Partner Of The Month

January Partner of the Month: Jim Hudson Ford

“I went from selling 15 cars a month to consistently selling over 20. Everybody wondered how, and the GM came to me and asked, “What are you doing?” 

We’re kicking off our first Partner of the Month of 2024 with a bang.

We caught up with Chris Dawkins, the Internet Manager at Jim Hudson Ford, to hear all about how the integrated product combo of TradePending’s AutoBio and Video for Sales is helping them sell more cars and put the customer experience first.  

Have you always used video in your sales process?

Chris Dawkins: I personally invested in Video for Sales about four and a half years ago. Back then, I was a salesperson and paid for it from my own pocket. It had a significant impact on my performance – I went from selling 15 cars a month to consistently selling over 20. 

Everybody wondered how, and the GM came to me and asked, “What are you doing?” – I showed him and he bought in. Now, we use it extensively for customer engagement.


What’s been your experience with AutoBio?

Chris Dawkins: AutoBio, introduced a few months ago, has been a game-changer. It provides detailed car information through videos, saving customers’ time and enhancing their buying experience. We’ve received positive feedback from customers who appreciate getting all the information upfront. 

AutoBio also serves as a safety net for salespeople, improving efficiency in customer interactions. We’ve essentially shifted from waiting for customers to ask questions, to loading them up with detailed information about the car. This approach is quite unique, as no other dealership around us is doing this.


Could you share your experience with the onboarding process and how your team adapted to using the products?

Chris Dawkins: The team found it straightforward and appreciated its value for providing detailed info to customers, setting us apart from competitors – giving customers compelling reasons to visit our store and choose our vehicles.

In my view, AutoBio has proven to be an excellent tool. By offering comprehensive vehicle information upfront, we’re not just answering customer queries, but also creating a more transparent and trustworthy buying experience.


Could you elaborate on how these tools have enhanced your team’s productivity and efficiency?

Chris Dawkins:  As an Internet manager, I often find myself reminding the team to utilize these tools effectively. For instance, when I assign a lead on Video for Sales, if I notice that a video hasn’t been sent for some time, I remind the salesperson responsible to do it promptly. This has significantly improved our efficiency by providing timely reminders about pending tasks.

The return on investment has been spectacular. We’re offering a unique service to our customers that no other dealership in our area provides. This unique selling point has greatly contributed to our success and justified our investment in these tools.


How have these tools changed your customer interactions?

Chris Dawkins: These tools have allowed us to engage with customers in a new way. Traditional methods like phone calls and CRM systems often don’t yield responses. Video for Sales, however, tracks customer interest based on video views and allows us to reach out to them on the same platform.


Any success stories?

Chris Dawkins: We’ve had lots of stories. Usually they involve using video during the trade-in process. Our response strategy involves sending out videos assuring them that our offer is genuine. However, we go a step further by expressing interest in not just buying their car but also helping them find a replacement through video.

In this case, we convey our readiness to purchase their vehicle and our eagerness to assist them in finding a new one. When someone checks the price of a car, they generally prefer not to engage in direct conversation. So, our video method provides a non-invasive way to present what we can offer, express interest in their vehicle, and assure them of the best value.

We also use these tools to engage with existing customers, not just prospective ones. By sending personalized videos for birthdays, anniversaries, or service visits, we acknowledge their loyalty. This often leads to more sales as customers appreciate being valued.


What’s been the customer feedback?

Chris Dawkins: Customers appreciate the personal touch in our videos and the effort we put into each one. These aren’t pre-made or generic videos. Instead, we make sure to physically interact with the car while stating its availability. We address the customer directly, assuring them that we’re eager to earn their business. This personalized touch and the time we invest in each customer seem to resonate strongly with them. They value the personalization and the care we demonstrate.


Has the use of our tools led to an increase in sales, and how are you measuring this?

Chris Dawkins: Absolutely, there’s been a noticeable uptick in sales since we started using these tools.

The reporting function in Video for Sales has been particularly useful. It allows me to track which sales associates are having their videos opened and how often. This gives me an opportunity to provide coaching where needed.

Our reports show that this strategy has been successful, with some associates achieving open rates of 70% to 80%. They effectively prep their customers by informing them they’ll be sending information in a non-invasive manner that respects their time. This approach has worked extremely well for us.


Would you recommend Video for Sales to other dealerships, and why?

Chris Dawkins: I would wholeheartedly recommend Video for Sales, and in fact, I have already done so to several of our other stores. While our CRM does feature a video platform, it simply doesn’t compare to what Video for Sales offers.

Video for Sales’ features are incredibly user-friendly, and no need to save videos to your phone as they are stored on a server which makes it really easy for viewing and forwarding. 

The tracking capabilities are also superior. It’s straightforward to monitor how many times a customer has opened a video, gauge their level of engagement, and view the text thread within the program. Having access to all this information, especially on a mobile device, is extremely convenient.

So, to answer your question, I would unequivocally recommend Video for Sales to anyone looking to boost their sales.


It’s clear that Jim Hudson Ford is not just talking the talk but walking the walk. With their authentic commitment to customer satisfaction and a forward-thinking approach to sales, they are undeniably leading the pack, setting a high standard for others in the industry to follow. Congrats Jim Hudson Ford!