The speed of lead follow-up is important, but the it’s the quality that really matters!
The clock is the most common unit of measurement for OEM’s to check the lead follow-up at their dealers. But is that the right measurement method? Of course, a fast follow-up is important, but the conversion is actually even more important. After all, the goal is to sell, and you measure that in numbers, not in time.
Measuring the follow-up of succession on the basis of the speed of succession is a start, but it doesn’t tell you anything else. As a dealer, you can faithfully follow all the leads you get from the OEM within 15 minutes, but if the result is a conversion from lead to sale of 8 percent, the OEM is not satisfied and neither are you. After all, OEM’s want a conversion on their first line leads of at least 13 percent. After all, millions are spent on marketing to get those leads and most dealers get those leads for free. They don’t have to pay for it, but that doesn’t mean that these leads are non-committal.
If you, as a dealer, manage leads exclusively on speed, then in many cases this produces a typical ‘checkmark culture’. Proudly, sellers show the OEM that they have followed up all leads within the agreed timeframe. What happens to the leads afterwards, or is done, remains out of range and that is just very wrong. The leads are free, but not without obligation. The OEM doesn’t just want to know if something has been done with the lead, but he also wants to know what the result is. The time in which a lead has been followed up is good to know, but doesn’t say anything about the final result.
Minutes instead of hours
The importer will therefore want more feedback from the dealers about the supplied leads and what has been done with them. We have already appointed the first KPI, that is the time within which the lead has been followed. It must be measured in minutes, not in hours. Especially when the lead arrives within the usual, and legally-held opening hours from 9:00 to 21:00 (Mon-Fri) and Saturday to 16:00. There are still OEM’s who have set the lead time for leads at four hours and this is completely chanceless. The chance that you are able to get into a dialogue with the customer at the right time is four times smaller after four hours than when you call directly, so within five minutes.
The next KPI. That is the number of leads that your sales people have actually had a dialogue with. By phone, e-mail or in any other way. This must be a qualitative dialogue, whereby the customer can of course also indicate that he (for the time being) has no interest. It is only natural that an importer requires that at least 60 percent of the leads that he sends and paid for leads to a dialogue. Good to know: experience shows that if you call within five minutes, you can reach more than 80 percent of the leads. That 60 percent is therefore not unrealistic.
A good dialogue ends in a concrete appointment. That is the next KPI of the lead: how many leads have been converted into concrete appointments? Suppose that 36 percent of the leads supplied by the importer are converted into an appointment, then the importer knows that the chance that the dealer can sell 13 percent or more of the leads is considerable. But… the problem is often not the last part, but the first part of the lead follow-up. We call too late, we don’t have a clear goal (dialogue and appointment) and there are no standard scripts that lead to an appointment. With only the clock as KPI we create that tick culture and not a culture where we, as a dealer, will step by step look at how we can improve the success of our lead follow-up.
Calldrip as a tool
A tool for more effective lead follow-up is Calldrip. Already four importers have implemented this service in some way in their lead follow-up. With Calldrip you can follow up leads within 60 seconds and that proves, demonstrably, that more than 70 percent of the leads are converted into a dialogue. Because Calldrip also includes all conversations, as a dealer you can train your sales people with very specific information to deal with the opportunities in a much better way. You don’t seem to need a BDC / CCC at all to be successful.
As an importer, you want full control over your marketing efforts and the result. With Calldrip you do not only know when the lead has been followed, but you also know how many leads have been converted into a dialogue and then into an appointment. With the data of the assessed conversations, you can also train and coach the salespeople in a much better way! Because using KPIs is fun and meaningful, but if you improve the sellers in the first-line succession, that will definitely lead to more sales.
About Paul de Vries
Paul de Vries has a tremendous track record in the automotive industry. He went from owner of a dealer company via the online sales platform Nieuweautokopen.nl to Marktplaats (eBay), where Paul is now Key Automotive Spokesperson. In addition, he is the founder and owner of #DCDW, a platform for dealers and car companies that want to sell more cars online. Paul presents the #DCDW Podcast weekly and under the heading #DCDW Academy he provides training and courses in the field of sales and online automotive for salesmen, sales managers and management. Paul is frequently asked as a speaker at seminars and congresses, he blogs a lot and his most popular blogs were brought together in two books: ‘Lead the Way op de digitale snelweg’ and ‘Follow up: meer success als digitaal autobedrijf’. More information about Paul, his books and his services can be found at: DCDW.nl.