Appointment-Driven Communications – Part 7
TRANSCRIPT: So, let’s do a quick roll play. I don’t mean a real roll play but you should be roll playing all the time. In fact, the only way to get these ‘talk tracks’ down, and the only way to keep the discipline you need to drive an appointment culture for yourself, is to do roll plays. So, let’s begin.
Let’s say we’re making an ‘orphan owner marketing’ call. This is someone who bought from us but their salesperson no longer works for us, or, they bought elsewhere, but, they service with us. So, let’s say we’re a Toyota dealer and we’re making the call to try to buy back the customer’s Tundra. “Hey, Mr. Jones, Steve Stauning calling from Century Toyota. This may sound weird, but we actually have a buyer in immediate need for a Tundra configured like yours. Now, I don’t know if you’d consider selling yours to us, or not, but I’d like to give you a written appraisal on that Tundra. I don’t care if you buy anything from me, or not. I just really need your Tundra. Now, I’ve got two appointments open today with my appraiser. I have one at 5:15 and one at 5:45. Would either of those work for you?”
Then, we’re going to shut up.
Now, there are times that this owner is gonna be like,”Yeah, I kinda been thinking about selling. Yes, I can be in at 5:15, so, you can give me a written appraisal”. But, most often, they want more information. We’re going to get questions like, “How much are you going to give me?” right? They want to know. “How much you gonna give me for my Tundra?” “Well, Mr. Jones, I can tell you this; only a trained appraiser knows what your Tundra is worth and it would be irresponsible for a dealer to give you that information over the phone. I can tell you that we are often paying above book value for well-maintained Tundras. Now, I’ve got two appraisals open today with my appraiser. I’ve got a 5:15 and a 5:45. Which one works better for you?”
Every objection that they have; every question that they have, I’m going to frame the next step. I’m going to have the discipline to come back and say, “I have two…of those open today”. Here’s the one that’s going to catch on those owner marketing calls: you’re calling someone to buy their Tundra, let’s say, and they’re going to say this; “Well, yeah, I’d like to sell my Tundra, but what am I supposed to drive home?” Just like a fish, they’re going to hook you and you’re going to fall right into salesman mode. You’ve got to stop that. You can’t say, “Oh, my gosh, with the deals that Toyota has today, we can probably keep you at the same payment on a 2014, 2015 Tundra….whatever”.
We’ve got to stop that. We don’t want to talk about that. What we can say is this, “Well, Mr. Jones, you’re going to be shocked at the great values that we have right now, and the great offers we have for the Toyota, however, I do have a buyer and an immediate need for your Tundra. Now I have two appraisals open today. I have a 5:15 and a 5:45, which one of those works better for you?”
See, we’re going to come right back to that. You can talk about “… and we’ll have you test drive something while you’re here”, but, we don’t want to try to sell the car, because all you can do is sell the other guy’s car on the phone. Let’s remember that. Our goal is an appointment that shows. So, we have him on the phone. Yes, he’s interested in a brand new Tundra. That’s great. We’ll deal with that when he gets here. We’ll have something for him to test drive. A similar color, perhaps, right? Maybe equipped a little nicer. We’re going to say, “Mr. Jones, it’s going to take about 45 minutes to do a proper appraisal on your vehicle. While we’re doing that, I’d like to just get the keys to this ’14 or ’15 Tundra; whatever model year this is, and just let you take it out on a test drive, right?”, so we can inject you with new model fever at that point.
You’ll get things like this: “What about my payment?” “Well, Mr. Jones, often people can stay at the same payment, however, it would be irresponsible for a dealer to give you that information over the phone. I do have two appointments open in my business office today. I have a 5:15 and a 5:45. Those coincide with the appointments I have with my appraiser. Which one of those works better for you?”
Here’s another one you’re going to get, and, this one you’ll need to have discipline for: “I can be in tonight. What time do you close?” Right now your team says this, “We close at 9:00…”, and they wait. They’ve just given control of the call over to the caller. The goal is not information. It’s not to get information. It’s not to give information. Your goal is an appointment that shows. So, when someone says, “What time do you close?” this is our answer every time: “Well, Mr. Jones, we close at 9:00, but, our last appraisal tonight is for 7:15. Now, I have a 6:45 and a 7:15 open. Which one of these works better for you?”
The reason we say it that way is we don’t want Mr. Jones rolling in at 8:45. We’re not going to sell him a car. We’re not going to be able to properly appraise his trade, plus, we want to get out of here at 9:00. Let me tell you about my dentist’s office. When they say they close at 4:30, make no mistake, they’re turning the key at 4:29. Every single day. Your dealership; if you close at 9:00 on weekdays, you need to be turning the key every day at 9:00, 8:59. You really do. You’re not going to sell any more cars being there till 11:00 every night. You’re going to wear your team out; you’re going to do poorly on the deals you do close after 9:00; you’ll make lower grosses, most often; you’re going to get bad CSI, and you think you’re doing the customer a favor, while they feel like this thing is really dragging out and thinking, “Oh my God, it’s 10:30 and I’m still at a damn car dealership”.
So, we’re going to do the customer a favor, and we’re going to do your team a favor, and we’re especially going to do you a favor: we’re not going to set any appointments for any later than an hour and forty-five minutes before we close the dealership. So, “What time do you close?” “Mr. Jones, we close at 9:00 tonight, but my last appraisal appointment is for 7:15. I do have one at 6:45 and the one at 7:15. Which one of those works better for you?”
Okay, now, here’s the final ‘talk track’ we’re going to give you when you are making those owner marketing calls. Let’s say today is Monday. You get ahold of Mr. Jones and you tell him you want to buy his Tundra. He’s excited. He’s interested, and he says, “Hey, I could be there on Saturday. What time do you open?” Right now, this is what your team says: “We open at 9:00.” You can’t do that. Today is Monday; Saturday is five days away. We can’t let this person sit for five days with new car fever. What’s going to happen on Monday night, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday? He’s going to shop. But you know where he’s not going to shop? He’s not going to shop with us because he’s going to see us on Saturday. So, if you say, “We open at 9:00. I’ve got a 9:15 and a 9:45; which of those works better for you?”, and he scheduled 9:15, guess what he’s going to do between now and 9:15 on Saturday? He shops. He shops around. Know what’s going to happen? He’s going to run into a salesman. He’s going to run into a salesman who’s going to buy his Tundra and sell him something else. It’s not going to be with you because he doesn’t need to shop with you. He’s going to see you on Saturday.
So, what you’ve got to do is have the discipline to understand what my goal is. My goal is an appointment that shows. He’s not gonna show. All of your appointments must be set for today or tomorrow, especially, if they’re an owner marketing appointment. We just told someone, “I have a buyer and an immediate need for your Tundra”, and, by the way, we do have a buyer, it’s our used car manager. We do have an immediate need because we always have a need for great, well maintained, used vehicles, right? So, I have a buyer and an immediate need for your Tundra. I just told him that. He’s interested, but he says he can’t be in till Saturday. I need to say: ”Hey, Mr. Jones, that’s okay. Listen, I’ve got five other Tundra owners on my list to call tonight. If I can’t get one of them to sell me their Tundra today or tomorrow, I’ll go ahead and call you on Friday and we’ll schedule the Saturday appointment. How’s that sound?”
More than half the time, he will find the time to come in tonight or tomorrow. He’ll say something like, “Well, I can come in tomorrow.” And you say, “Great! I’ve got two appointments tomorrow morning, a 9:15 and a 9:45. Which one works better for you?” Then we’ll go ahead and set the appointment. Remember our goal is an appointment that shows.
Suppose, though, he works out of town. Let’s say he’s out of town, and, truly can’t come in until Saturday. That’s okay. We’ve tamped down his new car fever on Monday. We can put a note in the CRM. If he calls our bluff and says, “Well, I really can’t come in until Saturday. Go ahead and call me Friday, if you still have a need”. Great, we’ll put a note in the CRM for 4:30, 5:00 Friday night and when that note pops up, we’re going to make that call. “Hey, Mr. Jones, Steve Stauning, calling from Century Toyota. Great news! I still have a buyer and an immediate need for your Tundra. I have two appraisals open for tomorrow morning. I have a 9:15 and a 9:45. Which one works better for you”? Then we’re going to set the appointment that shows.
Remember, when we get them on the phone, we have one goal, an appointment that shows.