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Chris Costner

Chris Costner Account Executive

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WHO LOVES YOU: Your customers?

While marketing deals with markets of many, selling will always be about markets of one. With that being said, how do you make your customers love you? Yes, I said “love” and not “like” ladies and gentlemen.  It’s time to we make this a goal during every interaction with our customers.

Contrary to one I know for sure and any others out there who believe the role of salespeople is becoming obsolete with the proliferation of internet and mobile technology, effective sales professionals and a personal approach to selling remains important to dealerships nationwide.

Being personal is more than just being nice or friendly in my opinion.  Customers like a salesperson that is nice but they do not buy solely on how likeable they are. They want more.  We all should understand and hopefully agree that customers buy from dealerships they trust.  Sure it helps to be likable but our current and prospective customers are looking for someone they can trust.  This will have more impact in creating loyalty over time.

At one time in our business, the customer walked in, we presented our vehicle, agreed on figures and not long after, they drove away.  Dealerships who operate with this purely transactional mindset of the old are finding it harder to meet forecasted numbers and even harder to retain customers.

Dealerships with large turnover of salespeople are in a difficult position to achieve customer familiarity and loyalty.  That is an entirely different discussion however and will certainly stick a pin in it for later.

Many dealerships are missing the point that the customer wants to work with someone who has a genuine interest in their automotive needs and will add value over time.  Unfortunately, the second half of that story isn’t as good as it started when the customer is in the showroom, smiling and getting ready to drive their new vehicle home.  As a matter of fact, that story ends many times once the salesperson is waving goodbye to the customer.  I call this a “For Profit Only” business strategy and it is happening at this very moment in dealerships everywhere.  If you are looking to increase profit, revenue, staff and customer retention, then remove the above strategy from your thinking.

If you want your customer to starting loving you, start interacting with them by having a genuine interested in their wellbeing, listening to them and understanding their priorities, dreams, goals and desires.  It’s about what you can do for them now and in the future.  I want to be of service to my current and prospective customers.  It’s time we all get personal.

Getting personal is more than just showing up and being pleasant.  Getting personal is about being personable, substantial, and authentic which I have discussed previously.  Combine these traits with your product knowledge, experience, skills, creative problem solving and business acumen and it is a beautiful thing to experience.  I tell those I work with closely is to engage your client with the intention of delivering results they haven’t even thought about, exceed their expectations and care about the outcome of their purchase. 

Getting your customers to love you is not some hug and kiss type idea; it is something that is at the heart of all genuine relationships.  

Bryan Armstrong
So true! The professionals of tomorrow and the success of your Stores future depends on this. So veterans, build a legacy and teach empathy and service to a green pea!
Jim Bell
Likability is key in this business. I don't know anyone that won't buy something from someone that they wouldn't like. When they like you, there is a trust level there that the customer has with the salesperson and we have to be able to make sure that we are likable. If we aren't a likable person or have a likable attitude, you might as well kiss their success good-bye.
Chris Costner
Well said Bryan. It certainly needs to become a part of every dealership's culture.
Chris Costner
Jim you are exactly right. I apologize for responding to your comments so late. Still not getting the alerts.

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