The 2017 Dealers United Wrap-Up
2017 brought with it a bunch of talented new team members, strong digital partnerships, a collection of game-changing product developments, and BIG company milestones for Dealers United. Check out this 2017 Wrap Up to see everything we did this year:
- We added 222 new dealer-members in just 31 days thanks to a crazy-successful Facebook ad campaign, and shipped out 222 infamous “Get Out!” buttons!
- The entire team was registered for training through DigitalMarketer, kicking off DU’s year-long certification obsession.
- Pete helped install the first-ever Digital Marketing class at the University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee campus.
- Our dealers unlocked the power of Offline Conversions to help measure actual vehicles sales on Facebook.
- We finalized “The Perfect Craigslist Template” and added it to our growing resource library.
- Ava joined Dealers United’s Facebook team.
- We formed a new team to help manage dealers’ digital accounts: the Performance Team!
- Pete, Brooke, and Cara became Customer Value Optimization (CVO) certified; Miranda received her Paid Traffic certification.
- We heard from our dealer-members about an industry-wide market slowdown in new vehicle sales.
#DMLab party at #TCS2017 #360 #TeamDU – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA
- The DU Team and Darren D’Altorio (our SEO expert) visited San Diego, CA and attended Traffic & Conversion 2017.
- The Marketing Team went to Arizona and set up some seriously strategic marketing campaigns with Sixth Division.
- Travis started his webinar series to help dealers combat the new sales plateau and focus on pre-owned sales.
- We announced our Craigslist Monthly Payment Generator.
- Dealers United became Digital Marketer’s first automotive Certified Partner.
- The DU office played a prank on Pete while he was out of office.
- The entire team took on the Color Vibe 5k Run.
- Katelyn joined to help bridge the gap between our Marketing and Facebook Teams, and Corey joined our Performance Team.
- DU was honored as one of the University of South Florida’s “USF Fast 56,” the Tampa area’s fastest growing companies.
- We learned some simple but sound advice at Digital Dealer 22.
- Jenn Hepner and Katelyn became CVO certified.
- We hosted a “mini summit” and welcomed dealers to a full day of training and collaboration at DU’s headquarters.
- Josh was hired as our Controller and Phil became the first addition to our Development Team.
- The rest of the DU Team earned their CVO certifications.
- Annette Freetage from Ford of Ventura told us why she loves working with Dealers United for Craigslist and Google PPC.
- Facebook published Sarasota Ford’s success story on the Facebook Business homepage.
- Bill joined Dealers United’s Development Team.
- DU moved all internal communication to Slack and had a battle about the correct pronunciation of “gif.”
- Brooke warned dealers to stop pressing Facebook’s Boost button.
- Heather, Miranda and Ava became CVO certified; Katelyn and Brooke became Content Marketing certified.
- Our home base in Sarasota, FL was voted best city for young entrepreneurs.
- Dev Team began the grueling process of normalizing dealerships’ inventory data to easily create dynamic product catalogs.
- We helped dealers use Make & Model line targeting and interest targeting on Facebook to connect with local veterans.
- We had our first toaster oven fire when Brooke burned her bacon in our *new* toaster oven.
- Our Dev Team launched the biggest expansion to DU’s Facebook program, Facebook Inventory Ads, to help simplify vehicle ads on Facebook.
- Cara wrote this article to show dealers what’s really happening on their 3rd party listings.
- Travis suffered an injury from a stray rubber chicken and a new Slack emoji was born.
- Pete traveled to Austin, TX to visit both DigitalMarketer’s HQ and Facebook’s HQ.
- We saw just how big an impact removing price from Craigslist posts can make.
- After Hurricane Harvey, our team joined a fundraising baseball game at Tropicana Field with the Houston Astros.
- Derek joined our growing dev team!
- Dealers United and The Cause Network became partners in order to help dealerships support their local communities.
- We announced our VDP View Guarantee and put our money where our mouth was on our Facebook Inventory Ads program.
- “Jordan (Jordy) Belfort,” our office’s beloved 5 year old betta fish, said his last goodbye.
- Pete filmed our first-ever Facebook LIVE video.
- We launched our 25-part Community Video Series to help dealers tell their unique stories online.
- Leader Auto Group visited our HQ (again!) for a full day of collaboration on their digital campaigns and strategies.
- Oracle Data Cloud shared how they work with Dealers United to help dealers use data to paint a bigger picture of auto shoppers.
- We delivered one of our favorite live sessions, “The Art of PRE-suasion” at Digital Dealer 23.
- Jim Scott from Jarrett-Scott Ford and Brooke were quoted in this article.
- We realized not all Facebook Live videos are perfect…
- Brooke FINALLY (!!!) updated our homepage and resource page.
- Ava received her Customer Acquisition Specialist certification.
- Half our team evacuated, the other half hunkered down, and we ALL survived Hurricane Irma.
- The team hit a major milestone and took a half day to adventure around Sarasota.
- We became the first official automotive partners in Oracle Elite Partner program.
- We shared “The Art of PRE-Suasion” one last time at #DDWNE
- Katelyn became Social and Community certified.
- Dev Team created an entire Inventory Ad campaign from scratch using the Facebook API.
- Pete MC’ed #SRQHacks for the Education Foundation of Sarasota County
- Derek was promoted from his long-standing role as “Temp”.
- Our write-up, “Not All Dealerships Are Experiencing A Sales Slowdown: How Dealers Are Coming Out On Top” was featured in AutoSuccess.
- We celebrated Halloween…
- DU sponsored a table at University of South Florida’s “Brunch on the Bay.”
- Katelyn takes the win for the most DU DigitalMarketer certifications after adding Digital Response and Copywriting certifications to her belt.
- Brooke’s powerful article was published in The SHOP Mag.
- Pete served as a panelist at Ringling College’s “Mind the Gap” event to encourage young talent to stay in Sarasota.
- We celebrated Thanksgiving with our awesome office neighbors, FloorForce!
- We hosted the STATE OF AUTOMOTIVE webinar with executives from Facebook and Oracle Data Cloud to help dealers unlock secret automotive data in Facebook.
- The Facebook Team hunkered down to upgrade all New Vehicle Facebook Ads with 2018 models.
- Luke joined the Dealers United team.
- Phil made us proud when he landed our team’s first Facebook Blueprint Certification.
- Our Dev Team published their technology to push Facebook leads directly to any dealer system without the need for a third party CRM integration.
- CEO Pete Petersen was named to the Gulfcoast CEO Forum’s board of directors.
- We started drafting the **OFFICIAL** Dealers United Playbook.
- The DU Team celebrated the holidays the only way we know how: in ugly sweaters!
All in all, 2017 was our best year yet with 16 employee certifications, 4 huge product developments, and 8 amazing new team members.
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