Drving Sales Executive Summit 2019

Driving Sales Conference Driven by Professionals and Personalities

Once again the Driving Sales guys and gals out did themselves with an enlightening and entertaining event. Due to circumstances beyond my control, I missed Sunday but packed everything I could into Monday and a piece of Tuesday. 

MOZ’s point person Britney Muller brought her hyperbole and high-heeled passion for analytics as the keynote for Monday AM. A couple of her bullet points included the fact that over 50% of website visitors are direct and do not “click” at all, and that there is still a consumer bias to click organic vs paid ads at a whopping 11:1 ratio (which is actually up 30% over a few years back). The takeaway for many was that having an optimized presence in the SERPs is essential and easily achievable with even the most basic SEO best practices. To me, it reinforced the fact that A LOT of your best traffic is not attributable in an analytical platform, not even Google, rather it’s an artifact of visibility. Her report is available via

Other timely talking tidbits on Monday were delivered by Jeff Cowan on how to retain customers. His chat focused on knowing your customer in the service drive. Jeff’s style was pretty much “in your face” and had an old-school feel to it, akin to a High School football coach driving home the importance of basic blocking and tackling. His emphasis was on delivering specific scripting proven to build customer loyalty and confidence in the service lane because pricing is not the end all be all decision maker for a customer. Once they contact you or show up at your dealership, they have already chosen you…and they are yours to lose. Scripting guarantees the messaging never waivers and that they (the customer) has come to the right place.

Steve Roessler was his usual entertaining self and stayed on point regarding communicating with customers on the level that they are used to. Texting is king, gets the most engagement, and is a far more viable communication platform than any other currently in use. Oh, and don’t forget the use of gifs to break the ice and develop rapport. His pow wow had more pow and wow than most. 

Of course, there was a Sean Kelley sighting. How this guy can be in so many places at one time defies the space time continuum as we understand it. He is proof the Einstein got it wrong.

There were many other speakers, all interesting in their own right, but the most interesting feature of the conference was the face off that pits a handful of vendors and entrepeneurs against each other to see whose innovation is the most interesting. It’s called “The Innovation Cup”, and although he didn’t win, Drake Baerresen rallied his pitch to convince all on hand that SnapChat for Auto was the social media platform dealers need to pay attention to. It’s usership is older than they think, and the advertising costs on SnapChat are microscopic compared to Facebook and Instagram. In my humble estimation…he’s dead on. 

What conference is complete without a party? The answer is none, not even if it is in Las Vegas! The Spazzmatics entertained on the bandstand pumping out 80’s covers while a number of booths were set up to include cornhole, giant beer pong with trash cans and soccer balls, football throwing for accuracy, and a giant soccer ball dart board. Yours truly dominated in 3 of the 4. Driving Sales went all out – thanks to Bart Wilson and Jared Hamilton for a great event.

#thecarbizcoach spoke to a large captive audience about the four elements it takes to build a winning culture. The insights around communication between siloed departments, effectively setting expectations, creating a company vision and investing energy into your people with coaching surely made a lasting positive impact for the attendees.

Drake Baerresen of Turnkey Marketing at Driving Sales 2019

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