September 22, 2015 // 8:00 AM
12 Surprising Social Selling Statistics That You'll Want to See
Maybe you think your buyers aren't active on social media. Maybe you're not sure if your boss would approve of you messaging prospects on LinkedIn. Maybe you don't even have a LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook account, and frankly, don't get what all the fuss is about.
Whatever the case is, you haven't started incorporating social media into your sales process. And why should you? After all, you haven't heard of anyone crushing their quota thanks to a social network. The day you see results is the day you'll look into social selling.
Well, that day has come. Salespeople skeptical about social selling need only to look at the 12 statistics in the infographic below to start coming around to the practice. A few choice data points sure to raise eyebrows:
- Social sellers surpass quota 23% more often
- The average cold-call-to-appointment rate is under 3%
- 77% of buyers don't engage a sales rep until they do their own research
Convinced? Thank Sales For Life, and get social selling!
Source - http://blog.hubspot.com/sales/surprising-statistics-on-social-selling#sm.0001nj4ot6g6nfgqz8i21tlpfifgf
For this week's Think Tank Tuesday, I interviewed Ray Bleser: owner of Northeastern Fine Jewelry.
Ray introduces a different way that he portrays his brand to instill trust in his customers. Many business owners still use price to advertise their brand; storytelling is a unique method that Ray uses to make sure that he is giving his customers the best service that they've had.
If you're a small business or an entrepreneur, this is the episode you want to watch in order to grow your brand and make sure your business is successful.
I want to hear your thoughts! Comment below:
This week, Sean V. Bradley CSP shares his tips and techniques on using tone and inflection as a sales tool.
If you like Make Money Mondays, you will love Bradley On Demand: http://www.BradleyOnDemand.com
For more information about Dealer Synergy visit, http://www.DealerSynergy.com
I am HONORED to announce Vets-Cars founder, Chris Walsh will be a Speaker At the upcoming Internet Sales 20 Group in Atlantic City, New Jersey April 8-10!
Watch this video… This is POWERFUL!
Our customers in this business today can smell insincerity like a shark senses blood. From the moment that they first meet you, and all through our sales process, they are looking for any hint of insincerity that may have seeped from you. This creates both the challenge for us, and the opportunity.
I like to think of sales as nothing more than the transfer of emotions. I also like to think of closing as making simple sense - basically justifying the emotions logically in the form of a car deal.
The reason that people are so sensitive to insincerity from car sales people is because of the high number of average and insincere sales people that are out there. Many of our customers have dealt with one of these annoying sales people at one time or another. These are the sales people that seem more interested in making their commission than anything else. These are the sales people that tend not to follow up with their customers, and keep in touch with them over the long term. Even though their customers trusted them to guide them though spending 20-30-or 80 thousand dollars, they neglect to continue serving that customer. This only reinforces the mentality that people tend to have about car sales people - because there are so many of us out there that are proving their preconceived notions to be correct.
Ask any person you know what they think in general of lawyers, and more often then not you will get some sort of negative explanation about their line of work in general - and the same goes for lots of other sales people out there in other industries. But not their lawyer. This is what creates the opportunity.
People want to deal with people that believe in the value of the services they provide. They want people that don't just believe at a general level, but at a level that is so great that this emotion is transferred to them. They want to feel your passion come through. Anything less than that is perceived by many people as insincerity - and rightly so.
People don't buy WHAT you do, they buy WHY you do it.
What we need to do is make sure we are not only keeping our attitude in check each and every day, but that we feel great about our line of work. We need to feel deep down that we are not only offering the very best quality of service, but also that if we allow that customer to leave and purchase from an average salesperson down the street - we are then doing them a great disservice.
If we are able to transfer our emotion and passion for what we do to our customer during our process, more often then not we will not only gain a customer and a commission, but also a friend and long term business relationship.
Remember, people don't buy what we do, they buy why we do it.
Stop Stressing Credits, Focus On Selling Cars
I am seeing a disturbing trend happening in our industry. A lot of dealers are focusing way too much on getting credits from 3rd party providers instead of focusing that energy on selling cars. Now, before you react. Please read the rest of this article.
Remember that I was an Internet Director (5+ years) before I started my company. Now for almost 10 years now I have been building Internet Sales departments and Business Development Centers. I say this just to show that I am not “pro vendor or anti-dealer”. I am a Car-Guy and all I care about is selling cars. And it seems that there is a trend with Dealers that are so focused on getting credits with leads. Some dealers spend so much time trying to track down credits it diminishes the amount of time following up with actual prospects. I am NOT suggesting that you should not be compensated for leads that are invalid or duplicates. I am just expressing my concern with Dealers that spend so much time focusing on trying to get credit for leads. Actually grinding their reps for more credit(s). I have clients that do it sometimes for sport. I said clients, so I know it’s a fact. Some dealers demand credits because they know that most lead source providers will concede rather than argue with a dealer or possibly lose a client over something as silly as a credit. There are dealers that sometimes not choose a particular lead source provider because of their “Lead Credit Policy”, or worse even cancel a 3rd party lead source provider or aggregator because they didn’t get a credit or the amount of credit back they thought they were owed.
This blows my mind because the average cost per lead in the United States is only $20 (give or take a couple of dollars). The upside is off the charts. If a dealer buys 100 leads at $2,000 and sells 10 percent (10 units) with an average Front and Back, total gross of $2,000 per copy. That is $20,000 Gross. The Return On Investment (ROI) is SICK!! We are talking about a Net profit of $18,000 from 1 lead source provider. Especially when you compare it to traditional advertising. NADA says that the average cost per sale in advertising is $640+ per car. In the model I just mentioned, 10 units sold out of 100 leads at $2,000 per copy means that the 3rd party lead source provider model is ONLY $200 per car sold. That is less than 1/3 of what the AVERAGE dealership in this country sells cars for.
Here is the problem; most dealers forget that leads are NOT magical beans or silver bullets. They forget that they have to work at these leads. And when I say “work”, I mean WORK and work them hard. Dealers need to have the following:
- A Follow Up Process – Dealers need to have a realistic follow up process for email, phone and social media (Yes, I said social media. Social Media is the #1 form of communication on this planet). They need to not just say “we need to follow up via email, phone and social media”. There needs to be an EXACT formula mapped out. The formula needs to be realistic and logical and take into account that the average buying cycle is 45-90 days. NOT 37 days. Also, the follow up process needs to be tailored to the fact that the average Internet sales prospect is also engaging 5-8 other dealers or websites…
- Content – Dealers need to have a powerful library of content. Email Templates, Phone Scripts, Word Tracks, Objections / Rebuttals, Value Package Proposition (Why buy from us message).
- People / HR – Dealers need to have the right amount of people in the department or the right amount of people in the dealership that are working the Internet Leads. A lot of dealers have too many leads and not enough people or the opposite… too many people and not enough leads. Both are bad problems (That can be fixed). But its not just not having the right amount of people. Dealers need to have the RIGHT people in the right positions. The right scheduling and pay plans are also imperative for success within an Internet Sales Department or BDC.
- Training – Dealers need to train their people with what to do, when to do it, how to do it and most importantly why they are doing it.
- TO protocol- There needs to be a 100% “TO” process in place with ALL Internet prospects. Just like most dealers and all successful dealerships believe in a 100% TO protocol for showroom prospects. So should the Internet department. Too many times dealerships “burn” through Internet Ups without any accountability.
- Culture – Dealerships that instill a culture that ALL leads are good leads. ALL 3rd Party leads are AWESOME will be tremendously successful. It’s the dealers that allow Internet or BDC reps to “pre-qualify” leads or allow reps to say that a certain lead “sucks”… those dealerships will be inundated with “bad leads” that suck. Dealers that teach their Internet / BDC teams that a lead is ONLY a “lead” it is an opportunity to sell an automobile. NOTHING MORE. It is a name, sometimes a phone number, sometimes an email address. BUT if you receive a lead without an email address or phone number instead of worrying about a credit (at first). FOCUS on trying to ascertain that contact information. For example dealers can:
- Open up the original lead within the ILM /CRM and see if the lead didn’t parse
- Reverse look up via 411
- Reverse look up via www.anywho.com or www.whitepages.com
- Thorough reverse look up with www.spokeo.com
- Reverse look up via social media (cut and past prospect’s email address into Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin etc…
Bottom line is that 3rd party providers have tremendous value. To realize that true value, dealers need to be prepared for these leads and have a proactive mindset that leads are gateways to opportunities to sell an automobile. Its not a guarantee, only an opportunity to do business. It is up to us how we maximize that opportunity.
If you have any questions about this article or if you would like me to review your Dealership’s Internet or BDC lead follow up process. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me on my cell at 267-319-6776.
I look forward to seeing you at the upcoming www.internetsales20group.com that AutoUSA is a Platinum Sponsor in Los Angeles, November 12-14
Get your copy here http://j.mp/stupidfreebook
As a 20 year car guy I've been given a LOT of bad advice over the years and I've made a TON of mistakes and I figure the best thing I can do is help others avoid some of those pitfalls. Plus, I love reading but the book has to be an easy read, a fast read, because I have work to do and so do you.
I'm giving away my book FREE today and tomorrow and all I ask is that you give it an HONEST review. If you enjoy it, head back to the link and tell everyone what you liked. If you think it sucks, tell everyone it sucks! Honesty is the best policy :)
If you’re looking for a grammatically well-written book by someone with an MBA that will put you to sleep; this is the wrong book for you. However, if you’re looking for a book written by someone who has spent 20 years in the trenches of sales, succeeding AND failing over and over so that you can learn from their efforts and improve your career….READ THIS BOOK!
The late, great, Zig Ziglar once said: “You can get anything you want in life if you are just willing to help enough other people get what they want.”
Those words have been a constant inspiration in my sales career so I want to help you get what you want. That said, I believe that everyone who gets into sales really wants to be successful but most of them, like me, start out with little or no direction, knowledge or training on how to reach that goal of success.
This means that we start out “stupid” in our sales career. When we don’t know what we’re doing, we look for advice from our peers but unfortunately they have little more training than we do, they’ve just got the experience of ‘time served’ so technically, they’re “stupid” too.
I’m not saying it to be mean because it’s not totally their fault, their manager was probably “stupid” too and his manager probably was too.
In sales, too many of us have learned from those who did their best but really didn’t have the knowledge, talent, or ability¬ to give us what we needed to be successful so the stupid cycle just keeps going.
This book will show you how to completely F*$K up your sales career. Hopefully this book will put a few smiles on your face while sharing real life examples of epic sales failures as well as solid practices for how to ‘Stop the Stupid’.
GET YOUR FREE COPY OF THE BOOK HERE Http://j.mp/stupidfreebook
Thanks in advance for reading and sharing - feel free to give this link to EVERYONE you know that wants a fun read!
Helping the best get better,
CEO & Founder
Car Sales / Automotive Sales Is NOT About Selling The Car In Internet Sales Or Phone Sales...
Sean V. Bradley Trains The Entire Honda Showroom Sales Team On "Selling 30+ Units Per Month"
“Let’s meet halfway” or “Let’s split the difference”: AKA The Worst Closing Technique Ever!
We’ve all witnessed the following negotiating technique one way or another. A Seller is selling an item for 20,000 dollars. A buyer offers 18,000. So what’s the next natural move? 19,000 dollars, split the difference, right? WRONG! The “Let’s Meet Halfway” negotiating tactic is one of the most common logical pitfalls of any sales process. Maybe at first glance it sounds or seems fair, or even logical, but it is truly the worst closing technique… ever!
Here is why.
First and foremost, it’s “bad” for profit. Let’s say a manager wants to sell a car for 340 dollars a month and a customer offers 300 dollars. A salesperson proposes to “meet halfway” by settling for 320 dollars a month, thinking it sounds reasonable and fair. This kneejerk logic just gouged the potential payoff big-time. Worse yet, this cognitive “shortcut” is often proposed immediately, without even putting any effort into a more persuasive or logical arrangement. Even if the Customer agrees, which is highly unlikely, and the manager approves, which hopefully he/she wouldn’t, we just blew away 20 dollars times the number of months of profit. That’s 720 dollars for 36 months, 960 dollars for 48 months, and 1,200 dollars for 60 months! Where is all of that money going to come from?
Secondly, it’s terrible for your credibility and reputation. When a salesperson suggests to “meet half way”, falsely believing they’re showing flexibility and fairness, a potential buyer gets an immediate feeling that they’re dodging a huge bullet. The “they were trying to stick it to me!” sentiment immediately surfaces. After a while, buyers just start assuming everything is marked up to be sold at some mystery halfway point. The manager would look like the “bad guy” trying to take advantage of buyers that weren’t as vigilant, and a salesperson would compromise the “agent” role, knowing that $320 is possible.
Additionally, it’s truly counter productive for turning a buyer into a shopper. A potential buyer can’t help but think: “If they are willing to “meet half way” (coming down to 320) just like that, I bet they will come all the way to $300 if I stick to it! In fact, I should have started lower...” $250 becomes the new target at their next stop. Buyers becoming paranoid, doubtful and combative is hardly a sign of progress.
Consider an alternate approach.
Rather than focusing on two large numbers, isolate the difference between them. Remember the first example? What sounds more daunting, 20,000 dollars, or a 2,000 dollar difference? Shifting the paradigm from the large numbers to the relatively tiny, impeding gap number shifts the entire thought process. Back to the car payment example, rather than jumping to the halfway point, ask the customer: “So it looks like we have a 40 dollar gap. Is that it? Let’s work it out.”
Next, you need to properly address the two numbers. Using logic and reason, explain the logic (or more likely, lack thereof) of their stance. Using honest and real facts throughout, walk the buyer through the manager’s position. Build up an ethical and professional case for your stance. Soon, you will identify a moment where a buyer realizes your position is grounded in fairness and fact.
As the buyer becomes more aware of the reasons behind your number and becomes (even a little) more visibly comfortable with your position, buttress your logical appeal with “goodwill.” Emphasize the roles of everyone involved: the salesperson as the agent, the manager as a true professional and “good guy” (remember EMI?), and the dealership’s everlasting commitment to service.
Next focus on reemphasizing the value. Shine the spotlight on the new car they’re taking home, the expectations you’ve exceeded, and the amicable relationship you’ve forged. All the while, the customer is viewing the aforementioned gap as a minor obstacle between all of these things.
Finally, Seek agreement through facial expression, A persuasive eye-to-eye direct look, and then move confidently into a close. Praising the manager’s efforts, extending a confident handshake, and ask for the sale: 340 is more than fair, let’s do it!
Let’s all agree to leave the “splitting differences” and “halfway meetings” to yard sales and flea markets; in this industry, you need professionalism, strategy, and innovation to succeed – not an “old school” consolation “one-liner”.
Are you a hunter or farmer For so many years, we have struggled as an industry when it comes to follow up. Then, companies like Clients for Life and came along and started sending our follow up letters for us. All we had to do was sign it and mail it. This gave us more time to focus on working with the customers who were on the lot and calling in.
Basically, it gave us the ability to focus more time on hunting for new business and the farming was something we were able to relax on, just a little bit, but it was a much needed break right? Then, with the invention of email we are able to reach more customers faster than ever before and thanks to tools like CRMs we don't have to sign letters or even look at what is being sent because 90% of it is templated. The idea behind all of this awesome technology is to free up the time consuming tasks so we can focus all of our attention on generating new business...basically....HUNTING.
Unfortunately, the information age also came with some interesting side effects.
#1 - Less folks walking on the lot because they can shop online and narrow their choices before spending $4.80 a gallon in gas
#2 - Less folks answering their phone because they can just email...or ignore your email
#3 - Our sales people have spent so much time learning how to use all this technology that many of them have forgotten how to HUNT.
Farming and Hunting are equally important but much of our farming has been automated and it's nearly impossible to automate the hunting process so let's talk about why we've forgotten how to hunt and what we can do to get back on track.
Sales Leadership Team: Before you spaz out, don't blame your sales person. The reason they forgot how to hunt is because many of us, as their leaders, have forgotten how important it is to teach them the fundamentals of being a Hunter.
We know how to do it and it was part of our upbringing so it's easy for us to assume that our team should just 'get it' but...well...they don't. And we didn't 'get it' either, somebody taught us so let's pass it on :)
1. Hunters prepare. Before going out into the wild, they make sure they have the gear they need to provide for their family. For a sales person that consists of the following NECESSARY tools.
A. Skills - LOT SKILLS: We need to make sure our team can walk us through the entire sales process from start to finish. Greeting to close. If they can't, don't verbally beat them up! If they can't do it it's your fault as their leader because you're responsible for training them how to do it the right way so use this as a teachable moment. PHONE SKILLS: They need to be able to handle a phone up, as well as an outbound follow up call. They need to be able to handle objections, concerns and roadblocks to gain the appointment or to bring someone back in if they didn't buy. NEGOTIATION SKILLS: They need to be able to handle objections like a pro. Cardone, Verde and a Million others have great info on this. Heck, for 99¢ you can download the AutoCloses app from the app store and it has the 25 most common auto objections at http://j.mp/autoclosesapp
B. Daily plan - Your sales people don't want to sit on their ass staring out the window, they just don't know what else they are supposed to do. Help them get in the habit of planning their day. We all used to have to spend 1 hour each day on improving our SKILLS, HABITS & ATTITUDE and it made us better. Why don't we help our folks do the same? Sample day: Set aside 20 minutes on your calendar for each of your sales people to have a quick 1 on 1 meeting with you to talk about what they did yesterday, what they're doing today and what they need from you in order to be successful. Have them set aside 20 minutes to role play with another team member. Have them set aside 20 minutes to listen to something motivational or read something motivational. Have them set aside 20 minutes every day for product knowledge. Have them set aside 1 hour each day to make all of their follow up calls to hot, warm and cold prospects. Have them spend 40 minutes each day making true prospecting calls to lease lists, customers over 90 days old and orphan owners. How many, how many, who's next? That's 3 hours of their day planned out with a purpose.
C. Attitude - Your sales people NEED a positive attitude in order to make A and B work properly. This tool is CRITICAL for them to be effective hunters. Let's face it, everyone has a bad day, we have personal things that come up that are unpleasant, stressful and sometimes overwhelming. As their leader, we need to help remind them of why we brought them on our team, why we keep them on our team. We need to remind them that they are valuable, they are important to us, they are great people. Without our sales people we don't have any chance of success so we need to treat them with the respect and value that they deserve. Without our sales people performing at their best, we cannot support our families.
Farming 101 Don't rely on your CRM alone.
The CRM may automate follow up but it's still not human. We're in the people business and relying on your CRM is telling yourself that the automated computer message is just as powerful as you are.
Nothing is more powerful than human interaction. A warm phone call every few months can work wonders in being a great farmer for years to come. Try something like: "Hey Bob & Sue this is Mat at (Dealership). I just wanted to say hello to keep in touch. I hope you're still enjoying that Honda Accord as much as you did on the day you picked it up. Call me at (number) if you need anything at all and I'll be here to help."
Farming is a process, one that often feels thankless but it sets the stage for long term relationships. Hunting can be scary but exciting and it is what helps you eat today, and gives you the means to farm another field for years to come.
I'd like to encourage you to set aside 20 minutes or so to write down all of your strengths and put them in one of two buckets: Farming or Hunting. Look it over and see where you need to focus your attention in order to improve.
Once you do it yourself, ask your sales people to do the same exercise so you can learn which areas they feel like they need your help.
Thanks for reading, make today amazing!
Would you like to have the mobile number of online shoppers on Cars.com, Edmunds, AutoTrader and other sites? Of course you would! Check out AutoCapture today and learn how you can stop the shop and increase sales overnight at www.konig.co/autocapture
Often times when I chat with dealers I ask dealers what is keeping them, from getting to the next level of super success I hear responses like:
We need more quality leads.
Or... Cars are bringing brain damage at the sale.
Or... It's hard to find real salespeople anymore man, they just don't breed them like us, you know what I mean?
My answer to these issues are yes, yes and yes...so what. You have to control the controllable and you can control all of these issues so why aren't you.
More quality leads needed? Dump the lead providers that suck and invest in the stuff that is quality...heck, just train your people to prospect the right way and build repeat and referral business since they are the best quality leads. Change your way of thinking.
Cars too expensive? So what! That means they are too expensive for everyone and now your aged inventory just became a better deal. Change your way of thinking.
Sales team weaker than circus lemonade? This is a great! you now have an opportunity for you to step up as a leader and shape them into the rock star that you once were! They are going to love you even more once you help them learn what they need to know so they can make more money. You just have to change you way of thinking.
Often times we are holding everyone else accountable...scratch that, we are shifting blame to everyone and everything else for our lack of success but we have a toolbox full of success resources right between our ears and its more powerful than any technology we can buy.
Make a change in how you see the situation and you'll start to craft ideas for creating the success that you desire. As He-man said "I have the power!" (80's cartoon for the gang to young to remember)
As Steve Jobs said: "My job isn't to be easy on people, it's to make them better."
Helping the best get better,
KonigCo // AutoOption
After nearly two decades in the Automotive Industry it still amazes me when a sales person is out there walking through features like a robot...emotionless...cold.
When I was a Nissan Manager I had a great guy on my team named Bruce. Bruce was a genius and he could tell you the inner workings of the Maxima's engine and how and why everything did what it did but Bruce, like many other intellectual giants, couldn't close a self closing cabinet door because often times he missed the most important piece of the puzzle.
He forgot to find out what made his customers happy.
Why is it so important to find out what makes the customer happy? DUH! If you don't know what makes them happy, you won't know why they aren't happy with their current vehicle anymore which means you won't know how to help them see how the new vehicle is going to make them HAPPY AGAIN!
No matter what product someone is buying, they're really buying the a hope of how this product is going to make them happier than they are right now in this moment. When they say "yes" to the product or service it's not because the 'value' is there on an intellectual level... it's because the VALUE is there on an EMOTIONAL level.
Find out what makes someone happy so you can tailor your next presentation to show HOW your product can make them happy again.
With all the competition in the Automotive World and so many websites, targeted ads and retargeting display ads vying for consumer attention it seems harder than ever to know whether or not your customer will remember you.
How do you set yourself apart from the competition and stay in the customer's mind?
USE COMMON SENSE AND THINK ABOUT USING MOBILE TO CONNECT WITH MOBILE! Niesen did a study in November about Mobile Auto Shoppers and it showed that 49% of mobile Auto Shoppers intend to buy within 24 hours. Rather than debating intention, let's talk about how you can capture the attention of most of these customers.
Get their attention and keep it with TOUT
#2 - Make sure you get the customer's mobile phone number or email address when you meet with them. Obviously you can't send them a message if you don't know how :)
Tout gives you the ability to record a 15 second video for anything in the world and since it's so short it FORCES you to make your point fast!
Here are some Follow Up Video Ideas you can try. Please share your feedback and let everyone know how it works for you :)
First follow up video: (Just a video of you in any spot at the dealership - NOTE: SMILE) "Hi Bob & Sue this is Mat at ABC Motors saying thanks for stopping in to see the CTS. Call me at XXX-XXX-XXXX if you'd like to take another peek at that or any other vehicles. I'd really love the opportunity to show you why our customers love us."
Second follow up video two days after they were in: (Offer an incentive or some other reason to come back) "Hi guys. I wanted to say hello and invite you back for another look at the CTS you drove. You can get a special savings coupon this week if you text the code AC to the phone number 71441. Call me at XXX-XXX-XXXX if you'd like me to bring it by, or if you'd like to stop back in.
Third follow up video if you haven't heard from them within another 2-3 days: (Alternative Vehicle Offering) "Hi Bob & Sue, I was walking our inventory and saw this (alternative vehicle - maybe a 3 series or C Class) and wanted to give you a quick peek at it. I have a few other vehicles that you may like to see so give me a ring at XXX-XXX-XXXX if you'd like me to bring one over."
Every one of these little scripts are just over 14 seconds so they are perfect for a TOUT!
Chances are, if you haven't heard from them by the time you send the third video, there may have been something that turned them toward purchasing elsewhere but don't give up hope! By sending these quick videos will make you different than everyone else by actually sending personalized follow up PLUS, it will keep you at the top of their mind.
Will this work with everyone? Of course not, but it will take a total time investment of 15 seconds to make and another 15 seconds to send to your customer so invest 90 seconds with your next customer and see if it will help you sell a few more vehicles :)
My name is Mat Koenig, and I was born and raised in Western Michigan. I'm VP and Partner of AutoOption and the CEO and Founder of KonigCo, the best mobile marketing company for Automotive Dealers, located in Kalamazoo, MI. Learn more here: www.konig.co
Are You Selling or Are You Buying?
Have you ever had this conversation?
You: “Hi Mr. Customer, it’s me John from ABC Chevy and I just wanted to follow-up with you to see if you are still in the market for that 2010 Chevy Silverado that you e-mailed me about yesterday? I have a 2PM appointment slot open just for you today so that you can come down and let me demo the vehicle for you.
Client: “Hi John, thanks for getting back to me so soon with your e-mails and call. I am still in the market, I just don’t know if I have made up my mind about yet and my friend has a new Toyota Tundra that he swears is the best thing since sliced bread. I think might just wait.
If you have ever sold vehicles before, odds are you have had this conversation. Odds are you have had this conversation many times. It’s what you say next that will determine if you are selling or if you are buying.
You: Mr. Customer I can see you value your friends opinion and as luck has it I have a used Toyota Tundra on the lot as well that I would be more than happy to do a side by side comparison with you. I can demo each vehicle for you and weigh the pros and cons of each truck that will allow you to make an educated decision on what truck would work best for you. Does 2PM today sound good for you, or will tomorrow work better?
This is a great close and with this close you are planting the seeds of thought into the customers mind, the customer now feels that he has more than one option at your dealership and he is more likely to set an appointment with you and more importantly show! YOU JUST SOLD THE APPOINTMENT!
The following statement is what you do not want to say.
Mr. Customer, I completely understand that you want to wait on your next purchase and when you decide that you are ready to buy, please consider ABC Chevy.
Though this statement is cordial and proper, you just bought what the client was selling. He said that he wanted to wait till after the first of the year and you bought it by saying that you understood and to consider your dealership when he decided to make a purchase. Sure you may sell a few customers this way, but I guarantee that in the end you will never reach your true potential as a stellar salesperson and you might as well use the empty showroom to get some exercise.
To everyone out there making a living in sales remember this:
- Be fully prepared! What I mean by this is to make sure that you know your product inside and out, do research on you competitors product so that you will be easily able to compare your product to your competitors and always be asking relevant questions to discover a potential clients pain points.
- Be excited! A few years ago I wrote a article about The Billy Mays Persona. We all remember him and how he was always excited about selling his products to the masses. Now I don’t mean that you need to yell and be spastic, all I am saying is to be passionate about what you are selling! When you are making cold calls and follow-up calls don’t be a monotone lame duck on the phone, be passionate about what you are selling, because if you believe that your product works then odds are your customers will too.
- Always be closing! If you have followed steps 1 and 2 then you have put yourself in the position to always be trying to close the deal.
Internet Marketing and Digital Strategist
I know what you're thinking – who does this guy think he is? How does he know what my “thing” is. Good – I have your attention.
I find it absolutely fascinating just how many dealerships I've walked into over the past couple of months and found, you ready for this? Silence. No customers on the lot, sales people hanging out around reception, flirting, cracking jokes, texting and the list goes on. Everything opposite of what should be happening is happening.
I spent a few minutes with a client at a major franchise dealership just last week talking about this exact topic. He is at his whits end with how things are looking at his dealership but just doesn't know how to turn things around and foster a productive change at his store.
Are you, or someone you know feeling the same way? Let's bring things back to basics for a few minutes and look at a couple of ways to turn things around. Success is hanging in the balance.
Do You Dream?
Sounds cheesy I know. One of my kids favorite movies is Disney's “Tangled”. The story of Rapunzel who has been locked up in a tower her whole life and has a dream to check out the annual lantern festival on her 18th birthday. Haven't seen it yet? Sorry for the spoiler.
There's one scene in the movie where in Disney fashion, the characters break out into song about Having a dream. The essence of it is that each character had a dream at one point and for whatever reason it was taken from them. Now, back to you and I.
Do you have a dreams? Have they been taken from you due to the economy, dream stealers or a plethora of other excuses? Do you still know what you want for your dealership?
If you'd like to create positive, productive and profitable changes within your business, here are the first two steps.
Define (or re-define) your dream
Gain a burning desire for its achievement.
Willingness to Learn / Willingness to Take Action
Have you ever read any self-help “be successful” types of articles? They all seem to offer the “fail proof” way to achieve greater success. They always seems to start with putting the pen to paper and writing down goals. Goals are great, don't get me wrong. I just don't agree that they are a sustainable driving force to helping you accomplish the success you are seeking.
Don't believe me? How many people do you know that actually stick to their New Year resolutions? If setting goals gave us enough sustainable power to act, there would be no more New Year Resolutions – the world would be a better place filled with extremely thin, successful, wealthy, patient, traveling, money-saving people.
Let me submit that before putting pen to paper, one must determine the level of their willingness to learn and willingness to take action. Think about this for a second. You've clearly defined your dream and now have a burning desire. If your dream is to have a more successful dealership by selling more vehicles, take a moment to rate your willingness to learn and willingness to take action in order to make that dream happen.
If I asked you to give yourself a “Willingness” score, what would it be?
Take a minute, pull out a piece of paper and give yourself a “willingness to learn” score between 1 and 10 (1 being none, and 10 being high). What did you come up with? Now do the same for your “willingness to take action”. What? Two 10's? Really? That's amazing! Now where would your score go if I told you the only way to make this happen is to abstain from drinking coffee for one full month? Why the sudden decrease?
Here's why goal-setting isn't the first step to success. All of us have goals, most of us haven't really determined whether or not we have the willingness to make them happen. Often the only thing that stands in the way of achieving dreams is our willingness to learn new ways of doing things and our willingness to take necessary action. Are you willing to do whatever it takes to make your dreams a reality or would you prefer to just keep going as you are?
Stop with the shenanigans! Continuing to do business the same way with no willingness to learn or take action will just give you more of the same depressing results. If you aren't picking up what I'm putting down right now, then selling cars and being profitable just isn't your thing.
Now - Stop blaming the economy and other lame excuses for your lack of success. Achieving your definition of success is in your capable hands. Define your dream, determine your level of willingness, and enjoy the results. You deserve it.
Michael Cirillo is the Executive VP at AutoVelocity™ and works with dealerships to help them achieve greater success through their marketing efforts.
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