The most important aspect of your CRM is not your CRM, but your ability to properly leverage all it can do for your dealership. Almost as important is being sure your employees know how to use it, and that they actually do use it.
The auto dealership customer lifecycle is intricate, and there are many CRM tricks that can be learned along the way. We've highlighted the top ten, saving you a lifetime of note–taking!
1. Who's Got the Power?
Designate a CRM point person
Determine who will become the CRM expert within your dealership. This person will learn the system and become your store CRM ambassador. Often referred
to as a power user or technology specialist, this person does not need to be an MIT graduate. Your point person will be familiar with the daily ins and outs of the CRM technology and will serve as a go–to when there is a question about using the system.
2. Integration: Bringing Together the Acronyms
Properly integrate information from your DMS to your CRM
Your data is worthless if it is not integrating to your CRM software. All too often, sales and service departments do not communicate with each other. The loss in potential sales and service revenue is staggering. Be sure your CRM solution serves all of your departments. Streamline your processes by using CRM software that includes live phone support, monthly conference calls and quarterly site visits.
3. Keep'em Accountable
Establish systems of accountability for your employees
Your CRM is only as good as its users. Managers, sales and service staff should all be familiar with the CRM and be using it daily. Managers should be proactively using the CRM to strategically drive business, while sales and service staff should be able to quickly and easily navigate the system. An efficient dashboard allows for proper accountability. Be sure your CRM allows you to assess employees' daily performances. Ideally, you can review an employee's productivity before the person leaves the premises. Setting goals, creating incentives and providing plans for success will decrease employee turnover and increase productivity, resulting in increased revenue.
The ability to create personalized marketing campaigns that are easy to initiate and maintain are part of the genius of CRM technology.
4. Market on Target
Target marketing is all the rage
Are you tired of hearing about the three R's: right person, right message, right time? Cliche?s be darned, the importance cannot be emphasized enough. The ability to create personalized marketing campaigns that are easy to initiate and maintain are part of the genius of CRM technology. Build customized marketing campaigns, and target market away.
5. Avoid the Mediocrity Trap
Convert successful lists into ongoing processes
Many dealers fall into the trap of building a list at the end of every month
to generate more sales and service business. While this may suffice, it is not optimal. Maximize your business by automating processes targeted at Key Customer Segments within your database. Be vigilant about automating processes every day, without failóno exceptions! Plant these automated seeds and enjoy consistent business growth.
6. Stay Alert
Create Alerts in your CRM for Time Sensitive Tasks
It is common for internet leads, reassigned leads, recently received and recently opened emails to fail to be responded to or followed up with due to lack of awareness. Create alerts in your CRM that notify your employees of these time– sensitive tasks through push alerts to mobile devices or notifications within the CRM. No more excuses!
7. Down With Unconverted Ups
Hold sales people accountable to leads not lead
When it comes to sales people manually logging information into your CRM,
it's garbage in, garbage out. Make it a best practice to track those people that don't get put in your CRM. You spend valuable marketing dollars attracting prospects to your lot; if they're not logged, you risk losing them to another dealership that performs proper follow–up. Start tracking unconverted ups by inputting notes referring to a prospect's memorable key physical attributes, such as "guy in red shirt" or "woman with pink shoes." You can then hold each salesman accountable to the people they failed to log via your daily checkout process.
When it comes to sales people manually logging information into your CRM, it's garbage in, garbage out.