Dealership Employees and Facebook: New Laws, New Challenges

ID-10077359It is no secret that social media technology has advanced quicker than most people’s social skills and common sense. The popular website Failbook is full of people who didn’t take a minute to think before posting on Facebook, and now they find themselves out of a job. Today, an online rant or a stupid Facebook post can get someone fired, but employers, including car dealerships, need to be clear on the laws of employee social media use or they could end up in trouble themselves.

According to a recent article by Michael Gifford over on WardsAuto, several states have laws on the books that offer some protection for employees on social media. For example, it is against the law in California, Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, Michigan, and New Jersey for employers to require employees to disclose their Facebook account and login password. Employers can view an employee’s Facebook profile if it is openly available to the public, but if the employee has adjusted their privacy settings to hide this information, an employer cannot require an employee to show their Facebook page.

In Gifford’s article, he brings up a real-life example that shows these laws do allow for shades of grey. A hospital employee was suspended for posting disparaging comments on their Facebook page regarding a patient and the paramedics treating the patient. The hospital was taken to court, but ultimately the hospital was not found at fault because the hospital had not sought out the employee’s Facebook page. Another employee who had access to the Facebook profile saw the comment and brought it to the hospital’s attention.

Do you know what to do if an employee makes inappropriate comments online? If not, we recommend reading up on the Stored Communications Act and any other applicable state laws regarding employee social media rights. Keep in mind that many states have passed new laws addressing this issue, so if you have a potential problem with an employee, get all the facts first and don’t make any rash decisions. Dealerships can also avoid problems by establishing social media guidelines for employees and making sure that employees understand them.

Want more tips and solutions for your dealership? Connect with Special Finance Group online through Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, and go to http:/// to learn how Special Finance Group can give you the Complete Special Finance Solution.

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The Five Kinds of Car Shoppers

ID-10036550One of the biggest stereotypes of car dealerships is the pushy salesperson. This is a stereotype that persists, and unfortunately, there are plenty of car salespeople who fit the profile and give it some truth. To make a better, more successful dealership, salespeople need to learn the line between guiding a sale and pushing a customer so hard that they walk right out the door.

The first step is to better understand the kinds of people walking into the dealership and whether they are predisposed to add-on products and warranties. According to WardsAuto contributor Steve Finlay, customers can be broken down into five categories. The first category is people who want the full package. They want extended warranties, add-ons, the optional features, and anything else that can come with the vehicle. The second category is people who will refuse any add-ons. No matter what you say, they will give you the cold shoulder and will likely walk out without buying a car if they feel pressured. The third category is people who need more information before they will commit to F&I products. Unfortunately, this category is easily confused with the fourth category of people who pretend they are interested but ultimately won’t buy. They will ask all kinds of questions and use up your valuable time, but they never had any intention of buying. The fifth and last category is people who honestly have questions, but they want to buy.

Finlay estimates that forty percent of customers fall into the fifth category, which is good news. The bad news is that salespeople usually encounter people who fall in the fifth category after dealing with people who fall into the second and fourth category. The salesperson gets done working with a customer who is belligerent or wasting their time, and they carry the baggage of that customer into their dealings with the next customer.

How can you avoid this problem? The most important thing to remember is to listen. Listen to the customer, and in your head, try to qualify what category they fall in. Do not assume right off the bat that this person wants to waste your time or is not actually interested in buying. These kinds of assumptions and the actions and attitudes it breeds will make you lose out on future sales. People will pick up on that attitude and will not respond well to it.

If you are looking to move more inventory and boost foot traffic in your dealership, Special Finance Group is ready to assist you with their Complete Special Finance Solution. To learn more about what Special Finance Group can do for you, go to, and connect with Special Finance Group on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

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Changes Over at Hyundai and What Dealerships Can Learn From It

ID-10088888It might seem like common sense, but the auto industry is realizing that not every customer that walks into a dealership is a prime credit customer or a repo waiting to happen. Sometimes, customers fall in the middle, and the industry can do more to help customers struggling to make their payments on time.

In a recent profile with Wards Auto, Hyundai Capital America walked through the steps they have taken to better serve their subprime customers who might be struggling with their payments. First, they needed to look at the people calling into their customer service center, their most common issues, and how customer service people were currently addressing these issues. They realized very quickly that their systems were inadequate for addressing customer concerns. Customers that could have received a loan extension might have missed out on the opportunity because service representatives had to get approval from their managers on every case. They would need to make some major changes if they expected to improve the customer experience and avoid potential delinquencies and repossessions.

Fortunately, Hyundai added a new software system to their rep’s computers. The rep could check if the customer’s payment history and whether they had received an extension before. While these reps still didn’t have the final say on granting extensions, the system walked the rep through the process and provided considerably more information on the customer than before.

When dealing with sub-prime credit car buyers, there are many little details that dealerships have to keep in mind when working and closing a deal, and dealerships that are new to special finance can miss these details easily. Fortunately, Special Finance Group is ready to help with the Complete Special Finance Solution. Lead tracking, a fully-staffed business development center, an in-house marketing team, and more, Special Finance Group has everything a dealership needs to create a profitable special finance department. To learn more about the Complete Special Finance Solution, click here.

Want to learn more about how Special Finance Group can work for your dealership? Go to today to learn more about the Complete Special Finance Solution, and connect with Special Finance Group on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn!

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No License, No Car: Why Dealerships Cannot Sell Without a Driver’s License

Last week, Gil Van Over at Ward’s Auto published an article “Believe It: Valid ID Needed to Buy Car.” In the article, he explains why dealerships cannot (and should not) sell a car if the purchaser does not have a valid driver’s license. As he puts it, “You can’t clear airport security by showing an expired driver’s license. You can’t rent a car with an expired driver’s license.” Why should you be able to buy a car without a valid driver’s license?

There are a number of problems that can arise if a dealership sells a car to a person without a valid license. The buyer might have multiple DUI convictions which automatically bans them from registering a vehicle. In that case, the dealership will have to pay off the loan. In another case, a buyer might be using someone else’s social security number and personal information that they purchased illegally, but their story will fall apart if asked for a valid driver’s license.

State and federal laws including the Patriot Act and the Red-Flags Rule require valid identification from the potential buyer. These laws also require that the dealership be vigilant and do their part to battle identity theft. At Special Finance Group, our call center representatives speak with potential customers every day. When they set appointments at associated dealerships, our representatives require that customers bring identification and verification of income including but not limited to their driver’s license and social security card. This way, we do our part to battle identity theft and protect our associated dealerships.

Find out today what Special Finance Group can do for you! Go to and check out our Complete Special Finance Solution! Be sure to also connect with Special Finance Group on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn!

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