It must be spring, because questions about the Dealers’ Choice Awards are pouring in. “Who votes for these awards?” Dealers and dealership personnel. “How and when?” The survey is open online throughout the month of May. “How do I nominate my company?” You don’t. It’s one big write-in. “How do I get votes?” Ask your dealers to vote for you. “How do I win?” Only ask the dealers who like you.

There are countless vendors, suppliers, and banks and finance companies serving the auto retail segment. They offer everything from new-vehicle leads to biweekly payments. They tell you they provide more than a quality product or service. They put their clients first. Their customer service is unmatched. They offer the best possible value for your money. You will confidently recommend them to other dealers.

The Dealers’ Choice Awards puts those claims to the test. Dealers don’t just list their vendors for each category. They also score the companies they work with on each of the standards listed above. Even if every dealership in America is on its roster, a company must outduel its competition in every regard to complete the uphill climb to the winner’s circle.

Some companies seem to manage this Herculean feat year in and year out. For the majority, it’s just a matter of staying in the mix and hoping for a top-three finish. Many companies “campaign” for awards, shotgunning the link to the survey to their customer base. That can be an effective strategy — again, if your dealers like you. But every year brings one or two winning companies whose directors are not even aware of our program until we contact them.

That’s the fun part. The hard part is creating and deploying the survey, answering questions and complaints, tabulating the results, and organizing the awards ceremony at Industry Summit. The only payoff for the magazine comes from the sale of promotional packages to winners once they have been announced. The program itself is sponsored solely by this magazine, and that is as it should be.

Participation in the Dealers’ Choice Awards grows every year. I encourage you to join in. Take a few minutes to name the partners who enhance your ability to market, sell, finance, and service vehicles. Score them honestly and let the numbers decide the winners. It’s a great, big industry that serves its hardest-working members well. Take this opportunity to recognize the companies that do so for you.

Click here to vote in the 2018 Dealers’ Choice Awards.

About the author
Tariq Kamal

Tariq Kamal

Associate Publisher

Tariq Kamal is the associate publisher of Bobit Business Media's Dealer Group.

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