Skip to main content

Plus, six tips to get the most out of the show

Author: Jay Law

The NADA show is coming up soon (February 1-4 in Las Vegas) and Ikon Technologies is going to be there in full force. So, I thought I’d take this opportunity to explain what we’ll be bringing to the conference. Also, as a seven-time NADA attendee, I thought I’d give you a bit of advice on how to get the most out of the show, which can be difficult to do, given how many opportunities there are and, of course, all the fun distractions of Las Vegas. 


But first, let’s talk a bit about NADA. If this will be your first show, you’re in for a treat.. If you want to learn about how the industry is changing and how to adapt to those changes, NADA has you covered. Looking for the most innovative new technologies that can enable your dealership to increase the value you provide to customers and deepen your relationships with them? NADA is the place to be. Hoping to find opportunities to network with the best and brightest in our industry? NADA is an embarrassment of networking riches.


Naturally, as an innovative technology vendor that’s focused on strengthening the dealer – customer relationship, NADA is a show we look forward to every year. And we’re especially eager to attend this year, because we’re seeing what many of the speakers are also clearly seeing: a tipping point where the business model of auto dealerships is radically changing. 

The new business model for dealerships

Pre-COVID, dealerships were all about sales volume and getting people into your showroom, a philosophy that was reinforced by OEMs. Sales reps were told not to discuss any pricing information at all unless the buyer was present at the dealership – bringing them in was the goal of every call and every digital interaction. 


COVID, however, changed the game. People were reluctant to come into the showroom, doing a ton of research online and gravitating towards dealers who had a strong online reputation and virtual experience. What’s more, higher interest rates have slowed down customer interest in replacing their vehicle or buying a new one. Focusing all your sales efforts on volume and bringing people in is no longer a strategy for success. Dealers need a digital strategy that will not only strengthen relationships and bring in repeat business, but will also help sell additional goods and services that add value. The key, today, is to maximize customer value as much as possible in an ethical way. The job no longer ends once the car is sold — that’s now just the beginning. 


Ikon’s Connected Car App: Benefiting Dealers and Customers

Ikon is dedicated to helping dealers make this transition. We provide a consumer connected car app that’s dealer branded, so the dealership’s name is front and center on the customer’s phone. Dealers sell this app to customers when they buy the car, and it provides a ton of value for both parties.


Customers can use the app to be connected to, and to protect their vehicles and their loved ones that drive them – very useful when your sixteen-year-old borrows the car to go out with friends on a Friday night. Also, if the car is stolen, Ikon offers the Nation’s Best Stolen Vehicle Recovery Process, and backs it up with a $10,000 benefit in addition to whatever their insurance provides. If your car breaks down, a light was left on or need a service? The app provides roadside assistance and a direct connection to your dealership.


The app also provides customers with convenience. The app logs mileage, trips and reminds customers when it’s time to take the vehicle in for service. Scheduling an appointment is also simple. They just click on “My Dealer” in the lower right and then “Book Service Appointment” to select a convenient time. 


There are also tons of benefits for the dealer. For starters, people heavily use their phones and the apps they support. On average, people spend 4.5 hours per day on mobile devices, and interact with them 96 times per day. For our app, we find that customers log in fifteen times per month, on average. That’s 15 interactions every month, and possibly 96 views per day of the dealer’s brand!


Additionally, because our smart marketing capabilities remind vehicle owners about upcoming maintenance and make it so easy to schedule a service through the app, customers will be much more likely to bring their maintenance and repair work back to the dealership. That’s a lot of additional revenue. 


But perhaps the most powerful feature is this: unlike an OEM’s connected car app, the dealer owns that customer, data and the relationship! . With this info, dealers can unearth insights to power targeted marketing campaigns, inform more effective sales strategies and identify new services and products that customers desire. It all adds up to additional revenue. 


Six Tips for Getting the Most out of NADA

  1. Have a plan: Do you want to see more about what specific companies have to offer? Looking for a specific kind of product? Interested in educating yourself about a particular topic? Decide what your goals are and plan ahead of time – the show is too big to play it all by ear.
  2. Make time to explore: There are so many new things at NADA that you’ve likely not thought of or haven’t been on your radar. Reserve time to explore new companies, products and programs.. Plus, don’t just meet with companies on your target list  – go see their competitors, too. You get multiple estimates and explore different options on your house when you’re getting work done, right? You should do the same with your business.
  3. Take advantage of the shuttle service: The convention center is, unfortunately, not very accessible on foot from most hotels. Use the shuttle. It’s fast, frequent and reliable. You’ll be glad you did. 
  4. Look at the speaker schedule ahead of time to prioritize and plan: In this way you’ll know when you have time for the expo, and you can maximize the value you get out of the sessions.
  5. Sunday is a great day to revisit: Plenty of people will have enjoyed the Vegas night life on Saturday, so the show is quieter on Sunday; this allows you more face time with exhibitors. Especially after you’ve looked at a bunch of companies, this is a great time to follow up with the ones you found most interesting, and get a deeper look at their offering.
  6. Private events: Don’t forget these! NADA features tons of private concerts, dinners and other events. The show shouldn’t be all about work, work, work, especially when you have the chance to see bands that play large stadiums in much more intimate venues and experience the incredible food and ambiance of Las Vegas’s top restaurants. It’s so much fun. Take advantage of it!


We’re looking to meet with dealers who are looking to supercharge their ability to maximize customer revenue, strengthen their brand and expand customer relationships. If you’d like to learn more and see a demo, come visit us at booth 6851N. Or set up a meeting BOOK A DEMO. We’d love to show you in person how our app can help both you and your customers.

Leave a Reply