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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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  • 1. Check Us Out Online at Volume 5 • Issue 12
  • 2. We help drive more than33,000 used car sales a day.Day, after day, after day.You can’t find a harder working sales partner than jump-start almost a third of all used car sales in America – that’smore than a million a month. Last year alone, we helped generate awhopping $99 billion in sales. No one brings together more buyersand sellers. And no one gives you a more efficient way to get yourcars in front of serious shoppers.Call 888-249-6860 today – and start making more salestomorrow. And the day after tomorrow. WHAT WE DO WORKS. The ultimate automotive marketplace.©2007, LLC. All Rights Reserved. “” is a registered trademark of TPI Holdings, Inc. used under exclusive license.Source: 2006 Prospect Close Rate Study, MORPACE International, Inc.
  • 3. DON’T BE FOOLED BY COPYCATS!! COPYCATS When you need a quality sales event that pays, use the original Turn-Key Sales Event provider....Turn-Key Events DEALERSHIPS AVERAGE 410% MORE UPS WITH OUR EVENTS THAN LEADING SALES. NO TEAMS, NO COMMISSIONS, JUST TRAFFIC!! IN APRIL 2007, THE AVERAGE RESPONSE PER EVENT WAS 531 UPS AND HOT LEADS Plus, we include everything for you... Direct Mailer or Parcel • Video Sales Event Website • Balloons • Mirror Tags Registration Cards • Incentives • Grand Prize Insurance • BDC Scripts and more! If you’ve been fooled, call our“I’ve been fooled by a copycat and now need the original so that I can make lots of money” Hotline at 866-665-5504. The Driving Force Behind Automotive Copyright © 2007 Turn-Key Events and it’s licensors.
  • 4. The Top Ten Sales Killers 8 TomHopkins Three Powerful Words to Sell More Effectively 10 BrianTracy Sincerity Wins the Day 11 DavidJacobson Three Dealers Who Are Hitting the Ball Out of the Park with Their Pre-Owned Sales Online Used Car Marketing: Three Leading Dealers Share Best Practices 12 DeanL.Evans The Road to ‘Customers for Life’ Starts With ‘Employees for Life’ 14 RandyMcPherson Let Your Fantasy Be Your Reality 15 MarkTewart Brand Yourself 18 DavidThomas Don’t Forget the Waiver 19 TonyDupaquier 12 The Art of Shameless Self Promotion 20 RalphR.Roberts Fraud, Scams, Identity Theft and Data Breaches... Who’s Got Time for all This 24 DeniseRichardson Making the Most of Your Media Interview, Part 2 Getting the Radio or Webcast Phone Interview 26 PattiWood Accountable to a Higher Calling 28 JesseBiter ‘I’ll Sell My Trade Myself and Come Back Later.’ Not 29 JeffMorrill How to Hire, Train, and Develop 20 Car-A-Month Sales People, Part 1 30 BobCarmack Your Dealership Web Site: Know How Customers Find You and What Their Shopping Experience Is 32 JonathanG.Edwards The Leading Edge of Leadership 34 MichaelYork A Line in the Sand 36 SeanWolfington How to Heal the Sting of a Customer Service ‘Challenge’ 37 AllenCheek Training Key to Dealership’s 20 Years of Success 38 PatrickLuck Working and Thriving in a Constructive Culture 40 TeresaBordenet Take a Free Ride Co-op Advertising Aids in Reducing Cost per Sale by Over 50 Percent 41 RalphPaglia Patrick Luck, Editor & Publisher Brian Ankney, Sales-improvement Strategist Susan Givens, Vice President Brian Balash, Sales-improvement Strategist 3411 Pinnacle Gardens Drive Thomas Williams, Creative Director Rachel Bussone, Sales-improvement Strategist Louisville, Kentucky 40245 toll free: 877.818.6620 Dave Davis, Creative Strategist & Editor facsimile: 502.588.3170 web: helping to promote... II Corinthians 9:7 Each one must do as he has made up his mind, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. God is the source of all supplyAutoSuccess Magazine is published monthly at 3411 Pinnacle Gardens Drive, Louisville, Kentucky, 40245; 502.588.3155, fax 502.588.3170. Direct all subscription and customer service inquiries to 877.818.6620 or Subscription rate is $75 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 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 magazine to which thismagazine 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 inwhole 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 thatnames be removed by calling 877.818.6620. Printed in the USA. Postmaster: Send address changes to AutoSuccess Magazine, 3411 Pinnacle Gardens Drive, Louisville, Kentucky 40245.
  • 5. sts fos ls ms sf fis TomHopkins sales and training solution The Top Ten Sales Killers Any veteran in the business to avoid using the word “contract” signs out of your eyes when you’re with automotive business when handling the financial details of a clients. If they suspect you’re pushing the can tell you a story vehicle sale. We all know that contracts are sale because of what’s in it for you instead about the one that got legally binding documents and require legal of what’s in their best interests, they’ll find away. If you’ve been efforts to get out of them. Call your contract another dealership to do business with. in the business more an “agreement,” “form,” or “paperwork.”than three months, you may already have The mental image is less threatening. Think Sales Killer No. 8 – Not Knowingyour own story. about the words you use and replace any How to Close negative word-picture images with gentler, In many cases, all you have to do is ask aHowever, veterans who are successful in more positive ones. direct question in order to close a sale. “Dothis business today learned valuable lessons you have your own financing or would youfrom those situations and, hopefully, never Sales Killer No. 4 – Not Investing like us to assist you with that?”repeated them. The same should go for you, Time in Building Rapportas well. Good rapport builds trust. No one will want Sales Killer No. 9 – Not Paying to make a purchase from someone they don’t Attention to DetailsAs challenging as the business of selling like and trust. Don’t just jump right into a If you skim over details or shortcut yourvehicles might be for some, losing sales presentation on your product. Get to know presentation because you’ve done it so manycan be unbelievably easy. Learn from the your client a bit. times that you’re bored with it, you’ll losemistakes of others so you won’t have many sales. Remember, every presentation is newof the sad stories to tell. Here is a list of the Sales Killer No. 5 – Lack of a to your client. So give it with enthusiasm andtop ten sales killers to avoid. Qualification System without shortcuts unless your client indicates A certain percentage of the people you that certain details you would normallySales Killer No. 1 – Lack of talk with will not be good candidates for cover aren’t of interest to them. This carriesProfessional Appearance ownership. If they don’t have the need or the over to your paperwork and ability to handleIf you want people to listen to you and heed money for a vehicle, there is no sale. Your a computer (if your orders are entered thatyour advice, you have to come across both in challenge is to figure this out as early in way). Any missing information can causeappearance and demeanor as a professional your communication with them as possible. clients to quickly lose faith in their decisionautomotive expert. This means that you Come up with at least three or four questions and walk away.are appropriately groomed. You walk with the answers to which will tell you if they’reconfidence. People will buy from you based qualified to own. Sales Killer No. 10 – Poor Fulfillmentmore on your own conviction and enthusiasm This ties into paying attention to details. Iffor your product than they will your product Sales Killer No. 6 - Not Knowing you or your dealership does not have theknowledge. When to Stop Presenting and Close practices and policies in place to properly the Sale fulfill the expectations of your clients, youSales Killer No. 2 – Talking Too Much Too many sales people think they have to will find yourself working harder and harderWhen you’re talking, you’re telling. When tell potential clients everything they know to get new business. Invest some time andyou ask questions to get clients talking about about the vehicle. Even after a client has effort in understanding the proper procedurestheir needs, you’re selling. You’re finding indicated that it’s right for them, the sales for delivery and follow up on new purchases.out what they want to own. Only then can person keeps talking. Doing so could easily Do not promise anything above or beyondyou guide them to the right car, truck, van turn the client off about working with you the company standard. Yet, strive to exceedor SUV. and cost you the sale. the client’s expectations in all areas.Sales Killer No. 3 – Your Vocabulary Sales Killer No. 7 – Ego World-renowned master sales trainer Tom Hopkins is the chairman of Tom HopkinsWords create pictures in our minds. Certain Selling is a service business. You must set International. He can be contacted atwords that are inherent to selling turn aside your wants and needs to serve the 866.347.6148, or by e-mail atpeople off. For example, I caution people in wants and needs of others. Get the dollar 8
  • 6. America’s Preferred E-Commerce Customer Provider.There’s no question about it: 20% more AutoUSA leadsturn into buyers than any other 3rd party lead source. And a recent study using vehicle registration data proves it. That means you get the lowest cost per sale in the business. No wonder AutoUSA is the preferred Increase your sales today! source of e-comm leads for AutoNation. AutoUSA is even the priority distributor for leads. 1-888-208-8764 Any questions?
  • 7. sts fos ls ms sf fis BrianTracy sales and training solution Three Powerful Words to Sell More Effectively There are three sometimes a bit more hesitant to answer a Once a person has stated their opinion on a powerful words and “think” question but they are much firmer in subject, they are locked into it. They almost phrases that you can defending their position once they have. always will defend and justify their decision use as you proceed rather than change it. Carefully phrased through the sales questions are powerful tools in every part conversation in order Carefully of the sales process. The more of them you to have the most successful results. phrased have and the better you use them, the more competent you will appear and feel, and the questions are more sales you will make.The first is the word “feel.” For example,“How do you feel about that?” is a very easy powerful tools in Use “feel” during the early part of yourquestion to answer. It is almost impossible every part of the sales conversation. Focus on getting goodnot to express a feeling when asked for one.A few other questions to gain an emotional sale process. information rather than trying to sell. Second, move to asking questions using theresponse from your prospect are, “How do words “think” and “in your opinion” later inyou feel about shopping for a new vehicle?” The third expression is “in your opinion.” the conversation when you want a definiteor “How do you feel about leasing?” The word “feel” is soft, the word “think” is answer or you are moving to close the sale. harder, and the words “in your opinion” areThe second and even more significant word the most definite and specific of all. Whenis “think”. When you ask, “Do you think this you ask, “In your opinion, is this the best Brian Tracy is the chairman and CEOwould be better than what you’re currently choice of vehicle for what you want?” you of Brian Tracy International. He can bedriving?” you are asking the person to take are asking the prospect to take a definite contacted at 866.300.9881, or by e-maila much more definite stand. People are stand. at 10
  • 8. sts fos ls ms sf fis DavidJacobson sales and training solution Sincerity Wins the Day How often do we would look forward to, for making you happy communicate with with this price? Future business. Please people and feel the send me customers. That is how I will benefit lack of sincerity? from giving you this price. Does that sound fair?”Nothing is more of a turn-off to a customerthan this. Your customer is anticipating this Customers will usually respond withfrom the beginning. They’re looking for the something like this:plaid jacket, used car sales person or maybeslick politician type. Be careful that you’re “Oh, I sure will, you can count on it.”not in these categories. All they will do at this point is start selling we’re this close to a cureIn most instances, sales people seem insincere you on the reasons you will benefit fromwhen they try too hard, use clichés or pitches giving them the price you did, which firmsthey recently learned, or when they’re being up your deal. This is exactly what you wantsuperficial. On the other hand, when you to happen.say something with sincerity, it melts intoyour presentation like butter. It solidifies any Two sales people can attempt to make thepoint you’re trying to make. same point and yet, one will seem so sincere, while the other comes across as shallow.Can sales people have the ability toconsciously choose to be sincere? Yes, Do you believe you sound sincere? If not,because that sincerity can be learned. One try this. Look in the mirror. Find somethingof the ways to learn sincerity is to take the you like about yourself. Give yourself apressure off you. This is accomplished compliment and notice how you feel. Youby being confident, which dovetails from should feel good about yourself. Now findknowledge and allows you to be real and something you do not like about yourself andhonest when dealing with the customer. still compliment yourself. You will probably feel bad. This works. You will see and feelThe key points of sincerity are eye contact, the difference.body language and body contact. Juvenile Diabetes Do you know why you feel the difference? affects millionsLet’s say you’re trying to make the point that Because if you lie, you will not convince Mary Tyler Moore International Chairman and causes long-the customer is being given a rare, special yourself otherwise. Don’t practice beingprice. It helps to lean over the desk, lower sincere by lying. This is not your goal. There term complications like blindnessyour voice and say it with eye contact. is enough to work with by being honorable. and kidney failure. Not to mention Besides, customers will see through you. pain and worry no kid should have“There is no reason to have to sell this car to live with. But we’re closer thanat this price; however, I understand that it is Does this mean that if you have a high gross ever to a cure. Your help makesnecessary if I want to earn your business. The profit you are lying to them about getting aonly thing I ask is that you refer customers good deal? No, because, ultimately, people life-saving research possible. Callto me, and please don’t discuss prices with will pay what they believe something is 1.800.533.CURE or visitthem. I will treat them fairly.” worth. If you and your service come with the package, then it is probably worth more toWas that a strong statement? You bet. Look them than your competitor’s the messages you have given the customer.They are the only one getting this deal. Not Sincerity is the glue that binds you to youreven their friends can get it. word and your customer to you.You must use the correct body language whendelivering these messages to your customer- all the time. Even when delivering a simple David Jacobson is the founder andmessage, such as the following: president of GrooveCar Inc. He can be contacted at 866.663.9038, or by e-mail at“Mr. Customer, do you know the only thing I #1 sales-improvement magazine for the automotive professional 11
  • 9. fs feature solution DeanL.Evans Three Dealers Who Are Hitting Online Used Car Marketing: the Ball Out of the Park Three Leading Dealers with Their Pre-Owned Sales Share Best PracticesYou probably don’t need anyone to tell you Ashley leapt into the world of automotive information up front - including photos of The Most Visibility Money Can Buy used cars more heavily online was our Reuben Muinosthat the Internet can help your used vehicle retailing four years ago, after graduating flaws - will win buyers’ trust and business “From our perspective, the primary value of experience in the sub-prime lending - in this day and age, it’s pretty from Colgate with a degree in English. in the end.” the Internet for used car sales lies in visibility. Many customers with poor credit think thatmuch a given. But finding the most effective She began in sales at Paragon Acura and There’s no other way to make your entire they can’t qualify for a new car loan. Thatway to use your Internet investment to sell was quickly promoted to Internet manager. As Many Leads as the inventory as visible to such a large audience may not be the case, but the fact that theymore used cars in your particular market After stints managing a floor sales team Process Can Handle of car buyers, and the cost is quite low. With expect to buy a used vehicle makes themmay not be so straightforward. and the Business Development Center, she “Our fundamental strategy isn’t very other media, you might highlight one or two more receptive to our marketing. And the is now marketing director for this two-store complicated: we acquire as many quality special vehicles, but the Internet gives you fact that many sub-prime customers areWe recently spoke with three dealers who business. used car leads as possible. We buy leads the chance to make every used vehicle on eager to apply for credit online gives us ahave blazed their own paths and are enjoying from third parties, we obtain them from your lot stand out for the people who might great opportunity to expose them to our usedgreat success in this area. They were eager to Constantly Fine-Tuning Honda and we take a number of approaches be interested in it.”share their stories with AutoSuccess. car inventory.” “Paragon Honda is the No. 1 ‘Certified Used’ - including search engine marketing, print, Honda dealership in the country, and both and radio - to drive used car buyers to our Be Careful Not to Blow It Selling More Than Just the CarAs you’ll see, some of their advice stores do very well with used vehicles of all own Web site. One reason this works is “Given this opportunity, you have to be “Most dealers understand that selling a newoverlaps and applies directly to virtuallyall dealerships. By contrast, some is more different makes - so we’re definitely doing our strong Internet sales process, which careful not to blow it. The biggest mistake car involves selling the dealership itself,specific to characteristics that define their something right here. But to say ‘something’ can handle the volume and convert leads at I’ve made in this part of our business has the sales experience, the service, and so on. is really a simplification. We’re successful higher-than-average rates.” been to post inventory on our Web site and Business Alliances Manager, But sometimes they leave that out of therespective businesses. But even here thereare lessons to be drawn. There may be no because we’re doing a lot of things right, and not revisit it regularly. It has to be current, Galpin Motors, equation when selling a used car. We makereason for you to translate your Web site into constantly fine-tuning to find the right mix of it has to be detailed and the pricing needs San Fernando, CA it a point to provide multiple photos and a Barry MandelSpanish, for example, but the underlying approaches.” to be competitive with what other dealers detailed description of every used vehicle,point Reuben Muinos of Galpin Motors in are doing. You also have to keep an eye on Galpin Motors was founded in 1946, and but we also stress our long history, ourSan Fernando, CA makes is important: Pay Biggest Mistake how your competition is merchandising their it’s a powerhouse: it’s been the No. 1 volume integrity, our warranties and our extensiveattention to how the demographics in your “Early on, I made the mistake of assuming products. Falling behind in this regard is a Ford dealer for 17 years straight. Reuben reconditioning program - all of which helpmarket may be changing. that quality used cars would sell themselves. sure way to lose business.” has been with Galpin for most of the past us close more sales.” In reality, it takes a combination of precise 15 years, moving from sales to InternetHere’s what Reuben Muinos, Barry Mandel pricing and strong merchandising. That’s true Benefits of Centralization manager to his current position. In between, Speaking the Right Languageof Schaefer and Strohminger Automotive, for all dealers, but especially so at Paragon. “We carry a total of nine brands at eight he worked for a CRM company, spending nearly three years traveling the country and “Here in the Los Angeles area, we obviouslyand Ashley Antonio of Paragon Honda and Real estate in the New York metro area is stores. Because our Internet department isParagon Acura had to say about increasing part of a centralized BDC, we’re better able training dealerships on effective CRM and have an enormous Hispanic market. We’re incredibly expensive, and we get by withyour pre-owned vehicle sales. to manage the complexities of marketing Internet sales processes. about to launch a Spanish-language version very little space. If a used car sits unsold, inventory that’s spread out over all these of our Web site, and we expect it to have a it’s taking up room and getting in the way of other sales. Again, the stakes may be higher locations. And centralization is making it A Big Leap Upward - And Outward big impact on our business, both new and Ashley Antonio for us, but any dealer with any limitations on more feasible for us to investigate advanced “The Internet has been an important part of used. The number of dealerships that could lot size should think this way.” merchandising techniques, including video. our new car operation since Galpin went benefit by taking this step is far greater today Marketing Manager, But the biggest advantage of a centralized online in 1997. But we really began to use it than five years ago, and it will be bigger No Such Thing as Schaefer and Strohminger effort is that we’re able to keep improving to drive used car sales only about a year ago. still five years down the road. I definitely Too Much Information Automotive, Baltimore, MD, our online sales process, so that we make the The turning point came when we discovered recommend that dealers stay on top of “If you’re posting used cars on your Web site Metro Area most of the leads that come in.” that 75 percent of our used car customers came changing demographics and think about without mileage or pricing or good photos - from within a 10-mile radius. True, this is a how they can use their Web sites to address a and I mean more than one or two - you’re Automotive is a second career for Barry, Sifting Data for Solutions very dense area, but there was no reason for changing market.” wasting your time, and you’re squandering who retired several years ago from his job “For dealers who are willing to dig deep, our business to be that local. Simply making the savings and higher profits that Internet as senior VP for a publicly traded health spa there’s a tremendous amount that can be sure that all of our used car inventory was on merchandising and marketing make possible. company. He wanted to see if he could apply learned from the behavior of visitors who our Web site and up to date made an immediate There’s no such thing as posting too much his sales experience in a new area, and he look at used car inventory online. It can be difference. Sales increased between 10 to 20 information. Some dealers think that a buyer sold cars for two different dealers before very revealing to see how often each car percent, depending on the franchise, and most will call if they want to know more, but the signing with Schaefer and Strohminger, the was viewed, how many leads it generated, of the increase came from buyers outside of fact is that it takes a lot of information to oldest automotive organization in Maryland. the ultimate disposition of those leads, the 10-mile radius.” Dean L. Evans is the vice president of Marketing Director, Paragon Honda bring a buyer to the point of making contact. As marketing manager for the eight-store and so on. I’m always looking at our data, field marketing for The Cobalt Group. He and Paragon Acura, Queens, NY Buyers shop a number of different dealer group, he heads the BDC, which includes the trying to find ways to improve how we do Alternative Points of Entry can be reached at 866.406.4309, or by e- and Woodside, NY Web sites, and the dealers that offer the most Internet Department, CRM, and CSI. things here.” “Another factor that led us to market our mail at 12 13
  • 10. sts fos ls ms sf fis RandyMcPherson fixed operations solution The Road to ‘Customers for Life’ Starts With ‘Employees for Life’ How happy are your 2. Take the time to hire the right thrown to the wolves. Make sure that employees? Knowing person, even if it means holding the they know how every customer is to be the answer to that position open for some time. We all get treated, the same way they are valued question is a good anxious to hire someone when we need by you. indication of how happy to fill a position quickly. Many existing your customers are. To employees may have to shoulder more 6. Seek constant feedback from yourtake care of our customers, we have to have of a work load for a while, but it is employees on what can be done better.happy and motivated employees, but good better than hiring the wrong person Get out of your office and walk aroundemployees are hard to come by and “happy” who won’t be able to contribute talking with your people. Many timesis relative. As business owners we are not just effectively to the team. We will never they are much closer to the action, theyrunning a “Happy Club.” We are running real be better than the people we hire. Don’t can tell you what’s going on and whatbusinesses with real-world demands and ever- stop until you find the right fit. can be done better. It shows you valueincreasing customer expectations. them when you ask for their opinion 3. Do background checks and drug and suggestions. You will be amazed atThere can be many reasons why employees screening. Many companies are doing what you find out.may be unhappy. Their skills may not fit the this now to make sure they are hiringjob they are trying to do or they may not have the right people. For $42 you can do 7. Publicly recognize your employeesbeen adequately trained. They may not be criminal, driving and credit reports every time they have a personal best.receiving regular feedback on how they are on all potential hires. Credit reports You cannot overdo it. They will lovedoing. They may feel like a “number,” or will tell a lot about the person you’re the recognition which will help foster afeel they may not be valued by management considering for hire. If they don’t mentality of continuous improvement.and co-workers. They may have personal handle their own finances well, they These are just a few ideas how to develop anproblems in their lives that make their whole normally don’t make good employees. “Employees for Life,” game plan. Most peopleworld seem unhappy, or just have a poor work Visit for more like to work in environments that challengeethic that doesn’t lend well to a demanding info on background checks. them to perform at their best and they feelenvironment. 4. Get referrals. Ask your top employees rewarded and appreciated when they do. ByThe following are some ideas on how you can for leads of people that they know that valuing your employees, you will teach themattract and keep, “Employees for Life.” might fit current openings. Your best how to value your customers. employees normally hang around 1. Write thorough job descriptions. “Employees for Life = Customers for Life” people like themselves. Some of you’re Hire the right people. Set the standard best new employees will come from E-mail me for three ways you can increase high. Develop a profile of the ideal referrals from my existing employees. employee loyalty today. candidate for each position based on past experiences and skill-sets needed 5. Train well. Once you have hired the Randy McPherson is the CEO of the for the job. Put it in writing and make right employee, make sure you have an re:member group. He can be contacted sure the people you interview “fit” the in-depth training program that does not at 866.467.3861, or by e-mail at job. Do not compromise on this. leave them feeling like they have been 14
  • 11. sts fos ls ms sf fis MarkTewart Let Your Fantasy Be sales and training solution Your Reality “In the mind of the you want to be. Your subconscious does not as if they have already occurred. Don’t let beginner there are reject any images or messages. Therefore, anyone detract from your mission. many possibilities, what you impress, you express. The dominant and in the mind of the messages and images win out, good or bad. expert there are few.” Write down what you desire. Write it again Mark Tewart is the president of Tewart Enterprises. He can be contacted at -Suzuki Roshi and again until you can see it in your mind’s 866.429.6844, or by e-mail at 12/11/06 2:01:10 PM eye. Picture your desires in present tense, would you do in your sales career ifyou did not have limitations? Everyone hasself-imposed limitations. These limitationscan stem from several strong forces– environment, childhood experiences,workplace profiling, etc. Never allow anyoneto pigeonhole you into who you supposedlyare or who you are not.People in your work environment continuallyjudge you as to what your strengths andweaknesses are, and what you can orcannot do. You must realize that all of theseevaluations are subjective. Opinions of youare simply that, opinions. What someonethinks of you does not necessarily have tohave anything to do with who you are. Theopinion that matters most is your own. What someone thinks of you does OUR NEW LINE UP not necessarily have to have Will Have You Seeing Stars. anything to do The MOST FLEXIBLE SERVICE CONTRACTS in the INDUSTRY with who you are. The opinion that matters most is your own. WE’RE SHOOTING FOR THE STARS, WHY AREN’T YOU?You create your own reality. Who you believe Call Interstate National Dealer Services today to joinyou are is who you will become. You are who ranks with hundreds of agents and dealers who have successfullyyou decide to be at any given moment. Youreally don’t need anything that you might aimed for the stars for over 26 years and reaped the benefitsbe telling yourself you need. I call this the“When – Then” syndrome. Example – WhenI get this, then I will do this.” Imagine your 866-515-INDS www.inds.comlimitations are written on a dry erase board. WE WARRANTY THE BIG THINGS IN LIFESimply erase them and then take action.You must continually feed your subconsciousmind with the images and messages of whothe #1 sales-improvement magazine for the automotive professional 15
  • 12. sts fos ls ms sf fis DavidThomas sales and training solution How would you like Brand Yourself 3. During Social Events, Etc their referrals and that you need them. to brand yourself as Buy a couple of extra shirts and give them to the “Honda Guy,” the key centers of influence to promote you and 8. Budget for Self-Promotion “Mercedes Lady” or your product. Set aside $50 to $100 per month for personal the “Ford Truck Guy”? advertising and self-promotion expenses. How would you like to 4. Drive What You Sell Some examples are:be recognized and mentioned everywhere Consider using valet parking at key social • Ad in community bulletinyou go as “The Car Person,” the automotive functions and tipping a little extra to park • Ad in high school program“go to” guy/gal? your car in front for some great exposure. • Ad in church, PTA or alumni newsletter It’s a rolling billboard. • Classified adBranding yourself can make you more • Radio traffic spot sponsor 5. You Must Enjoy Talking About Cars • Charitable event or auctionmoney than your name ever will. But do you Even after a 12-hour day at the dealership,know how to brand yourself? How do you be enthusiastic and ready to discuss cars at Ask yourself, “What group can I identifybecome the expert? How do you become the dinner and social functions. This could be with, that I will gain from repeatedtopic of conversation at social events? Here your best source of prospects and referrals. association with?”are some tips. 6. Get Involved Make an investment in your future sales.1. Be Proud of Your Product and Give back to your community. Volunteer. Above all, ask yourself every day, “WhatOccupation Choose to involve yourself in an organization can I do to meet new people and promote myIf you don’t believe in your product and that you will enjoy participating in. You will love of selling cars today?”yourself, no one else will. be rewarded for your energy and efforts with exposure and recognition. David Thomas is the owner of Subaru2. Eat, Breathe and Wear Your Logo of Dallas. He can be contacted atDo you proudly wear your company brand 7. Show Appreciation 866.429.6803, or by e-mail aton your leisure time? Let everyone know that you really appreciate CREDIT REPORTS LEAD SOLUTIONS COMPLIANCE TOOLS ID VERIFICATION Lead Prospector Solutions Know ‘em. Reach ‘em. Close ‘em. First Advantage CREDCO, the leading provider of specialized credit reports, offers Lead Prospector Solutions – a powerful suite of lead generation tools. From highly-motivated bankruptcy and subprime leads, to targeted demographic and Internet leads, we have a leads solution for every prospect so you can close more deals! Visit us at NABD, Booth #705, May 14 - 16 866.745.2485 • Delivers Lead Prospector READY-TO-BUY INTERNET Online Consumer Leads 18
  • 13. sts fos ls ms sf fis TonyDupaquier f&i solution Don’t Forget the Waiver The waiver can be a wouldn’t you rather have the coverage?” will not close the customer. useful tool in selling products, if used The key to utilizing this very powerful tool is Tony Dupaquier is the director of F&I Training for the Automotive Training properly. justifying the product you are attempting to Academy. He can be contacted sell. You must find the benefit that interests at 866.856.6754, or by e-mail atOnce a customer has agreed to purchase the customer. Otherwise, the waiver alone products he or she needs, begin havingthe customer finish the paperwork. Thisincludes all the forms that are required by thegovernment, state, dealership and factory.Doing so enables the customer to relax, as the“selling” has ended. Once this has occurred,the customer becomes more receptive tohearing what you have to say, making iteasier to go back and ask for additionalproducts – if they are justified. The very lastform to be signed in this grouping should bethe product waiver.When presenting the waiver, explain theproducts and benefits the customer willbe forfeiting. Also explain how he or shemust sign off on the waiver to denote thatthe products have been offered and weredeclined.There is a very specific legal reason everycustomer should sign a waiver. It is thedealership’s responsibility to prove that itoffers every customer every product. In theevent a customer disputes the fact that allproducts were offered, the burden of prooffalls on the dealership. The courts will notrely on the business manager’s word; thereneeds to be substantial proof.Based off your needs analysis, pick oneproduct you believe the customer needsmost. Do not attempt to close more than oneproduct. Instead, simply restate the benefitsof the one product you choose. Do notbecome greedy. Another item to touch uponis how much the product would cost, basedoff a monthly amount.Use something along the lines of, “Mr./ Ms.Customer, this waiver states that you havebeen offered these products and benefits andhave elected not to purchase these products.Based off what you told me earlier, though, Iam surprised you didn’t purchase the vehicleservice contract. You told me you did notwant to pay for repairs once the factorywarranty expires. For only $23.83 a month,the #1 sales-improvement magazine for the automotive professional 19
  • 14. sts fos ls ms sf fis RalphR.Roberts sales and training solution The Art of Shameless Self Promotion Close your eyes and Everyone knows where to find me, no matter online, you are missing a huge opportunity try to visualize the where in the world I am and what company I to boost sales and revenue and gather more president of the United am working for. lifelong customers. States. You probably get a pretty clear image Find Something Unique to Promote I have more than 200 Web sites and blogs ofof George W. in your head. Now, repeat the In 2003, I discovered an 11-foot tall, 500- my very own, which I refer to as my personalexercise trying to envision other famous pound nail that was being auctioned off on spider web. These Web sites and blogspeople you know - perhaps Martin Luther eBay and bought it for $3,000. The “Big Nail” work separately and together to promoteKing, Jr., Martha Stewart or Jerry Seinfeld. was a recognizable symbol in the Detroit area one another. I am not suggesting that youThese faces are probably branded on your where I sell real estate. When I purchased the immediately try to launch 200 Web sites, butbrain cells. Why? Because the media keeps Big Nail, I had no idea what I was going to I do highly recommend that you have at leastreminding you of these people. do with it, but it has since become the center one blog or Web site of your very own. of my marketing campaign. You can visit itThis is exactly what you should be shooting at Make the Newsfor when you market yourself. You want Even though the news may not always reporteveryone in your area to know who you are The Big Nail has been in local parades, the facts, appearing on the news or in theand what you do, so when they think of a attended major fundraising events, and news as the resident expert in your fieldproduct or service you sell, your face pops has even managed to appear in the local instantly boosts your credibility.up first and foremost in their minds. newspapers… with me standing right there next to it. Contact the media in your area, and letRemember, you are not just a sales person. them know that you are ready, willing andYou are a business. Consider yourself “You, You may not be a Big Nail guy or gal, but you able to be interviewed. Remember, theyInc.” You are the President, CEO and CFO need to find some equivalent, something that have columns and air time they have to fillof You, Inc., and you want everyone in your you and others around you can get excited every single day. You can obtain a great dealneighborhood, across the nation and around about, and then promote it. of positive, free exposure just by makingthe world to know it. And the best way to yourself available.accomplish that goal is to create for yourself Design a Consistent Look and Feela strong brand presence. The more creative you are, the more If you are a fairly good writer, offer to variation you probably enjoy. When it comes write an article or commentary for theAdvertise Yourself to branding yourself, however, variation is local newspaper or for magazines or onlineYou may be so busy advertising your products your sworn enemy. All of your marketing publications. In addition to boosting yourand your company that you have forgotten materials should have plenty of snap, crackle credibility and your visibility, articles maythe single most important asset you should and pop, but they should all do it through a lead to other media advertising - yourself. Remember, before consistent look and feel that “brands” yourcustomers are going to buy from you, they name and face on prospective and current Remember, good sales people target marketshave to buy into you as an individual. customers. and customers. Great sales people make themselves the target.If your company encourages you to set up Establish a Presence on the Interneta Web page or blog on its site, doing so is Even if your customers do not normallyperfectly acceptable, but you should really purchase the types of products or services Ralph R. Roberts is a nationallyhave your own Web site or blog, as well, with you sell online, you can be sure that many of recognized sales coach, author andyour name or nickname or however people your customers and prospective customers the official spokesperson for Guthy- Renker Home. He can be contacted atknow you as the domain name. I have several do their research on the Internet when 866.470.5181, or by e-mail atWeb sites, one of which is making a purchase decision. If you are not 20
  • 15. INTRODUCING… …the BEST premium of the year! Increase your sales today! Thousands of Satisfied Clients! Steve Charlton, City Ford Your incentive programs are low maintenance. Any customer issues we have had over the years of buying your incentives have been dealt with in a timely and professional manor— that’s one of the many reasons we are on our 19th incentive V ation C ac re-order with Travel America. When we run your incentives, elebration we sell 20 – 30% more cars on a monthly basis. Your ti on incentives have helped make me the #1 Ford dealership in n Celebra V catio the country! a your choice of one of  luxur a caribbean y vacations inclu ding or a vacation cruise, las vegas getaway, of a lifetime in cancun, mexic o Gord Pidde, Clarkedale Motors As a Dealer Principle, I have guided 4 separate car dealerships to sell record numbers of both new and used s including V ca a t ion C y vacation vehicles. One of the effective tools I have used over the of  luxur vegas getaway, elebr e of one o at your choic ribbean cruise, las in cancun, mexic ion a ca or a vacati on of a lifetime years to generate buyer traffic is running travel incentive promotions offered by Travel America. They also offered me your choice a ca of on e of the right travel incentive for the season I was selling cars. or a va ribbean cr  luxury catio uise, la vacatio CHOICE IS n of s ve ns in T H E U L TaIlifetime in gas getawa cluding M AT E Lcanc U X U R Y y, un, me xico Cam Geddes, Millennium Ford Every time we gave away trips, we had a sharp increase in sales. That’s why we’re on our 12th re-order with Travel America. We will continue to use your customer sought after travel incentives in the future. XUR Y Garrett Willoughby, Whitby Mazda M AT E L U CHO E U LT I ICE Travel America have the finest quality incentive offerings, E IS TH IS T HE CHOIC U LT I M AT E LU XU RY their attention to detail is second to none. Their unique point- of-sales materials have made a big difference in generating more traffic and vehicle purchases. The be-back cards have been a highly effective tool for our sales representatives toVacation Celebration–Diamond Getaway Package secure more car sales. Your choice of one of 3 luxury vacations including a Matthew Page-Hanify, Shaw GMCCaribbean Cruise, Las Vegas Getaway, or a vacation of a Travel America’s travel incentives are the most effective lifetime in Cancun, Mexico! closing tools our sales representatives have ever used. We have ordered from Travel America 12 times in the last two years and have current plans to buy a higher quantity of their incentives in the near future to help us close even more car deals. We make one simple call to our representative with the required number of incentives and our order is to us within 1 – 2 days. 159 Brent Preuss, Acura of Lynnwood $ 00 Travel America has been a tremendous addition to our sales campaigns. We used the Platinum Passport program as an incentive to our car sales. When we first launched the campaign, we noticed a $215,000 difference in our profit over the same time period from the previous year. We liked it so much that we purchased more for this year and plan to use Travel America in the future! Dealer Benefits •Increase sales by 30% •Increased ad response Call today for your free information package •Generate Excitement •User friendly 1 866 443 9874 •Exclusive Territories
  • 16. GENERATE LEADS ➞ FILTER LEADS ➞ MANAGE LEADS FOLLOW UP LEADS ➞ FINANCE LEADS ➞ SELL MORE CARS!® SHOWROOM Dan Warren, Finance Director Whitten Brothers, Jeep Chrysler Mazda The first thing I noticed when we started using FUEL was the amount of customers walking in the door. The second thing I noticed was that we were closing 85% of the FUEL appointments. Interactive Financial’s FUEL, DOLLAR, and BDC programs are a great asset to our dealership. I receive quality leads and I have a great way to keep them organized.Three Time Consecutive Winner of aDealers’ Choice Award Your Goal Is Our Mission... SELL MORE CARS! ® Call now to speak with an IFMG representative today. 1-888-905-1002
  • 17. sts fos ls ms sf fis DeniseRichardson Fraud, Scams, Identity Theft sales and training solution and Data Breaches... Who’s Got Time for all This With news of their credit reports. Filled with skepticism, and driven to the brink corporate data • Implement identity theft policies and of emotional exhaustion, I set out to find, and breaches and identity procedures with specific written steps hire, a company that would actually take on theft hitting the to be taken, when identity theft or a the responsibility of protecting my name. papers every day, data breach occurs. the odds are pretty • Conduct background checks on I found a company called LifeLock that had angood that a hacker, thief or con-artist will employees and vendors who handle interesting pledge, one they referred to as theireventually find you, your employees or sensitive data. “million dollar guarantee.” Here’s what caughtclients. But, if you take proactive steps • Review policies designed to safeguard my eye... ”We prevent it from happening tonow, you just might spare yourself some in-house, out-sourced and online data you in the first place. If your Identity is stolenmajor headaches down the road. storage operations, and determine while you are our client, we’re going to fix what type of data may be taken off the the problem. Period. If you lose money, we’re“What can I do to protect myself?” is a premises, stored on laptops and who going to reimburse you. If we need lawyers,question I hear almost daily. has access to sensitive data. investigators or accountants, we’re going to • Implement strict guidelines for hire and pay for them.”My answer? Be Proactive. those employees who have accessAnyone who has been a victim of identity to vulnerable files and passwords It sounded too good to be true. I didn’t wanttheft will tell you that the worst part is the to financial, personnel and sensitive to subscribe to, or endorse any company,time and frustration involved in cleaning up accounts. without fully researching their services.the resulting credit mess. The Federal Trade • Make sure the people applying for I flew to Phoenix and toured Lifelock’sCommission says that it takes anywhere from credit are who they say they are. Ask facilities. I wanted to know if those four little170 to 300 hours to deal with the ramifications questions that only those individuals words that piqued my curiosity, “We will fixof this crime. If it happens to one of your would know – look for red flags. it,” were words I could trust. Would someoneemployees or customers, you will likely feel • Offer your employees and clientele really be there to turn to if my identity wasit too, since one person’s identity theft can educational materials and information stolen? Would they really take on the burdenhave a domino effect. Employees often must on available services that will prevent of cleaning up the mess that an ID thief canspend numerous work hours trying to rectify identity theft from occurring in their dump in my lap at any given moment?the problems caused by identity theft, which lives.can hurt productivity. Victims’ lives are Yes. According to CEO, Todd Davis…, “Assuddenly turned upside down; basic rights a LifeLock client, you will NEVER havesuch as the ability to obtain credit, purchase to fear ID theft.” More music to my ears.a new home or finance a car can no longer be Victims’ lives are If someone did steal my identity, Lifelocktaken for granted. would do whatever was necessary to make suddenly turned things right, including covering my expenses,Your business files contain a treasure trove upside down; basic lost wages, attorney and accountants’ fees, upof personal information for identity thieves;names, addresses, mothers’ maiden names, rights such as the to $1 million.” That was all I needed to information, social security ability to obtain Without having to provide them with anynumbers, credit card and bank account credit, purchase account information, it took less than threeinformation. This information is as good as minutes for me to subscribe to their to a potential thief. Employers are being a new home or For the first time in years, I found peaceheld liable for identity theft that occurs in the finance a car can of mind. Someone else is now in chargeworkplace and companies must be preparedto defend the procedures they’ve adopted no longer be taken of guarding my identity and if a theft does occur while they’re in charge, they’ll fix it…to protect the personal data stored in their for granted. on their time –and their dime!files. Taking the necessary precautions nowwill go a long way towards minimizing the To receive an instant 20 percent discount,likelihood of identity theft, and limiting an call 1-877-Lifelock or visit their Web site atemployer’s liability when an identity thief If you don’t want to go it alone, find a, click on enroll and enter thestrikes or a data breach occurs. company that offers services to protect promotional code: asuccess. your employees’ and customers’ data.What should you do to protect your business,your customers, your employees and After spending the better part of 15 years Denise Richardson is a member of the National Association of Consumeryourself? Be proactive. disputing, correcting and re-claiming my Advocates and an author. She can be • Educate employees and customers credit identity, I recently decided I no longer contacted at 866.439.9242, or by e-mail at about the importance of reviewing wanted to carry this heavy burden alone. 24
  • 18. sts fos ls ms sf fis PattiWood Making the Most sales and training solution of Your Media Interview, Part 2 Getting the Radio or Webcast Phone Interview Being recognized as In addition to these critical questions, you information in case you to want contact an expert in your field need to make a few requests so that the them again with a story or show ideas not only gives you interview goes as smoothly as possible and in the future. recognition for your is a success for them and you: knowledge, talents 1. Request that they e-mail you You should ask the critical questions in yourand skills, but also gives you a way to teach confirmation of the interview, first phone call, but the following questionsthe public about the topics that you are including the time the interview will can be addressed later via e-mail:passionate about. In order to do this, you start and other details. 1. What kind of show is it (news, comedy,need to become media-savvy. If you can be 2. Give them your phone number and an entertainment)?dazzling in a media interview, and then learn emergency back-up number. 2. How many people does it reach?how to follow up, your opportunities to step 3. Have them e-mail you the station call 3. What is the market (city or cities)?into the spotlight will multiply. letters, numbers and the name of the 4. What is the editorial slant (conservative, show as well as the contact’s name, liberal, controversial)?Last month, we covered ways to get phone number and address 5. Who is the interviewer and what doesinterviewed. This month we’ll go over the 4. Tell them how you would like to be (s)he prefer to be called?steps you’ll need to take to give a dynamic introduced to the listeners, and request 6. How familiar is the interviewer withinterview. that they announce your Web site your topic? address for further information. 7. Would they like any other informationPreparing for a Potential Interview 5. Tell them if you have a book (offer about you? You can give them yourHave the following checklist ready when the to send one), or an event, product or web site address or, in lieu of that, e-phone rings with a request for a broadcast or service particularly applicable to their mail or fax them information.magazine interview. Usually the journalist or audience. 8. Let them know you maintain a list ofproducer or host of the show is making quite 6. Tell them if you have other interviews questions past audiences have askeda few calls to potential guests and will be in a or obligations near the show time so and find out if they would like to seebig hurry. They will typically speak quickly, they will get you on and off in a timely the list. Many times, the host willso if you can shoot off your questions and manner. appreciate the courtesy, especially ifrequests quickly, they will appreciate it. Do 7. Ask if they have a Web site. If so, the interview is about your book. Benot expect to gab. You may want to make suggest they link their Web site to aware, however, that sometimes thea copy of this list and keep it by the phone yours and tell the listeners about the interviewer may consider this gestureor on your computer. In the event that you link. pushy. Play it by ear, making the offerreceive a call asking you to go on the air 8. Request that they mail you a tape of only when you believe it will be wellimmediately, do not accept the offer unless the show. Often, you’ll be told that are a very experienced interviewer. tape requests must be made separately 9. If you have a book, product or serviceOtherwise, you could end up looking like to someone else at the station. If so, that you can offer for free, ask them ifless than an expert and it could hurt, rather be prepared to give the station name, they would like to give it away to callersthan help, your chances of getting future call letters, time slot of the show and during your interview or perhaps laterinterviews. your start time. This will give you as a contest prize. I sometimes offer a record of what is said. In addition, a free hour of my time to a contestHere are the critical questions you should you can sometimes use the recording winner, which includes an analysis ofask for a radio interview or Web cast. for future promotion. However, this is their body language for interviews, or 1. What time is the interview, and what illegal unless you’ve received written a public speaking coaching session. time will you call? permission from the station. It’s rare The station gets a great “give-away” 2. What is the topic, and what do you that your request would be turned prize, and I get to let listeners know I hope to find out? down, but keep in mind that 99 percent coach as well as speak. 3. Will you call live on the air ,or will of stations will NOT grant permission there be a wait? to sell the interview as a product. 4. Approximately how long will the 9. Ask them to confirm these requests via interview be? e-mail. In addition, request their e-mail 5. Do you typically run on time? address, then confirm everything on Patti Wood, MA, CSP is a professional speaker, author and coach at 6. Who else will be interviewed (or has your end via e-mail. That way, you’ll Communications Dynamics. She can be been interviewed) on this topic on have all the necessary information in contacted at 800.849.3651, or by e-mail at your show? print, and you have all their contact 26
  • 19. sts fos ls ms sf fis JesseBiter leadership solution Accountable to a Higher Calling In any well-run thieves break in and steal. But store up for a good steward of your business and/or organization, there yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth personal finances. However, putting career needs to be oversight. and rust do not destroy, and where thieves growth and financial reward ahead of all else Performance metrics do not break in and steal. For where your can be disastrous. No one can serve both God should be firmly in treasure is, there your heart will be also.” and money. Material things are not bad in place in order to ensure Matthew 6: 19-21 themselves. They only become bad when weaccountability in all aspects of a business. place more importance on them than on ourEmployee accomplishments on the job must Human beings are created with a sinful nature. relationship with carefully measured by the appropriate As a result, the business world is unfortunatelymanager or corporate executive. Even a CEO inundated with some of our more negative “Moreover, when God gives any man wealthmust ultimately answer to the shareholders of characteristics. The Bible encourages and possessions, and enables him to enjoythe company and to the customers whom they responsibility, ethics, loyalty and the utmost them, to accept his lot and be happy in hisserve. Regardless of an individual’s respective integrity on the job. Christian employees are work - this is a gift of God. He seldom reflectsposition within a company, everyone needs to expected to go to work each day as if Jesus on the days of his life, because God keeps himbe accountable for an organization to flourish. Christ were sitting in the office next door. occupied with gladness of heart.”But there is more to accountability than sales Christian employers are expected to always Ecclesiastes 5: 19-20figures and balance sheets. treat employees fairly and with respect. It’s easy to get wrapped up in the traditional An infinite quest for career advancementAs Christians in the business world, we are top-down corporate hierarchy. However, it’s and financial success will ultimately proveaccountable to a much higher calling. The critical to remember that although Christians disappointing. But by choosing accountabilitymultitude of tasks that we perform each day may be at different levels in earthly society, to God in all you do, your performance inshould be carried out as if we are working we are all equal before God. life and business will be rewarded by eternaldirectly for the Lord. Christian business leaders happiness.understand that true performance metrics have Jesus taught us that our relationship withlittle to do with the ability to drive sales or Him is far more important than materialbolster the company’s bottom line. possessions. He said the good life has nothing Jesse Biter is the president and CEO of to do with being wealthy, which is the exact HomeNet, Inc. He can be contacted at“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on opposite of what our society dictates. Prudent 866.239.4049, or by e-mail atearth, where moth and rust destroy, and where planning is an important component of being 28
  • 20. sts fos ls ms sf fis JeffMorrill sales and training solution ‘I’ll Sell My Trade Myself and Come Back Later.’ Not Situation: and calls. Would that interfere with insurance is primary in the event of The prospect wants your job? an accident?” to retail his vehicle 4. “Nearly all our customers finance instead of trading it in. their cars. How will you finance a car The Closing Question: He won’t buy your car for someone?” “Mr. Prospect, my experience is that folks until he sells the trade 5. “Are you aware that the Massachusetts who actually succeed in selling their cars atbecause he’s afraid of getting stuck with Lemon Law applies to private party all usually do get somewhat more than tradethe hassle and expense of two cars when he transactions just as it does for dealers? value, but quite a bit less than dealer retail.only needs one. He promises to come back, If there’s a problem with the car, The small additional premium you mightbut we rarely see him again. Why? Because you’re on the hook.” get selling it on your own can be very costlymost people never succeed at retailing their 6. “Did you know that in Massachusetts, in terms of money, frustration, time andown car: you get a five percent sales tax credit risk. With all those things in mind, doesn’t • It’s hard to sell a car. It’s hard on the value of your trade? That means it make more sense to trade it so you can enough for an experienced sales when we give you $10,000 for your start enjoying all the benefits of the new car person, with a nice facility/location, trade, you’re really getting $10,500 now?” significant dealership ad budget, because you save $500 in sales tax on ability to finance, big selection, etc. the new car.” Imagine how hard it is without any of 7. “How much do you think you’ll these advantages. spend marketing the car - signs, ads, • Cravings pass. Skip dessert and detailing, replacing worn tires or Jeff Morrill is co-owner of Planet Subaru you rarely wake up the next morning brakes? That’s several hundred dollars in Hanover, Mass., and Planet Chrysler looking for chocolate cake. After the that will reduce your net gain.” Jeep Dodge in Franklin, Mass. He can be excitement in the showroom wears 8. “When potential purchasers test drive contacted at 866.872.8699, or by e-mail at off, the prospect usually decides your car, did you know that your that his car is good enough to keep driving. When he’s in the market again, he’ll probably want a different car somewhere else. • He never gets around to it. He won’t “Within the make the time to recondition the first hour of the car, market the car, put up with the strokers, etc. e-newsletter going out, I had 15 test drives.”The Solution:Help the prospect discover that it’s bestto trade. You won’t get far lecturing him.Instead, politely asking the followingquestions will plant the seeds of doubt about > Scott Haynes, Penske Chevrolet and Hondaselling it himself. 1. “Have you ever sold a car on your IMN Loyalty Driver™ is a turnkey e-marketing service that drives own before?” You will learn how interest, sales and customer loyalty. Customized, trackable email familiar he is with the difficulties. communications provide tangible results for dealerships across 2. “How much do you think you’ll get?” the country. A couple of examples: Knowing this amount will help you • 15 test drives scheduled within the first hour after later show the narrow gap between an IMN Loyalty Driver e-newsletter was sent. what he will net from the sale and Web traffic spiked to 2.5 times its normal rate • what you can give him on trade. after a dealership’s first e-newsletter. 3. “Where will you offer it for sale” If at home, “You know, I love meeting new Looking for results like these? Call 866.964.6397, ext. 214 or email folks but in all candor there are some pretty scary people that come looking Drive customers in…For sales, for life. for a car. I sure wouldn’t want them knowing where I live and my family lives, especially if they ever had a problem with it.” If at work, “Take it from a person who does this every 866-964-6397 day, selling a car takes a lot of timethe #1 sales-improvement magazine for the automotive professional 29
  • 21. sts fos ls ms sf fis BobCarmack sales and training solution How to Hire, Train, and Develop 20 Car-A-Month Sales People, Part 1 Hiring the “Right” of sales people and managers, and a little and impulsive customer, the Type “C” or Sales People: time, you can close 50 to 70 percent of your reserved and indecisive/thinker customer, The “real” national customers? and the Type “D” or analytical/structured closing ratio in our customer. business is around 15 There are four basic personality types on the to 20 percent and, as planet, each representing about 25 percent The main reason the “average” closing ratioan industry, we accept it. What if I said that of the population: the Type “A” or direct/ is around 20 to 25 percent (1 out of 4) is thatwith the “right people,” “proper training” decisive customer, the Type “B” or emotional our sales people meet customers that are the same personality type as themselves, they instantly get along, and generally the sales person closes the sale with little effort. Once all personality types are fully understood SEARCHING FOR by the sales person and they learn “how to associate” to the other personality types, a sales person can easily close over 50 percent A COMPETITIVE of their customers. This process is commonly known as “matching and mirroring” and has been used for training by Fortune 500 ADVANTAGE? companies for around 30 years. It has a proven track record of success. For example, the Type “A” being very direct, MarketView360’s suite of solutions will help you decisive and to the point will usually make find what you are looking for, whether it’s increasing statements like, “Look, I know what I want retention or reducing acquisition costs. (I want…), I don’t want the run-around, I want your bottom-line, and you only have 30 minutes to sell me a car….” Type “A” people generally will only work with people like them- they want someone direct and to the point, not indecisive, indirect, or slow themselves. In response to their comment, you would say something like, “I understand, THIS MONTH TAKE ADVANTAGE no problem. Here’s what I’m going to do. I will get you the vehicle you’re describing, OF EMAIL DISCOVERY AT A I’ll get you the best bottom-line price, and SPECIAL DISCOUNT. I’ll get you out of the dealership fast. Follow me.” Now execute, and remember, ALWAYS tell them what you CAN DO for them, NOT what you CAN’T DO. (i.e. Mr. Smith, I can’t sell you a car in 30 minutes. When could we get together when you have more time?) The Type “C” person is 180 degrees opposite WORK SMART, MARKET SMARTER the Type “A” person. If you relate to them as a Type “A,” you will be too “pushy,” cause too much “pressure”, etc., and this customer The Most Intelligent Multi-Channel Marketing System On The Planet will simply leave (or run away from) the dealership. The Type “C” person will usually 1.866.591.4238 park away from the front door, or hide, when entering the dealership. Their normal pattern is to want to “look” at everything on the lot, as they are indecisive people. When you greet them, they are likely to say, “I’m just looking today, I’m not sure what I want - I just want to look at everything, I’m not buying today, 30
  • 22. A B C D Dominance Sociable Steadiness Cautious “Driver” “Expressive” “Amiable” “Analytic” Dominance Persuasive Patience Accurate 20 17 19 15 17 15 17 13 15 13 15 11 13 11 13 9 11 9 10 7 7 Risk Taker Sociable Relaxed Restrained 10 6 9 6 8 5 9 7 Self Assured Generous Deliberate Sensitive 8 5 6 7 5 4 Unassuming Convincing Mobile Own Person 4 6 4 3 3 5 3 Realistic Factual Critical Independent 4 3 2 2 2 2 1 1 Mild / Dependent Withdraw Spontaneous Rebellious 1 1 0 0 0Low “A” prefers to be a Low “B” prefers Low “C” prefers Low “D” prefers“team player” to be alone variety and change spontaneity#A’s: #B’s: #C’s: #D’s:#N’s: Grand Total = (should be 24)and/or I’ll need to sleep on it before making the “D” should be medium low to midrange.a decision.” Our normal reaction to thiscustomer is to say something like, “Great, This profile means the sales person isI know where everything is parked - let emotional, decisive, driven to wait onme show you the cars” and you try and ask customers, driven to succeed by beingquestions while walking the inventory. Let competitive, is motivated by money and theme ask you this question - if a person does desire to be recognized as No. 1, and has justnot know what they want, do you give them the right amount of structure which meansmore or fewer choices? If you said “fewer”, they will develop their plan and work theiryou’re right. Too many choices only further plan. Their paperwork will be clean andconfuse this customer. We also usually ask organized. They will follow up, producethis customer “open ended” questions and referrals quickly and CSI will be high. Theysince they are indecisive people, they can are capable of selling over 20 cars a monthrarely give decisive responses, which causes generally within three to six months.them to retreat. Therefore, when you firstmeet them, say, “So, you’re just doing a little Another way to quickly increase your sales islooking and shopping today, right?” Get them to know your customers and hire more salesoff the lot quickly and inside to a “round- people like your customers. For example, iftable” environment to avoid them seeing too your dealership is located in techno valley,much inventory. Ask them choice questions your customer is probably the high “D”with two or three options vs. open-ended engineer, chemist, programmer, researcher,questions such as “When you’re ready, will CPA, etc. You should hire more “D” salesyou be considering a car or truck, something people. The “D” sales person will instantlysmaller, midsize, or full-size, manual or “bond” with your “D” customer, act, thinkautomatic”, etc. When they select a choice, and process information the same, use thethey feel as if they are making the decisions same verbiage, read the same publications,without pressure. etc. Bottom line, they are two peas in a pod, walk the same walk, and talk the same talkIf you want to immediately increase your - instant sale.sales, use one of the nationally approvedpersonality profiling instruments. The salesprofile that has consistently produced the Bob Carmack is president of Carmackexceptional sales person worldwide is the & Associates, LP and is a professionalhigh “B” or emotional/impulsive profile speaker and trainer. He can be contactedcombined with the high “A” dominant, at 866.393.8221, or by e-mail atdecisive profile. The “C” should be low and #1 sales-improvement magazine for the automotive professional 31
  • 23. sts fos ls ms sf fis JonathanG.Edwards marketing solution Your Dealership Web Site: Know How Customers Find You and What Their Shopping Experience Is You and your his advertising as his marketing brand a showroom visit? management team making it synonymous with “Bob Smith • Do I get quick access to new and must actively manage Motors” so that the consumer keeps pre-owned inventory and Web site your dealership “Top of Mind.” I specials? Web site. Your sales don’t mean just putting your URL in • Are my Internet sales consultants consultants should be your advertising as most dealers do responding personally and effectivelyusing your dealership Web site as a sales today I mean literally marketing www. in both e-mail and on the phone?tool to co-navigate with customers. Today as the dealership. • Do my Internet sales consultants giveit is generally agreed that between 80 to 90 a compelling reason for a customer topercent of automotive Web shoppers use the If the consumer starts thinking www. respond?Internet at some point during their purchase then they are more likely to go • Was there any long-term follow up?process. Take an active role in knowing what to this Web site when they are in the marketyour dealership Web site shopping experience for a new vehicle. This can be a difficult Don’t assume that just because you hire anis from start to finish. transition to make, especially if the dealership outside company to run your Web site that has a well-established brand name. everything is working. While most do aFirst, understand how customers find your good job, it is your responsibility to ensureWeb site. If a dealer successfully gets the public to everything is working the way you envision • Redirect from your Manufacturer site recognize the Bob Smith Motors as www. it. Would you let an outside firm manage • Search Engines like Google, Yahoo,, it increases the likelihood your showroom floor? Probably not, so you etc. that they will go directly to that Web site and need to take an active role in the customer • Advertising your Web site address surpass a search engine like Google or Yahoo experience. (URL) with all kinds of placement marketing. If you can draw leads directly from your dealership Here are some common mistakes to avoid:The last point is an important one and many Web site, you are getting basically a free • E-mail responses to quick quotesdealers don’t pay enough attention to this. Internet lead. getting caught in SPAM filtersIt is much more than just fitting your Web • Broken links in the process and/orsite address somewhere in your weekly Once they have found your dealership Web confusing dead-endsnewspaper ad. Smart dealers have begun to site, what about the customer experience? • Out-of-date contact informationunderstand that their Web site address is a • Not populating the “Specials” tab withvery important extension of their established You know how your showroom floor sales any informationbrand, and work very hard to make the two process works and what the customersynonymous. If customers think of your Web experience is there; in fact, you see the One thing to remember is that your dealershipsite address, and it is how they recognize transaction happening “real-time,” which Web site is typically at the end of the consumeryour dealership they are much more likely to allows you to get involved or make quick purchase funnel. By the time a customer is ongo directly there. The “don’t make me think” adjustments when needed. Best of all, the your site, they have probably already donephilosophy” is prevalent with today’s Internet customer is in the dealership. the majority of their research and your Webshopper, so the simpler it is to find a Web site, site experience is their “first impression.” Ifthe better. But what about the Internet sales process you don’t provide the experience they expect, and customer experience? Have you ever you will lose them. You need to ask yourselfDealerships actually have two showrooms, put yourself in your customers’ shoes and “is my Web site experience something toone physical and one virtual (on the Internet). shopped your own Web site? On the Internet, brag about?”.Keeping your dealership “Top of Mind” the customer is not on your showroomis essential in today’s crowded Internet floor yet. The dealer, who understands that There are many free resources out there tomarketplace - where most of your customers the dealership Web site is their 24/7 virtual help you anonymously mystery shop yourare. This means you may need to totally “real-time” showroom and sales consultant, site. You can set up a pseudo customerrethink how you market your brand in all of understands how important it is to shop e-mail account on public Web sites likeyour advertising. their own site. In today’s world, dealers and Yahoo for free and if you Google “free local managers cannot afford not to know the voicemail phone numbers” you can findSo, how does this look? In some cases it customer experience on their Web site. This various sources of Web-based voicemail tomeans tweaking your well-established brand is where the customer decides to do business track the phone call.that you have been marketing for generations. with you or go elsewhere.Here is an example: • Bob Smith Motors has been in business By shopping your site, you can answer some for 32 years in the same location and very important questions: Jonathan G. Edwards is the vice president of operations & training at Kain is well-known in the marketplace. • Am I providing an experience that Automotive, Inc. He can be contacted at His Internet URL is www.bobsmith. would compel me to purchase a vehicle 800.385.0095, or by e-mail at com. The dealer needs to consider from this Web site?, or visit marketing his Internet URL in all of • Do we make the experience easier than 32
  • 24. sts fos ls ms sf fis MichaelYork The Leading sales and training solution Edge of Leadership Phil Knight of Nike The True Leader largely because of the way they think - about once remarked, “There The setting of the sail, the direction we’ve what’s possible and impossible. is only one leader.” chosen to go, the individual or organization out in front. The point at which we face the One of those associations I work with has That sounds powerful challenge and adversity ahead, the winds of gone from less than 600 members to over – only one. Black or change, and the leading edge that propels 2,500 and become the largest association ofwhite, win or lose, no room for finishing us through it. Does that give you a mental its kind in the nation in just over two years.second. picture? How’d they do it? By changing the thinkingI get the opportunity to do quite a few It’s not a bad definition of how true leaders of the leadership and finding the right“leadership” talks or presentations. Once, meet the challenge of leadership. And true I was preparing to do a session for a leaders can be anywhere in the organization,member-organization at a university, I went not just at the top. The leader of that organization has metback to my dictionary to look up the word with considerable “cold shoulders” as theleadership. True leaders don’t create more followers; new kid on the block who became No. 1. they create more leaders. By their thinking, Envy, jealousy and excuses on “why ourBig clue here: Guess how many people look commitment, actions and expectations, they organization didn’t do that.” Or worse, whyup words in the dictionary? raise the bar on what’s considered possible it can’t do that. or impossible.Right - not many. Because they think they Isn’t it amazing how so often that isalready have a pretty good idea what the Don’t just think about individuals as leaders; the response to radical results or bigword means (and if not, they’ll just fake it, think about products or organizations. improvement?or worse, misuse it). FedEx made the delivery service as a whole I’ve seen the same thing so many times:That means looking up words occasionally, radically better, even the postal service. They “Well the only reason they’re No. 1 is blah,even when you think you already know their changed the expectation of the marketplace blah, blah,”meaning, is uncommon. There are many by changing the performance (or the “how”)“common” misconceptions on leaders and of delivery. “We are better quality…We don’t have thisleadership. or that… It won’t last…They’ll find out it’s Can you believe there was a time when we not that easy all the time...”Webster defines leadership as “the ability or said, “Oh, it’ll get there when it gets therecapacity to lead.” Just above that entry in - 2 or 3 days, maybe? OK, I guess that’s Whatever.the new college dictionary under the word fine…”“leader,” there are more than 13 references Excuses and jealousy are common. Radicalor definitions of “leader.” The next day. That’s what FedEx promised, growth and improvement, uncommon. and soon it was what the marketplaceAnd really, not one of those definitions demanded. Next issue, we’ll take a look at “servantI found were appropriate in delivering a leadership,” the part of leadership where themessage to a group of individuals or to an I love how Jim Rohn (one of my long-time real treasure is buried.organization that wants to truly understand teachers) offers up his take on true leaders:leaders and genuine leadership. If you’d like the rest of my “short list” on “The challenge of leadership is to be strong, LEADERSHIP LESSONS e-mail me at theI was disappointed in that discovery, much but not rude; to be kind, but not weak. To be address the disappointment I feel when I hear bold, but not bully; to be thoughtful, but notsome of the proliferation of leadership lazy. To have humor, but without folly. To bemessages in the marketplace today. humble, but not timid; to be proud, but not arrogant.”But just a couple of entries down that samepage is the definition of “leading edge”: Well said Mr. Rohn.“The edge of a sail or vessel that faces How about Jim Collins’“Level 5 Leadership?”the wind. The foremost position in a trend Read page 13 of his book “Good to Great”or movement; the vanguard, someone or and let me know if it surprises you like it Michael York is an author and professionalsomething occupying such a position.” surprised me. The first 16 pages of that book speaker. He can be contacted at should be required reading for everyone. 800.668.5015, or by e-mail atWow. The Leading Edge. That was the I work with associations and member, or visitmental picture I was looking for. organizations that are trapped in mediocrity 34
  • 25. sts fos ls ms sf fis SeanWolfington leadership solution A Line in the Sand We all possess values, part of the human fabric of life, neither can In the course of managing budgets and good or bad. We all one disassociate business from ethics and bottom lines, leaders set the tempo for fellow make choices, good morality. They are, in fact, synonymous. colleagues and shape the behavior of all those or bad. A value is the involved in the organization. The important idea and belief that Throughout history, successful leaders have thing to understand is that, whether you like it influences and directs effectively incorporated moral ethics into or not, as a leader you carry a moral and ethicalour choices and actions. We are all faced daily management. According to Henry Ford, Sr., responsibility to those whom you affect. Thewith situations that require the use of our “For a long time people believed that the behavior and demeanor established by leadersconscience and judgment. Whether at home only purpose of industry is to make a profit. set patterns and become behavior models foror in the workplace, in conversation or deed, They are wrong. Its purpose is to serve the colleagues.we are all confronted with circumstances in general welfare.” The concept of ethics inwhich we must exercise our freedom to make leadership is an age-old principle. For more Drawing a line in the sand means taking adecisions with regard to words and actions; than 2000 years, mankind has turned to the stand. It is a commitment to refrain fromor perhaps you can relate more closely ethical wisdom of one of the greatest human compromising the integrity of others for theto decisions about budgets, marketing, minds, Aristotle, who suggests that ethics and benefit of the bottom line. From conductingadvertising strategies, etc. It’s inevitable. morals cannot simply be learned by studying, business with a customer to selecting anDecisions need to be made. Where do you but can only be acquired through observation advertising strategy, we must always upholddraw the line in the sand? and witness of the conduct of a moral person. and promote good moral values. For the sake That simple theory bears a huge relevance to of the integrity of our industry and the futureBusiness is business. Right? Wrong. Leaders leadership. Leaders affect people, whether of our children and generations to come, therehave the responsibility to make decisions positively or negatively. To sum it up in terms has to be a place where such a line is the best interest of the profits of the of results, employees will be as ethical and Where will you draw your line?business; but more importantly, management loyal in performing their jobs as they perceive Sean Wolfington is the general manager ofhas the responsibility to make decisions their bosses and managers to be in leading, and ADP Company. He canfor the common good of the people. Just and directing them. Think of leadership as an be contacted at 866.802.5753, or by e-mailas one can not deny that business is a basic investment with a huge ROI! at 36
  • 26. sts fos ls ms sf fis AllenCheek marketing solution How to Heal the Sting of a Customer Service ‘Challenge’ When was the last this incident, the President did all the right time you encountered things: He listened, gave a genuine apology, a horrible customer took responsibility, probed deeper into the service situation? For incident and worked to solve the issue. These, some, it may have as a whole, were the successful ingredients happened just minutes to remedy the situation.ago. It’s amazing how easy it is to recallthose moments of despair. It happened to me Many dealerships rely on manufacturer CSIrecently. scores to measure customer satisfaction such as performance of the buying process.Here, I was selling a boat and was approached No matter how tight the quality controlby an on-line subscription service. The call standards, there will be missteps. Problem-with the sales associate was so high pressure solving strengths in many ways may defineand fast paced, that it actually felt like a scam. overall success with customer satisfaction.In fact, when I declined the offer, the sales Depending on your specific issues, you mayassociate ended the call by telling me the find that CSI survey results by themselvesboat would never sell and actually hung up are not enough to uncover the root cause.on me. I’m sure that sales associate thought Consider assistance from an independentnothing more about that call and moved on third party research bigger fish. However, I was so appalled Icouldn’t let this easily go. In fact, I have to Nine steps to exceeding customer serviceadmit I was somewhat intrigued to find out if standards:this was a legitimate business. 1. Willing to state underused terms such as “I’m Sorry” or “Thank You”A Google search quickly identified the 2. Listencompany – it did exist. When I called the 3. Ability to empathize with situationcompany, I was pleasantly greeted by a “live” 4. Being upfront and honest with thereceptionist. She conveyed the president was customernot available but would return my call. I 5. Empower staff to “Do the Rightreluctantly gave my name and phone number Thing”unsure that I would ever hear my phone ring 6. Clear workflow processesagain from this company. Surprisingly, my 7. Excellent trainingphone rang within three hours and it was the 8. Practiced and effective problem-president of that company. He greeted me by solving skillsname and listened intently as I recalled my 9. Accountabilityprevious experience. He was very courteousand did not interrupt as I vented about his In many cases, the perception of a companyassociate. is driven by the faces of employees. A negative impression may ultimately lead toWhat impressed me next was how he dealt missed sales and lost customer loyalty.with such a disgruntled customer – me. Hedidn’t go on the defense and he didn’t try For a company to provide “knock your socksto pass off accountability. He first offered off” customer service, it requires a cleara personal apology, probed deeper about mission statement and consistent policiesthe incident, empathized about the incident that must reverberate throughout the entireand offered a “fair fix.” Talking with him, organization. From the general manager,I ended the conversation having a totally sales advisors, technicians to the receptionist;different impression of the company. In fact, it must be woven throughout the entire fabricthis experience was 180 degrees different of the organization.from the sales associate. The president wasshocked and totally caught off guard by the How you address and resolve a customersales approach being delivered by one of his service challenge truly defines the characterassociates. of a company. When done correctly it further solidifies customer loyalty and keeps theHow many customers are lost because customer coming back.of a disconnection between companies’core values compared to the delivery by Allen Cheek is the president ofemployees? Furthermore, are companies CLARITY OMS. He can be contacted atinstituting the right proactive measurements 866.611.0998, or by e-mail atto minimize customer service blunders? In #1 sales-improvement magazine for the automotive professional 37
  • 27. sts fos ls ms sf fis PatrickLuck sales and training solution Training Key to Dealership’s 20 Years of Success It may not be just no way to train once every other month everything – incoming phone calls, unsold exciting. It’s not and expect people to understand and be on showroom traffic, CSI phone calls, sales groundbreaking, the same page. It just doesn’t work.” CSI phone calls, follow-up sold customers,’ state-of-the-art or Bennett said. “A lot of our growth has been cutting edge. What Bennett partners with his general sales from our retail and lease retention, and that’sit is, however, can best be described as manager, Ken Pugh, to make sure that each been the biggest thing that comes to us“successful.” member of the staff is in a constant state of through our BDC. For example, in the past, learning. “Every day, we do anywhere from dealers have had lease customers and don’tBy any measure, Bruce Bennett Nissan, a half-hour to 45 minutes of training,” Pugh have a clue about what to do to retain them.located in Wilton, Connecticut, can be said. “We take the entire sales staff upstairs You begin to rely on sales people, you relyconsidered a successful dealership. It is the and we may do meet and greets for 45 on managers and maybe a receptionist to callstate’s No. 1 volume Nissan dealer, and it minutes. We may talk about how to present those people and offer them something tohas earned Nissan’s top customer service true market value. We may talk about how come back in. Without any kind of formalaward for the past 20 years in a row. The to present the car, we may go over hood to process, such as ‘We’re going to contact thisdealership’s secret? Training and service. trunks, we may go over the products ... we person again in one year, six months, three try to see what the sales people might need months, two months, one month, two weeks,“It’s always been about customer service,” for that particular week or month. And then and one week, right up until the time thesaid Todd Bennett, who has been the we rotate the topics.” lease expires,’ you just can’t rely on gettingdealership’s general manager for the past repeat customers.”eight years. “We are a destination store. The dealership’s management also keepsWe’re not on an auto mall road or anything track of areas of development that may need Owner Bruce Bennett knows that hislike that. We just sit all by ourselves about work. “Our managers get together on Monday business is in good hands with son, Todd, as10 miles from a major highway on either morning and we talk about the weekend and the general manager. “Just the other day, Iside of us, so getting customers to us and what we saw on the showroom floor,” Pugh got there about 9:30 and they were havingkeeping those customers around for a long said, “and where sales people might be weak. a sales training session – that’s a dealer’stime has definitely been the most important From there, we might break down to one-on- dream,” he said. “I think most dealers, andthing for our success.” one training. At least once or twice a month, I’m going to say 60 to 70 percent of dealers, I’ll take sales people upstairs and do what we have no ongoing training whatsoever inAnd one of the keys to providing great call a refresher course. They might need a their dealership. Todd and Ken know howcustomer service is training, Bennett said. refresher course on product presentations, on important that is. Todd’s learned enough“We train every day - Monday through negotiations, on follow-up, whatever subject through my 20 Group, and he’s learnedFriday, every single day,” he said. “Most of we feel the group or individual may need enough through what I’ve taught him tothe training goes to the sales team, because one-on-one training.” understand that sales people need trainingthey are the first point of contact. When a every single day, and they need goal setting.customer decides to buy a car from us, if the Judging from the amount of business thesales process doesn’t go well, they’re never company gets from repeat business, the “It’s not groundbreaking,” Bruce Bennettgoing to come back and service a car from training is paying off. “We realized that our said of his company’s philosophy. “I wasme. We train our sales force every single best gross comes from previous customers,” trained by General Motors in the 1970s. Theday.” Bennett said. “Our best opportunity for repeat business hasn’t changed. The business hasn’t business and referrals comes from previous changed at all. You train people, and youA lot of thought and research went into customers, and that’s when we really started train them well, because they’re one-on-onedeveloping the dealership’s training regime, to focus on that area. Our growth has literally with the customer on the showroom floor. IfBennett said. “When I got the opportunity been from that segment. We probably get 30 you don’t train them, all your advertising andto take over the store, I traveled around to percent of our business on a monthly basis everything you’ve done goes up in smokeHonda dealerships, Nissan stores and Toyota from that segment, which is a lot. There’s no right then and there.”stores, and tried to find the most efficient way other way we could do what we do withoutto train,” he said. “I found that concentrating that.”on one philosophy every day - one way ofdoing things so that everybody is on the To maintain this repeat and referral base,same page at every single stage of selling a Bennett said the dealership depends on its Patrick Luck is the editor and publishervehicle - is the most effective way of doing BDC. of AutoSuccess Magazine. He can bebusiness consistently and successfully. contacted at 866.441.7228, or by e-mail atThere’s no other way of doing it. There’s “Our business development center handles 38
  • 28. sts fos ls ms sf fis TeresaBordenet leadership solution Working and Thriving in a Constructive Culture What the heck • Focus on blame are naturally resistant to change, so a change does that mean, a • Maintain the status quo in your culture needs to start at the top to get “constructive culture”? buy in. You’ll need to lead by example to help And how does it help • Constructive Cultures - Proactive your team move toward the new, constructive an organization thrive, • Foster innovation culture you are trying to create.and therefore, be more profitable? We know • Reinforce personalthat behavioral changes are the most difficult responsibility and Here are some thoughts on dealing withto achieve, but if they can equal bottom line accountability for change.results, why wouldn’t we try to make those performancechanges happen? If you can get your team to focus on the So let’s go back to defining culture. Earlier outcome after the change (more profitable,Let’s start by defining what a constructive I said that culture has a lot to do with our more fun) then people may be willing toculture is. And even before that, we need to behaviors. If you want to start promoting adopt the new behaviors. Also, at a certaindefine what culture is. a constructive culture, there are certain level we are all sales people, so SELL your behaviors that you will have to eliminate team on this change. Keep the lines of“Culture” is the shared beliefs and values from your organization, as well as certain communication open and don’t let the smallguiding the thinking and behavior styles behaviors that you’ll need to enhance. stuff get in the way of the primary focus ofof members - the members of the team or your business.organization. It is the sum total of people’s For example, if your team is constantlyhabits, attitudes, beliefs and expectations. backing up the person that has the most A constructive culture fosters innovation, authority, simply because of that authority, personal responsibility and accountabilityLong-term studies have been done with that’s a problem. You’ll need to help your for performance. An organization with acompanies, and in the companies that are team think for themselves. And if your team constructive culture is one that is moreconsidered to have a constructive culture, follows orders – even when they are wrong profitable, and a lot more fun to be in.the stock prices, revenue and net income you are fostering a defensive culture wherefar exceed those of their defensive culture the blame game is evident every day. We can all foster this culture by changingcounterparts. our behaviors, and leading by example by If you can motivate others with friendliness embracing this change. And as Henry FordSo not only is it more profitable to work in and show concern for people, and balance always said: “Whether you think you can oran organization that fosters a constructive this with emphasizing quality over quantity think you can’t, you’re right.”culture, it’s also a lot more FUN. and working for a sense of accomplishment, you’ll be moving towards a constructiveThere are two types of cultures that you culture. This isn’t to say that you don’ttypically see in a work environment, and hold people accountable. But you can startthey are either defensive, or constructive: building a constructive culture by fostering Teresa Bordenet is the vice president of strategic initiatives at MarketView360. these behaviors. She can be contacted at • Defensive Cultures - Inactive/Reactive 866.452.7022, or by e-mail at • Create overhead There’s one more thing to keep in mind. People 40
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