
easily ship them very fabulous out of
38:55
already a very well developed
38:57
distribution
38:58
network so so then you’re like cool and
39:02
but what does he learn what is he master
39:04
out of that operations logistics right
39:08
supply chain management and so then he
39:12
goes man I’ve really figured out this
39:14
supply chain management thing I should
39:16
just sell that to everybody else and
39:18
then he creates Amazon Marketplace and
39:20
says by the way look how awesome I
39:23
figured out this process now you guys
39:25
can depend on me right you can build
39:29
your ecosystems around my giant ass
39:31
planet and like because I’ve created my
39:35
I’ll say atomic units out of operations
39:39
and logistics and efficiency the amount
39:41
of mass I’ve created out of a business
39:43
has created so much gravity that I’ve
39:44
pulled in other businesses to be
39:46
dependent on me and now they’re orbiting
39:48
around yeah and then he’s like now
39:51
there’s Amazon Marketplace script and
39:52
then he goes and says you know what we
39:54
really need like servers to power some
39:59
of this stuff yeah maybe we should just
40:02
make a thing called Amazon Web Services
40:04
yeah okay and we’ll do that
40:06
internal first yeah and then like a year
40:09
two years later he’s like wow we’ve just
40:11
mastered cloud services yeah you know
40:14
what we should do is if you like what
40:20
and then on my favorite example is the
40:23
recent one because it was the fastest
40:25
one which was Amazon go stores where you
40:28
just walk in yeah perceivably I I think
40:32
I don’t I don’t know but it looks very
40:36
similar I think the question they asked
40:39
was like look we’ve figured out how to
40:40
make warehouses hyper efficient to where
40:44
very quickly a warehouse worker can grab
40:48
objects right and all of these things in
40:50
the ceiling are tracking where they
40:52
pushing where they’re grabbing objects
40:54
where they’re placing objects all of
40:55
that so what if we didn’t even have the
40:57
warehouse worker and it was just
40:58
replaced by a shopper right yeah and
41:01
they’re like well let’s just use the
41:03
same technology we’ve mastered and then
41:06
we’ll watch for the new consumer process
41:08
that might emerge and then they see it
41:10
they master it and now their relay
41:12
and selling it to Target selling it to
41:15
everybody else and they’re just selling
41:17
a process and it’s like man I think back
41:22
to like hey you know you can’t depend on
41:24
someone giving you a blueprint you kind
41:25
of have to like make your own blueprint
41:27
but there’s great resources to figure
41:28
this out um I think the dealer of the
41:32
winners in five years are going to be
41:34
these guys that were like I’m not
41:37
waiting I’m developing this blueprint
41:39
right now I know 50% of it’s wrong I’m
41:41
gonna iterate all that 50% over and over
41:44
and over again and but I’m shaping the
41:47
process versus like like waiting for
41:49
someone to drop I just marketplace
41:53
reaction yeah okay this is fine so who’s
41:58
your favorite process but do you have a
41:59
favorite book in process or ooh I’ll be
42:06
like a curve ball would be principles
42:08
Ray Dalio
42:09
only because you know it’s like you know
42:13
in the in this again
42:15
280 tweet characters it would be like
42:21
define your decision-making criteria and
42:24
then your decisions become clear yep did
42:27
you ever read email by Michael Gerber
42:30
mm-hmm
42:31
and it’s called the the system is the
42:33
solution he it’s all about repetitive
42:37
outcomes right so it’s it’s about doing
42:41
some process that you know consistent
42:43
results right that’s McDonald’s like
42:45
look no matter where you go in the world
42:46
the hamburger virtually tastes the same
42:48
you know the fries taste the same right
42:50
totally the same now obviously other
42:53
countries have nuances to menus that are
42:56
localized they were able to do that even
42:58
at scale but very consistent so you have
43:02
to look at like a dealership today what
43:06
is truly your competitive advantage if
43:07
it’s it can’t be priced because that’s
43:12
sorry and that’s that’s a that’s a urban
43:15
flowing part of this business it’s
43:17
particularly right now it’s just not
43:20
abuse cars are now exactly I know I’m
43:24
like manner
43:24
no marketplace you have a backup of
43:26
trades of least turn-ins you have backup
43:29
of fleet when the auctions really kick
43:33
back in what’s gonna happen or they
43:34
gonna drop 20% 30% I mean I don’t know
43:37
that our dealers gonna have to sell
43:39
their way entrepreneurial II out of this
43:42
you know Titanic of water of you know
43:47
used cars so that’s gonna be interesting
43:49
but I think resonating back it’s it’s
43:52
process like you have to be great at one
43:54
thing like I feel I remember it was a
43:57
while ago I always said like we compare
43:59
not apples to apples anymore like people
44:02
aren’t comparing them buying or
44:04
servicing a car with just that
44:06
experience they’re comparing buying a
44:08
car with them walking in the Apple to
44:11
buy a phone or get it serviced and the
44:14
experience they receive great because
44:16
yeah that’s how our brains work that’s
44:19
there’s nothing our brains work in link
44:22
things together and I always said I had
44:24
called I think it was I forget what it
44:27
was it was years ago I had called and I
44:29
got put on hold and you know I’m on hold
44:32
and it’s taken forever I am like damn
44:35
and I’m like I go through this like
44:36
really like the experience and I was
44:38
like huh so and I remember I had bought
44:41
a pair of pants at down here I think it
44:45
was like Belk Lindsay or something I
44:47
don’t remember a store and I when I got
44:50
home I realized there was two pairs and
44:53
I picked up the wrong ones I picked up
44:54
the ones too big and I was literally
44:56
going to the airport and I called elf
44:59
Lindsay and they put me to the apartment
45:01
that lady’s like oh yeah I remember you
45:02
she goes I’ll just walk the pants
45:05
outside and literally I drove up in my
45:08
car she just handed them and handed them
45:10
yes I’ll take care of the rest don’t
45:12
worry about it and I was basic and then
45:15
I know it’s experience right and then I
45:18
linked that experience to another
45:20
experience it had nothing to do with
45:21
buying freaking pants I don’t know what
45:23
know what it was it was calling at the
45:25
time sprint which knew who I had my
45:29
phone service and hold like it was
45:32
indefinite well yeah so like it’s weird
45:34
to me you know there’s like the oven
45:37
flow to exhale
45:38
valuable experiences like right now it’s
45:40
super valuable right when it becomes
45:42
like website was super valuable in the
45:44
beginning yeah and then it’s kind of
45:46
like just bear like a bare minimum like
45:49
you have to have this yeah and so
45:51
eventually like that curve happens but I
45:55
think what’s so interesting with with
45:58
this moment is that like there’s nuances
46:02
since my hypothesis is there’s going to
46:04
be more there’s gonna be a lot of mass
46:08
gravity to digital retailing and then
46:11
there’s gonna be more plugins and kind
46:12
of the ecosystems that exist around it
46:14
just like there was with website it’s
46:17
like what we started website and then it
46:19
was like oh chat paid search SEO company
46:22
agency bubble I’m reading all these
46:23
moons around the planet exactly I think
46:26
digital retellings going to become
46:27
another one of those and in I think that
46:31
when that happens you know like talking
46:38
about telephones it’s it’s kind of like
46:40
the pattern I see is the moment I had a
46:43
telephone experience and they said hey
46:46
do you want to hold your spot in line
46:48
and we’ll just call you when we get a
46:50
chance the moment I had that was the
46:53
moment I hated every person that didn’t
46:55
have that experience you know I mean
46:56
well that’s it you that’s this is how
46:59
our brains like the benchmark right do
47:01
not you don’t need to be comparing
47:04
yourself to the your competitive dealer
47:06
that is short-sighted you comparing
47:09
yourself to every human that your
47:12
customer or every business your
47:14
customers are touching which is
47:15
everything so you have to be as
47:18
competitive as the simplest of Apple you
47:21
have to make online scheduling one touch
47:24
button simple not you know I don’t know
47:27
my VIN what is a VIN where do I find the
47:30
VIN because we even if we look at our
47:33
websites we talk in automotive
47:35
terminology that the average person has
47:38
no idea what that means
47:40
totally I think like the reason to be
47:42
scared from uber like people always like
47:44
to use the uber we were like whatever
47:46
uber if someone want to replace a car
47:48
with uber it be so expensive be a $1400
47:50
a month like why would they ever do
47:52
and then you’re like yeah but it’s a
47:55
click of a button
47:56
yeah and I get like maybe in traffic an
48:02
hour of my day back back and forth yeah
48:05
yeah I mean so like if your Road idea
48:07
you could bill for that hour totally and
48:10
if if you’re just me I can work on my
48:13
laptop on something in that hour yeah in
48:16
that traffic so it’s like like I think
48:18
there’s you know again that comes back
48:21
to the wrong metric unit of success
48:24
we’re like well money right it cost more
48:27
money and you’re like no guess what
48:30
experience is better time is saved yeah
48:34
if there’s always those two equations
48:36
either you’re saving time are you saving
48:38
money and it’s okay to like spend more
48:40
money if you’re saving way more time you
48:42
know yeah because it’s dollar cost is
48:44
its money look we trade time for money
48:47
right and as smartest businesses end up
48:50
or smart winning both yeah like
48:52
entrepreneurs really learn how to 10x
48:55
that right they turn they get out of
48:57
their personal time unit and it becomes
48:59
a 10x multiplier right so that’s what
49:02
I’m finish up to me has always been
49:03
about but yeah I agree with you a
49:06
hundred percent
49:07
like I think dealers right now it this
49:09
is that pause opportunity to say hey
49:11
let’s rethink our processes and you know
49:15
let’s let’s do more with less and be
49:18
more efficient and actually document our
49:20
processes of how we do things not how we
49:24
say we do things because I always find
49:26
and I don’t know if you had that
49:27
experience I walk into a dealership
49:28
they’re like oh no we got that and this
49:30
is how we do it yeah and then I’ll walk
49:33
in there and not tell anyone and I don’t
49:34
get that experience and I mean may not
49:37
get the experience because it gets the
49:40
manager or owner is being told one thing
49:43
but something else is being delivered
49:45
down here and it shows in the results so
49:48
yeah totally that mean there’s there’s
49:51
like you know a we need more leads it’s
49:54
like cool like there’s a there’s
49:58
sometimes enough fear in the dealership
50:00
like micro ecosystem that like they’re
50:05
like oh
50:06
all make Leeds happen and then like
50:07
miraculously like a bunch of junk leads
50:09
just appear in the desk and everybody
50:11
breathes a sigh of relief right or wrong
50:15
metric exactly
50:16
so like again it’s like like I love the
50:19
idea of saying like we need more web
50:24
conference meet and greets okay that
50:28
seems reasonable we need more Tio’s to
50:31
the general manager through chat okay
50:33
like that’s in like that seat to me like
50:36
is the right way of thinking it but to
50:39
be like wait a morally it’s like no like
50:41
like get any more engagement get me more
50:43
like get me something that’s tangible
50:45
not you know because I think again
50:49
that’s an empty calorie at this point
50:50
yeah great man this has been really good
50:53
today I had a lot of fun with you I’m so
50:55
glad I didn’t get to spend some time
50:58
with you I feel like I could sit where
50:59
you sit on for like hours and just go
51:01
out yeah well we could have gone into a
51:02
lot of rabbit holes I think this is like
51:04
this is probably the most focus our
51:07
conversations I’ve ever been and it’s
51:08
still navigating a few things today and
51:13
it’s cool I think we have to come back I
51:14
think there’s some more stuff I think we
51:16
could share and do this again so
51:18
absolutely man definitely yeah man well
51:21
I again super appreciate you taking time
51:23
today and it’s awesome man sit and talk
51:26
definitely here listen to your brain
51:28
work man so you got some really
51:30
insightful thoughts there and it’s thank
51:33
you well I appreciate it appreciate you
51:34
getting on here absolutely I’m saying

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