Why every auto dealership must create a powerful process for lead follow up — Matt Easton

Much of the success in car sales stems from the ‘follow up’ with customers, but that process gets overlooked far too often. Today on CBT Now, we’re pleased to welcome back Matt Easton, sales trainer, consultant, and founder of Easton University, to walk us through the importance of creating a lead follow up strategy and four methods to improve your sales. 

Easton first shares some surprising findings from a study conducted by Easton University which found that 82% of sales representatives are completing no follow up at all, despite saying that they did. Also, only 62% of those who do follow ups, are following up more than once. 

If you’re a business owner or manager whose salespeople are failing to follow up on leads, Easton says it’s primarily your fault. He notes that many salespeople are not following up because “they don’t think it works,” “they don’t know what to say,” and “they’re scared.”

A major necessity, according to Easton, is for people to stop using foul language when they call people, including “the F word,” which stands for follow up. Instead of using the phrase “I’m just following up with you,” he gives various tips on what salespeople should say. First, introduce yourself, mention how you are connected, and then use one of four deviations for the rest of the conversation. 

soft phone skills

Related: The 4 soft phone skills that will matter in 2022

Easton says the two “best words ever” are “as promised.” Using this phrase is often great after the introduction, but “does it make sense to (enter desired outcome)?” is another decent line. Telling customers you’d like their opinions is a third option, and following up after a long time, using phrases such as, “I’m not sure if you remember me, but I remember you,” can often lead to success. 

Determining the next step is absolutely crucial, Easton says, regardless of how the rest of the conversation goes. He notes that every conversation “adds value, adds dignity, adds respect, [and] adds credibility.”

Easton reports he decided not to hire someone for a job salaried at $94,000 because they did not follow up with him after four days. This, he suggests, might be the way they would act towards customers, which could hurt business. 

According to Easton, sales managers should gather their employees, take the blame for the lack of follow up, and implement procedures that will “press the reset button” for the follow up process. Some business owners and managers also choose to call customers and find out if their salesperson followed up with them or not. 

Easton says it is acceptable to follow up with customers on their preferred communication platform, whether that be texting, calling, or emailing. Nevertheless, he says calling is sometimes necessary because it’s about the salesperson showing they care enough to leave a message, even if it goes unreturned. 

As always, Easton notes it is essential for customers to feel like they are in control, and being pushy is not a successful sales method. Continuous practice and training are critical, and overall, Easton’s ultimate message is to “set the next step, and things will happen.”

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