July 1, 2018 – the 1st half of the year is in the books. Do you want the 2nd half to be the same as the 1st?
Creating a Game Plan, A Road Map, a definite Work Plan for the month is a way to design your outcome.
You examine your mix of sales, are their segments such as used trucks you may be missing opportunities? You look at the sources of opportunities – Floor/Phone/Internet Social Media/Repeat/Referral. You take into consideration the working days, the amount of opportunities you have for the upcoming month. These are factors we consider when we project for the upcoming month.
As you build your forecast, look for the opportunities you may have missed, maybe only 1 or 2 used and you feel a growth opportunity lies here. And, FORECAST in small increments, 10% over previous month. But remember, a GOAL is MANDATORY so whatever you forecast – you accomplish. Then the following month another 10% and then another 10%. By December you will have grown your sales by 60%. What would a 60 increase in sales do for your income?
If you have questions or would like a copy of my “Forecasting Worksheet”, call or drop me a note.
6633 Buckhorn Tr * Loves Park, IL 61111 * (815)978-5038 * firstname.lastname@example.org
In the past 30 days, I have attended an Internet Conference in Las Vegas, viewed eight webinars and read in excess of 30 articles on “new and improved ideas”, techniques and products; all related to what’s working BEST with the Internet TODAY.
What is my conclusion? Everything is working, yet nothing is working. So, not to worry you – I do HAVE THE ANSWER.
First, let’s look at some of the latest statistics:
Here are some statistics you have probably heard just to confirm:
* 90% of the people shopping for automobiles are at one time going online and viewing things via the internet.
* Phone-ups currently are 4-1 over lead submission.
* The average person is visiting approximately 1.5 dealerships.
Now, here are some stats you probably did not know!
DAYS TO SOLD
Day 1 – 14%
Day 2 – 18%
Day 3 – 12%
Day 4 – 6%
Day 5 – 4%
Days 6/10 – 14%
Days 10/30 – 19%
Days 30+ – 12%
Since I started specializing with the Internet, I have been teaching the importance of having a “long-term” schedule to identify and engage potential clients and I am still an advocate of that; however, I am changing my emphasis to the first 5-days, with an accelerated push at that time and then automating things, with just a couple of calls. Let’s consider the logic.
DAYS TO CONTACT
Day 1 – 67% 99% of Sold’s were contacted within the first 5 days
Day 2 – 19%
Day 3 – 8%
Day 4 – 2%
Day 5 – 1.5%
Day 6 – .5%
Then, the next question to come up should be what method is being used to ENGAGE there people? 72% of the people were contacted by phone and 28% were engaged via email. This tells me that strong emphasis needs to be placed in order to get the right person to speak with you on the phone. Question: “Does your first email response ask to have a telephone conversation for additional details? It should – even if the prospect did not provide a number, ask them to take the time to call – you will both be better satisfied!
So, considering the statistics and remembering that I told you I had the answer….. so here it is. THE ROAD TO THE SALE today, whether you want to admit it or not, starts online! How much time does your sales manager spend with your BDC, Internet Sales People, whomever you have responding to these opportunities? I was taught that the best management style in a dealership is performing “one-on-ones” daily with the salespeople, I still believe that, but if your main sales manager is not performing “one-on-ones” daily with your people responding to your Internet leads everyday you are missing opportunities. They should be making certain that multiple calls are being daily in the first five days in an endeavor to contact new leads Additionally, there should be at least four hours between attempts. Are they viewing the emails being sent? Are they discussing the messages being left? Are they monitoring how many out-going dials are being made everyday? If you are not doing these things daily, you are probably not selling 11% of the overall leads you get.
54% WILL PURCHASE WITHIN THE 1ST 5 DAYS
33% WILL PURCHASE BETWEEN DAYS 6 – 30
12% WILL PURCHASE 30+ DAYS
As a closing note…. I speak with dealers and managers who tell how expensive it is to bring someone in to train, help set these processes in place and setup schedules to follow and my question back is always: “How expensive is it NOT TO ENLIST THE ASSISTANCE OF AN INTERNET PROCESS SPECIALIST AND HOW MUCH NET PROFIT ARE YOU ALLOWING YOUR COMPETITORS TAKE AWAY FROM YOU WHO HAVE THE PROPER PROCESSES, PROCEDURES AND PHONE TECHNIQUES TO PROPERLY HANDLE TODAY’S CUSTOMER?”
Scott Hembrough of Hembrough Business Systems worked with Cannon Auto Group in Lakeland, Flordia – a 2nd generation dealership that was struggling from bouncing back from the financial slow down the entire auto industry suffered from.
Scott helped with Internet, phone training, overall dealership processes and listen to the credit Danny Cannon gives Scott regarding the dealerships profitability.
We are each born with 18,000,000 brain cells.
So here is the question: How many are you going to use in 2013?
Trick question with a simple answer – more than you used in 2012.
At the time of this writing the news is blasting about “the fiscal cliff”. We just had a record number of Tornadoes on Christmas Day run from Texas to Alabama.
Desert Storm Commander Norman Schwarzkopf died last night. MY POINT: There are always going to be business interruptions. There are always going to be weather conditions to contend with. Something for you to consider is whether you are focusing on the negative news or looking for ways to stay focused on the positive?
So what does all of that have to do with succeeding in 2013? Remember earlier I said each of us is born with 18,000,000 brain cells. It is my opinion that in 2013 you had better be using more of them than you did in 2012. To me this will be one of three critical components to succeeding in 2013.
First critical element: Like it or not, technology is the way of the future. I was speaking with someone the other day and that asked me to relate technology years to human years. I questioned what they meant by that. They responded: “You know, dog years, if a dog is 10 years old in human years, they are 70 years old in “dog years”. So he again asked the question: “If your website was designed and last time it was updated was 5 years ago, how old would that be in human years?” I still had no clue. Finally he said 50. One year in human years is the equivalent to 10 years in technological years. POINT: You have to be reading, studying, and most importantly DOING things if you want to succeed in 2013. WHY – because the guy down the street might be, and if he is and you are not, you are going to be toast.
Second critical element: Teamwork and employee productivity. I read a Harvard Business Review last week titled: “What One Thing Your Team Wants You to Stop Doing.” What was one of the things one of the things they wanted their employers to stop doing? It was – Sugar coating things – tell me where I really stand. Another thing was I can deal with the truth so be honest with me.
From Patrick Lencioni’s book: “Not Finance. Not Strategy. Not Technology. It is TEAMWORK that remains the ultimate competitive advantage, both because it is so powerful and so rare.”
Third critical element: Leadership. If technology involves everyone – teamwork and productivity are critical, the only way to accomplish these is with effective Leadership.
In many businesses they struggle with the difference between management and leadership. In many businesses, they ASSUME their managers are BORN great leaders. John Maxwell is in my opinion one of the BEST Leadership trainers today. He starts many of his lessons with: “The Law of the LID because it helps people understand leadership. If you can get a handle on this law, you will see the incredible impact of leadership on every aspect of life.” LEADERSHIP ABILITY IS THE LID THAT DETERMINES A PERSON’S LEVEL OF EFFECTIVENESS. THE LOWER THE INDIVIDUAL’S ABILITY TO LEAD, THE LOWER THE LID ON HIS POTENTIAL. THE HIGHER THE LEADERSHIP – THE GREATER THE EFFECTIVENESS. EX: “If your leadership skills are rated at an 8, then your effectiveness can never be greater that a 7. If your leadership is rated only at a 4, then your effectiveness will be no higher than a 3. Your leadership effectiveness – for better or for worse – always determines your effectiveness and the potential impact on your organization.”
In a classic movie, “The Untouchables”, I love the line Sean Connery used. He kept of asking those he worked with: “So what are you going to do about that?” And that would be my question to you – “What are you going to do about things in 2013?”
Read the same amount you did in 2012. Study Leadership and Teamwork the same amount you did in 2012? Commit to technology the same as you did in 2012? OR – are you going to take some of those 18,000,000 brain cells and try to use more of them? That is my plan for 2013 – study more, read more, listen more, push myself more, help those around me more, share with others more.
Yesterday, I posted on Facebook an interview with the great Zig Ziglar that took place a couple days before he passed away and he shared one of his greatest messages: “You can have everything you want in life – EVERYTHING – if you will just help enough other people get what they want.”
May 2013 Be Your Best Year Ever.
It’s not your building – your parts – your cars – it is your customers! I have been in the car business for a long time and I cannot tell you how long ago I heard this. The PROBLEM is everyone agrees this is important, but do we really treat it as your “Most Valuable Asset?”
Let me start by sharing a recent experience I had in a dealership that I feel is very normal. I was working with a salesperson and we will call him Abe. I asked Abe how many units he had delivered the previous month – he responded 11. I asked him how many he was forecasting for the upcoming month – he responded 12. I then asked him how long he had been selling cars? He responded 10 years. That is when I almost lost it. The national average is around 10 units per month and this salesperson has been selling for 10 years and he is selling 1 more car than the average. What has he done with the past 10 years of owners?
He has done with them the same as what most other automotive salespeople have done – very little. No – let me change that answer – he is “WAITING” for them to come in and ask him to sell them another vehicle. I see two issues that cause this in today’s business model and I will address one of them in this issue – the other in an upcoming issue.
The first thing I see is this person has never been trained how to develop a “book of business” and capture all the opportunities it offers.
Let me start by sharing some data. I asked Abe how many units he had sold in the previous 3 years, he said 330. I shared with him that 1/3, or 110 of those people will either replace a vehicle in their driveway, add a vehicle, a relative or close friend will replace a vehicle, the problem is – Abe doesn’t know any of that information. If he does do follow up with his customers it is usually just checking in on the car he sold them. He doesn’t have any clue: “How many vehicles they own, who the drivers are, were they purchased new or used and when, and most importantly when they plan to replace them”. He has NO CLUE – HE JUST LEAVES IT TO CHANCE. Abe has 9 people EACH MONTH he has done business with that are going to be purchasing a vehicle or someone very close to them will be purchasing something – he basically lives by the floor. And here is the bigger problem, multiply that by the number of salespeople in your dealership and think of that amount of business you are leaving to “chance” each month. Think of how much you could reduce your advertising if you had control of these opportunities?
The first step in fixing it is at the TOP. You have to provide time and resources to go after this business. Take away the “loss” of not standing by the door or you will miss a good UP. Have a rotation system. Require people to contact so many previous owners or bonus or spiff money isn’t earned. Train them. Train manager’s to manage these opportunities. Build “Controlled Repeat Business” into the pay plan.
With as fast as the Internet and everything else is changing in the car business – this has not changed and will not change. People want to be appreciated and “building a book of business” creates fantastic owner loyalty.
Just an FYI – I write this version of my newsletter for managers – I also write another one specifically for salespeople. In the one for salespeople I got more into the specifics of what and how they could build their “Book of Business”. If you would like a copy of that newsletter let me know and I will forward it to you.
I would love to hear your comments or successes with “building a book of business”.