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Building Relationships: Turn Your Weakest Marketing Arm Into Your Strongest by Richard Keeney
Building Relationships: Turn Your Weakest Marketing Arm Into Your Strongest by Richard Keeney
Dealer and Manager, do you feel frustrated by costly expenses needed to get customers through the door?  Salespeople who build something really significant, by flexing their own marketing arm, understand the importance of personalization.

Many dealers have a few sales professionals that really get it; “Build it and they will come” concept. 

 

I believe the old school way of marketing is the best way to create trust and loyalty.  The result is repeat and referral business that pays big dividends for the long haul. The current generation coming into workforce were born with an electronic device in their hand, may need a bit more convincing of the impact of personalization.


Hopefully you are already doing this to some degree, yet imagine every salesperson hand writing 10 cards and making 10 customer and/or prospect calls every day, Monday through Friday. Duh, some may say, can’t you come up with something earth shattering, this is so basic? 

Success, individually and collectively, isn’t all that complicated. 

Sometimes the old school methods are the simplest and very effective to building relationships.  Make it a requirement, and make sure they see the wisdom so they also do it for their reasons, not just yours. 

I’m sure you already spend a great deal of money on CRM tools and human resources for sales support.  However, as wonderful as today’s technology is, it can come with a little collateral damage as well.  Many salespeople lean on it solely to trigger future activity, and lose site of the personalized follow-up.  Consider allocating some of the marketing budget for cards, envelopes and postage. 


Just so you know, The Mar-Kee Group practices what we preach. Our office sends out dozens of blue ink hand-written cards every day. 

In a day and age where there is so much generic email messaging, your personalized card will stand out from all the other white noise.


This isn’t about asking someone to buy anything. This is about touching people to convey that they are important to you, and not just viewed as a future transaction. If all people hear from a salesperson or dealership is the “special opportunity to save big” email messages, that’s not massaging relationships very well. 


If you need more traffic and business right now, and had 50 - 100 cards going out every Monday through Friday over the last couple of years, your current reality might be more attractive.


Why don’t more salespeople do the personalized calls and cards every day?  Here are some possibilities:

  •  ♦  Don’t see the big picture
     ♦  Too immediate gratification oriented
     ♦  Look at this as an interim job
     ♦  Don’t have the cards and envelopes
     ♦  Look at this activity as effort today; without pay
     ♦  It’s not required by your manager/dealer
     ♦  Crappy hand writing and don’t like the phone
     ♦  Just got lazy
     ♦  Lean on technology too much
     ♦  Quit doing it every time business gets good


    When salespeople are great at personal follow-up and they begin receiving the dividends, they are more likely to stay at your dealership for years to come. There’s money in that too! 



    I’m a consumer, and so are you. Doesn’t it have a positive effect on you when you get a call or card just saying “Hello”, “Happy Birthday”, “Merry Christmas”, etc.?  

 

  • Again, don’t call to sell all the time.  Instead, shake hands every day through follow-up.  The transactions will come when the time is right for the consumer. As a wise coach once stated, “Focus on the win, and the money will follow.” The “win” we are talking about here, is building relationships with our customers, therefore creating loyalty.


    RELATED: One More by David Martin
     
    Richard Keeney, Co-Founder
    The Mar-Kee Group
    888-300-4629
    251-680-6633 (cell)



    The Mar-Kee Group is the leading provider of Sales, Service & Management Training Solutions to Automotive, Boat & RV Dealerships.

 


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