This Month’s Selling Principle:
How to Increase Our Shown Appointment Rate
When initially setting the appointment, we can significantly increase our show rate by choosing our words carefully.
Rather than saying, “Please let me know if you need to reschedule this appointment,” ask instead, “Would you be willing to call me if you have to change our plans?” and then wait for the customer to answer, ‘Yes.’
If the appointment is set via e-mail, then the wording can be like this: I’ve scheduled a dedicated time slot for our appointment and will not schedule any additional activities during this time. If something changes and you’re unable to keep our appointment, would you please extend me the courtesy of a heads up phone call? And if something changes on my end, I’ll show you the same respect. I’m grateful for this chance to serve you and look forward to meeting with you on ____________ at ___________.
Another thing we can do is politely ask our prospect to repeat back to us the appointment date and time. It sounds simple, and it is, but it’s also very effective in reducing our no show rate. Obviously, this can’t be done via e-mail.
Also, when setting the appointment, it’s a good idea to say to our prospect, “I’ll also text or e-mail you a reminder. Is that okay?”
The following is a list of contacts that we can use to further insure our prospects show up for their appointment:
1) An Introduction Package: This includes a note of introduction, a short bio page (a paragraph about us professionally, a paragraph about us personally, and a few professional and personal pics), a testimonial page (just a handful of customer pics with short quotes about their experience working with us), and additional info about the vehicle the prospect was interested in. Something they can physically touch is a powerful reminder for our prospects to receive. Keep in mind it will take a couple of days to have the U.S. Postal Service deliver it.
2) Confirmation E-Mail: This includes the appointment date and time reminder and a link to an intro video if one hasn’t already been sent.
3) Confirmation Text: This includes an appointment reminder and the link to an intro video if one hasn’t already been sent.
4) Confirmation Phone Call/Voicemail: This includes an appointment reminder and should be made 24 hours before the set appointment. If our dealership has a manager confirmation call as part of its process, then we’ll want to skip this step.
And do I really need to mention that we should make sure we’re available to honor our commitment?!
So, until next time, be well, and do good work!
Michael D. Hargrove
“He who obtains has little. He who scatters has much.”
Objection of the Month: “The payment/price is too high.”
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. “How much too much?”
b. “Liz, the price properly reflects the safety, performance, and quality that you’ll be enjoying for the next four years of ownership. Let’s wrap this thing up so you and your family can start enjoying your new car. While they’re finishing up the rest of the agreement, let me get you all something cold to drink. Who wants to come and help me carry the drinks back?”
c. “Mitch, didn’t you say this car is for your wife? Sue, you understand why Mitch wants you to have the airbags and the anti-lock brakes, don’t you? Now Mitch, wouldn’t you agree that Sue’s safety is worth a few extra dollars a month? Let’s put this thing to rest so you both can put this shopping stuff behind you and start enjoying your new car. Should we register this in just Sue’s name or both names?”
d. “Bart, you originally said that your major concerns were reliability and economy, right? Isn’t it true that the money you’ll save in gas and upkeep over the next three years is more than worth the additional $300 in original investment now? Just OK your purchase right here and we’ll get them started on the rest of the agreement. Did you want to use my pen or yours?”
e. “Of course it is Rachel! Tell me though, other than price, is there any other reason why we can’t send you home in your new car today? No? Good! Now you said that you usually keep your cars for five years, did I hear you right? You also said that you’ll use it mostly for business and that you’ll carry clients in it a lot, right? Well, isn’t the prestige and extra influence this car will bring to your career worth a few extra cents a day it’ll cost over the next five years? Let’s wrap this thing up. Exactly how do you want it registered?”
f. “What’s easier for you, an extra $4000 up front or an extra $100 per month?”
g. “If you had $5000 deposited in a CD, what would you expect your rate of return to be? Heck, the state charges you ____% tax and what services do they really provide?”
h. “Let me ask you this, Ms. Customer, currently how many of your payments are too low? All payments are too high, right? You see, that’s simply the nature of payments. The fact is, three years from now when you’re ready to replace this vehicle, you’ll be trying real hard to keep your payments right around the one that today …seems a bit too high. Just like now, you’re trying to keep your payments right around the ones that three years ago, seemed a bit too high. That’s just the nature of payments. You love this car, and we both know you can afford it. Why don’t you just go ahead and get it?”
i. “If paying $XX more per month for the vehicle you love is too much, how do you justify continuing to pay $XXX per month for a vehicle you don’t even want anymore?”
Next month’s objection will be: “I’m just looking, not buying today.” 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.
“The more you pour out, the more life will be able to pour in.”
4 Inspirational Stories About Great Leadership
by Lee Smih, Co-founder, Gatehouse
In 1932 Dale Carnegie published a book called How to Win Friends and Influence People.
Today, it’s sold 13 million copies. Most people read it and think: “That’s interesting”, then shut the book and forget all about it. But I heard a story about Warren Buffett, one of the world’s most successful investors. Apparently, he’s fascinated by it. So much that he decided to do a statistical analysis of what happened if he followed Dale Carnegie’s rules – and what would happen if he didn’t.
He tried giving some people attention and appreciation, and then others nothing. Sometimes he would be deliberately crabby, just to see what happened. He tracked all his results. What he found was that the numbers proved Carnegie’s theory – the rules in the book worked!
I love this story because sooner or later as a manager you realise that many of the people you depend on for your success don’t actually report to you. And that’s when you realise just how important influence and persuasion is to leadership.
Knowing how to inspire people – not just amongst your own team, but across a wider network of internal stakeholder – will define you as a leader.
Here’s four stories that I think reveal important points about leading staff to success:
1 – Leaders set the direction
Once upon a time, a group of soldiers became lost in the Alps. They were hungry and disoriented. They argued about which way to go, but in the fading light every peak looked the same. The soldiers had no chance of surviving the night in the freezing temperatures.
Suddenly, a miracle.
One of them found a map sewn into the lining of his kitbag. He plotted a route, and marched them briskly back to base. Later, when they were warm and well fed, the soldier looked closer at his map. It actually was of the Pyrenees – hundreds of miles away.
It’s like the old saying – when you’re lost, any old map will do.
Take-away: Leadership entails vision. Otherwise where are you leading people to? If you don’t know where you want to go to – and if you can’t communicate that direction effectively – then you have no right to ask people to join you on the journey.
2 – Great leaders let people get on with it
Bad leaders like to ‘shake the pan’.
You see this a lot on TV cooking shows. The producer tells the chef to keeping shuffling the risotto around the pan. It’s more fun to watch, but apparently it’s not always the best way to cook.
To top chefs, learning when to leave food alone – when to resist the temptation to flip the steak – is as important as learning when to manipulate it. It’s the same for leaders. Great leaders know when to stir things up and when to let it simmer.
3 – Leaders hire the right people
One thing a lot of people miss: being a great leader starts before your team even start work.
Publishing magnate Felix Dennis used to say: never seek a replica of yourself to delegate to, or to promote.
Apparently, it’s a common error in leaders. You have strengths and you have weaknesses in your own character – so it makes no sense to increase those strengths your organisation already possesses and not address the weaknesses.
Ad man David Ogilvy was also a big proponent of only ever hiring people who were smarter than them.
He kept a set of Russian nesting dolls, and would place sets around his offices to illustrate a point: “If each of us hires people who are smaller than we are, we shall become a company of dwarfs. But if each of us hires people who are bigger than we are, we shall become a company of giants.”
I hear they’re still dotted around Ogilvy offices today.
Take-away: Consistently hiring people who are smarter than yourself could be the greatest legacy you leave.
4 – Leaders understand what really motivates staff
Restaurateur Danny Meyer says that he learned about managing employees from working on John Anderson’s 1980 presidential campaign.
“Learning to manage volunteers – to whom, absent a pay-check, ideas and ideals were the only currency – taught me to view all employees essentially as volunteers” he writes in his book, Setting the Table.
“Today, even with compensation as a motivator, I know that anyone who works for my company chooses to do so because of what we stand for.”
Take-away: As a leader it’s up to you to provide solid reasons for your employees to want to work for you – a sense of meaning and purpose – over and beyond their pay-check
“Once you have learned to give, You will have learned to live. The law of harvest will reward you highly in material and emotional benefits and give you the things you desire.”
New Life Summary
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Retail Automotive Sales: The Professional’s One Day Workshop
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