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Here comes fall already – it seems like the summer just began! Dealers all over the United States are gearing up to get fall inventory on the floor, coming up with ways to move summer cars and get started with fall promotions is imminent.

Red Tagging

When new cars are ready to hit the showroom floor, dealerships find themselves in need of moving out the excess inventory. Part of this is ensuring that dealers don’t sell a make or model that might be backlogged in upcoming fall shipments. This could occur due to a natural disaster or situation in the East, such as the Japan earthquakes.

If you find you need to put certain vehicles on sale and haven’t done much advertising, you can always advertise a “red tag” clearance, putting red tags on cars that need to clear. This will keep you from being forced into a firm commitment to move certain cars.

A Fall Theme

Implementing a fall theme might be a great way to attract new shoppers. After all, consumers are tired of the summer at this point, and ready to see some of those fall leaves and colors in your advertising.

Contests and promotions can be a major part of this – organizing an end-of-summer barbecue with all the fixings is a great way to attract customers, and get your cars out there. You can advertise special fall promotions for selected models that are lower than the “on sale” price you may be advertising before the barbecue. You can set up barbecue grills, do a marshmallow roast and have “sticky” tags on car windows.

Another great way to utilize fall colors is to organize a “sell-off” by ticket color> Red, yellow, orange, and related colors are a great way to mark promo sales tags and get clients engaged. Decorate the showroom with scarecrows, fall leaves, and clever signs. Consider, “Prices are FALLing.” Naturally, you can be more creative with this – hopefully you get the idea.

You can also take advantage of back-to-school colors by giving away colored notebooks, pencils and other school supplies. Bring the whole family in with a fall raffle where you give away fall-related prizes.

The Sales Shift

Fall is the perfect time of year to evaluate an upcoming change in sales. Customers may gravitate more toward back-to-school or winter ready type vehicles. Analyze past sales, and use this data as a basis to prepare for the kinds of cars you’ll be selling in the fall and winter. If you’re selling more trucks, obviously you want to do a truck special. Consider using automotive direct mail services to highlight getting trucks off your lots. Use fall prizes and promotions to clear your old vehicles, and get ready to bring in the new.