Chat and Phone Leads Start with a Helping Hand

One of the biggest lessons I learned when working at the dealership was that you can't do the same things on the phone or in chat that you would do when you're talking to a person face-to-face. We often discuss controlling the transaction and leading our customers down the right path, but if they're not in front of you, the control-factor is often limited.

This is why it's so important to be more helpful on the phone or on website chat. They are controlling the direction of the conversation in most situations. We've probably all heard phone call recordings where an opportunity gets missed because a salesperson pushes too hard to set the appointment. That's not to say that you shouldn't try to get the appointment; there's probably more instances where a salesperson is not aggressive enough on the phone.

The same things happen in chat. Finding that perfect middle ground on phone or chat where the customer feels like they're getting their questions answered while still being driven down the path to set the sales appointment is critical.

There's something else that we see happening in chat specifically that we talk about on our blog post. When a chat comes in that isn't sales-related, we sometimes see the chat operator at the dealership trying to push business their way. Someone gets on chat, starts asking about parts or service, and then the salesperson handling chat throws out the good ol', "That's an expensive service. Why not just trade it in? I can get you more money than it's worth!"

On the surface, this might seem like a great idea, but it's usually not. There is a time and a place to discuss trading rather than repairing, but that time and place is not on the phone or through chat where the control-factor is limited. Get them in to do the service. Make sure they ask for you so you can help them in service. Face-to-face, now you have an opportunity to go over other options.

A helping hand is not the most aggressive way to get people into the dealership, but it's usually the most effective.

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Comment by Brian Amberg on March 30, 2015 at 10:39am

Another good example of putting the customer's needs ahead of our own and how that attitude will build the trust needed for a long term relationship.

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