We all want to get more leads into the showroom and onto the salesfloor, but follow-up can be a daunting process.  In this article we’re going to look at a few ways to improve your lead handling and ultimately get more leads into the dealership.

 01 | Slow Down to Speed Up

One of the biggest problems in your BDC department (and on your salesfloor) is that everyone is rushing so fast to answer leads that they’re missing half of the information included in them.

Lead response time comes with so much pressure to go faster, that it’s no surprise that half of the information is being missed, but those fast response times don’t get you anywhere.  You might set a lot of appointments, but most of those people aren’t going to show.

You need to slow down to speed up. 

Slow down and actually take the time to read the lead.  It only takes an extra 15-20 seconds to take in all of the information available and then actually craft a thoughtful response to the lead.

When you take that extra bit of time to slow down, you actually speed up so many other things.  You speed up your growth, your accuracy and most importantly; your performance numbers.

Focus on creating quality leads, that are going to set an appointment, keep their appointment and actually come into the dealership to buy a car.

02 | Increase Your Activities

One of the biggest mistakes that dealerships make is contacting their leads at the exact same time every day.  Following up with the lead becomes a task and usually salespeople and BDC staff alike tackle that task first thing in the morning.

The problem is, most people are busy at 9am.

If you keep calling them day in and day out at the same time, you’re never going to get in touch. Your timing was bad the first day, why do you think it will be any better tomorrow?

With a once-a-day contact policy, it takes most dealerships an average of 4-6 days to get in touch with a lead.  That’s eternity for a sale.

Time kills all deals.

If you really want to get in touch, you need to remember that you’re trying to find a time that works for the customer, not the other way around.  Vary the times that you’re reaching out and make sure that you’re trying to connect more than once per day.

It might seem like a lot, but the more you reach out, the more likely you are to connect with that lead sooner.  Twice a day is the minimum number of times that you should be reaching out to a lead.

Ideally, you’d be reaching out three times a day by phone, by email and by text.

If you reach out at a variety of times, in a variety of ways, multiple times a day, you’re more likely to turn each lead into a sale.

03 | Make it Bling – Not Ring

We’ve all had a manager tell us to get on the phones and make more calls, but ask yourself this; how often do you answer a call from an unknown number on your cell phone? Moreover, how often do you listen to your voicemails or return them?

Only 19% of people will answer an incoming call from a number that is not saved on their phone.  81% of people just send you to voicemail.

Yet, 90% of people will read a text message within 3 minutes of it being sent and 99% of people will read it within 20 minutes.

Start the conversation with a text.  It doesn’t mean that you need to text exclusively, but you should always start the conversation that way.

Your chances of setting an appointment that will actually show go up about 10% when you set that appointment on the phone, so use your text conversation to move the lead to the phone and finish the conversation there.

Leaving voicemails will get you nowhere, so make it bling, before you make it ring.