Auto by Auto Experts: Clair Wallace
Auto lenders and dealers want more knowledge and faster information about their markets and customers—on and off the lot so they can quickly close deals and grow their businesses. The Automotive Solutions team at Equifax is uniquely qualified to help with this and provide insights that drive results based on their 360 degree automotive expertise and respective tenures in the industry.
Our team has over 500 years of combined experience with lenders and dealers, either having lenders and dealers as their customers or in various strategic leadership roles. This means we have been in your shoes, and know what you need to help accelerate growth. This also means we care deeply about the industry that we’ve dedicated our working careers.
This Q&A blog series will highlight our experts and give you a glimpse into their background, accomplishments, view on the industry and even a peek into their “softer” side.
Q: What’s your background and how does it benefit auto dealers?
A: Prior to Equifax, I spent more than 10 years at Cox Automotive where I spent 4 years on the B2B marketing team focused on bringing solutions to the market for dealers and OEMs. And then spent 6 years on the Sales Strategy team where I helped ensure that our large sales force was equipped to provide consultative conversations with their customers and help to drive their businesses forward. My experience both on the marketing and sales side gave me the opportunity to understand dealers across the board – Franchise, Independent, small and large – and understand their challenges. While I never expected to fall into this industry, my passion now for the industry has me laser focused on making sure dealers have the best tools at their disposal to help attract and retain the right customers.
Q: What value does Equifax provide for dealers?
A: I have been at Equifax for a little over a year now. Much like many people in the industry, I knew Equifax as a credit bureau. Now, I know it is so much more than that. With consumer credit data as a foundation, Equifax can provide so much insight for dealers – from solutions on a dealer website to help identify unknown online shoppers to customer acquisition data to find in-market shoppers.
And the biggest asset for dealers at Equifax is really the Auto Industry team. It is a smart, passionate team with years and years of industry expertise that is dedicated to finding solutions to deliver insights that dealers and lenders can actually use to help improve their business.
Q: Where do you see the auto industry for dealers in two years and why?
A: Clearly, there are some interesting things going on in the industry and many that threaten the current state of the industry as we know it. Digital Retailing, Uber/Lyft, Carvana, self-driving cars, etc…. things are coming at dealers at all angles. I believe the dealers that are most ready and willing to make changes to embrace new technology will win. And those dealers will be able to set the landscape for how dealers manage with all of these new technologies. The dealers that are slow to change and don’t invest will be left behind playing catch – up.
Q: How do you think you have helped accelerate the auto industry?
As a marketer, my job has been to provide materials and messages to support our sales team as they consult with their dealer customers. I hope that over the years my focus on driving value for dealers whether in advertising messaging, sales conversations, or simply the products we have launched have helped dealers make better decisions for their business. And I think at Equifax, we have just reached the tip of the iceberg with communicating and showing the value we can provide. Over the past year, I have had the amazing opportunity to really dig in deep with our products to understand how they can help the industry. With the credit file at the foundation of our solutions, the information we can provide dealers to help target, convert and retain customers is unmatched.
Q: What do you enjoy when you are not focused on auto and data insights?
A: When I am not working, I spend most of my time with my family. I live in Decatur, GA with my husband Chad, daughter Lucy (7) and son Nate (4). The kids keep me very busy. However, I like to take time to participate on the board of organizations that are important to me like the Down Syndrome Association of Atlanta and Aldersgate, a community serving people with disabilities. I also sing in the church choir and run whenever I have the chance.
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