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AutoSuccess Jan10

AutoSuccess Jan10



AutoSuccess addresses the specific, researched needs of new car and light truck dealerships by providing entrepreneurial, cutting-edge, solution-based editorials to increase dealership profits and ...

AutoSuccess addresses the specific, researched needs of new car and light truck dealerships by providing entrepreneurial, cutting-edge, solution-based editorials to increase dealership profits and reduce expenses

AutoSuccess, magazine, sales, new, used, selling, salespeople, vehicle, dealer, dealership, leadership, marketing

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    AutoSuccess Jan10 AutoSuccess Jan10 Presentation Transcript

    • It’s Here - AutoSuccess Best of the Best NADA 2010, page 4 January 2010
    • feature solution 3834 Taylorsville Rd. Building A, Ste. 1B Louisville Kentucky 40220 | 877.818.6620 / 502.588.3170 | AutoSuccessOnline.com / AutoSuccessPodcast.com | info@autosuccessonline.com sgivens1@autosuccessonline.com Susan Givens, PublisherJanuary 2010 By SusanGivens Engaging More Customers With Video Have you ever felt like you were mak- sound. With years of successful ex- $1 more on advertising ing little mistakes that are costing you perience, this team is innovative and • Increase your gross profits any- design@autosuccessonline.com Thomas Williams, VP & Creative Director tons of money at your dealership? Do up-to-date presenting fresh ideas where from $300 to $800 a vehicle you feel like there are hidden profits to keep up with our ever-changing • Make an extra $100,000 or more in in your dealership that are just waiting business. I would recommend Tew- your service profits in 90 days or less to be uncovered? If you are like most art Enterprises Inc. to anyone who • Double and even triple your sales dealers, the honest answer is, YES, wants to improve their business. and service customer retention leadership solution Absolutely! – Doug Mathers • Double your appointments and Ken Russwood Auto Center, Lincoln, NE sales conversion from Internet leads, 877.818.6620. Printed in the USA. Postmaster: Send address changes to AutoSuccess Magazine, 3834 Taylorsville Rd., Building A, Ste. 1B Louisville, KY 40220. whole or part is prohibited without express written consent from AutoSuccess. AutoSuccess may occasionally make readers’ names available to other companies whose products and/or services may be of interest; readers may request that names be removed by calling magazine to which this magazine may be linked from time to time. Always confer with legal counsel before implementing changes in procedures.© All contents copyrighted by AutoSuccess Magazine, a Division of Systems Marketing, Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction in and solutions; views expressed are not necessarily those of AutoSuccess and by no means reflect any guarantees. AutoSuccess accepts no liability in respect of the content of any third party material appearing in this magazine or in respect of the content of any other per year. AutoSuccess welcomes unsolicited editorials and graphics (not responsible for their return). All submitted editorials and graphics are subject to editing for grammar, content and page length. AutoSuccess provides its contributing writers latitude in expressing advice AutoSuccess Magazine is published monthly at 3834 Taylorsville Rd., Building A, Ste. 1B Louisville, KY 40220; 502.588.3155, fax 502.588.3170. Direct all subscription and customer service inquiries to 877.818.6620 or info@autosuccessonline.com. Subscription rate is $69 JohnFreund 14 PAY YOURSELF FIRST It’s a shame for YOU not to make Web site leads, third party leads more money, when these dealers do My name is Mark Tewart and I am the • Increase your F&I Product pen- john freund it so easily… President of Tewart Enterprises Inc. etrations by 25% immediately JustinDuff 16 FIT IS ESSENTIAL For almost two decades I have been • Discover the one secret that will Our association with Tewart En- helping dealers find hidden profits and make your dealership an additional terprises has been nothing short correcting little million dollars ddavis@autosuccessonline.com Dave Davis, Editor & Creative Strategist of extraordinary. Our sales volume mistakes that were or more over the pg 6 pg1 increased over 30% in the first sixty days of implementation. More costing those deal- There are a few things next five years — ers hundreds of We have several importantly, our sales gross in- thousands of dol- that every dealer clients who have sales & training solution creased an average of over 68% lars. These almost- should be doing to already experi- over the first five months of imple- magical solutions enced this and it bernie mock THE TOP SIX TECHNIQUES FOR MORE EFFECTIVE DalePollak 08 USED VEHICLE SOURCING mentation. The bottom line result turn little mis- make money, will make the hair was an increase of over $350,000 takes into instant especially in this stand up on your DOES HOW WE LEARN IMPACT HOW WE BUY? net to the Dealership Operation. I cash machines of neck when you KirkManzo 20 have used many sales systems over bottom-line profit. economy. hear this. the years and none of them have 10 TIPS TO IMPROVE INTERNET MattWatson 22 RESPONSE TIMES IN 2010 ever provided the success that we Because I have are experiencing with the Tewart not met you and do not know anything super6@autosuccessonline.com Brian Ankney, Account Manager Call 888 2 Tewart (888 283-9278) or System. about your dealership, I can’t say how e-mail info@tewart.com to schedule TedRubin 24 THE FIVE CHARACTERISTICS OF A ‘GREAT SALESPERSON’ Walter Alfaro, GM much money is being left unrealized at a private and confidential interview. tony clark Perry Ford your dealership. However, I can say FOR CERTAIN that the number ***We will share candid and specific MarkTewart 25 THE MARKETING AND SALES GENIUS OF HOWARD STERN: BUSINESS LESSONS FROM Our grosses went up 30% on the of dollars is substantial and would information that will prove to you with- THE SHOCK JOCK front end, and we added almost 50% shock you, if you knew. out a doubt what I am saying is true. You in the back end. The best part of that will see real dealer examples that support pg 2 pg3 TomHopkins 28 WINNING DEMONSTRATION is that our sales also increased over 25% and continue to increase. There are a few things that every dealer should be doing to make these results. Because of time constraints, there will only be a limited amount of DON’T FEAR ONLINE NEGOTIATION Gary Minneman Jr, GM money, especially in this economy. dealers accepted into this program. TonyClark 32 shorne@autosuccessonline.com Susie Horne, Account Manager & BernieMock Sunshine Toyota The Great News is that I have identified P.S.: To receive the FREE Special marketing solution Working with Tewart Enterprises is those little mistakes and have big solu- Report “New Generation of Selling” e- jwarner@autosuccessonline.com John Warner, Sales-Improvement Strategist different from other consultants and tions for them. NO BS, just real measur- mail us at info@tewart.com with New drake baerresen TimJames 10 WHO SINGS YOUR PRAISES? Creating ‘Evangelical Customers’ Who Spread the trainers. We are getting results with very satisfied customers. In addition, able results that start happening immedi- ately and I guarantee those results. Generation in the subject line Good Word About You Tewart Enterprises Inc is helping us THREE LEVELS OF A CAR DEALER’S J.D.Rucker 18 SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY to make our entire business more • Sell more vehicles without spending WANT SUCCESS IN 2010? STOP PLAYING MattBaker 26 MIND GAMES pg3 pg 0 DrakeA.Baerresen 30 AND, FOR OUR NEXT EVENT...
    • sales&trainingsolution DalePollak THE TOP SIX TECHNIQUES FOR MORE EFFECTIVE USED VEHICLE SOURCING Last year, dealers Having expanded the types of vehicles and to past practices should be considered to experienced an number of auctions, there is still much more maximize the opportunity that exists. unprecedented phenomenon: difficulty that a dealer can do to source vehicles more sourcing used cars. To be clear, there was no effectively. For example, the dealership’s Whether or not a dealership adopts any or shortage of used cars, but rather a tightening appraisal process and win rates (look to all of these suggestions, it is a certainty that of supply and a wholesale market that rose book) become critically important. Today, sourcing vehicles will continue to be of great faster than the corresponding retail market. the appraisal process takes on the added importance to used vehicle operations. The The result was that dealers found it very dimension of importance as a sourcing amount of time necessary to identify the difficult to buy used cars. It is likely that this mechanism as well as its traditional role as hottest vehicles, understand what price to condition will continue, and even worsen, a deal maker. Dealerships should review pay, locate their sources of sale, and execute this year. their process of appraising, win rates and their procurement will be greater than ever. even manager and salesperson incentives for It is also a certainty that traditional used car There are, however, several strategies achieving superior performance. Remember managers have more to do than ever with that dealers can use to ease the problem that salespeople become sourcing agents for fewer resources. This is an organizational of sourcing used vehicles. First, dealers the dealership every time they encounter a problem that further impairs the dealership’s can and should expand the horizon of customer with a trade. Properly managing ability to source vehicles. I therefore vehicles they will consider stocking. the appraisal process will result in both recommend that dealerships provide There are always segments of vehicles, in more sales as well as more trade-ins for used car managers with the assistance of particular makes and models, which are reasonable prices. stocking analysts. A stocking analyst can do available at more reasonable prices than much of the computer legwork of identifying others. Often, however, such vehicles are There is still more. However, to go vehicles and the locations where they can either not recognized as such, or otherwise further requires challenging long-standing be sourced. They can even create appraisals excluded because they are not vehicles dealership management practices. The first in order to know how much can be paid for that the dealership has sold in the past or is such approach is to reduce the amount of each vehicle. Such an individual doesn’t have consistent with their new car franchise brand. expected gross profit necessary to justify to be highly compensated, and may likely By simply expanding the set of acceptable the acquisition of a vehicle. Most managers already be on the payroll. They simply need vehicles for consideration, dealers will have won’t justify the purchase of a vehicle unless to have strong analytical ability and a general more choices and opportunities. The most they can foresee at least a $2,000 profit. sensitivity to the used vehicle marketplace. current technology allows dealers to identify Often, the wholesale going price of the Once the work of the stocking analyst has these types of vehicles, as well as where they vehicle is $500 to $1,000 more than what the been performed, the traditional used car can be sourced. Remember that when you buyer thinks it needs to be. If they were to manager can review and approve the stocking have market knowledge that is not commonly pull the trigger it would mean that the profit plan and purchase recommendations prepared shared — and you can act upon it — that opportunity might only be $1,000 to $1,500. by the analyst. Such an approach facilitates constitutes a true competitive advantage. But the choice is not between purchasing for aggressive sourcing and allows traditional an expected profit of $2,000 versus $1,000 used car managers to focus on all of the other A second strategy that can be employed but, rather, a choice between $1,000 and critical tasks for which they are responsible is to expand the sources of acquisition. nothing. There are simply periods of times in Most dealers use a small number of local markets that call for temporary adjustments The bottom line is that the market is creating auctions. While these locations may continue in expectations and changes to traditional new challenges. Dealerships must respond to be useful, they do not provide dealers beliefs and practices. with new thinking and solutions. There is no with the maximum number of choices and doubt that the new challenges in sourcing opportunities. This means that dealers may Just to turn the temperature up even a bit can be overcome — there just needs to be a have to undertake the burden of traveling more, I am going to further suggest that willingness to do so. regionally or potentially even nationally dealerships re-think the amount of their to find the vehicles they want at the prices pack. Packs cause buyers to expect to that are right. The technology of online purchase vehicles that allow them to make purchasing can ease the burden of using expected profit plus the pack amount. This Dale Pollak is an author and the founder of vAuto. He can be contacted at distant auctions. Every dealer should invest creates an even greater perception that cars 866.867.9620, or by e-mail at the necessary time to properly identify and can not be purchased for reasonable dollars. dpollak@autosuccessonline.com. learn about the available tools to purchase Once again, there are moments in markets, and vehicles online. this is likely one of them, where adjustments08 www.autosuccessonline.com
    • marketingsolution TimJames WHO SINGS YOUR PRAISES? Creating ‘Evangelical Customers’ Who Spread the Good Word About You When faced with a • He genuinely likes you and wants you to wonderful technology. Take the time problem that only an do well. to truly get to know your prospects expert can fix, everyone feels vulnerable if • He is willing to pay more because you and communicate with them (utilizing we don’t know an expert who’s responsive, offer the whole package (decent product, technology) throughout the buying experienced and reliable, and who we know fair price, you’re here to stay and that cycle and beyond, even if they do not will give us a fair price in exchange for certain “guy”-ness). buy from you. Let your CRM do the quality service that they stand behind. • He wants to help others, and that work of the follow up, but know what motivates him to tell others about you “work” it is doing. Know what each Let’s say your family doctor says you need a (that also makes him credible). e-mail says, and follow up with your own knee replacement. Unless it’s an emergency, • He is a not just a happy, repeat customer; personalized e-mails and phone calls. Get it’s not likely that you would drive to the he is a walking testimonial, working for out and become a positive part of your local hospital and ask for the next available you without compensation. community. surgeon. You would probably spend a few • He refers “softened” customers to • Be Grateful — Stop and appreciate what months getting mentally ready, but unsure you, meaning they’re already sold on they’re doing for you and actively thank how to research surgery options, surgeons and essential intangibles like trust, reputation them. Write thank-you notes after every facilities. Feel the anxiety? Many people feel and fairness before they walk into the referral, whether the deal closes or not. the same way when buying a car. showroom. After they’ve sent you a few customers, • He sends you more business than your send them a small but highly meaningful Now, suppose a colleague had a knee replaced brother-in-law. gift, like if your customer likes to fly fish, last summer. She can’t stop telling people send them a dozen hand-tied flies. Show about how wonderful her new knee feels. Priceless, right? You bet. We should all be so that they mattered enough for you to She talks about her doctor like he’s a god lucky — and we can. remember something important to them. (regardless of the actual qualifications of • Be Humble — Ask them how you can the surgeon). She tells you about how the How Do You Create improve and listen carefully to their physical therapy facility sent a van, so her Evangelical Clients? ideas. These people like to feel needed husband didn’t have to take off from work • Be Trustworthy — If your mentality is and helpful. They will appreciate the three times a week to drive her. And, when that every deal is a notch on your quota opportunity to better the world. Even if you share that you need your knee replaced, bedpost, customers’ radar will go up, their suggestion is something you already your colleague earnestly responds, “You need and they will get a sense that they mean do, don’t dismiss the idea (instead, look a knee replacement? I’ve got a guy who’ll fix nothing more to you than cash. The only at how you can better create consumer you right up! I’m walking three miles a day!” customers you will attract in that case awareness around that service since are the ones looking for the best deal; in your best customers don’t know about I’m sure you know a “guy” in the car other words, they’ll be using you, too. it). Appreciate that they took the time to business, too — the industry veteran Voluntarily ensuring transparent, win-win think of an idea and be honest with you. who seems to have a lock on your local transactions will build trust and pay out • Be Responsive — When an evangelical community. Everybody in town, maybe even far more in the long run. customer calls, answer the phone. It’s your uncle, buys their car from this guy. • Treat Every Customer Right — Put usually important. In fact, it’s usually a Forget “taking ups” or prospecting using the yourself in their shoes and do whatever lead or a complaint. In either case, it’s CRM; he has a large book of customers that you can to meet their needs. Every once important that you’re on top of it. he sends birthday cards to and always seems in a while, exceed their expectations, like to have people referring him business. the van that shuttled your colleague to Remember, as passionately as the evangelical physical therapy appointments. client sings your praises, he can also ruin your Wouldn’t you love to be the “guy” to your • Care About Your Customers — Keep name in his circle of influence, and do so with customers? What does he know that you notes on every one of them, including the that same passion. Remember, he’s out to don’t? names of their spouse and kids, birthday, create a better world, and if that means people anniversary, hobbies, etc. Take a photo should avoid your business, he’ll freely tell What every guy knows how to do is create of them with their new car and create them to do so. To him, spreading a cautionary what marketers call an evangelical client, a scrapbook with their testimonials for word is just as helpful as a recommendation. a customer who enthusiastically promotes prospects to flip through on your desk. their “guy’s” business, product or service • Be Human — Show your personality. The good news is evangelical customers through word-of-mouth without solicitation. Create a photo montage screensaver of are naturally forgiving people. Should Evangelical customers feel great reward your family. Whatever your hobbies, something happen that causes them to slip from helping both the person in need and the put evidence of them on your desk to out of evangelism or flip alliances, go back business they are promoting. They enjoy that, help you connect with your customers and work toward renewing your relationship. because of them, others are having the same on a personal level. That connection is They’re worth it. Just ask any “guy.” successful experience they did. They believe imperative for the evangelical customer. in a better world and this is one way they • Be Personal — If technology is contribute to it. They feel their community removing so much communication Tim James is director of sales of HomeNet worth is enhanced with every “convert.” throughout the buying cycle, how can Automotive, Inc. He can be contacted at 866.924.6573, or by e-mail at an auto sales professional become the tjames@autosuccessonline.com. An evangelical client is the ideal customer for “guy?” The exact same way the “guy”1 several key reasons: became the “guy” before all of this0 www.autosuccessonline.com
    • By SusanGivens Dealer.com’s CarFlix™ Video Package offers CarFlix™ Virtual Test Drive videos for new vehicles, and CarFlix™ with HumanVoice for pre-owned vehicles. TheseOver the past two years, online video has captured Make a Plan: Set Goals and Measure Success customers who may purchase from the dealership. two products automatically generate compelling videos for new and used vehicles,the attention of marketers, online retailers and, It’s obvious that most dealerships can and should benefit from the use of video. But before doing so, Further, YouTube’s VSEO capabilities can land and include real human voices. The CarFlix™ Video Package also includes a videomost importantly, consumers. As few as five years dealerships should first determine the goals of video relative to the overall marketing strategy. Those YouTube videos atop search rankings, and diminish gallery for dealers’ inventory, and an online research center designed to keep carago, video was an expensive, labor-intensive who do will have more success than those who merely begin posting videos just because everyone’s the visibility of your own dealership Web site. shoppers on your Web site longer. In addition, dealers can quickly and easily postmedium that required serious bandwidth and telling them to. If you don’t discuss goals, how will you know if the video is successful? In the hype Would you rather direct shoppers to a third-party their own videos through Dealer.com’s user-interface, “ControlCenter™.” Further,professional production. That’s all changed now and hurry to push video into the marketplace, many well-intentioned dealers skip any video strategy site where you have no control, or to your own all video and other tools are part of Dealer.com’s Internet marketing platform, andwith increased broadband penetration, easy- discussion and move directly to production and placement. Video is a tactic, and like all other site where you have complete control? Web site incorporate traditional and VSEO practices, and are accessible from one login.to-use online video publishing software and marketing tactics, the value is maximized when it’s a part of an overall strategy. providers that combine traditional SEO and newer Advanced CarFlix™ Video Reporting also carefully tracks the success of all videos,tools, and additional technological advances. VSEO best practices can achieve the highest video including views and length of views.Today, everyone is talking about the marketing Key Questions to Answer Before Creating and Posting New Videos search rankings, linking directly back to your siteimplications of video, stressing the importance • What are we trying to achieve, and how is it tied to our overall marketing strategy? and inventory rather than someone else’s. 1. CarFlix™ HumanVoiceof video and citing consumer viewership of, and • Who are we trying to reach and what appeals to them? CarFlix™ HumanVoice is the only solution that automatically creates unique,preference for, online videos. • Based on our goal, what metrics will we use to measure success or failure? These are serious considerations that need to be realistic videos of every vehicle in a dealer’s inventory. CarFlix™ HumanVoice • How often will we evaluate metrics to determine which videos meet their objectives? discussed before posting on YouTube. Again, your produces a professional video within minutes, and is able to produce videos for aWhen properly executed, video drives more • Which provider has the best quality video offerings to represent my dealership? approach should be strategic, with clear goals dealer’s entire inventory in less than an hour.Google search referrals, more time spent on Web and objectives in mind. If dealership branding issites and more leads. While some vendors try Getting Started the goal, then YouTube could help. If the goal is CarFlix™ HumanVoice videos include theto exploit YouTube loopholes to produce video Once you have established goals for your dealership videos, it’s important to determine the most increasing vehicle sales, though, then skip YouTube following features and benefits:search engine optimization (VSEO) results, Dealer. efficient way to create and post them. Start by talking with your Web site provider. They should be and post vehicle videos on your own dealership • Real human voices with a variety of engaging, professional male and femalecom has built a comprehensive VSEO program able to assist with creating and posting vehicle and other dealership videos. The best providers will Web site. After all, there is no evidence to suggest speakersdesigned to drive traffic back to the dealership’s be able to help you post high-quality vehicle videos of your inventory within a few days, if you’re that people shop for vehicles on YouTube, and • SmartScripts based on which features on different vehicles are most importantown site. A recent study of Dealer.com video just beginning. If you already have vehicle videos on-hand, your vendor should be able to help you many dealers have been disappointed to find that to potential buyersstatistics found that form submissions on Web publish your inventory on your Web site within hours. YouTube videos did nothing to increase their • High-quality video with images seamlessly combined to form smooth, high-sites with video were 130 percent higher than sites Web site traffic. In fact, some have argued that resolution videoswithout video. Further, consumers spent 20 percent Set a high standard and aim to create unique videos for every car in your inventory. Extensive YouTube can decrease your Web site traffic by • Context sensitive music tracks are automatically assigned based on the mostmore time on Web sites that included videos. In inventory videos increase your Web site’s organic search engine rankings and make the dealership directing shoppers away from the dealership site appropriate music for different types of vehiclesaddition, Google search referrals increased up to look professional. when consumers click on YouTube videos in search • Dealer branding on all videos with a call to action, dealership image and208 percent on sites with video. While Dealer.com results. Be mindful that this cannibalization of contact informationcan export inventory videos to YouTube, search If your video provider isn’t also your Web site provider, they may push you to post videos on third- the dealership Web site’s SEO efforts can result. • Built-in lead forms to instantly schedule a test drive or receive a quotereferrals from YouTube have shown a referral party sites because that is the only way they can claim SEO value. However, using a single platform Dealer.com vehicle videos can be exported to • Advanced CarFlix™ Video Reporting in ControlCenter to track viewership andrate that is marginal, at best, and should not be for Web site and video increases SEO value for the dealership’s own Web site, in large part by linking YouTube, as well as AutoTrader and Cars.com, but engagement levelconsidered the cornerstone to any VSEO program. search results directly to inventory on the dealer’s site. This way, videos can be fully integrated with again, the decision to export should be based on the SEO best practices applied throughout the Web site. dealer’s goals for individual videos. 2. Dealer.com’s CarFlix™ Virtual Test DriveVideo is proven to generate more leads because CarFlix™ Virtual Test Drive high-definition videos use professional voiceovers toit helps attract and engage more automotive In Conclusion name and describe individual vehicle’s features, for virtually any vehicle available.shoppers online. According to additional Dealer. In Addition to Unique Vehicle Videos, Personalize Your Dealership with the Following Videos: Video can be a great way to brand your dealership, CarFlix™ Virtual Test Drive also provides extensive interior and exterior footagecom research, 97 percent of online shoppers who make a human connection with shoppers, and sell that brings the vehicle to life.view one video are more apt to watch two or three. • Welcome video from the president, CEO, general manager or other spokesperson • Videos of personnel, including key managers, heads of departments and staff members who more vehicles and services. Research concludesAdditionally, the more time consumers spend on that properly executed video can increase search CarFlix™ Virtual Test Drive videos include thea Web site, the more likely they are to submit a shoppers will meet in person at the dealership • Videos of current specials and promotions results, length of time spent on site and lead following features and benefits:lead. Why? Because video provides an emotional generation. Videos should be created and posted • Virtual Test Drive videos on your inventory pages as well as your showroomconnection for consumers and creates excitement, • Community involvement videos, such as charitable events, sports teams and civic organizations • Existing commercials and other marketing videos based on measurable goals, and aligned with a • Professionally written scripts by industry expertsand consumer excitement for a product increases dealer’s overall marketing strategy. Further, while • Real human voices (not computerized) recorded by professional voice talentthe likelihood of lead submission. • Videos displaying your showroom and facilities • Videos featuring happy customers and other testimonials there can be benefits to posting videos on third- • Broad coverage of virtually every make, model, body style and trimIn addition, video allows branding and party sites like YouTube, videos are most effective • Comprehensive vehicle review including introduction, exterior and interiordifferentiation opportunities while providing a To YouTube or Not to YouTube? when posted on the dealership’s own Web site as a features, mechanical features and closingunique and professional 24/7 sales pitch. You There is healthy debate about the pros and cons of posting videos on YouTube. On one hand, it’s part of the overall marketing plan. • High-resolution digital spins, operational footage and image sequencescan showcase your dealership’s personality incredibly easy to post videos on YouTube. And with millions of people visiting the site each day, • Stylized background music based on type of vehicle presentedwhile making a human connection with shoppers YouTube can expand the reach of the dealership’s videos to new audiences. Further, since Google • Standard Flash Player eliminates the need for QuickTime/Windows Mediaonline. Providing links to vehicle videos in owns YouTube, the VSEO capabilities are strong, and video search results can appear within plug-inoutgoing e-mails is a great way to distinguish seconds of posting. • Advanced CarFlix™ Video Reporting in ControlCenter to track viewership andyour dealership to consumers who are shopping engagement level For more information about Dealer.commultiple stores, and also increases the likelihood On the other hand, today it is just as easy to post videos on your own dealership’s Web site. After all, contact us at 866.790.1262, or by e-mail atthat customers will visit your Web site. you may not want to reach millions of people around the world. You might just want to reach local dealer.com@autosuccessonline.com.
    • leadershipsolution JohnFreund PAY YOURSELF FIRST No matter how hard invests $5,000 a year for 10 years, putting his a savings plan is by taking advantage of the you try to avoid total investment at $50,000 — exactly twice convenience of electronic funds transfer it, sometimes it seems like your day-to- as much as the early investor. (EFT). You may be familiar with this type day living expenses eat away your entire of service if you currently receive or make paycheck. Before you know it, the money Assuming an eight percent average annual electronic deposits to your bank account. in your paycheck seems to vanish, and you rate of return on their investments, if we jump This service is also available from other don’t even know where it went. And while ahead now to 20 years from the time our financial services firms, and paying yourself you’re focused on just making ends meet, two investors started, the difference in their first by using an EFT system can help you get putting money away for the future may be the accounts is substantial. Our early investor in the habit of saving. last thing on your mind. Even so, you need would have accumulated a total of roughly to remember that taking care of your longer- $100,493 in her account by this time. Keep Direct deposit allows you the opportunity to term financial goals is just as important as in mind she hasn’t put a penny of her own deposit all or part of your paycheck to the meeting your current needs. money in for the last 15 years. Meanwhile, account of your choice, so you could choose the late investor’s account has grown to only to set aside a certain portion to go directly to a Ever since the days of putting pennies in a $78,227, and he has been contributing each savings account as opposed to your checking piggybank, you’ve likely received plenty of year for the past 10 years. That means that account. Another way to take advantage advice on the value of saving your money. our early investor only put in half as much of EFT is to set up an automatic monthly But when mom and dad aren’t taking care of of her own money, and came out well over deposit. This is a simple, disciplined way to the necessities any more, and you have your $20,000 ahead. add to your account, authorizing a specific own bills to pay, it’s easy to lose track and amount to be transferred from one of your forget to save. As a reminder of just how Now, this example is only meant to illustrate accounts to another (i.e. from checking to a important it is to put part of your income the advantages of saving regularly and savings or investment account). aside — and to do it sooner, rather than later starting early. This does not reflect the — take a look at an example of just how the performance of any specific investment, nor Regardless of which method you choose — or numbers shake out. does it take into account the eventual effects even if you decide on completely different of taxes. It does, however, make the point investment strategy — putting aside money For this example we’ll use two investors very clear — by delaying 10 years in getting now will help you prepare to reach your — one who starts early and lets her savings started, the late investor loses out on the financial goals that lie further down the road. grow, and another who waits until later to benefits of compounding over a longer period begin. Let’s say the early investor puts away of time. $5,000 per year for five years, and then allows that investment to grow for 15 years without Disciplined investment habits aren’t always John Freund is the senior vice president of putting in another penny. The late investor, easy to come by, but there are several investments for Moors & Cabot. He can be on the other hand, waits for 10 years before things you can do to improve your savings contacted at 866.599.9162, or by e-mail at he even begins his savings plan. He then routine. One of the easiest ways to establish jfreund@autosuccessonline.com.14 www.autosuccessonline.com
    • leadershipsolution JustinDuff FIT IS ESSENTIAL We learn at a young dealership? Choose the products that really New Products/Services Purchases: age that everything “fit.” Selecting an Inventory Management • Does a vendor we already work with offer requires a “fit.” If you buy new shoes without System or a new ILM is just like buying a this product/service? trying them on, chances are you’ll be sorry car or a new pair of shoes — it’s something • Can we use this product/service on a trial (and trust me, it’s not easy to find shoes that has to work for you, your employees and basis? when you have size 13 feet). The fit theory your business as a whole; it has to “fit” your • What is the contract length and continues as we grow up because we learn business development goal. To make sure cancellation policy for this product/ that, if you’re going to commit, it had better it fits, go out there and experience all that is service? be to something you like. I like to think my available. Right now, we’re in an uncertain • How is this product going to improve our last vehicle purchase serves as a good example time, and spending thousands of dollars on a dealership? of finding the right “fit” in my life. When all 12-month contract before you get a great feel • Will we need to cut something from our was said and done, I left the showroom with a for the product might not be a wise decision; budget to purchase this product/service? vehicle that fit my personality and lifestyle. instead, drive it before you buy it. In doing so, • Will this product/service replace your risk goes to zero and you can be confident something we currently use at our Would I buy a car based on looks alone? Not with the “fit” you’ve been searching for. dealership? entirely, and neither should anyone. Yes, a • What is the training period for this nice looking car is what first attracts me, but During these tough economic times it’s product/service? I need to dig deeper and make sure it has all important to consolidate your tools if possible. • What are their customer service hours? the features I want and need. I take a trip to There are great ways to save money by • What are the main features of this my local dealer and take a seat inside the car. bundling services. Take a look at your local product? I look around, play with the controls, grasp cable companies. Most offer TV, Internet and • How will we see a return on investment by the steering wheel in my hands, and try to phone all for one low rate. using this product? visualize myself driving down the road. I • How will this product benefit our Try to find a company that offers all of the customer/future customer relationships? analyze all of the features and amenities to products you need and is willing to combine determine how they will best “fit” my needs. their products and services at a discount that Upgrading Current Products/ If I think I’ve found a solid choice, I have “fits” your budget. You’ll find it trims the fat Services: to be sure. I need to take this baby for a test from your budget while continuing to offer • What am I currently paying for this drive to really experience it. Sitting in a car great management tools for your dealership product/service? on the showroom floor really only gives you and engagement tools for your customers. • What is the cost of upgrade (if any)? one-tenth of the actual enjoyment you’ll have driving your car. Test-driving isn’t the ONLY way to determine • Am I completely satisfied with this the “fit” for your dealership. The real key product/service? Now for the Test Drive: I slowly pull the car is being as informed as possible, because • What additional features/benefits do I out of the parking lot and give it some gas. in situations when you can’t just hop in the receive with the upgrade? The rush of acceleration is pretty fantastic. driver’s seat you still need to know what • Are there statistics to support the positive Check. I turn up the volume on the sound you’re getting into. To help determine what effects of an upgrade? system. Potential deafness. Check. My phone will work for you and your dealership I have • Does the upgrade require a renewed automatically connects with Bluetooth. Check. developed a list of questions for you to ask contract? The seats really support me through the turns. yourself and your vendors as you consider • Does the upgrade replace a product or Check. Heated seats warm me up within new products and services and look to upgrade service we are currently using? minutes. Check. After taking the car for a nice your current products. You may never know • How often do upgrades come out for this 30-minute drive I really got a better feel for the true ins-and-outs of a product until you product? the car and how it will “fit” me as I continue purchase it, but these questions will get you • What, if anything, does the upgrade to drive it. I love it. It was definitely the right answers you need to make a solid, informed require on the dealership end? choice, and I’m glad I took it for a spin. buying decision. After answering these • How will this upgrade keep our dealership questions, I hope you are able to reach a up-to-date with technological advances? As you approach marketing and services for decision about the most suitable product/ your dealership, the same principles apply. service to accommodate your dealership Justin Duff is the vice president of sales There are more services promising to make needs. That’s what it comes down to — for Dealer HD. He can be contacted at your dealership run than you can count, but choosing the most relevant product/service 866.867.0016, or by e-mail at how do you choose the right ones for your that is the perfect fit. jduff@autosuccessonline.com.16 www.autosuccessonline.com
    • marketingsolution J.D.Rucker THREE LEVELS OF A CAR DEALER’S SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY It’s official. Everyone truly “emerged” as a viable option in the strong presence on social media. Start off has, at some point, automotive marketing arena. with the primary sites: Facebook, Twitter, heard of or used social media. Most car YouTube, Flickr and MySpace. Build these dealers have at least considered integrating The Toedipper is the most basic and easiest accounts regularly and rapidly, posting it into their marketing strategy. Some have way to get involved in social media with updates at least once a day. taken the leap. Many have failed. neither the budget to support it or the time to get involved. It’s better than nothing, and The Engager is talking to people. He/she is The few who have truly found success fall leaves room for more engagement later if active within the “community,” looking into into three primary groups. Determining budget and/or time open up. what others are doing, customizing pages, which method is best for you and your posting interesting things, and occasionally dealership is as easy as looking at your At the very basic level, make sure your posting specials or unique inventory items. dealership needs, the level of commitment, dealership has a Facebook fan page and and the budget (if any) available. Below, you Twitter account that are updated regularly. An hour a day (normally broken into two will find a breakdown of the three levels and Surely someone can find the 10 minutes a 30-minute slots) is enough to be a good learn ways to determine what is best for you. day it takes to see what people are saying to engager, though more is better. you, grow the accounts a little at a time and The Social Media Presence The Toedipper offer a small amount of engagement to keep If your dealership can either hire a strong There’s nothing wrong with being cautious. the accounts fresh. social media marketing firm or hire a Social media is often called “New Media” dedicated person to manage the accounts, or “Emerging Media” because it is just that As the importance of social media grows, you’re ready for the “big leagues.” Add — new and emerging. While many social it will become easier to push accounts every profile listed above. Then create a blog. media sites have been around for years and and pages that have a “rolling start” rather Then add other social media sites — there tons of companies have taken advantage of than starting with a new account and no are thousands. Feel free to contact me for the possibilities for a long time, it hasn’t experience later. Update your page and recommendations on others to join, but keep been until last year and 2010 that it has “tweet” interesting things about your in mind that having a presence on certain dealership, your sites can be a bad thing if your accounts brand, your city... aren’t active. Only bite off what you know anything that you can chew. Services that offer “hundreds GET MORE SERVICE BUSINESS people might find interesting. The of social media profiles” will do more harm to you and your reputation than good. AND REDUCE COSTS Toedipper should not post inventory Post to the blog at least once a week. Talk WITH VIDEO E-MAIL! or specials very about things that are happening locally. often, as they “Cover” a local little-league baseball game are not engaged for a team that your dealership sponsors enough to “earn” with pictures and videos posted to the blog, the right to do so. Facebook, etc. $3500 COMPLETE PACKAGE Instead, post Let everything feed upon everything else. If extra-special you post a strong blog post, link to it from Stay in front of your customers things (interesting trade-ins, super Facebook. Tweet it. Post videos to YouTube, then embed them on your blog (then post in a personal and unique way sales, etc) sparingly and them to Facebook and tweet them). only when there Talk to people. This is the key. Having It’s trackable and costs less than direct mail! are enough someone dedicated to building the accounts “non-spammy” also requires that they are communicating Service specials presented in a video format updates and with everyone involved. Customers just click to print a coupon tweets to separate Regardless of which group you want to fit each attempt at into, let me repeat a key point: Don’t bite off CHECK OUT AMP-MAIL AT A marketing. more than you can chew. It’s better to have www.advertisingm www.advertisingmarketingpartners.com ti The Engager the right level of engagement rather than With a small trying for too much and failing. As accounts budget of go stale, so too does your credibility and the either time, perception of your dealership. money or both, J.D. Rucker is chief marketing officer of 70 702-5 702-597-1091 a dealership’s Internet manager TK Carsites. He can be contacted at 866.796.9622, or by e-mail at david@advertising david@advertisingmarketingpartners.com or anyone who jrucker@autosuccessonline.com. Please contact Lor Feiro or David Moline Lori has an hour a day1 can have a very8 www.autosuccessonline.com
    • sales&trainingsolution KirkManzo DOES HOW WE LEARN IMPACT HOW WE BUY? Can our natural interesting is how our natural learning styles First, if Google is the first place most buyers learning methods of visual, auditory and kinesthetic impact the look, then are you setup to capitalize on the impact how we buy? Web behaviors of your customers. way consumers search for a car on Google today? No longer does the user have the Studies indicate that adult learners take in In 2001, a list of the most popular search patience to type in “Honda” or “Honda information using three primary methods: engines included some familiar and some Accord.” It is much more like they will type visual, auditory and kinesthetic. We acquire now-overlooked sites: AltaVista, Yahoo, in “Honda Accord EX 4dr black Davenport knowledge via printed text in books, or AOL Search, Lycos and MSN Search. Today Iowa” — make and model specific with by listening to others speak on subjects of everyone on the planet (except China) goes geographic information on location. Make interest. We engage in self discovery via trial straight to Google as their first option. The sure you adjust your site to take this into and error, but in the end much of what we question is, what is the No. 2 choice for most account. learn is a result of what we see, hear and do. users? It is not who you might guess: It’s This dynamic helps explain why so much YouTube. Why? Secondly, if YouTube is more popular than of our education remains instructor lead many of the other conventional search and classroom based. This delivery method Well, let’s go back to the way people learn engines, like Yahoo and the new Bing, then allows for the application of all three learning or educate themselves. The majority of will the customer even find your dealership modalities. people are visual learners. This explains why and/or your inventory on the site? Try this television is so popular. But remember that exercise: Type in the make and model that In understanding this early motion pictures were silent pictures. you sell most often with the city and state information, how The story was completely visual. The Web you operate in, and see who and what you does this help explain applied this approach by providing visual find. For you to participate in YouTube, the process of how content to educate and entertain users. Web try purchasing a Flip Digital Video camera someone then looks for sites with great visuals were adequate. for less than $200 and start using video to a new automobile? differentiate your store from the competition. Then audio was added to the mix. Web sites, We know from various like motion pictures and television, began to What is important to remember is that sources that around 90 use sound to enhance the experience for the applying visual, auditory and kinesthetic percent of shoppers user, or in our case, the car buyer. The media experiences for your buyer are the key to will use the Internet has now progressed where many sites have a helping them learn about you, your product in some form prior to spokesperson welcome your customer to the and your dealership. This should be utilized purchasing a vehicle. site to humanize the technology. in your Web approach, as well as when the While the motivation customer is on the lot. may seem obvious All the while, the consumer is applying (save time and money), kinesthetic learning by trial and error Remember in the end, while 90 percent are these two factors and typing on the keyboard searching for of buyers will use the Web to help in the unique to the Web 2.0 solutions. The physical act of typing utilizes buying process, they still want to have era? Not really. The a similar learning approach like writing is the experience of driving the car prior to idea of “better/faster/ used in the classroom. purchase. And isn’t that a visual, auditory and cheaper” has driven kinesthetic experience? innovation for more So why are customers using YouTube to find than 100 years. and buy a car? It saves them time, and thus, If you are going to be in Orlando at NADA money. How? Well consider the fact that this year, stop by Booth #3024 and say hello. Consumers just want to given the choice of reading instructions on Good luck and good selling. find their information “How to ______” (just fill in the blank with faster and easier. This whatever it is you would like to learn), versus is why the Web has sitting and watching a video that explains the become such an integral same information. Which seems easier? Kirk Manzo is the president of The part of our lives and Manzo Group. He can be contacted at 800.858.6903, or by e-mail at is forever attached to So here are two things you may want to think kmanzo@autosuccessonline.com. the way people buy about with regard to your Web strategy for cars today. What is 2010.20 www.autosuccessonline.com
    • sales&trainingsolution MattWatson 10 TIPS TO IMPROVE INTERNET RESPONSE TIMES IN 2010 Improving Internet 5. Use a fully mobile-enabled CRM 10. Third-party monitoring services — They response times is one system that allows you to view complete can ensure all leads are being responded of the most important steps you can take lead details, send e-mails and log phone to on time. Some services even offer 24- on the path to raising your closing ratios. calls. hour monitoring. Manufacturers know this, and are starting to put a huge emphasis on shortening those 6. Alerts for unanswered leads — Set your While there are several different steps you response times in 2010. Here are some CRM up to e-mail a manager if leads can take to minimize your response time to actions you can take to improve the service aren’t responded to within a certain Internet leads, the most important step you your dealership provides to your online timeframe. can take is committing to take steps in the first customers: place. The expectations of online customers 7. Alert prompts within your CRM are only going to become more demanding, 1. Text messages and e-mail alerts — — Receive pop-up notifications so it’s important to strive to make constant Make sure you are immediately notified automatically when new leads arrive. improvements to your response time, and the when new leads are received. 8. Use a phone calling service that can best time to start is now. 2. Manually sending an e-mail or logging a instantly call the customer when a lead phone call attempt counts as a response; is received. With the right organization, auto-responder e-mails, however, do not response times can be cut to less than count. five minutes! 3. If your CRM supports it, respond to 9. Use a netbook or laptop when you’re on leads from your smart phone. the go to respond to leads. Matt Watson is the chief technical officer for VinSolutions. He can be contacted at 866.626.8489, or by e-mail at4. Lead “buckets” — Don’t assign leads to any particular person, but instead put them in a bucket; the first sales rep who gets to it gets the lead. mwatson@autosuccessonline.com. 2 2 www.autosuccessonline.com
    • sales&trainingsolution TedRubin MarkTewart sales&trainingsolution THE FIVE CHARACTERISTICS THE MARKETING AND SALES GENIUS OF HOWARD STERN: OF A ‘GREAT SALESPERSON’ BUSINESS LESSONS FROM THE SHOCK JOCK Have you ever noticed Often, they convey a request that is really after purchase, but they refer their friends and No, I am not crazy, and Who do you want to be? Decide and declare how some people just a prelude to what they actually need. So, family because they want to share their benefit yes, I am talking about it. I have a saying, “You are who you decide seem to be just born for sales? Why is that? Todd filters what he hears to zone in on the with others who trust them. Work each deal the well-known shock jock. Howard Stern is to be in any given moment.” It does not take What is it about these people that makes need behind the request. You must listen to with the expectation of the same outcome, and a genius for many reasons, and they all apply money, fame, education, connections, other selling appear so effortless? I know many the answer and determine if a deeper dive is only make deals you can both live with and to how you can succeed as a salesperson, people or any other excuse that you might of these “masters of the art,” and it is quite necessary to get to what your customer really enjoy. The happiest customers and the best manager and entrepreneur. presently be sabotaging yourself by using as beautiful to watch them work. I have been wants. sales are created when both sides come to a an excuse to keep you or your business from a student of numerous experts for many full agreement. Let’s examine several of the reasons and being what you want. years, and I can tell you without a doubt, you Third, thoughtfulness is a must if you the lessons that can be learned. First of all, must truly care about people to be a great are trying to win someone over. Similar to Fifth, be sincere. This is the most significant lesson No. 1 in business is to never be boring. Another essential element of success is salesperson. developing a friendship, thoughtfulness is characteristic of a great salesperson, in the Although, you may not agree with Howard to create a following. Make you and your key to building up the customer’s confidence same way it is of being a great friend or Stern’s humor or persona, he certainly isn’t business personable. The more personable My current business partner, Todd Smith, in you and what you can do for him or her. building a long-lasting relationship. It is boring and that not only attracts people, it you are and the more you communicate that is one of these people. We have worked I am always happily surprised when I see a the prerequisite to effectively utilizing the keeps people listening — even those who say in an endearing and enduring fashion the together for about five years now. I can tell salesperson direct a customer in an area that other tools mentioned here. To be great, you they might not like him or his show. I liken greater following you will create. If you have you unquestionably, he truly cares about his is unexpected, but clearly for the customer’s must be completely sincere in attentiveness, it to the train-wreck theory: People may say a customer who has not heard from you in customers. Here is what I have learned from benefit. I have even seen my own business thoughtfulness and consistency. Sincerity is they are horrified by something, but it does not some fashion for 18 months, then it is as if watching him, and others. partner redirect a potential customer to a not really something you can learn; it is more keep them from paying attention to it. they never did business with you. You are consultant or another service that will serve about who you are. It has to be a part of you forgotten and all the hard work that went into First, he starts to build friendships and them better at this time. He would rather see and is about being conscious and focused, and One of the lessons to writing good advertising creating a customer and potential follower is relationships with his customers right them successful (and hopefully come back having a real interest in the person you are copy is in having a great headline. Ninety gone. Most people work so hard on getting from the start. He engages in very personal to us), than to sell a product or service that working to help. It is about being aware of percent of the effectiveness of a good sales new customers that they ignore the customers communication with everyone that he interacts might not reach the peak of its potential. yourself, who you are and who you want to be. letter can be traced to an attractive headline. they have. You must move your customers with. Watching this process unfold, you see Work hard for your customer, and let them If someone is not drawn in by the headline, from being customers to being followers that one of the most significant differences see it. Offer options. Make recommendations. As a final footnote, I find it interesting that as they certainly won’t read the rest of the letter. and fans. Howard Stern works very hard at between a good salesperson and a great Thoughtfully adjust expectations, if necessary. I thought about the truly great salespeople I The same rule applies to having an effective creating consistent followers and then creates salesperson is that the good one is trying Make it clear to them that you are working and know, I found that many of them are also my meet and greet when you first come in contact fans from his followers. to sell. The great one is just trying to help. thinking of ways to help them get what they friends. I realize that is not an accident. In my with a potential customer. Your potential Customers come to you for help; they do not want. People almost always acknowledge this study of the traits of a great salesperson, it customers are going to make instant and Howard Stern’s radio show is like a radio soap come to be sold. effort and respond appreciatively. appears that these characteristics are basically lasting judgments about you. You have to get opera, with real-live stories involving him and the same as those required to be a great friend. someone’s attention, stand out from the crowd his co-stars. Each person on the show opens Second, you need to be attentive and know Fourth, consistency is more important This is something that seems so obvious, but I themselves up in a personal way that invites how to listen. When I have watched Todd and give a compelling reason for someone than weight. One of the reasons that great believe most people miss it. Think about it…. the listeners into very private view of their and other greats interact, they are completely to keep paying attention. Howard Stern gets salespeople stay great is because they create lives. The listeners feel connected because they focused on the customer, their needs and attention and keeps people listening. a following. Their customers know they can Ted Rubin is a founding partner of can relate to what’s going on in their world. requirements. Todd always tries to read trust them. They can rely on the fact that there ActivEngage. He can be contacted at The Stern Show was reality radio before there between the lines. People do not always know Secondly, be contrarian. The world is full of is benefit on both sides of the deal. Therefore, 866.387.9061, or by e-mail at was reality TV. Don’t be afraid to show some how to articulate exactly what they want. trubin@autosuccessonline.com. what I call “me too’s.” Decide who you are they not only continue to come back purchase warts and be personal with your customers; and be that person or business. Don’t look at everyone else and copy what they are doing. they will connect with you on a deeper level The masses are not successful and copying and trust you more for talking about the so- others just makes you another faceless entity. called “elephant in the room” that nobody The fact is that you stand a much greater would mention. Be vulnerable and people will chance of being successful if you do exactly let you in; act perfect and people will shun you. the opposite of the masses. Be somebody, do Nobody can relate to perfection. something and be newsworthy in doing it. There are clues to success and you can find Don’t be a copycat. Howard Stern stands out them all over. Often the best places to look and goes against the grain of what everyone are in places most would not look. Somehow else is doing in radio and therefore has I doubt that MBA classes are being taught created a category of one. today about the marketing and sales genius of the “Howard Stern Show.” The reality Next you should declare who you are and who there is probably more lessons to be learned you want to be. Don’t wait for some magic in listening to two hours of Howard Stern person or media to anoint you or certify that than taking two hours of an MBA class. Who you are something. Howard Stern declared knew you could learn so much about business himself the “King of All Media,” and that from a so-called shock jock? was when he was almost solely known for his radio show. Because Stern was willing to decide what he wanted, declare and then Mark Tewart is the president of Tewart shout it from the rooftops, people started to Enterprises. He can be contacted at accept it and treat him as the king of all media. 866.429.6844, or by e-mail at mtewart@autosuccessonline.com. Suddenly, Howard Stern was in movies, TV, 2 CDs and multiple different forms of media. 2 4 5 www.autosuccessonline.com th #1 sales-improvement magazine for the automotive professional the l i t
    • marketingsolution MattBaker WANT SUCCESS IN 2010? STOP PLAYING MIND GAMES Open any trade by thinking, “I’ve got this one,” his chances A: Giving sales people too much time to publication this month of making it go up dramatically. Just like the concentrate on the negatives will only make and you’re bound to find at least one article basketball player, dealership sales teams need things worse. Keep your sales team active. packed full of speculations on what we’ll to believe in their ability to put deals together Get them prospecting on the phone. If you’re encounter into 2010. Rest assured, this is not so they see the opportunity instead of reasons looking for a better way to network with the that kind of article. why deals won’t come together consumers in your market, consider getting your sales people involved in community During a time when many are contemplating Encouraging confidence among your sales events. This helps your sales team prospect New Year’s resolutions, I have been team is not always an easy task. Ensure good to potential buyers while promoting your inundated with questions from GMs, dealers work is recognized publicly, and remember dealership as a community focused business. and even dealership salespeople who are to pass any potential issues up the chain of looking for ideas to increase business or command while pushing positive news down All dealers want to stop advertising during enhance personal performance in 2010. to your salespeople. Consider bringing in a down economy. In reality however, the While each question focused on achieving outside influencers to shake things up. This decision to stop advertising only makes the different results, all of the answers boiled can include auto consultants, motivational problem worse. I have a rule I live by that down to the fact that each person’s outcome consultants, or even books and tapes states, “Things in motion stay in motion. this year will be directly related to their designed to inspire sales professionals. Things at rest stay at rest.” In order to ensure personal outlook. your dealership stays “in motion,” you’ll It may sound crazy, but simply changing need to keep advertising to attract more Want to get a better understanding of what your frame of mind can make luck appear customers. More customer visits means that means? I’ve compiled a few of the most as though it is on your side. Things begin to more opportunity for your sales team and pressing questions I was asked, in an effort to come together and ultimately more deals get ultimately more money in your pocket. Busy help you gain insight on some different ways closed — no matter what apparent obstacles sales people are productive sales people and to improve yourself and your business in the may be out there. before you know it, they’ll be “accidently” new year. closing deals. Q: All of our customers know that Q: “In my market, unemployment is dealerships are struggling, which makes Take the initiative to help them get and stay high and credit is tight. Given our current them want to negotiate a better deal. What motivated. Suggest books or tapes that they situation, what can we do to get more deals can I do to make more money this year? can engage in every day, which are focused bought?” Dealer, Phoenix, AZ on creating or discovering personal drive. If Dealer, Detroit, MI you’re looking for a place to start, I highly A: Increasing gross is a key aspect of my recommend the book Rhinoceros Success A: This is not an easy question to answer. business, just as it is with any dealership. by Scott Alexander. And if motivational Not because high unemployment and tight As a result I’ve spent a lot of time over the tapes seem more appealing to you, check credit are impossible obstacles to overcome, course of the last year watching the trends in out Get the Edge by Tony Robbins. Both are but rather because the answer is not often consumer car buying. That being said, I’ve powerful tools and have had a remarkable what people want to hear. In cases like this, a noticed an interesting pattern over the last impact on many of the salespeople I’ve dealership’s ability to close deals relies more seven or eight months. Our retail sales teams worked with. on mindset than it does on magic tricks. have actually seen an increase in grosses over this period when working with dealers Do you have a question about how to I hesitate to share this because I don’t want to across the U.S. How can that be? It seems improve your personal performance or hurt feelings, but in my experience I’ve come that over the last 12 to 14 months, people in your business throughout 2010? E-mail across a lot of people at dealerships who have the market to buy a car have been stockpiling your question to me at the address below gotten caught up in all the reasons why deals money for that big purchase. Since these and I’ll be more than happy to offer some can’t get done. Once this “doom and gloom” consumers have chosen to save their cash suggestions in an upcoming issue of philosophy takes hold of one person, it can before they buy, they have more funds AutoSuccess. spread across the dealership like wildfire, available to put toward a down payment. ultimately limiting everyone’s ability to see opportunity. Moral of the story: Focus less on negotiating price and more on down payment and the Think of it like this. A basketball player customer’s monthly payment. lines up to shoot a free throw and thinks, “I Matt Baker is the vice president of sales hope I don’t miss this.” With a mindset like Q: My sales guys need an attitude for G&A Marketing. He can be contacted that, what do you think the odds are that adjustment. What will get them to break at 866.618.8248, or by e mail at e-mail mbaker@autosuccessonline.com. he’ll make the shot? Slim. If, instead, that out of their negative mindset? basketball player approached the free throw GM, St. Louis, MO26 www.autosuccessonline.com
    • sales&trainingsolution TomHopkins WINNING WOLFINGTON DEMONSTRATION The Name on Your Grandfathers Brougham A TRUSTED NAME IN THE AUTOMOTIVE BUSINESS SINCE 1876. When it comes time the demonstrating, too many fail to prepare because they try to make themselves the stars to demonstrate a properly. Doing your homework is vital. of the demonstration. They want to show vehicle, you need to be well prepared. Too Knowing the decision-maker’s history, and how well they know the vehicle. They spout many automotive salespeople invest most of his or her likes and dislikes will help you off technical information about engine size, their preparation time in vehicle knowledge, direct your demonstration in a manner that fuel economy and handling that may be of which is very important, but spend little time will be most acceptable. p little or no interest to the client. In fact, the thinking about how to actually demonstrate client may not even understand what they’re vehicles so their clients quickly envision saying. “View yourself as a sort of themselves as owners. There are very matchmaker. The two specific things you can do to accelerate their parties you believe are Learn this now: Get yourself out of the acceptance of a vehicle, thus leading to more a perfect match for one picture. Let the vehicle shine! The people closed sales. another are your product and you are demonstrating to should be up close this prospective and personal with the vehicle. If they ask a Before getting to the point of demonstrating, client... question about the navigation system, tell you have to use your other selling skills well. them which buttons to push to make it work The original Brougham, designed by Alexander J. Wolfington Let’s say you did just that. You used some of — don’t do it for them. The same goes for was an enclosed four-wheeled carriage that was driven by a coachman and a single horse. your excellent prospecting methods to find a any buttons, dials or displays in the vehicle. couple who needs a new vehicle. You made a You are the tour guide…not the chauffeur. 1876 ALEX J. WOLFINGTON BUILDS BROUGHAM CARRIAGES -THE WOLFINGTON CARRIAGE COMPANY competent original contact and warmed them If you’re not getting them directly and up nicely. They seem very comfortable with personally involved with the vehicle, you’re HARRY J. WOLFINGTON TAKES OVER COMPANY. ONE OF THE FIRST TO PROMOTE THE SALE OF 1910 TWO BODIES FOR THE SAME CHASSIS. CLOSED BODY FOR THE WINTER, OPEN FOR THE SUMMER you. You then qualified as to their needs by not selling — you’re showing. You need to asking the right questions and are confident get yourself off that stage and be the one 1920 HARRY J. WOLFINGTON CREATED BUS, HEARSE AND AMBULANCE BODIES you have a vehicle that will truly be good for It’s your job to directing the performance instead. them. introduce them and 1932 HARRY A. WOLFINGTON CREATED THE WOLFINGTON BODY COMPANY. BY 1940, give them an When it comes to discussing service or IT BECAME ONE OF THE LARGEST DISTRIBUTORS FOR SUPERIOR STUDEBAKERS Now, it’s time for the show to begin…and opportunity to get to know warranties, be sure to have brochures and each other.” 1935 HARRY J. WOLFINGTON TOOK ON PLYMOUTH DESOTO DEALERSHIP you are the master of ceremonies. Are you other items that you can hand to the decision- properly prepared for this step in the sales makers that provide the details you will 1960 EUSTACE WOLFINGTON - WOLFINGTON CHEVROLET process? deliver verbally. Hand them your calculator In some cases, you may get the feeling to run the numbers for any questions that 1962 EUSTACE WOLFINGTON - WOLFINGTON MOTOR COMPANY Giving a winning demonstration is not that the decision-maker is challenging you come up. Show testimonial letters from other 1972 HARRY J. WOLFINGTON SR. - HILL VOLKSWAGEN unlike presenting at the Oscars. It’s not to demonstrate and present an offer better satisfied clients. This creates both physical easy preparing for such a major event. Even than he or she can decline. They may come and emotional involvement. And the more 1973 VINCE WOLFINGTON - CAREY LIMOUSINE INTERNATIONAL tougher is performing before all of the best across like this, “Okay, Mr/Ms. Professional involvement you get during the presentation, and brightest in Hollywood, not to mention Salesperson, you’ve got my attention and you the more comfortable they’ll be with long- 1978 EUSTACE WOLFINGTON - HALF A CAR the millions of television viewers. have 20 minutes to show me why I should term involvement with your product. 1980 HARRY J. WOLFINGTON SR. - HILL LEASING part with my hard-earned money for what Chances are good that you will probably you have to offer.” It’s almost like a dare At the very least, have the stories about other 1999 HARRY J. WOLFINGTON JR. - THE WOLFINGTON GROUP never have to face such a challenge. with some people. You have to be prepared to clients who purchased this type of vehicle in SEAN WOLFINGTON - BZ RESULTS However, every demonstration you make dazzle them during your demonstration. mind and how happy they are with it. Perhaps 2001 can potentially earn you the award of a new the experience of others might be just what’s THE WOLFINGTON GROUP IS HONORED AND PROUD TO CONTINUE THE LEGACY OF THE WOLFINGTON NAME. client, a hefty addition to the company’s It’s important that you note here that the needed to help this new client off the fence bottom line and a nice little “fee for service” vehicle is the star of your demonstration. and into the driver’s seat. Designing Comprehensive NEW & Used Car Sales Events with Innovative for you and your loved ones to enjoy. Always You are not. View yourself as a sort of keep the potential reward in mind when you matchmaker. The two parties you believe World-renowned master sales trainer Tom Direct Mail, Live Call Center and CSI-Friendly Staff to ensure a Stress-Free Sales Event. are preplanning a demonstration. That reward are a perfect match for one another are your Hopkins is the chairman of Tom Hopkins or goal should be inspiration enough to keep product and this prospective client. It’s your International. He can be contacted at you working on honing your demonstration job to introduce them and give them an 866.347.6148, or by e-mail at thopkins@autosuccessonline.com. skills until they are as smooth as silk. opportunity to get to know each other. While most people agree that the fun is in Many salespeople falter and lose sales FOR YOUR FREE NO-OBLIGATION MARKETING PLAN, CALL HARRY WOLFINGTON JR. OR DREW COTA, NATIONAL ACCOUNTS MANAGER AT 866-386-0625 WE INVITE OUR DEALER PARTNERS TO STOP BY OUR N.A.D.A. HOSPITALITY BOOTH FOR HORS DOEUVRES AND REFRESHMENTS · BOOTH NO. 252128 www.autosuccessonline.com
    • marketingsolution DrakeA.Baerresen AND, FOR OUR NEXT EVENT... What reaction do you or not. These dealers are committing to sweet spot for shoppers on a budget. Auction get when you tell change and they are taking action to integrate strategies, red tag and scratch-and-dent sales someone you sell cars? It’s not always a good a new way of thinking, which will give them continue to bring folks in the door. Focus on reaction, is it? Auto retailing also hasn’t been a greater control of their financial fate. the bargain vehicle shopper for your event. portrayed well in the movies. Classics like The marketing pitch could be something Cadillac Man (1990), Used Cars (1980), and Like every sports coach knows, you have like, “Come on in and buy these cars and most recently, the Goods: Live Hard, Sell to be able to execute on the basics to be trucks before we ship them to the auction,” or Hard take all the clichés from our business effective. You don’t have to go back to “You can buy them now at near-auction and and exaggerate them for lots of laughs. These square one, but you have to make sure all discounted pricing and we don’t have to pay to days, however, not many sales professionals your sales and marketing initiatives are ship them to the sale.” Lots of great tag lines or dealers are laughing. We have gone targeted for maximum effectiveness. The and pitches are available for creative thinkers. through some drastic market changes marketing mix needs to incorporate purpose- impacting our sales volume, and I am seeing driven marketing messages that tie in direct To have a successful event, look for an event dealers falling into two camps. The first camp marketing channels. This may include online marketing company that offers a custom is the dealers who have tightened up, but strategies (dynamic lead-generating Web event Web site, direct mail materials and a are still pursuing a market strategy that has sites), e-mail and database marketing (direct process to target the right customers, and basically been the same for the last 10 years. mail) and some exciting event marketing design assistance for ads in local newspapers, That means advertising in the newspaper, initiatives to attract fresh customers. Web sites or billboards. It’s important that television and maybe some billboards and you maintain continuity all through the deferring to the OEM sales strategy. I guess Each of these segments is part of the promotion of the sales event. this time they are expecting different results.marketing foundation and critical for a holistic approach. As dealers look for ways to Utilizing a targeted direct mail promotion is Then the next camp is the dealers who differentiate themselves from the competition, also a critical part of advertising your event. are tired of forces outside their control they are recognizing that connecting with You want to make sure your direct marketing determining whether they will make a profit customers face to face is becoming more event vendor can identify prospects that are important. There at the right point in the buying cycle. These are already a people are more desirable and a much better number of authors quality prospect. There are various ways addressing the marketing companies do this, so be sure online specifics, their methodology makes sense for your Friends? so I will be focusing on the growing trend of dealership. Don’t “shotgun” direct mail pieces, but use a more targeted “rifle-shot” process to hit the right prospects. Share! event marketing. Unlike the story in The Goods, Be sure to prep your team members for the event and keep them excited and engaged. Loyalty Driver dealers aren’t Follow the plan and make sure each customer enewsletter content bringing in coming on the lot is made to feel welcome. outside teams to Then, reinforce that this event is absolutely a connects you to manage events, great deal for them and the values offered are social networks. but working with truly unique. This validates to the customers event marketing that the event is legitimate and builds on the companies to excitement you created in your pre-event provide a process marketing materials. strategy, as well as an exciting and Also, consider extra incentives for your cross platform salespeople for the event — a spiff on each marketing/ customer a salesperson registers for the Friends share great content... promotions game event and another spiff for converting a making new connections for you. plan. prospect into a demo ride, for example. Event marketing can be incredibly profitable for Many auto your store, but there is a right and wrong way shoppers these to execute this strategy. I invite you to e-mail Innovative Enewsletter Solutions days are looking me for a list of items to address for successful loyaltydriver.com | 866-964-6397 for value- dealership event marketing. priced sales, so highlighting Drake A. Baerresen is the vice president inexpensive of sales and marketing and co-founder of pre-owned and Turn-Key Events. He can be contacted at certified pre- 866.900.7714, or by e-mail at drakeb@autosuccessonline.com. owned units3 are right in the0 www.autosuccessonline.com
    • sales&trainingsolution TonyClark & BernieMock DON’T FEAR ONLINE NEGOTIATION customer just like a customer in our physical We have seen other successful dealerships facility. Do they negotiate? Yes, they do. A like Feldman Imports who close a 40 percent There is a storm brewing in the automotive recent general manager asked me, “Don’t you ratio of the online negotiation leads they industry, caused by the desire of the think they will call the next dealership and get. Knowing the national closing ratio of consumers. Consumers want to experience shop us using our numbers?” We said, “Yes Internet leads runs around six percent, it their buying process online directly with their they will, and they probably are anyway.” seems to us that we should look into this local dealership. We also found it is an unfair competitive storm and receive the value of this process advantage over your competition. This was in our demanding market conditions that we Many dealerships we are working with are clear at the Bill Hood Auto Group, when they face today. thrown off by the process of this consumer sold 10 units in the first week of turning on push. One thing we know: The negotiation the program. Again, we stress that you should not have to can’t be handled like a regular Internet lead. go headlong into this type of engaging the The customer wants to work the process customer without examining the processes completely then enter the dealership to pick We see the online negotiation as the new that make this a success. The storm is out up their new vehicle. The consumer wants to way the consumer wants to do business. In there, and we in the industry must rise to give the dealership all their information on the the industry, we must set the processes in the meet the storm head on. Processes make this trade, their credit and financing or lease and let dealership to encourage the consumer to do the a reality today and truly can produce what the the dealership give the consumer a proposal. business as they want. In fact, with the right dealers always wanted: incremental sales by processes in place, the CSI goes up and the a new process. For those of us in the business, this may seem back end increases because the three-hour wait to go against the way we have operated in in the process is adverted. The F&I department the past and the principles we were taught by has a fresh customer to sell products to, and Tony Clark and Bernie Mock are co- those who preceded us. What we have found the customer is happy to listen. What we have founders of the National Independent is the consumer will give us the information found in dealerships that are progressive is that Consultant Consortium. They can be and our showroom has truly gone virtual. the need is there to change their processes to contacted at 866.590.4651, or by e-mail at A virtual showroom demands we treat the match that aggressiveness. nicc@autosuccessonline.com.32 www.autosuccessonline.com
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