Have you ever read the book The Seven Habits Of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey? With more than 15 million copies sold, this book was named as one of the top 10 most influential books of all time by Forbes Magazine. That made me start thinking of what the seven habits of highly effective powersports dealers should be. I spent many years of successfully identifying some of the right and wrong ways of operating four franchised dealerships in Atlanta, Georgia. Since then, I’ve been fortunate enough to have exposure to hundreds of dealers in many different markets. Some have been really good, and some really bad.
Let’s take a look at the seven habits of highly effective powersports dealers.
Develop A Marketing Plan: "We waste half of our money on advertising; the only problem is we don’t know which half." Isn’t this the truth? Top dealers have a marketing budget, which is consistently spent in the areas that generate the most sales leads for the investment. Some dealers go by 1% of total sales and others take a more conservative approach of $50 per unit sold (based on forecast unit sales). This means you’d better get good at smiling and saying "no thank you" to all of the different people who have the solution to your advertising needs. The money is in the metal and one of the best ways to sell more units is to generate more sales leads through a strong consistent marketing plan.
Have A Selling System: Today’s effective dealers have a sales team who know how to properly welcome customers to the dealership, interview and investigate to determine customer’s wants and needs, develop rapport, perform value-building presentations and ask for the sale. Their sales managers have implemented an accurate traffic log or CRM so they can quantify floor traffic, advertising reach, diagnose individual salesperson’s strengths’ and weaknesses and follow up with sold and unsold customers. But that’s not all these dealers also have a strong selling system in place for the parts and accessories and service departments.
Foster A Customer Satisfaction Culture: We’re selling fun! The Internet will never be able to compete with a store whose employees smile, call customers by their first names, care about their appearance and hygiene and generally treat people the way they would like to be treated. Service after the sale leads to more repeat and referral business. It’s much less expensive to keep existing customers than buy new ones.