His comment was brash, and ignorant of facts based on countless studies generated by the top marketing groups in the US. But really, have we gotten to the point of no return with face to face selling? Have we willingly given devices, and AI reign over how we communicate with other people, or do we have to re-discover the lost art of selling, following up leads, and being responsible dealership representatives? Could it be a bit of all the above?
Are we that repellant of a profession, or are car salesmen so conniving, and distrustful that we now need to initiate contact via texts, anonymous live video streams, emails, and algorithms defining to us the probability of a lead being truly “in-market” and not just a tire kicker? Could it be all of the above?
There are thousands of metric tonnes of consultants out there setting dealerships up with state-of-the-art technology that initiates contact with customers, responds to leads, sends emails & review prompts by software, and other clever ways to squeeze dollars out of customers in every inch of the dealership. I even saw one dealer with signs in the urinal asking if the customer was flushing dollars down the toilet by not getting an extended service contract!
WTS, I’m not against automation. My blog site focuses on emerging technology and creates a spotlight in which new and old vendors can wax on about their various solutions, technologies, and philosophies. I do EVERYTHING in my power to help new vendors get a break but…I believe the practice of developing person to person skills is lost with technology. Technology dulls our senses, and truncates our ability to communicate with each other the way nature intended.
Meanwhile, while online yesterday, I uncovered some ancient texts written by some of the world’s greatest sales people, on how to achieve success as a person,. After all, we’re all always selling something right?
Without further ado; here are some success secrets of some of the most accomplished sales people of all-time…just in case your algorithm breaks down. Notice, these are more like life tips rather than sales advice. It’s about you being the best human you can be, not the best software.
“I determine to render more and better service, each day, than I am being paid to render. Those that reach the top are the ones who are not content with doing only what is required of them.” -Og Mandino, The Greatest Salesman in the World
TAKEAWAY: The whole is greater then the sum of its parts and rewards are oft-times bestowed upon us based on effort, effort is energy, and energy is NEVER wasted. Remember, the love you make is equal to the love you take! Go that extra mile…every day!
“Personally I am very fond of strawberries and cream, but I have found that for some strange reason, fish prefer worms. So when I went fishing, I didn’t think about what I wanted. I thought about what they wanted. I didn’t bait the hook with strawberries and cream. Rather, I dangled a worm or grasshopper in front of the fish and said: “Wouldn’t you like to have that?” Why not use the same common sense when fishing for people?” ― Dale Carnegie, How to Win Friends and Influence People
TAKEAWAY: Listen to your customer and introduce them to something they want, not what you want them to have. It’s not about you. They bait their own hooks!
“Never allow two people to do a job which one could do. George Washington observed, ‘Whenever one person is found adequate to the discharge of a duty by close application thereto, it is worse executed by two persons, and scarcely done at all if three or more are employed therein.” -David Ogilvy, Ogilvy on Advertising
TAKEAWAY: If you want something done right, do it yourself! Believe in yourself, rely on yourself, and stay focused on making sure your customers are happy! You may hand them off, but make sure you never drop the ball!
“Most people think “selling” is the same as “talking”. But the most effective salespeople know that listening is the most important part of their job.” -Roy Bartell
TAKEAWAY: God gave us two ears and one mouth for a reason. Fools speak, wisdom listens. The customer will tell you exactly what they want, makes sure you can hear it.
“Talk to someone about themselves and they’ll listen for hours.” – Dale Carnegie
TAKEAWAY: Show people you are interested in them, everyone needs attention, be your customers spotlight. Make them feel warm and bright.
“The reason it seems that price is all your customers care about is that you haven’t given them anything else to care about.” -Seth Godin
TAKEAWAY: Ask questions, listen to answers. Your customer will tell you why they value what they seek, it will likely never be price first.
“Pretend that every single person you meet has a sign around his or her neck that says, ‘Make me feel important.’ Not only will you succeed in sales, you will succeed in life.” -Mary Kay Ash
TAKEAWAY: People want to feel loved. So do you. “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Who said that?
“To build a long-term, successful enterprise, when you don’t close a sale, open a relationship.” – Patricia Fripp
TAKEAWAY: Not making a sale isn’t always a loss, if you make a friend, you always win.
“The Automotive News Car Dealerships Can Really Use”