Introducing TOAST Fixed Ops and Finance Online

We often hear that “Sales doesn’t make the money—it’s all made in the back.” In almost all cases, the Service Department is an integral part of the financial success of any dealership.

TOAST Fixed Ops

That’s because, on average, about 50% of a dealership’s revenue is created by fixed ops.

Taking it by the numbers, you’d think that 50% of any dealership’s advertising budget would be spent on attracting customers to fixed ops (and 50% of a car dealership’s website dedicated to this huge earner).

Continuing on this track, 50% of Facebook and Twitter expenditure would go to hunting and gathering for fixed ops—and 50% of the Google advertising budget to the “Shop.” Makes sense, right?

Excuse my rhetoric, but that just doesn’t happen. In the real world, most dealers pay very little attention to service and parts when it comes to the online advertising budget.

Not on Twitter 99 problems meme.

When it comes to service, the most that the average dealer will do on their site is put up a page showing service hours, a stock picture of some guy with a wrench, and a “contact us” link. As for the parts, it’s a pitiful showing for those guys and girls too.

It’s Time to Fight Back!

Fixed operations departments across Canada are struggling. Big businesses like Mr. Lube, Canadian Tire, Jiffy Lube and Kal Tire are controlling the ZMOT highway online, and dealers are making little or no effort to fight back.

Those crossing their fingers and hoping “things will turn around” are in for a rude awakening in the not-too-distant future.

TOAST Fixed Ops is starting a revolution. Take up arms with Strathcom Media, and join us for this brand new TOAST session, coming to a city near you.

View Upcoming TOAST Training Sessions

Toon Town TOAST Session for Car Dealers

TOAST Header Today’s Online Automotive Sales Techniques (TOAST) is kicking it off in Saskatoon, and this is your chance to take your digital car dealership to the big leagues. TOAST introduces you to the tools you need to make your dealership dominate online.

Time & Location

Where: Park Town Hotel, 924 Spadina Crescent E, Saskatoon, SK S7K 3H5
When: 9:00 am to 3:45 pm, Thursday, July 18th.


Price: $199 per person attending


• Morning and afternoon TOAST session attendance
• Lunch, as well as coffee and refreshments in the morning and afternoon
• USB drive containing TOAST examples and templates

Breaks are scheduled periodically throughout the day and lunch will be served around noon.

For more information check out our TOAST page or watch our TOAST Video

TOAST Heats it Up in LA (Lethbridge, AB)

It might not be as hot as Cali, but LA just got a lot TOASTier!

Lethbridge Alberta is the next destination for Today’s Online Automotive Sales Techniques (TOAST) and the crew is coming to heat up your dealership’s online sales.

Meet Strathcom Media’s Stuart Bendall and find out what your dealership can do to succeed with valuable insights into automotive marketing online.

Time & Location

  • Where: Holiday Inn Lethbridge 2375 Mayor Magrath Drive South, Lethbridge AB, T1K 7M1
  • When: 9:00am to 3:45pm, Wednesday, June 12.

The Reviews Are In!

Stuart Bendall recently gave a sneak peek at TOAST in the DealerTalk Kijiji Webinar series, and response has been overwhelmingly positive:

“Holy smokes!
What a Webinar! Strathcom Media’s Director of Training, Stuart Bendall took the DealerTalk Webinar series to a whole new level. After 5 – 10 minutes I was laughing out loud and writing notes frantically. This wasn’t another “the internet is going to be big type of education. If you are responsible for the online merchandising of your dealership’s inventory, this is a must watch.

More than 150 dealers from across Canada were tuned in for some playful banter and education from our favorite Brit. Stuart has worked in a dealership. He knows the struggles dealers face every day. Today he basically gave away all of his secrets, and then some. Who said there was no thing as a free lunch?
– Ryan Thompson, Kijiji Autos

Q&A With Google Adwords Expert at TOAST Vancouver: What We Learned

Toast Online Automotive Sales Techniques in Ontario We know that not everyone could make it to our special TOAST + Google session in Vancouver on May 21, but it’s not every day that we get the story straight from the source. Read on for the key points of our Q&A Session with Google Adwords Expert Kristoffer Sorensen, and our take on how it affects your car dealership online: Speaker Background: Kristoffer Sorensen

Google's Kristoffer Sorensen Google Representative for Ann Arbor, Michigan (Greater Detroit Area), AdWords Expert and developer for Google’s online marketing strategies for Search, Display, YouTube and Mobile platforms.

“Consumers are not brand loyal anymore”

  • I am on my fourth car and fourth brand myself. With loyalty at a minimum, you can’t count on customers to come back to your dealership. You have to work for them, and improving your online presence will help.
Car buyers aren't brand loyal anymore like this guy.

“We live in a multi-screen world”

  • People are always connected, and they do most of their research online. Take that family standing on your showroom floor: they could be researching a vehicle from their phone right now. How do you know they aren’t on a competitor’s website?

Only 20% of shoppers actually buy the first vehicle they research – Google/Compete/Polk Cross-Shopping Analysis, July 2012

Provide your customers with all of the information they need on your own site and they will be less likely to walk onto a competitor’s car lot. This is  why having a mobile website, especially when other dealerships don’t, will give you an edge.

Mobile websites are important


“Customers use 18 different sources of information”

  • That’s a lot for your sales team to stay on top of, which is why you should put the information that your customers need on your website.

Car reviews, vehicle information, and even reviews of your dealership may influence their decision to buy a vehicle from you. Having information readily available online will keep customers on your site and attract them to your dealership.

“It is still not too late to be early”

  • Did you know that Roger’s still does not have a mobile site? Get out ahead of your competitors by embracing new technology. It’s better to be an early adopter than the last one to the party.
Rogers doesn't have a mobile site!

“Customer interest never closes” 

  • Over 35% of automotive searches occur when the dealership is closed. Even if your dealership is closed and your staff are on holiday, your online showroom never closes for business.

“Searches for Auto Dealers are up 42%”

  • That is just in one year, between 2011 and 2012. With more and more people searching online, now is the time for your dealership to take advantage of this growing industry and capture the market while it’s fresh!
Online car shoppers

“Serve people the right ad at the right time”

  • If I’m drinking my morning coffee while reading the sports section and come across a car ad in the newspaper, it is unlikely to grab my attention (unless it’s particularly clever). But if I’m sitting at my computer and type in “What car should I buy?” into Google, there’s a good chance I will click on one of the first few websites at the top of the Search Engine Results Page (SERP) offering information on the subject. If your dealership is in those first few results, then I am one step closer to walking in the door.

For the record, “What car should I buy” is a real search phrase that many people have entered and that your dealership could capitalize on:

Keep an eye open for upcoming TOAST sessions and gain more valuable insights into how your car dealership can succeed online! While this was the first time that a Google representative has joined us, we don’t believe it will be the last. Duncan Cochrane & Michael Fisher

TOAST from Coast-to-Coast

Today's Online Automotive Sales Techniques (TOAST) by Strathcom Media

Get out your surfboards, because this month’s your chance to catch the wave to online success with Today’s Online Automotive Sales Techniques (TOAST) sessions in Halifax Nova Scotia and Vancouver ( Burnaby), British Columbia. Meet certified “Toast Master” Stuart Bendall and gain valuable insight into the world of online automotive marketing. TOAST is all about real-world ways to boost your bottom line and succeed in the automotive car dealership industry.

East Coast of Canada

  • Halifax –  TOAST Session 
  • Where: The Four Points Hotel, 1496 Hollis Street, Halifax, Nova Scotia
  • When: 9:00am to 3:45pm, Thursday, May 16th.

Register Today: HALIFAX

West Coast of Canada

  • Vancouver (Burnaby) Toast Session
  • Where: The Executive Hotel, 4201 Lougheed Highway, Burnaby, BC
  • When: 9:00am to 3:45pm, Tuesday, May 21st.

Register Today: VANCOUVER

What is TOAST all about?



 The Morning Session of TOAST covers the elements of an effective car dealership homepage and how to attract customers. There is a new force guiding how today’s customers shop online: you will learn about the Zero Moment of Truth (ZMOT) and how it influences your customer’s buying cycle. We’ll top off the session with some real-world examples of ways to improve your bottom line.

Learn about:

  • Effective online advertising
  • Getting people to your car dealer website
  • Receiving and replying to automotive leads
  • The automotive online sales process
  • Building value in yourself, your dealership and the product
  • Making and confirming the appointment


The Afternoon Session of TOAST is a guide to effectively promoting your automotive website online. You will learn more about how leading search engines like Google find your website, and see how cost-effective proper search engine marketing can be. Learn how reviews can become a powerful and effective way to boost your online marketing strategy without spending more on your budget.

Learn about:

  • Google
  • Online Advertising
  • Google Analytics (measuring your success)
  • Adwords (how they work)
  • Handling Reviews
  • Social Media (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, blogs and more)


Price: $199 per person attending

• Morning and afternoon TOAST session attendance
• Lunch, as well as coffee and refreshments in the morning and afternoon
• USB drive containing TOAST examples and templates

Space is limited, so register now! Fill out and fax either the Halifax TOAST Registration form (PDF) or  Burnaby TOAST Registration (PDF) depending on what is convenient for you. You can also contact Strathcom Media online, or phone us toll-free at 1.888.914.1444 or visit our TOAST page for more information.

TOAST Hits Ontario – Automotive Sales Techniques to Kick Ass Online in 2013

Toast Online Automotive Sales Techniques in Ontario

This April we’re giving you three opportunities to catch a piece of TOAST in Ontario! Today’s Online Automotive Sales Techniques gives you an inside look at the world of online automotive marketing and how to succeed in your industry. It’s all about boosting your bottom line. Click here for videos, information and registration.

  • Session 1

    Where: The Four Points Sheraton, 150 Wellington Road South, London, ON
    When: 9:00 am to 3:45 pm Tuesday, April 9th.

  • Session 2

    Where: The Four Points Sheraton, 6090 Dixie Road, Mississauga, ON
    When: 9:00 am to 3:45 pm Wednesday, April 10th.

  • Session 3

    Where: Aloft Hotel, 151 Bass Pro Mills Drive, Vaughan, ON
    When: 9:00 am to 3:45 pm Thursday, April 11th.

Check out this TOAST preview:

TOAST 1.0 & TOAST 2.0

Toast 1.0: Learn what it takes to make a great homepage. If you’ve read Strathcom’s Online Car Selling Checklist, then you already know the importance of images and descriptions. In this session we’ll show you what it takes to hook customers with great descriptions and images. Learn about how to cultivate your customers by assisting their Zero Moment of Truth (ZMOT). Topics include:

  • Effective online advertising
  • Getting people to your own site
  • Receiving and replying to a lead
  • The online sales process
  • Building value in yourself, your dealership and your product
  • Making and confirming the appointment

Toast 2.0: Now that you know how to make a great website, learn to promote it online. Be seen by leading search engines, see the benefits of an organized search engine marketing campaign and learn to track success with Google Analytics. Reviews are also an important part of managing your online reputation – we’ll show you how a response strategy can boost your online marketing strategy. Topics include:

  • Google
  • Online Advertising
  • Measuring your success with Google Analytics
  • Adwords and how they work
  • Handling reviews
  • Social media (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, blogs and more)


Price: $199 per person attending

  • TOAST 1.0 and TOAST 2.0 session attendance
  • Lunch
  • Coffee and Refreshments in the morning and afternoon
  • USB drive containing TOAST examples and templates

Space is limited, so register now! You can Contact Strathcom Media to book online, or phone us toll-free at 1.888.914.1444.