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From: Jared Hamilton
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Lauren Cummins

Lauren Cummins Automotive Product Marketing Manager

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3 Misconceptions Dealers Have About Staff Phone Performance


f2b938e76a088b2979da0875cb5e6838.jpg?t=1Your sales guys are great on the showroom floor, closing deals left and right. So they’re clearly just as charming on the phone, right?

Wrong.

The biggest misconception dealers have about their sales guys is that they perform equally as well on the phones as they do in person with a prospect. Here are some common phrases we’ve heard from hundreds of dealers before they began listening their calls. Listen to calls out loud at your next sales meeting, and use these examples and solutions to point out weak spots on the phone.

“My sales guys are great on the floor, so i’m sure that’s translating on the phone.”

Things that are common sense to you as the dealer, may not be common sense to your sales team. There is an egregious number of times that we have listened to calls and heard sales guys forget “please” and “thank you.” Combat this problem by dedicating a meeting to phone etiquette, and include addressing the caller by name and using the proper tone of voice. Otherwise, your salesmen might actually sound rude on the phone, and an opportunity for business with a new prospect could be lost.

“People are making a lot of outbound calls, so they must be speaking with a lot of callers.”

Call counts are the last thing you want to focus on. Let’s say you sat down with Jerry and told him he wasn’t making enough phone calls. The next week, he makes more than 100. Great, right? Actually, no. If you were to listen to those calls, you would realize that he didn’t connect 86% of those calls to a caller. 100 isn’t so impressive anymore. Your call tracking provider will be able to break down and categorize the conversations your sales team is having, so you can figure out who is actually making meaningful calls.

“My sales guys are trying to sell cars, so of course they are inviting people into the dealership.”

You probably didn’t know this, but your guys are only asking for the appointment 22% of the time. That’s a lot of opportunities for business flushed down the drain. We determined that if salesmen simply ask for the appointment, regardless if you have the vehicle they need or not, they will only turn you down 12% of the time. The odds are good, so your guys need to be taking advantage of them.

By implementing phone training during your sales meetings, you’ll be to quickly combat these problems happening on the phone, and make your sales team just as successful on and off the floor.

Carl Maeda
Great article Lauren, To expand on what you said, You're right, don't just look at Call Counts. Look at Total Call Time and average call time as well. This can help you determine what calls to listen to. The other subject I thought about was soft appointment setting. Its' not just about asking for the appointment but making them show up. What good is an appointment that doesn't show up? It wastes time. At a minimum, take the time to tell the prospect what you will do to prepare for their visit and confirm the appointment again at the end of the call.
Jeanne Landau
All excellent points! And, not only can recording your sales reps' conversations help identify areas where the team may need improvement, you can couple that with an audio mining solution that will search for specific phrases that you identify as important. Then, any call with those phrases present will be automatically categorized and highlighted so you can find them more easily. So, imagine being able to automatically sift through the hundreds of calls you get in a month, for example, and find the 10 that need immediate attention? Speech analytics is a growing technology among many businesses, no matter what the size. It's not just limited to enterprise level companies, or huge contact centers.

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