Take it nice and slow…
Customers who applied for an auto loan online, and are waiting for that call, with what they assume will be bad news, can be hard to communicate with in the first few minutes. The leads you are calling should always be real time, and you should always call them as soon as you get the lead, that way you can get to that customer before they have a chance to apply on any other site and another dealer swoops in. The longer you wait, the more difficult it can be to get a conversation going.
So you have the lead, fresh from your email, fax, or CRM, you pick up the phone and dial. Someone answers! It’s very important to let the customer know within the first 10 seconds that you are responding to their request, you’re not just a dealership calling randomly. Let the them know that you are calling about the auto loan application the customer filled out online. Subprime customers probably have creditors calling, you don’t want to mistaken for a creditor or an unsolicited call. I’ve found that throwing it all out there gets my foot in the door and doesn’t get be piled in with the other callers that I don’t want to be associated with. My best opening line, “Hi, this is Allen, I’m calling for John Doe about the auto loan application he just filled out.” I try to avoid mentioning the franchise of the dealership right off the bat. Of course, I’ll tell them where I am calling from, but I won’t list off the franchise names. It sounds cheesy and it can be a deterrent. If someone is looking for a specific make and model such as a Chevy Tahoe, it really puts a kink in the chain if you say you’re calling from a Kia dealership. It’s also helpful to introduce your dealership in a way that lets the customer know that you don’t just sell new cars. Most customers who have bad credit and limited income hear a franchise dealership name and see high priced new cars, not realizing right away that dealerships have used vehicles from auctions and trade ins that can easily fit their needs and budget.
You may be sitting there thinking, “Did I really just read about how to say hello to a customer?” The answer is, yes you did. How to say hello and introduce yourself to leads can greatly increase your sales. It’s about understanding your customer, and putting yourself in their shoes.