Can you give us a brief overview of From Car to Finish?
From Car to Finish is a national car negotiating service that takes the haggle and hassle out of buying a vehicle, to save you time and money.
Here’s how it works: You choose the basic make, model, and style of new vehicle you wish to purchase. From Car to Finish takes your vehicle information and contacts at least four dealers near you. Each dealer commits to a specific profit margin and any other mandatory fees/add-ons for a period of 2-4 weeks.
You’ll receive a report outlining each dealer’s commitment, and a worksheet that will allow you to calculate the bottom line from every dealer. We don’t take any compensation from a dealer, so you know we work for YOU, and we offer a lowest price guarantee.
How does the internet benefit From Car to Finish?
Thanks to the internet, From Car to Finish is a virtual business with nationwide reach. Around 15% of our sales have come through the internet sight unseen.
I’m a big fan of the web in that it allows a one-person startup to look like (and compete with) a Fortune 500 company. A good website can help to establish legitimacy (and therefore customer confidence) to do business with a small business. Go web!
What’s your approach to social media?
It’s key to do that, if for no other reason than to remind people that your business exists. We will alternate between posting useful tips and purely entertaining automotive content.
We also answer automotive questions on onsite forums, and are guest contributors to several sites on car buying/buying advice.
What’s your favorite digital marketing trick?
Using helpareporter.com to get quoted by the press (or be a guest on a radio show). I’ve been quoted enough times in the last four years that I’ve created a spot on my site to archive it all, since it helps to build trust with potential customers who may not have heard of our service.
What’s the one thing about working online that you wish you’d found out sooner?
How time consuming it can be to keep up with everything (i.e. posting, answering emails, making changes to our site, etc.)… It wouldn’t have changed the fact that we’re a virtual company, but I might have organized my time differently from the beginning.
What’s the next big thing for you online?
I’d like From Car to Finish to connect as an affinity program/employee benefit to numerous organizations. This would allow me to reach a lot more people without using traditional advertising as the intended audience could read up on me on the referring organizations’ site and then come to my site to place an order.
Mike Rabkin is the president and owner of From Car to Finish. He has over 21 years of professional negotiating experience and has facilitated the sale of over 7,500 new vehicles for purchase or lease. Mike has served as an editor of a nationally recognized industry automotive rebate newsletter as well as a new vehicle reviewer for an automotive website.