CRM for Car Dealers | Maximizing Lifetime Customer Value
Dealers, managers, and salespeople from across automotive retail share secrets for forming better customer relationships, creating maximizing lifetime income, and building the perfect CRM.
How to nurture customer relationships & connections to create income for a lifetime. #HowToSellMoreCars
How To Sell More Cars Town Hall Meeting
CRM for Car Dealers - How to Maximize Lifetime Customer Value
Wednesday August 3, 2022
Terry Lancaster 0:09
All right. So welcome aboard everybody. I'm gonna go ahead and get started 703 Welcome to the How to Sell More Cars, town hall and this is a town hall meeting. It's a town hall meeting between two things you show up and you speak up. I'm going to chat just a little bit, but it's not all about what I got to say. I'm hoping to hear as much from you if not more than what I gotta say want to hear what you guys are doing. But you guys are what's working for you what's not working for you in building maximum, customer lifetime value. We're gonna be talking about maximizing customer lifetime value, building better customer relationships and creating decades of opportunities, decades of opportunity. So I'm going to have a little bit I want to talk about three things that I think you need to be doing to maximize customer lifetime value, my ideas, but I want to hear from you. So when I get done, I'll open it back up and we'll we'll chat just a little bit. And we'll keep you in here for just about 25 minutes. Try to keep everything sorted and we're gonna be out by 730 Because I know you got things to do places to be and people see Michael J. Smith about to go close another car a second of the day. I think he said so. He's Excellent. I'm Terry Lancaster. I'm the author of How to sell more cars. I've been jumping on the car dealers, several cars have been salespeople sell more cars since the Reagan administration. So that's that's just a little while. So how to sell more cars. I talk a lot about about CRMs and you all have CRMs that you use to manage your customer relationships, but there they I don't think they're doing the trick. That's I don't I don't think there's any customers or relationships in most customer relationships managers that are there to fulfill the purpose of the dealerships. And I'm going to be talking today from the from the point of view of the dealerships, and the salespeople because dealers, dealers are spending about $600 a copy on advertising and marketing for every new vehicle that goes out the door. $600 and they're spending most of that money 63 64% of every advertising marketing dollar that the automotive industry spends is going to digital advertising to create more leads and for a while in the car business has been more about leads than about the customer. It's about most leads and how much leads costs and what your conversion ratio on leads and we're looking at at the customers as this number instead of the people so that's that's that's where the $600 go. Meanwhile, dealers spend almost nothing to turn those one time customers and they spent so much money to generate they spend almost nothing to keep and retain them to bring it back to create a lifetime best way to build relationship that lasts forever. And it starts of course, obviously, with the fact that most dealerships have trouble retaining himself. You can't begin to build long term relationships with your sales that is turning over every year and the and the energy you should lose it 70% of their sales day, every single year. So it's hard to build those relationships one on one if you don't have the employee employer relationship first. So and it matters. It matters because those customers who are coming back Mike Michael J. Smith was just telling me before going back then he's got a customer in finance right now that he sold his first car to you 14 years ago. So he's he's built this relationship for 14 years. So the student with multiple cars in the interim, and it matters because these guys you are coming back to 14 years. Later or five years later on 14 months later, whenever they're getting back there. They're easier to close. They're more likely to close if you want to boost your closing ratio, spend more time working on people who already have a relationship with the salesperson for the dealership because they already trust you that that is built in you don't have to overcome that hurdle. It's already there. They there they close with higher grosses. Just because you don't have to go through that all the real role you're reaching most of the time. You're there earlier with the opportunity before the shopping process begins. If you can ever reach them before they raise their hand before they start shopping every time I've ever do you get more opportunity to have more growth. So when I talk about this at people, I never want to get the idea that you want to stick it to your friends and that's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about delivering a valuable experience that's so valuable and so forth. Wow that your customer is going to pay you more for it and be happy to do it because you delivered the experience that they wanted to have. You say to you, whoever you are, we can hear you.
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So you there, there we're talking about giving them an experience that they're more willing, they're willing to pay more for it customers will pay more for a premium experience and as you save them the hassle and the time of going out and finding a new dealership, a new salesperson. For him in the car business the most valuable thing you can do is be their friend in the car business. So here's the three things for you to get more of these people who who close as close easier and who close with higher grosses. They need more reviews, more referrals and more repeat business and they cost less because you don't have to spend so much on the advertising the first first thing is the good thing because this goes unsaid and said you have to deliver the five star buying experience if you want them to come back. If you want them to talk about you if you want them to have nice things to say but you got to have you got to give them something to talk about. You got to give them the experience worth sharing and experience worth remembering and experience they want to come back for again and again and again. The customer experience is where everything starts. And after that, if you want long term customer relationships long term, all of these thoughts if you want to build a long term relationship and create a lifetime of value, you have to own that first week. And I'm not talking about oh my send them an email out of the CRM after seven days. I'm talking about oh, did you guys call them that way before they before they ever leave the dealership make sure they get your contact information and make sure they've got someone to contact information in the phone at the dealership. You want to have their salesperson in there. Or if you got a vice president of customer relations with whoever you're trying to build the relationship with. That kind of that means to be in the phone before they leave. They need to be connected on Facebook before they leave. You need to start with the pictures and the video testimonials before they leave. A couple of days later because you're setting up you have to see if you're selling new cars, and you got to start generating some Google reviews if you sold them some used cars and all that stuff is infinitely more likely to happen if you get them in the first 2436 72 hours. If you're waiting to two weeks ask them to review when the second week ask them for more referrals. You know their lives is gonna come and gone since and they've got other things to worry about. But when you hand them the keys and never gonna lock you any more than they do in that moment. So have that moment. Ask them what you need to ask them ask them for your girls ask them for reviews, call them later that day and make sure they got home Okay, call them a couple days later says anything that they haven't been able to figure out on their vehicle yet. Make sure they get a thank you card. Thank you I don't know why you used to the biggest deal in the Reagan administration was everybody said that same cookies and brownies that were sold abroad. CSR says I think I don't know that that's a thing anymore but I don't know why I never get Michael J. Smith and Sampson Harrison and Mike Columbus that his hands in the ears and I know he sends out the brownies. So I don't know why we got away from that. But it works. It works to improve the CSI and it works to improve that customer relationship. Number two, the second thing I want you to do whatever it takes to get them in the service department, then we'll give them to the service department before they ever leave the store today with their car the
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Entetake them back into the back and introduce them to someone it doesn't matter who you introduce them to this introduce them to someone the service departments in the bigger there's another human being back there who they they can know like and trust you know the human being they can place their faith in competence and that's going to be more likely to get them back in for a service and if you can get them back in for service and they trust you enough where there will changes that they trust you enough for any warranty worker or anything has to get done. Any any recalls. that haven't been if you can get them in there and they trust you for that you're going to be top of the list for who they trust. When it comes time to buy another car. Plus you got opportunities every single day. Every every time they come into the dealership, you got an opportunity to cement the relationship to build strengthen the relationship to make the relationship grow stronger, but you have to get them in the service department to do any of that. And number three, this is the biggest thing is is a conscious thing. This comes from my buddy Dave play and I wish they was here today to talk about this Dave Clayton's over in South Carolina always Pawleys Island for Andy he. He says that the most important thing is to make the mindset to make the mindset that you want to be in that customers lives. Now whether you're at the dealer level, the manager level or the or the salesperson level. You want to make a commitment that you have a personal relationship, that commercial relationship, a personal relationship, these every customer that you have, you want to be in their life because buddy if you want them to be in your lives if you want them to keep showing up in your life, you need to keep showing up and you need to make a decision and that's what I'm doing in this course is like the foreseeable future and then show up.
Job on Facebook. We're not going to talk about Facebook. I use that as the proxy for for social media because Facebook is a real social media. Everybody's on it 70% of everybody's audit, and it's the most most engaged most one thing but whether it's Facebook or LinkedIn or Tik Tok or, or Instagram, whatever usually it is make sure that you connect with them because that's that's where they are. First thing in the morning before the feet hit the floor. Last thing in the evening, before their head hits the pillow. They're on their phones scrolling through, and usually on Facebook, anything you can start showing up in there. You've got the chance you got the chance to be and when I talk with them, the thing that gets a lot of attention is what people are posting. Well I need to be on Facebook, but I need to post this I need that to be 100% honest with you. I'm more concerned with you engaging with what your customers are posting. Because when you're engaging with what they're posting, then you're showing up in their lives not telling about yours you're showing up in their lives and it also works the way real life does. Facebook sees you acting interested in engaging with this person, and they're going to start showing each other, each other more of your information. Whereas if you're just spamming everyday about you deal with a day and face variant nobody hears just like real life interests goes where interest is given. And the painfully obvious secret of social media is to just be more social show up and show up on their birthday with birthday cards with the American Greetings that some of you send out with with video as long as I know it's in your CRM and I know you've got the button that you can push that says 15 people their birthday email for the day, but nobody cares about the email but some robots they will care if you send them a personal video and they know it came from you and will care if they get a birthday card in the mail. Because Because nobody seems birthday cards in the mail. Holiday guard same thing make sure you send him some holiday cards showing up in their lives. A Christmas card so short stay on their refrigerator for a whole bunch of the birthday card stamp forever. I swear to God when I walk into a car dealership and start talking about this idea of sending more cards and being showing up in people's mailbox. Generally the general manager will walk into his office and grab a handful of cards that I've sent him over the last him or her over the last two or three years. I talked to a general manager the other day and he told me that he's added a piece out a postcard that I sent him posted stapled to the bulletin board across from his desk every day for the last seven years. So is there a difference between looking at this? Michael Smith with a question? I'll come back to that in a second. I got a couple more things about about about setting better lives and showing up. I had another friend who just sends random text just on a random Tuesday. She says she sends me everyday everyday she says for 510 20 people whatever attempts and says hey, how you doing what's going on? Get your life how you been how things are has nothing to do with business has nothing to do with anything just except just catching up and I read I read a review and not a review an Article Two days ago in Psychology Today about how much people you'd be surprised how much people appreciate on expected attention. If you reach out to someone you haven't spoken to in a while and they're not expecting it. It makes an overwhelming impression just because of that surprise factor. So send people some texts and messages for no good reason at all. And then once every once in a while. Ask them the magic question who you know, who might be in the market for a new or used car because it's not necessarily about selling to these past customers that you build relationships with everyone. They have 250 friends on Facebook, every one of them has a bunch of people that they can reach out to and probably two thirds of the people you ever asked that question they'll know somebody who's been thinking about buying a car just had a maybe you're just getting married or just as indirect. They know someone who would be beneficial for you. So so I'm going to open this up when you got any questions, anything in the comments that you want to add you could pop in the first question anyone has this is if you're building a perfect CRM, I kind of I kind of backed down CRMs in there. If you're building CRMs what would you add to the CRM that you don't have right now? How could you make it make the CRM better and make it more beneficial for acting, actually building relationships? Who ever wants to pop in pop in there?
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And I got a question here from Michael says is there a difference between having a dealer interview and a Google review is one better than the other? No, no, the the only thing the one that the best one is the one that you can get the best review and that goes back again that that first day that only only that first week is asking for the review and most of you have some kind of a tool that kind of automates that. Just want to make sure that you follow up and then follow up and actually do it and whether you're asking for reviews or a review and DealerRater is good because people are actually going there and people are actually going to Google but it doesn't matter where they put it as long as they could. And this is the crazy thing about reduta And I don't even understand is that people will trust. People will trust a review that they've read online from a stranger. Same degree they trust, a recommendation, a personal recommendation, or personal friend, but because it has that kind of impact. That's that's where it's on the internet. And it must be true. So whether it's a dealer interview or a Google review, the important thing is asking you get go in you won't ask early and ask often and make it super simple for them. DealerRater had split the difference in a lot of times I'll do I'll create a short link that goes straight to that, because that Google review to leave the review there is kind of long and convoluted. So I'll create a short link and I've created QR codes for dealerships where they can where they can make asking for that Google review. Super simple as easy as putting a car review with the short and I got it. So the best one is the one that you can use and wonder that the customers are asking for my Columbus to get your audio problems. Thanks, buddy. Yeah,
Unknown Speaker 17:15
I think I'm fixed enough.
Terry Lancaster 17:16
All right. So how are you?
Unknown Speaker 17:20
Pretty good. It's been a tough year. So far. Business has shipped from new cars to use cars but we're hanging in there.
Terry Lancaster 17:28
So how are how is your customer relations You're the king of this you got that you've been building for a while and you stay in touch what's what's working for you in terms of building and getting people back in for the referrals and reviews?
Unknown Speaker 17:42
I think what's working best is some of the personal ones, the ones I'm doing very well connected in my community with BNI. We have networking events called green drinks out here and another Association I'm involved with the Builders Association. So I kind of like the personal meetings. I do the cards of course, and I'm in the process of getting an assistant to handle my CRM. It's just not enough time.
Terry Lancaster 18:13
You see, you see are you from the store or your CRM is from the store? Yeah,
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Unknown Speaker 18:18
it's just insane. He says I have over 5000 people in my CRM, you got
Terry Lancaster 18:26
5000 people in your official bonafide CRM from the store. How can it be working better for you? Or easier for you that you don't necessarily need an assistant? If you had a design department, what would you do?
Unknown Speaker 18:45
I guess if you had the power to design the perfect system, you get a lot of the garbage out of it but that's not necessary. But I get my CRM down to 200 overdue cast and get the 200 overdue tasks down to zero then the next day I've got another 400 open. Yeah, it's just a never ending nightmare.
Terry Lancaster 19:09
Yeah. Oh, my God.
Unknown Speaker 19:12
I'm yelled at every day.
Terry Lancaster 19:15
Every day. How many do you have in your in your CRM?
Michael J Smith 19:19
I don't know. I'd be afraid because the problem was be staying in the same village for so long. Is I have so many people that have done the same to me as often owners. So there's tons of people that the CRM is only ever contacted. Right? It's tough enough to stay in touch with people where they've actually sold that, you know, y'all so I really only, I don't know, I was gonna ask my wife about all his tasks and all his different people in the Sierra like who is keeping.
Mike Columbus 20:02
So the ones that I primarily keep in touch with those that purchase the color three, four or five years ago? I think those are the ones just touch base with them and see they are looking Okay, nope. Anyone looking? And I don't know if you're using VinSolutions sort by
Unknown Speaker 20:19
purchase. Yeah, that's where we have
Unknown Speaker 20:24
my boss doesn't think I should concentrate on birthday calls so much because they do get the email and they do
Unknown Speaker 20:31
a piece of shaming. No.
Unknown Speaker 20:33
I mean there's a pretty good xers they get they get movie tickets. And gift card for the concession stand. Well, that theater so Oh, okay. Much more generous. They might call it happy birthday. Ours is pretty good. And then I usually follow up with a call that says when you come in for your movie tickets, be sure to say I gotta go.
Unknown Speaker 21:02
I'm trying to catch your call my clients
Unknown Speaker 21:05
will see my that's a shame that would have been a good good dialogue.
Terry Lancaster 21:11
Yeah. So you that's amazing that your dealership actually has that it's not just the generic random email that goes out. It actually has had some value for
Unknown Speaker 21:22
the customer. Yes, yeah, absolutely.
Terry Lancaster 21:27
All right. Anyway, we got about six more minutes. 556 more minutes. Does anyone else have a contribution or a question that they want? To ask about customer relations about maximizing Lifetime Customer Value?
I got I got all the time in the world brother.
Unknown Speaker 21:46
I'm a big believer also in print marketing. As you know the words I'm using trying to come up with a rack card for automotive repair shops and body shops on that
Terry Lancaster 22:02
there's something that you can take in there and they can make you get that freedom right incident up bars, you know, just just design your postcard and send out card and then they can post or you can use Vistaprint which can print some dirt cheap or you can use I'm sure you got a relationship with a local printer who can help you.
Unknown Speaker 22:23
Right. And then the other thing is the low hanging fruit right under our nose, my office in my house is looking at of our call to sack and my neighbor two or two doors down has a new car they bought from one of our franchise stores. So yeah, and you can never put enough to keep a relationship going with either your neighbors or regardless if you hate those fall through the cracks like that.
Terry Lancaster 22:48
Well you know, it all you can do is all you can do, and all you can do is enough but in terms of low hanging fruit, you know, one of the things that I tried to get everyone to do is make sure everyone in your life at the bare minimum knows what you do for a living. They know what you do, where you work and and how you can help them and that's that's why I'm such a believer in social media because it's right there. Facebook is right there and every time you interact with them and talk about the weekend barbecue that's coming up on the dogs that are whose dog got locked balls, no matter what you're talking about. It shows that hey, I'm here. Here I am. And here's where I work. Here's what I do.
Unknown Speaker 23:33
You're right, Carrie I don't know if you saw my post. This was Monday night I had a party at my house. Oh yeah. And they were nine CRPS in my driveway. I took a picture of it. One That Got 161 likes and a lot of comments. And so it's amazing. Why don't get get the likes and get the comments going.
Terry Lancaster 23:54
Yeah, I mean, it's just engagement and what I mean it's it is no surprise what gets good engagement and the comments and what gets all that going isn't the latest dance phrase on Tik Tok and it isn't what you got last year. It's the most human content, every question every time every every every hands down. It's the human content is going to win and the more personal you can make it and the more you and you can make it and the more authentic it is because you got nine friends drew up in your driveway with CRPS that's just authentic. It's just part of your life and you're sharing your life with people who you would like for them to share their lives with you and that's the whole thing about the mindset. And I was talking about making a commitment early in their lives, not just in business.
Unknown Speaker 24:41
So Terry's me ask, Are you doing anything with Sen Dobot and the ability of SendOutCards to integrate into the CRM
Terry Lancaster 24:51
know that there's one thing I'm looking at working out I actually know that you mentioned that I'm going to look up some dogo because I don't know what that is, but I was I've been using SendOutCards for years and from my level, my personal level, from you know, in automotive sales training that I do and also in dealerships getting dealerships on board, whether it's them actually sending the cards or working with them for me to send the cards and mass they just send me a list of a list of their card but anything I can find to automate that and make it simpler to do I want to know more about
Unknown Speaker 25:27
so let me tell you one send out card story. It was a customer that left the dealership didn't purchase but he was Chinese. I just asked him what was the language he spoke and he said Mandarin. So I went on Google and got the translation of thank you in Mandarin and sent him a card and about two years later he came back in asked for me and he showed me his father. He had places he had been last item in his file was that card I sent him. Yeah, that's how he remembered me.
Terry Lancaster 26:01
And it was this powerful stuff. It really is and and people kind of get sick of big talk about it. I think it is so powerful for threatening. say those words and birthday merge driven my business for the last five years and I sell to the general managers partnerships. But everyone, everyone wants to be appreciated everyone everyone likes to be everyone likes to feel special and the person that makes them feel special. Attention goes where attention is given. It's it's cute.
Unknown Speaker 26:32
birthday cards, I was campaigns.
Terry Lancaster 26:34
I sit down once a month and send out I have a campaign that I send out. So what I'll do is I have the campaign made and then I go through once a month but I'm not trying to do 5000 people but yeah, that's it depending on how many units do you get in there
Unknown Speaker 26:50
or not? The 5000 Did my CRM and and like Michael said love those are orphan customers. They
Terry Lancaster 26:57
don't have your person your personal CRM the people that you sell to that you're trying to keep in touch with?
Unknown Speaker 27:04
Well, I have many more because I've always kept all my contacts have ever gotten rid so I don't know how many are local how many
Terry Lancaster 27:12
Yeah, I know I'm there's a guy here to see I actually got a buddy he's a salesman or a Buick, Buick GMC store just down the road that I do some training at. He's got a he's got a guy that he bought a car from when he was a kid in Virginia. 20 some odd years ago he bought this car and he gets it he gets a Christmas card and a birthday card from this guy every year for the last 20 years.
Unknown Speaker 27:35
What do you thoughts of calendars?
Terry Lancaster 27:38
I think I'm a fan. I'm a fan of anything that is physical in the physical world because there's so much that's not you know, that's on an email or on social media, social media that is just ethereal and just kind of just kind of smoke that anything that they can put their hands on. It's going to stick around it fires up different neurons in the brain. It's something that's right there. So I've got a mike my real estate agent just sent me a football schedule today. I've got the AIDS got that Cynthia University of Tennessee, Vanderbilt and Tennessee Titans football schedules on it. It's a magnetic fields on he sends it out every year. In the fall. We go on everybody's refrigerator. I love stuff like that.
Unknown Speaker 28:17
Yeah, due to the fact that for someone that can help me with like to lay down
Terry Lancaster 28:23
for football but basketball basketball is coming up they got basketball league in Washington yet. So you got that alright, right so 731 we're gonna wrap it up here. You have anything else to add right before we go. I appreciate you popping in Clinton. Anything you want to add you bring your back in and I dropped her and now it looks like
Clinton Bramlett 28:47
though Jerry I just appreciate the invite. And I enjoyed all the information. This is one of the things that I have not I have yet to master really. So it was it was good. A bunch of information. I appreciate it.
Terry Lancaster 28:59
Alright, happy to do Karen and happy to see you wait. Thanks. Thanks for popping in. Everyone, if you'd like to continue the conversation on how to sell more cars.com I appreciate you stopping in and spending 30 minutes of your evening with me and now. I'm going to enjoy your families. Everybody will take care. See you next time.
Who the %@#! is Terry Lancaster?
I help car dealers and salespeople sell more cars, make more money, get more reviews, more referrals, and more repeat business by building deeper, stronger, more authentic relationships. I’ve worked with thousands of dealer principals, managers, and salespeople providing proven strategies for making the cash register ring.
Over the years, I've helped thousands of dealers sell millions of cars by putting the right words in the right order to tell the right story. How can I help you tell yours?
My #1 best selling books BETTER! & How To Sell More Cars have received glowing reviews from around the world thanking me for the actionable, life-changing ideas they present.
I’ve been featured in Automotive News & Forbes, spoken at the NADA national convention and from the TedX stage, and came in second place at my Eighth Grade debate championship.
Winner Winner. Chicken Dinner!
In my personal life, I've survived Cancer... twice. I've had a gun held to my head and a knife held to my throat. I've been inside a building that was hit by a tornado, onboard one boat that sank and two planes that I was sure were about to crash.
I lived through three teenage daughters and I've been married over 35 years... in a row!
When I'm not battling for truth, justice and the American Way, I spend most of my free time, like every other middle-aged, overweight, native southerner, at the ice rink playing hockey.