To crack car sales prospecting, dealerships must look beyond traditional techniques of marketing. While there’s no denying sales prospecting is tough in any industry, when it comes to the world of automotive, things are undoubtedly even more difficult. This is mainly due to the high cost of vehicles. Cars are a big investment and for most customers, not only a pretty big decision but a noticeable wedge of cash to part with. It’s no wonder so many car salespeople loathe the idea engaging with new clients or re-connecting with previous customers. This unenthusiastic attitude often leads to industry experts get it so wrong by using ineffective and outdated techniques, which simply won’t bring in the modern shopper and ultimately, drive sales.
The fact is, we live in a digital age and you must use this to your advantage by embedding online techniques into your strategy, in a bid to appeal to your virtual audience. You might be tired of hearing it, but the internet isn’t going anywhere. To succeed, your dealership needs to be forward-thinking and open-minded.
It can seem a little daunting, right? If you’re an automotive business looking to boost revenue by implementing or updating your sales prospecting strategy, then the team at SnapCell is here to help. Thanks to our extensive knowledge of the industry, we’ve been able to put together a list of methods to help drive sales across your dealership.
Outbound vs Inbound
Before you put together your strategy, it’s worth noting that there are two main types of prospecting methods: outbound and inbound.
Outbound sales prospecting traditionally requires your sales team to carry out “cold” engagement with potential clients, through techniques such as calling or emailing, customers who haven’t ‘opted in’ to hear from you.
Inbound sales prospecting is pretty much the opposite, as this technique looks at salespeople building and strengthening relationships with customers who have already shown an interest in your dealership, a product, or a service.
Depending on the size of your dealership, your goals, and your budget, you might choose to use one main technique or the other. However, we would advise that you’ll gain the best results if you mix it up and combine both outbound and inbound selling.
There’s no denying that cold calling is arguably still one of the most used and – if done properly – successful sales tactics in the industry.
Of course, it doesn’t always need to be a ‘cold’ call that you make. Softening your pitch and making a ‘warm’ call will get you just as far, if not further. Have a read of our recent blog article for a better look at the dos and don’ts of dealership cold calling and discover how you can perfect the pitch when picking up the phone.
Aside from cold calling, creating email campaigns is another traditional sales technique that is still one of the most powerful car sales prospecting strategies around.
We’re not talking about the standard, generic, ‘one-box-fits-all’ campaigns. No, to really engage with new clients, as well as tickle temptation from existing shoppers, then you need to get clever with your email marketing.
Create campaigns that appeal to your target audience by using the information you know about them, to develop relevant content. For example, if you have a group of customers who have previously bought a family-style car, then why not send them an email with the best gadgets for those traveling with children? Or even advertise the top five vehicles for families?
Remember, it’s not necessarily about the direct sales pitch with customers, it’s more about successful engagement. You don’t want a mind-numbingly long, text-heavy email. If you want to get one step ahead of your competition that you want the content of your emails to instantly connect with the customer opening it. Including videos within your email campaigns is guaranteed to put your dealership in the driving seat when it comes to winning over customers and better still, retaining them. SnapCell can help you do just that. Made with the automotive industry in mind, the easy-to-use SnapCell app helps to create immediate engagement with your audience by seamlessly integrating high-quality videos into your marketing emails.
Email marketing is a great way to keep in contact with previous customers. Although there’s always a huge focus on encouraging new custom, it’s important not to lose sight of those who have already purchased from you. They might just need a gentle nudge to remind them to shop with you again.
Master Social Media
It’s easy enough for us to say, get yourselves on social media but the fact of the matter is, if you’re going to throw your dealership into the ever-growing world of social media, then you need to be committed. The only way you will successfully use social media as a car sales prospecting strategy, is to invest in creating an online presence.
This means regular posting and engaging with customers when they interact with you.
YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Snapchat, and Clubhouse are just some of the big social media platforms available. With more than 231 million Americans using social media, you need to be prepared that posting across the channels available has the potential to expose you to thousands of new customers.
Create a social media strategy and work on engaging content. Remember, your social media channels should never be used to only directly promote your products. Instead, weave in posts covering your blog articles and links to other organizations, or news stories that will appeal to your target audience.
Don’t just stick to static content, try your hand at videos too. Videoing is becoming a much more popular way for car dealerships to engage with customers. Plus, with tools like SnapCell available for your sales team, creating professional-looking content at just the click of a button, couldn’t be easier.
Blog articles are a simple and cost-effective way to not only help bring in new leads but also strengthen relationships with existing customers. They provide the perfect platform for showcasing your knowledge of the automotive industry while engaging with your audience by signposting them towards helpful tips that they can put into practice. If done correctly, blogging can help build trust with your audience and, as we all know, trust is one of the key elements when it comes to sales and customer retention.
Plus, if they’re written well, your blog posts have the ability to generate a lot of traffic towards your website from search engines, such as Google. A SnapCell top tip, don’t get disheartened if you don’t see results immediately. Be sure to keep blogging and you’ll soon begin to reach a larger audience.
Remember not to make your blog topics too niche. Instead, build your blog by focusing on broader topics that engage with a wider set of customers and choose subjects that will appeal to a variety of people.
In the case of blog writing, updating content is key. If you don’t do this, then it could just as easily backfire on you, with search engines preferring recent, information-rich content. With this in mind, it might be worth adding reminders to your calendar to ensure you post frequently.
When blogging, try not to necessarily always focus on the words. Infographics are being a more and more popular way of sharing information with customers, especially when dealerships want to highlight specific data. Of course, using an eye-catching, easy-to-read infographic adds another dimension to the more boring blogs too.
Don’t be put off by the world ‘infographic’. You don’t have to be a professional artist to create them. In fact, there are plenty of free and user-friendly tools out there which can help you get started, such as Canva.
As well as posting raw material online, through blogs and social media, it’s worth considering paying for online ads, if your budget allows.
Whether you use Google Ads or social media advertising, this is a great way to target specific audiences. Plus, pay-per-click ads only charge you every time somebody clicks on the advert, rather than every time somebody sees it, which means you can use your marketing budget more effectively.
While all of the above techniques offer a solution when it comes to reaching out to customers, a huge element of car sales prospecting is to follow up your pitch.
Car sales prospecting isn’t necessarily about immediately selling a product, it’s about forming and building those solid relationships which will keep customers coming back for more. Make sure your sales team is following up with customers and regularly keeping in touch with them. This could easily be the difference between you securing a successful sale and not.
Block out time for car sales prospecting and make sure you mix things up. Practice many of the tactics we’ve mentioned, so you can create a solid foundation ahead of you building a successful marketing strategy for your dealership.
Ultimately, car sales prospecting is all about building trust. Creating high-quality, professional video content can help do just that, leading to a rise in sales at your dealership. With so many great ways to incorporate the SnapCell app into your marketing strategy, it’s hard to know where to start. Get in touch with our friendly team of experts and find out how SnapCell can help make those hard-to-reach clients, reachable.