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Wooed by the fancy capabilities, and perhaps prompted by a grumbling Internet sales manager or other salespeople who complain about the current system, many dealers become convinced they need the latest, greatest CRM features to stay competitive. But do they really?
Before investing large sums of money to implement a new CRM, a dealer should ask the following: Is the current CRM system really the problem, or is it the process that has resulted in the CRM not being utilized to its full capabilities?
Process does not have to involve advanced technology. One of the most successful car salesmen I ever knew worked in the late 1980’s, before computer systems in dealerships had CRM capabilities. When any customer walked in the door, he took their name and information and entered them into his own database on his own computer. The minute the prospect walked out the door, the salesperson printed out a letter and mailed it to them. Then he followed up on every letter with a phone call. He did this with every customer, repeatedly. After several years he never had to prospect for another customer. This person devised his own CRM methodology and became successful because he was committed to the process.
The point is this - if people believe that following a process will make them more money they will follow the process. CRM is simply a tool to help them follow the process
How do you know when the time is right to buy a CRM? When your current system is outdated or does not integrate well with the dealership’s DMS. “My staff doesn’t use it,” is NOT a reason to buy a new CRM. If they don’t use the current one, what makes you think they’ll use a new one?