I’ve talked to a number of people this week who have been affected by the severe winter weather that has hit parts of the country. While shoveling snow and uncovering cars customers have been sitting on the sidelines for the last few days and are waiting to come out when conditions improve.
There has been a traffic freeze affecting the northeast but dealers should not be afraid because industry numbers show that January is going to set up 2016 to be a very good year in terms of new car sales. There will be built up momentum when the weather clears up and with January’s month end close, shortly followed by Presidents’ Day weekend will set a lot of dealers up to reap the rewards in their share of traffic.
Now is the time to employ extreme measures in your follow-up from unsold prospects from last year. Just because the snow is blocking the lot doesn’t mean that there aren’t people out there who are planning to buy a vehicle and haven’t pulled the trigger yet. Several dealers I talked to are pulling old manifests from November and December direct mail pieces and calling customers who were mailed but didn’t take advantage of the sale or the year end pricing. Another dealer called and asked to pull his equity customers for several products so his sales people wouldn’t sit around and complain all day about the weather. Whatever tactic you use make sure and use this time when traffic is frozen to reach out to those who can buy when the weather improves.