This Month’s Selling Principle:
Contacting the Lease End Prospect
Prospecting is usually one of the topics that come up in our one day advanced sales workshops. And although I consider prospecting to be a basic selling skill, unfortunately, it usually isn’t until well into our car selling careers that any of us decide to do any regular disciplined systematic prospecting. And most of us never stick with it because as a rule the benefits, that is additional sales, can be initially slow to come.
The exception to this rule, however, is calling the lease end prospect. Not only are the additional sales quicker to come by (most prospects are near the end of their trading cycle and know it), and most are still highly credit qualified, but also brand and dealer loyalty is statistically highest with lease customers.
So, this month I want to simply share with you our phone script for getting face to face with a lease end prospect. This word track is plucked directly from our Telephone Selling Skills workshop. It can be used, with minor modification, for a client of our own as well as the orphan customer outlined here. It also has many fall back positions based on what you tell us are the typical responses these prospects give you. Here it is:
Calling The Lease-End Prospect
1) (SMILE, our customer can hear it!)
2) Good Morning! or Hello! or Good afternoon! (Any appropriate salutation.)
3) Mr./Ms. Customer? Did I catch you a good time?
4) This is ________ from A B C Motors. Your account has recently been assigned to me and the reason I’m calling, Mr./Ms. Customer, is that the lease on your _____________ (year, model) is scheduled to end on _________ (lease end date). Are you still enjoying your _____________ (make)?
5) If no, then ask: Oh, then, what are you driving now? (or try to address their problem)
6) If yes, then say: That’s good. We need to schedule a time this week to explore and select the lease end option that’s best for you as well as help you with the lease end inspection of your present vehicle. Will this ______ (day) at ______ (time) work for you?
7) If our prospect says: “It’s not for four months, what’s the rush?”, we say: Most of our clients prefer the transition into their next vehicle to be as smooth as possible. By deciding early, Mr. Customer, you’ll avoid any surprises and you’ll also keep all your lease end options open to you. Will _________ (day) work?
8) If our prospect says: “Can’t we do this over the phone?”, we say: It might be possible, however, to optimize the value of your vehicle the best way to do so is to go over the car together. There are critical differences between what is considered normal wear and tear and excessive wear and tear. Simple things like measuring remaining tire tread or inspection of the windshield could make a significant difference. For example, it may be possible to perform a simple $40 repair of a glass chip instead of a $500 or $600 windshield replacement. We need to go over these things together. So, will ______ (day) work?
9) If our prospect says: “What are my lease end options?”, we say: You have several and they are varied. When we get together, what I’d like to do is put on paper all the different lease end options available to you. That way you can see them for yourself, first hand, side by side. After reviewing them all, you can simply pick the one that’s best for you. Does that make sense? If yes, then say: Will _____ (day) work?
10) Got a pen? Please write my name down. My last name is spelled (slowly) _________. And my first name is ______________. Here’s my number ______________. That’s _________ (day) at __________ (time).
11) See you then and thank you!
If we are unsuccessful at setting a specific appointment with our prospect, we then simply offer our name and contact points should they need our assistance in the future, thank them, and get off the phone so we can move onto the next call. Once they come in, we can assist them through our regular selling process.
Obviously, we need to tailor this talk track to our own vocabulary and personality. We also need to take the time to practice it, role playing it several times before using it with a prospect. But please don’t wait until we have it down perfectly. Sometimes we just need to take action. It’ll get easier and more profitable the more we use it.
So, until next time, be well, and do good work!
Michael D. Hargrove
“I suggest that your presence in the world of form has a grand mission and that you can discover and begin thinking, feeling and behaving in ways consistent with that mission.”
Dr. Wayne W. Dyer
Objection of the Month: “We must think/sleep/pray about it.”
These are just a few of the most common strategies shared at the workshops we’ve conducted all across North America and attended by thousands of the top sales people in our field. Please keep in mind that nothing works all the time, and no one thing will work for everybody. Each of these strategies, of course, need to be tailored to the individual user, to the specific customer, and the particular situation. Also, this is by no means the definitive work on overcoming this particular objection and it’s not intended to be.
a. “Of course you need to think about it, it’s a big decision, right? Come on inside so I can get you all of the information you’ll need to make an intelligent decision. Follow me please.”
b. “Where I come from, that means someone just wants to make their decision” (or “pray about it”) “without some salesperson hanging all over them. I’ll just excuse myself for a few minutes and you folks go ahead and discuss this alone.” (or “do what you feel you need to”) “When I come back, if you have any remaining questions, I’ll address them then. That way you’ll feel completely comfortable about owning your new car.” (Then we need to leave and get out of their line of vision for a few moments. After about thirty to forty seconds, we get back into their line of vision, close enough to see them but not so close as to hear what they are saying, and let them see us waiting. When they ask us back into our offices or back to the table, they’ll usually tell us either ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ but rarely tell us they need to think about it.)
c. “Mr. Customer, we’ve worked out such a great deal already. Now is the best opportunity you’ll ever have to own the van you really want. I’ve worked very hard for you and now the ball is in your court. So, let’s wrap this thing up so you can start enjoying your new van. Do you want it registered in your name or the company name?”
d. “That’s fine Ms. Customer, obviously you wouldn’t spend time thinking this over if you weren’t serious about owning this car. You wouldn’t be telling me this just to get rid of me would you?” (Wait for their response, then ask,) “Then I know you’re going to give this careful consideration, right?” (Wait for their response, then ask,) “Listen, just to clarify my thinking, just exactly what is it you have to think over?
e. “That’s great! Let’s think it over together. Two heads are better than one, right? What exactly do you still need to think about?” (Or if the objection is “Pray about it”:) “That’s great! Let’s pray about it together. But I always want be honest with you though folks…you’re going to pray for guidance, right?” (Wait for their response, smile, and then say,) “Well, I’m going to be praying for the sale.” (If we aren’t comfortable with this last one, don’t force it.)
f. “Good! Think about it some more, and remember they can only honor this deal for a certain amount of time. I’ll be back in a few minutes.”
g. “Okay, that’s why I’m here! I’ll help answer any further questions you may have while you think. What’s the first one?”
h. “Please don’t think yourself right out of the car you really want to own! I can see how excited you are and that excitement is really a necessary element of making a great decision. Let’s finish it now so you can start showing off your new Porsche. Will that be a personal check or a company check?”
i. “Sometimes when my customers say that it means I haven’t done my job well enough. Tell me what you need to know in order to feel comfortable about owning this car.”
j. “Whether you take one night, one week, or one month to think this over it’s still going to come down to the same three issues it does with all my clients. I call them the three “P’s”. The first “P” is the product. Is it missing some equipment you need?” (Wait for their response, then ask,) “Is it the wrong color?” (Wait for their response, then ask,) “Does it have stuff you don’t want?” (Wait for their response, then ask,) “Anything at all wrong with the car itself?” (If so, we simply switch them to a unit that better fits what they’re looking for. If not, we proceed with:) “Maybe it’s the second “P” which stands for the “people”. Is it the dealer location that’s hanging you up?” (Wait for their response, then ask,) “Is it our service hours?” (Wait for their response, then ask,) “The dealership’s reputation, is that what’s wrong?” (Wait for their response, then ask,) “Is it me, did I do something to offend you?” (If so, we simply introduce them to someone else. If not, we proceed with:) “Then it’s got to be the last “P”, either the payments or the price. Which one is it?”
k. (If the objection is “Pray about it”:)“That’s neat! I don’t hear that very often. You folks are a devote couple, huh? You pretty much go down the path the Lord leads you, right?” (Wait for their response, and then say,) “Listen folks, you’ve found the car you’ve been thinking about for six months now, equipped exactly the way you like it, in the color you didn’t even think you’d be able to find, at the store that’s closest to your home, and with a salesperson who takes care of her clients for years after the initial purchase. All that and we even got it to fit into your budget too! Isn’t it possible, folks,” (Pause…) “isn’t it possible that’s why He led you here in the first place?”
Next month’s objection will be: “I don’t want to play the back & forth game.” We need YOUR input!!! Please forward your ideas on this one, or your suggestions on which objection to cover next, to firstname.lastname@example.org.
“No one ever attains very eminent success by simply doing what is required of him; it is the amount and the excellence of what is over and above the required that determines the greatness of ultimate distinction.”
Charles Kendall Adams
On Goal Setting:
“Keep Your Goals in Sight”
by: Author Unknown, A 2nd Helping of Chicken Soup for the Soul
When she looked ahead, Florence Chadwick saw nothing but a solid wall of fog. Her body was numb. She had been swimming for nearly sixteen hours.
Already she was the first woman to swim the English Channel in both directions. Now, at age 34, her goal was to become the first woman to swim from Catalina Island to the California coast.
On that Fourth of July morning in 1952, the sea was like an ice bath and the fog was so dense she could hardly see her support boats. Sharks cruised toward her lone figure, only to be driven away by rifle shots. Against the frigid grip of the sea, she struggled on – hour after hour – while millions watched on national television.
Alongside Florence in one of the boats, her mother and her trainer offered encouragement. They told her it wasn’t much farther. But all she could see was fog. They urged her not to quit. She never had . . . until then. With only a half mile to go, she asked to be pulled out.
Still thawing her chilled body several hours later, she told a reporter, “Look, I’m not excusing myself, but if I could have seen land I might have made it.” It was not fatigue or even the cold water that defeated her. It was the fog. She was unable to see her goal.
Two months later, she tried again. This time, despite the same dense fog, she swam with her faith intact and her goal clearly pictured in her mind. She knew that somewhere behind that fog was land and this time she made it! Florence Chadwick became the first woman to swim the Catalina Channel, eclipsing the men’s record by two hours!
“Simply fix your eyes upon your goal — visualize it with every ounce of your being; enjoy the prospect of it — and courageously set out toward it.”
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