A few things about this announcement get my marketing consultant muscles flexing:
No, I don’t think there will be any bargains on GM cars on eBay. No $40K cars bought with your winning bid of $18K.
Whether they were forced into innovating as so many companies find themselves isn’t the point. (Staring into the abyss tends to get the creative juices flowing!) This IS interesting and it MAY push sales. More likely, it will lead to something else that is closer to the answer.
How so? It moves toward solving the biggest issue around buying a car from a dealer: it’s a horrible experience. It’s one of the few remaining times in your life you go toe-to-toe with someone who clearly is trying to beat you out of every dollar he or she can.
You could rightly say, gee, who would have thought GM would be selling new cars on eBay?! But the important thing about this announcement doesn’t involve GM or eBay, it’s about you and me. What are you doing with your marketing right now about which could rightly be said, gee, who would have thought _________ would be _____________?! Or is it still business as usual, or are you’re still in the cost-cutting mode?
It isn’t business as usual, even if you aren’t as hurt as GM has been.
Talk to your customers. Think crazy thoughts, but translate them into less-than-crazy actions. Act. Test. You’re likely two or three or four small tests away from the answer.