Success is Never Owned, it’s Rented. And the Rent is Due Every Day.
We have officially reached the second half of 2021. For some, this an extension of a never-ending year and for some it’s a new beginning. The events of 2020 have affected all of us in some form or fashion and while some floundered, others managed to flourish. The car industry, despite all it’s challenges, has seen record demand and those dealerships that were able to adapt to the change realized unprecedented profits.
The good news is that normalcy is within our grasp as we reach the middle of summer. July has typically been a hot month for car buying and it’s also the time of year when we tend to become complacent and let things slip through the cracks. With the excitement of the warm summer days, our minds tend to focus more on beaches and our long-awaited family vacation, instead of working our leads, nurturing past clients and bringing in more car sales. Regardless, here are a few strategies to stay focused, motivated and inspired.
1. Leverage Social Media
We cannot stress this enough; everyone is on one social media platform or another. This is low-hanging fruit that can be used to enhance and expand your reach. There are many ways to engage shoppers and spark their interest by uploading pictures and videos to your channels, and asking thoughtful questions to your audience. You should be doing this as a dealership, and also make sure your sales reps are reaching out to their own networks. Think about it – on average, a person has over 300 friends on facebook. If you have 10 sales reps promoting and sharing your dealership’s posts, you have an additional 3,000 people you could be reaching.
Doing so isn’t hard, it just takes a consistent effort and can include uploading pictures of your car lot, highlighting a sales rep, videotaping a shopper getting into their new vehicle and even having your sales rep’s check into the dealership will increase your visibility. When you do it right, you’ll get people coming in and seeing familiar faces, making them more at ease, and you got it, more willing to buy that car from you!
You can make things fun and create unique hashtags. People love to use popular hashtags, and will quickly utilize your hashtag if it is descriptive enough. Make it a destination! Make it entertaining!
#vacationingwithmyford #summerwithmybmw #thisiswheremynissantakesme #campingwithmychevy
Or what if you run some contests from your social media pages? For instance, you can start a monthly drawing that followers are entered into when they tag two of their closest friends. This can be a fantastic way to get more eyes on your page, which can turn into sales leads. Have photo contests where your followers can upload and win merchandise from your dealership or free oil changes. Incentivize your followers even more by adding extra entries each month for scheduling a test drive or by referring friends. Anything to get them into the auto dealership to give your car salesperson a chance at turning them from followers into potential customers. The ability for something great is there, you must find a way to make it yours! This has the potential to quickly become the new hot trend for your dealership and can help you quickly increase sales as a car salesman/saleswoman.
The bottom line is this, you need to be providing valuable content to engage potential customers. Ask questions on your posts. When potential shoppers respond, you can create a dialogue, move them to a private message and you guessed it, bring them into the car dealership!
2. Maintain Your Relationships with Your Sold Client Base
Your relationship with the customer should not stop after you sell a vehicle, in fact it’s just the beginning. Do you know that repeat business closes at 75%? That’s huge. With an average of 2 drivers per household, you have the opportunity to sell that family another vehicle – hopefully more. That is, if they had a great customer experience. If they were really blown away, they’ll even send some referrals your way and those close on average at 65%.
Salespeople often think that selling a vehicle is just an exchange of hard-earned benjamins for horsepower, but there is so much more to it than that. If the customer was genuinely happy with the process of buying a car from you, then through their experience, they will be more than happy to refer friends and family members and come back to you when they need a new vehicle. You can be their “car guy”. The key is you need to be proactive! Keep the momentum going and continue building the rapport that you’ve already established with the car buyer. Ask them confidently to give you a follow on social media and ask them to write a review of their experience online. They trusted you to help them find a vehicle they are driving off the car lot, you clearly must have done something well enough to earn a follow and a review!
You should be proactively reaching out immediately after delivery, 30 days out and then at a regular quarterly cadence. Be sure to take notes and include them in your CRM so you can add in personal details when you follow up. For example, think of the impact you make if you ask them about their favorite sports team or if you check in on their kids Timmy and Mary. They’ll remember these thoughtful encounters and next time they’re in the market for a vehicle, you will be top of mind.
3. Create a Weekly VLOG
You read that correctly, create a VLOG. This is a new age of selling cars, and it is time to get creative. While things are starting to revert back to normal for some, remember there are others that would still much rather keep socially distancing. Find ways to do most of the selling and paperwork online and remotely. Share videos about the highly anticipated vehicle coming out for 2022. Talk about newer features and what you personally like with the changes, colors, body styles, etc. Bring up the differences with the older models and explain the sales process to show how fast and easy it is to get them into a newer car.
Additionally, explain the trade in process. Highlight that difficult to sell vehicle that’s been on the lot for months and go into detail about what sets the vehicle apart. Explain how your dealership is looking for trades and let them know that you are currently looking for any trade in.
These vlogs can be promoted on your website, through social media and through email campaigns. It’s the new age of car selling and video is king!
4. Practice, Practice, Practice!!
If you’re a manager in the car business, you should be setting aside time first thing every shift for five to ten minutes of training. This is essential because otherwise you’re sending your sales team out on the floor cold and they’re warming up on your customers. If you’re a salesperson and your management isn’t doing this, take initiative and practice car buying scenarios with another salesperson. You’ll be better and your boss will take notice. This is an important habit to create so that you know what to say to a customer in every buying situation. The words should flow freely from your mouth. The more you practice, the easier and smoother it will become and you will master the art of controlling the conversation, which is essential for any car salesperson.
Listen, it’s easy to get distracted by the beautiful weather of summer and cut corners. However, successful people do what others won’t. By applying these strategies, you’ll be able to set your dealership apart from the rest and thrive even when demand for vehicles goes down. To learn how you can sell more cars at the dealership, sign up for a demo to see how our world-class training has helped thousands of dealerships convert more opportunities into car sales.