Partnerships and Integration

TIDAL partners with Mercedes to give drivers one year free music

STUTTGART, Germany - 

Mercedes-Benz and global music and entertainment platform, TIDAL have partnered to provide Mercedes drivers who connect their car to the brand's me Portal with access to complimentary TIDAL HiFi membership.

By next year, Mercedes drivers will be able to stream TIDAl’s more than 50 million songs, over 185,000 music videos and special Mercedes-Benz playlists at no cost for a year, the companies announced on Tuesday.

“Thanks to the cooperation with TIDAL, we are enhancing the Mercedes me lifestyle range with a unique entertainment experience,” Mercedes-Benz Cars marketing vice president Jens Thiemer said in a news release.“Our customers can stream music and videos at home or on the go virtually unlimited. We also offer exclusive opportunities to contact artists or experience them live.”

Mercedes-Benz and TIDAL are celebrating the launch of their collaboration with an exclusive concert on Friday, Sept. 15 during the upcoming me Convention at the Frankfurt International Motor Show hosted by Mercedes-Benz and South by Southwest.

Convention participants can sign up for tickets during the convention using the event's app. Additionally, more tickets will also be raffled over the social media channels of both TIDAL and Mercedes-Benz.

“TIDAL is honored to partner with the world’s premier automobile manufacturer,” added TIDAL’s Lior Tibon. “The joint mission of superior quality and excellence is a natural synergy between both brands. Mercedes customers value ingenuity and we’re proud to share TIDAL’s elevated music and entertainment experience with them.”

Search Optics joins new Mazda online marketing co-op program

SAN DIEGO - 

Search Optics has been named a preferred provider for Mazda North American Operations’ recently launched Mazda Digital Certified Program (MDCP).

The new program offers Mazda dealers new online marketing solutions designed to increase qualified website visits, attract more traffic to showrooms and provide customers a consistent shopping experience.

“At Search Optics, results always come first – and for MDCP, our priority will be to create customer demand and increase the flow of qualified traffic to Mazda dealer websites and dealership locations,” Search Optics chief executive officer David Ponn said in a news release.

“As a Mazda preferred provider, our qualifications are second to none and include unparalleled experience with the Mazda brand, an innovative mix of integrated technology, and a staff that has earned the automotive digital marketing industry’s highest number of Google certifications,” he continued. 

Search Optics’ collaborative business relationship with Mazda spans nearly a decade.

As one of Mazda’s original preferred co-op program providers, Search Optics has worked with the automaker to develop and implement dealer group websites, according to the company.

“In supporting Mazda and its dealers as an independent digital marketing agency, Search Optics has always steered clear of cookie-cutter digital marketing solutions,” said Ponn. “Instead, we’ve focused on customized approaches that drive stronger results and improve sales. We’re very excited to continue our tradition of success with Mazda as a preferred provider, and we congratulate them on the launch of the new program.”

Additionally, Search Optics also recently worked directly with both Google and the Mazda Western Region to implement a market-wide paid search initiative.

As a result of the initiative, Search Optics said Mazda dealers quadrupled their campaign click-through-rates on Google search pages.

The global digital marketing provider received Google’s 2016 and 2015 Google Channel Sales Mobile Champion Award last year.

Each year, Google presents the award to companies it determines has the highest levels of real-world results based on several quality metrics.

Pearl integrates KBB Instant Cash Offer into express retail platform

DALLAS - 

Pearl Technology Holdings announced Wednesday it has entered into a new agreement to integrate Kelley Blue Book’s Instant Cash Offer within its ShowroomXpress (SRX) retail platform.

The integration allows consumers shopping through the SRX retail widget to get a real instant cash offer for their current vehicle.

Kelley Blue Book Instant Cash Offer asks car owners to answer questions about their vehicle and returns a real cash offer they can apply to another vehicle or use to sell the vehicle.

“Adding the Kelley Blue Book Instant Cash Offer to our ShowroomXpress experience will enable dealers to change the way they retail cars with a few lines of code. The added functionality of Kelley Blue Book Instant Cash Offer will be transformative to dealers wanting to offer a different online and in-store express retail experience,” Pearl chief executive officer and founder of Bruce Thompson said in a news release.

“While we believe our dynamic widget is the most powerful automotive express retail initiative in the industry, the missing element was a credible and instant offer for a consumer’s vehicle. Instant Cash Offer provides that with the added benefit of the trusted Kelley Blue Book brand.  We are very excited to be working with Kelley Blue Book on what we believe is an inevitable shift in the way vehicles are sold in the U.S.,” Thompson continued.

Additionally, ShowroomXpress displays purchase and lease offers, and the consumer can configure their transaction and pick an ideal payment.

Payments are integrated into the dealer’s finance and insurance screens anytime, and Customers or sales personnel can freely alter terms and payment changes based on regional lender programs, according to Pearl.

“Pearl is on the cutting edge with its ShowroomXpress system, and we are very pleased to be working with the Pearl team on this initiative,” added Damon Bennett senior director of syndication at KBB.

CDK Global Partners with ActivEngage to create chat tool for sales

HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. - 

CDK Global announced recently that it has partnered with ActivEngage to create Concierge Chat, a messaging tool built directly into CDK Next Gen Websites.

The integration of Concierge Chat with the CDK platform provides customers with a professionally managed chat service fitted with features designed to help to drive qualified sales opportunities, the company said.

“The integration of Concierge Chat into our Next Gen websites further builds upon the fully responsive platform we’ve developed to allow dealers to connect with their customers no matter how they shop,” CDK Global vice president of product management Max Steckler said in a news release.

“As the industry continues to be flooded with standalone product innovation while lacking best-in-class integration, the creation of Concierge Chat is just one example of how CDK is meeting the challenge and enabling end-to-end automotive commerce via an open exchange,” he explained.

Concierge Chat’s notable features include:

• behavioral technology

• inventory sharing

• data mining technology

• seamless integration

ActivEngage joined the CDK Global Partner Program when it launched last year.

Currently, the program includes over 15 partners whose services are optimized and integrated across CDK Website workflows.

“CDK Global recognizes the power of giving consumers the opportunity to interact with dealers in real time via messaging solutions like chat, text or social media,” said Todd Smith, ActivEngage chief executive officer.

“Our partnership with CDK Global will allow our company to share new innovations that will help consumers navigate the purchasing journey more effectively, while creating better results for the dealer,” he added.

Podium welcomes new VP & 2 partnerships to collect dealer reviews

CARY, N.C. - 

Podium recently announced the appointment of Matt Murray as senior vice president of strategic accounts as well as new partnerships with DealerSocket and DealerVault.

Podium’s latest integration with DealerSocket and DealerVault automates dealers' common interactions, such as collecting reviews and sending text messages.

The new partnerships will allow dealers using DealerSocket and DealerVault to integrate Podium technology with their existing dealer management systems, according to the company.

“With the addition of these partners Podium now covers nearly every franchise dealer in the country," said Murray in an email interview with Auto Remarketing.

Prior to his current role, Murray most recently served as vice president of strategic growth and retail solutions at Cox Automotive, Dealertrack Technologies and Dealer.com. As senior vice president of strategic accounts, Murray has been tasked with overseeing Podium’s cross-vertical strategic account strategy.

He said both DealerSocket and DealerVault customers have reported substantial increases in total reviews captured since the integration.

“Podium’s integration points automate a significant portion of the reviews process for dealerships, alleviating the burden from employees, and ultimately optimizing their local SEO strategy,” Murray explained. “We are helping to ensure that they will get found, get chosen, and receive valuable insights from both new and existing customers."

According to Podium, its recent growth within the automotive sector follows a $32 million Series A funding round from investors such as Accel, Summit Partners, GV (formerly Google Ventures), and Y Combinator.

“We're delighted to now support a broad network of solutions providers in the automotive space, giving a significant number of dealerships a better way to interact with their customers throughout the entire customer journey, and foster valuable, long-lasting relationships,” Podium chief executive officer and co-founder Eric Rea said in a news release announcing the new partnerships.

Chrome Data partners with Hyundai to harness brand build data

PORTLAND, Ore. - 

Chrome Data recently entered into a new commercial agreement with Hyundai Motor America to implement the brand's build data within its VIN Description Services for the purposes of accurately describing Hyundai vehicles.

The build data information from Hyundai allows Chrome VIN description services to be 100-percent accurate for Hyundai vehicles, according to the company.

“We are very pleased to partner with Hyundai to ensure their vehicles are described accurately throughout the marketplace and remarketing chain,” Chrome Data general manager Craig Jennings said in a news release.

The build data provided to Chrome will be utilized along with the Chrome Vehicle Catalogue data.

In addition to information on Hyundai vehicles’ interior and exterior colors, options, packages and technology, Chrome said build data from Hyundai offers specific information concerning equipment that is not always possible to derive from a standard VIN decode.

“Working with Chrome Data to make our build data available to hundreds of automotive industry partners will ensure our vehicles are represented properly to maximize the value of every vehicle,” added Dean Evans, chief marketing officer of Hyundai.

Last year, Chrome Data decoded over 3 billion VINS, according to Jennings.

Online video provider launches ad-serving TV service with AutoDealerNetwork

LAS VEGAS - 

Advertising online video provider Vidillion recently announced its partnership with AutoDealerNetwork.TV to provide dealership customers visiting sales and service waiting rooms with up-to-the-minute news, entertainment and targeted and programmatic ad-serving from Vidillion.

Vidillion allows dealers to both feature their own commercials and block any commercials of their competitors.

The new service’s private live TV network to dealerships includes news, sports, travel, lifestyle, business and weather content from the portfolio of networks provided by Turner, a Time Warner company.

“The AutoDealerNetwork.TV product gives dealerships the ability to feature their commercials- whether that means dealership or auto brand specific spots- while blocking competitor's commercials,” Vidillion president and chief executive officer Tom Engdahl said in a news release. “We feel that is a big deal and really brings a level of targeting into a space that can certainly benefit from local spots hyper-tailored for each market.”

More than 50 northern and southeastern U.S. dealerships took part in the initial launch of the content and monetization network in May.

This year, an additional 3,000 plus dealerships throughout the U.S. are expected to launch the service, according to Vidillion.

“A single AutoDealerNetwork.TV set top box and one TV will display approximately 7,000 to 10,000 commercials each month regarding your products and services,” said Dirk Newsome, operations manager at AutoDealerNetwork.TV.

“If multiple boxes are installed in a property, the revenue opportunities and ability to reach customers in a meaningful way with special offers and direct dealership storytelling are exponential,” he said.

Dealerships can install an AutoDealerNetwork.TV set top box for use with existing TVs.

"This service has unlimited uses and can be applied in auto sales & service businesses, but also in healthcare, spa services and any environment where there is a waiting room," added Engdahl.

LotLinx, VistaDash connect to deliver helpful marketing metrics data

CHICAGO - 

LotLinx recently announced a new partnership to fully link VistaDash's marketing metrics platform to LotLinx TURN, which provides dealers with metrics on targeted shoppers, total spend, sold VINS, conversions and engagements on vehicle detail pages.

To help dealers make marketing decisions that improve their ROI and digital ad spend, LotLinx customers now have access to VistaDash metrics via their TURN dashboard, the company said.

The newly integrated VistaDash platform is the result of research by PCG's Brian Pasch. LotLinx said he designed the platform to both provide dealers with unbiased marketing metrics and yield helpful insights related to different business goals.

"VistaDash is the brainchild of Pasch, whose book "Swimming with the Digital Sharks" has been hailed by the auto industry for its research on digital advertising inefficiencies and dealers' inability to obtain actionable marketing metrics," LotLinx said in a news release.

The platform's metrics inspect ad traffic quality and allow dealership managers to easily examine and identify strategies for increasing their return on ad spend, according to the company.

"With VistaDash, it's our mission to help dealers finally understand their data," added Pasch.

He said "through this partnership with LotLinx TURN, our products are working side-by-side to provide our clients with strategy, transparency and actionable data to help them succeed—and that is invaluable in today's digital age."

Additionally, LotLinx said it was the primary sponsor for PCG's seven-city Automotive Engagement Conference held earlier this year where the companies showed dealers its latest online strategies for connecting with shoppers.

LotLinx and PCG will be at the upcoming Digital Dealer 23 Conference and Expo from September 18-20 in Las Vegas.

The companies plan to educate dealers about avoiding "digital sharks" and utilizing data-driven solutions, according to LotLinx.

Element unveils new insight service that integrates OnStar data

TORONTO - 

Element Fleet Management recently introduced Connected Data, a new service for fleet performance insights that streams vehicle data from both OnStar and other connected car systems in non-GM vehicles.

Connected Data gives fleet managers the ability to tailor analytics to meet common reporting and regulatory needs, according to Element.

The new service offers dealers a selection of different data feeds they can use to optimize their fleets. Users can explore odometer reporting, vehicle diagnostics and driver behavior data. 

Access to data feeds is available via Xcelerate, customized reports and Element strategic fleet consultants.

“Today’s fleets are in a unique position to harness the power of connected vehicles across an increasingly connected digital fleet workflow, one that integrates data from drivers, suppliers and the vehicle itself,” Element Fleet Management North America products and services senior vice president Michele Cunningham said. “Connected Data delivers just the subset of vehicle and driver data that customers need, making it easier to gain insights and take action in areas like optimal replacement, preventive maintenance, and assessing and mitigating driver risk and more.”

Connected Data is currently available in three packages: Odometer, Fleet and Safety.

The Odometer package provides mileage reporting compliance data and vehicle utilization insight. Fleet includes the offerings of the Odometer package, along with integrated location and diagnostics data.

The Safety packed is fitted with Fleet package data, in addition to driving pattern information used to identify high-risk drivers, help improve safety and reduce accident expense. The data covers hard braking, fast acceleration and speeding.

For additional information about Connected Data's offerings, visit elementfleet.com/fleet-services/car-light-duty/vehicle-fleet-connected-data.

ADAM Systems integrates DMS with Xtime Spectrum

SPANISH FORT, Ala. - 

ADAM Systems, provider of dealer management solutions, recently announced that its DMS has been fully integrated with retention solution Xtime Spectrum, a Cox Automotive brand.

“We are excited to expand our already extensive offering to our client base. The ADAMConnect API continues to allow us to partner with industry leading solutions, like Xtime Spectrum, and work between our platforms in a transparent and secure manner that really brings value to Fixed Ops departments and their customers,” director of product management for the ADAM DMS platform John Cowan said in a news release.

Through a two-way exchange of data, the integration between ADAM Systems and Xtime can provide dealers enhanced customer relationships and retention.

“For a busy shop like ours, it is critical that we schedule service appointments accurately to meet our customer’s expectations,” said Premier Kia president Robert Alvine. “The seamless integration between Xtime and ADAM DMS expedites this process and allows our service advisers more time to give customers a higher level of service.”

The data exchange can help dealers speed up the service write-up process, giving staff more time to manage the service lane process, according to ADAM Systems.

“A great service experience doubles repurchase loyalty, and robust integration is critical," Jim Roche, Xtime senior vice president of marketing added. “Our goal is to help dealers build more value and convenience at every customer touch point, and we're thrilled to have ADAM as a technology partner to provide a better service to dealers and vehicle owners.”