Creative Sales Calls

January 14, 2009 / John Paul Strong / 0 Comments /

Toyota Dealer Advertising

Toyota dealer who I was with today had his BDC manager in his office while we were having an advertising meeting. The manager was giving every reason in the book as to why his lead conversion numbers sucked. He cited the biggest reason is the growing number of customers that “do not return phone calls.” He said, “We call and call, and call again, but nobody will call us back.” I thought to myself, “That’s because your phone messages are weaker than well water.”

We live in a world where a customer watches shows like “American Idol” & “Family Guy” which dominate their dayparts in most markets. What you need to do is get creative to get these customers on the phone. Go out on the edge, leave an almost crazy sounding message and that probably will incite a call back – or at least they will think you are the most excited sales person they have ever seen. 

Be hyper and enthusiastic – don’t just call and say, “Mrs. Smith, this is John Paul calling from Strong Automotive, to follow up on…”  



Try this

“Mrs. Smith, I have located the perfect black Camry, with all the accessories you had on your wish list, as well as the trim options and interior color you requested. This car just arrived. It’s shiny and has that new car smell. Please let me know when you would like to see it (then give name and number).” 

or a more serious approach…

“Mrs. Smith, buying a new car is a decision you will only make a few times in your life and I want to give you all the information that you need to so you can make the best informed decision.”

Whatever you do – get your salespeople away from leaving the same redundant messages over and over. Just think about the fit that my Toyota dealer pitched when he had to listen to excuse after excuse from his BDC Manager… Now get to work, monitor phone calls and spend some time listening to how your people are communicating.

About the author

John Paul Strong: As owner of Strong Automotive Merchandising, a company that increases traffic up to 1,000% for dealerships, Strong lives by the simple concept that your attitude affects your success. Without a positive mind set he would not have been able to grow the company over the last decade from just 10 to over 80 full-time employees. The rapid growth is thanks to his ability to keep the company on the forefront of technology, market changes and an infectious talent to motivate and keep employees striving to fulfill their potential. His beginnings in direct mail gave him the tools and skills to develop incredibly successful marketing plans. From there he moved on to traditional forms of media and has now mastered the dynamic world of digital and social media advertising. With over 150 dealers to please, Strong takes a hands-on approach and personal attention to detail in all aspects of marketing strategies. His expertise in plan development gives him a keen sense on how to maximize a dealer’s budget and ultimately increase their bottom line. Strong is a passionate speaker in the automotive industry. He has authored two books on creating next day traffic. He graduated from the Executive Education Program at the Harvard Business School. Strong received a B.A. in Communication Studies from the University of Montevallo. He lives with his wife and three children in Homewood, Alabama.


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