Be Less Typical - Car Sales Mentor Me

Mentor Me? A Guide to Starting Out

“Well, so far I can log onto my computer, and I know where the bathrooms are! Progress.”

 

This post in my Facebook news feed from a friend who started a new job today, takes me right back to my first day working at the car dealership.

I remember nervously entering the parking lot on that first day, wondering where to park. It’s a car dealership. There are cars everywhere. So where do the employees park, I wondered? Having no idea, I arbitrarily parked right up by the front door. My new manager saw me enter the building and immediately sent me back out to move my car, pointing out the location of the employee parking lot, way behind the building. It’s great to have a manager who is helpful and kind, but wouldn’t it be nice to not have to repeatedly ask your manager for help? Let’s face it. Managers are busy, and having an employee that doesn’t require constant attention makes a manager’s job easier and the employee more valuable.

Mentor programs help smooth out the transition for newbies, but often car dealerships don’t even offer a formal training program, let alone a mentor program. New employees may feel like they are on their own when it comes to figuring out their new job. This might be perfectly fine for someone with car sales experience. But if you are new to the business, you probably have a million questions and a million more you don’t even know you have yet.

Therefore, it will be up to you, to find a mentor for yourself. Here are some ideas on how to find a mentor and how to help them help you. Read more

5 Social Strategies for Car Sales

5 SOCIAL STRATEGIES FROM 5 KEY PERFORMERS

At Be Less Typical-Car Sales, we have had an opportunity to talk with some of today’s top car sales performers and find out how they are leveraging social media and the social strategies that go along with it.

The following are the top 5 strategies we have uncovered:

1.  Share your day: Use social media to stay top of mind with your friends, family & social network. Everyone in your network should know where you work and what you do for a living. Share your work life by posting dealership events, new vehicle/model reveals and poll you audience questions.  For example: Post a picture of a new vehicle color option with a caption: Check out this new color. Love it -or- Hate it? This gets people engaged.

2.  Use video: Videos allow consumers to meet you before they come into the dealership.  Ideas for videos include walk arounds, option awareness/functionality & how to’s. For example: How to pair a mobile device with bluetooth in a vehicle.

3.  Hashtags: You might not see the ROI (return on investment) in black and white, but hashtagging allows customers to search and find your content easily without having to search through your social feed.  Is your dealership involved in a charity or do you provide content on a particular topic? If so, hashtag it.  For example: #DealOfTheDay

4.  Be Helpful: Create and curate content that customers are looking for. If you see a trend in the questions being asked, consider answering it on social.  This increases your visibility and builds your credibility as a trusted resource. How do you know what people want? Ask your customers!

5.  Use social to communicate: Offer it to customers as a means of follow up.  For example: Patrick, what’s your preferred method of communication; phone, email or direct message on social media? The benefits of leveraging social media in the marketplace are endless. Many dealerships are still questioning the use of it, but the question should be how to properly train employees to leverage it effectively. Follow the five key strategies we have shared and start experiencing the difference it can make in your business.

statistics for car sales

WIIFM – Car Sales Stats That Mean Something

As I look through automotive news, headlines and current events it seems that there is a statistic tied to everything these days. Many statistics for car sales can be very compelling, but what’s the WIIFM? (Pronounced whiff – like you got a bad whiff of whatever someone is heating up in the staff microwave, followed by -um.) WIIFM is an acronym for ‘What’s In It For Me’?  I use this acronym a lot during sales training, but it can be applied to almost everything, including a discussion on automotive industry statistics.  Let’s take a look at a few statistics that caught my eye and dive a little bit further into the “WIIFM” and why it’s relevant to car sales and automotive industry.

The WIIFM

  •  The Center for Generational Kinetics recently released research (May 2015) on the top 75 employers where Millennials want to work and grow their career.  In the ‘Medium Employer Category’ the top 3 companies are car dealerships! In fact, car dealerships or auto groups comprise 15 out of the top 75 spots.
    • The WIIFM: Car dealerships are changing the way they structure their business and work environment to meet the needs/wants of new employees.  Some are offering flex time scheduling or shared responsibility sales positions. Many have good benefits, including 401k match options and demo vehicle plans.  If you’re interested in entering the car business, this is a good time to begin!

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8 Steps to uploading a video to YouTube

Eight Steps to Creating a Video for YouTube

When we recently interviewed Melissa Granke, the Ohio Car Girl, on our podcast. She brought up her unique way of learning about the vehicles and products she sells. Using her iPhone, it is her practice to record a video of herself giving a walk around on a specific vehicle. She uses the opportunity to become familiar with the vehicle and its features, while at the same time creating content that she can upload and later use to help educate her customers.

Inspired by this, Courtney and I decided to give it a try. Neither of us had previously experimented with capturing video for promotion…so we decided that this was a great opportunity to take the advice from Melissa and create some content. We figured we could build some content to help promote our podcast and learn the process to do it at the same time.

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costing10k

Your Social Media Habits Could Be Costing You $10,000 This Year

One of the most difficult things for me to grasp, both personally and professionally, was my individual responsibility. There have been many times in the past, where I have wanted to point a finger at someone else for the shortcomings I was experiencing in my life or career. It wasn’t until I started to grab the reigns of my own success, that I truly started to see incredible results.  One aspect of my success and my teams success has revolved around the utilization of the social networks we have at our disposal.  Encouraging my team to utilize their own social networks to grow their book of business, has provided them with an opportunity to gain success faster than what an average salesperson might experience.

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RelationshipsImage

Building Relationships at the Car Dealership

Building relationships within the workplace, specifically a car dealership, can seem a bit overwhelming in the beginning. For every vehicle you sell there are multiple people and departments you need to interact with; Sales Managers, F&I Managers, the Service department, Porters/Detail team, Administration personnel, the cleaning crew, not to mention your co-workers (other sales people). Each of these departments play an integral role in your success, which is why it’s so important that you establish good/healthy working relationships with these people. 

So, how do you build relationships with all of these people while still getting your everyday job responsibilities completed?? Well, not to state the obvious, but you do just that… establish relationships. You need to get to know the people within each department and understand what their expectations are. This should be a priority as you begin your career in the car business, but it’s also something that you have to work at and foster, even when you’ve been working at the same dealership for a long period of time. It’s like any other relationship, it takes work and a little bit of time, but the payoff is well worth it. Besides, you are going to be spending countless hours with these people, so you might as well understand who they are and how they work.  

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First Day Selling Cars

Tips for Your First Day Selling Cars

Walking in on your first day to sell cars can feel like a daunting task. The emotions felt will be of excitement, anxiety and optimism – potentially all at the same time! It is not common for many dealerships to have a formal and written “training” program in place for new hires. Setting your expectations for this at the get go is important so that you can feel motivated to seek out the training you will need and not just wait for the program to begin. The dealership is a busy place, busier than most outsiders may realize and every person in it will have regular daily tasks that they are working on in spite of you showing up for day one. Don’t get discouraged or deterred if you aren’t treated as the top priority right out of the gate. I have outlined a few tips for your first day selling cars below that can hopefully launch you into this new endeavor on the right foot. Read more

Social Media in Car Sales

Social Media in Car Sales

Chances are by now you are using one or more Social Media sites (most likely Facebook) in your personal life.  So the next logical question is, should you be utilizing your personal social media account(s) to help increase car sales? Should you be building awareness, having dialogue with current or prospective customers or creating customer advocates?  There is no clear-cut answer, however I would offer you these items to consider.

It’s okay to start small 

  • There’s no need to start a new Facebook, Twitter, InstaGram and Snapchat to reach customers.  Start small, pick one platform and try it out to see what kind of results you get.  Consider how many friends you have on FB or on other social sites (the average adult has 388 friends on FB according to Pew Research: Pew Research).  I would start on the platform where I have the largest number of friends or followers.  These social friends already know and trust you enough to have accepted your friend request or sent you a friend request.  Do you think it’s easier to sell to someone you already have an established relationship with or a fresh up that walks through the front door of the dealership?

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