No matter how tightly or loosely your association with the automotive industry, this is a month of reckoning for so many reasons. But most are still in 'wait and see mode'. That just flat out can't be comfortable and it's not right, so why is it done? If you'd had the proverbial crystal ball, what would you have done months ago (if not years)?
It is interesting to hear about some level of negative consumer sentiment or backlash about the Toyota 0% advertising. When was the last time the public's voice rallied against dealers communicating with them too much or trying to sell them cars they didn't want?
Not to rip off Lexus and their annual end-of-the-year ad blitz, but will this be a December to remember? Some stores are talking about a small lift in their traffic, some about people buying again and some are just happy to get clients responding via email. How do you keep the water flowing?
These are constants in what IM@CS teaches daily:
1. Put everything in the customers' terms
2. Ask questions
3. Validate the customer (while talking less)
4. Answer their questions and ask a new one (yes, keep the conversation going)
5. Demonstrate a real reason to buy
6. Promote value, advantages and benefits
Then ask yourself what your marketing says and remember that if you keep doing the same things, don't expect different results. In a meeting with a dealer service provider Tuesday, their entire (refreshing) approach was to understand their clients' needs better. Almost everything we talked about related to engagement. So…what are you doing every day to think about how you communicate and relate to your clients?
Don't pay more attention than your precious time allows to think about the economy, bailouts, cut backs, fewer units sales, etc. Nothing affects you more than the leads you're not responding to, the terse or lacking responses and messages you leave, the appointments you don't confirm and the time you don't spend learning how to do things better.
Find every reason to make this a December to remember for your own reasons, get out there and be great!
Best practices: Professional Insight, Powerful Results
I strongly agree with your 6 constants – and they are even more important in times like today when consumers are purchasing less. The key word being “less”. It’s easy to get engulfed with all the bad news – but people are still buying cars, just not as many. I’ve noticed that those purchasing cars are those who are stronger, better customers. A large portion of todays customers are looking for an easy purchase, want to be provided information from the dealer and are ready to buy with the dealer who provides them the best interaction. In 5 months I’ll be one of those customers – my Lexus lease will be up and I’ll be buying a replacement vehicle. My last purchase came from the dealer who responded to my emails, who answered my questions, who’s online presence was inline with the marketing I heard on the radio & TV and who located the vehicle I wanted so I didn’t have to hunt lots of dealerships.
I believe that dealers who follow your recommendations, who take the effort to put them into full practice this month can turn this December into a time to remember.