3 Ways Service Advisors Can Sell More With Zero Sales Objections

by | May 4, 2020 | Automotive Consultant, Business, Podcasts, Sales, Service Department, Service Drive Revolution

Another week of getting comfortable with being uncomfortable! 

Times are tough, people are forced to choose between fixing their car or paying rent… but you can help make their decision a lot easier. Yes, you! And I’ll tell you exactly how, because today we’re going to talk about three ways a Service Advisor can sell more with zero sales objections. 

That’s right: ZERO.

Whenever rookie service advisors ask the question, “why are customer relationships important?” This episode is just one of many, many answers. So make sure to subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or over at the Chris Collins YouTube channel

And remember– we have a new vault for you at servicedriverevolution.com, where we’re posting old episodes from the back catalog, along with some complementary training videos that are on us! Jeremy and I are also working on some other fun stuff that we’re going to put there for you, so go to the website and sign up to join our secret service society today!

During our morning group coaching call, I asked my coaching team, “Hey, we’re doing Service Drive Revolution today. What are you guys hearing? What’s going on in your coaching calls? Where’s everybody at?”

One thing I found interesting – and all of my coaches reported this on more than a couple calls – is that traffic is up! Our clients are even busier now than before the Coronavirus quarantine started because, like we’ve been saying, there’s pent up demand!

But, and this is where it gets really interesting,  they’re completing more R.O.’s with fewer people on staff– less than half of their usual staff in most cases! There’s a simple explanation for this: They’re sending home techs and service advisors. 

Now, when they chose who to send home, do you think they sent home their best techs and their best service advisors? Hell no!

Every business’ workforce has a hierarchy: Who brings the most value to the business? If you were an advisor or a tech and you got furloughed, laid off, sent home, dismissed, whatever… it’s because you landed low in the hierarchy of value! So what’s the lesson in that?

For service advisors and techs, this is the lesson: If you’re bringing more money in than you’re paid, then you’ll always be in demand. My Grandpa always told me that, and it couldn’t be more true. So, if you aren’t going out of your way to connect and collect customers, and bring value into your shop or dealership… You’ll be the first one to get the axe. And it’s because, in times like these, the dealers and owners are thinking:

“We should run leaner, we keep too many people around that shouldn’t be kept around, and they don’t add value to our business.”

Some businesses have a higher net profit when they’re working with a leaner crew. That instantly tells them that the way they were running it before wasn’t efficient enough, and they’re going to run a leaner crew moving forward.

But what you dealers and shop owners have to consider for the near future is, we’re about to experience higher volumes than we had before. You don’t want to bring in so much that your systems break down… A lot of you are going to need more techs and more advisors. We’re going into summer, which always picks up traffic.

Things are picking up, and it’s really good for those of us that are ready for it. We’re going to be able to gain market share and put up some really big numbers.

Character is built in times of strife. Consider investing in yourself, and go check out our OnDemand Training.

Remember everybody: when you post a question on our YouTube, LinkedIn, and Facebook or send it to [email protected] and we see it and read it on the show, we’re going to send you some swag. We love your questions and we get more questions than we can possibly put on the show, but we do try to answer questions that are relevant to Jeremy’s skillset and my skillset more than anything else.

The first question comes from Facebook:

“What’s your take on the technicians that may be out of jobs right now as most dealers are working with limited staff? Are you seeing dealers thinking about strategies to retain their technicians, or in some cases, looking to attract more techs that may be looking for other opportunities given the current circumstances?”

That’s a bit of a loaded question, because every market, every dealership, and every shop is a little bit different.

I would go back to what I said earlier: if you’re being furloughed or laid off, I would do a real inventory on how much value you’re adding to the shop. If you’re one of the top technicians, they’re not going to let you get too far away. They’re definitely not going to want somebody to steal you.

Even if you’re mediocre, technicians are still hard to find. They’re going to bring the technicians back as quickly as they can. If they don’t, they’ve probably got other problems.

We know clients that are hiring technicians, so even in a downturn like this, technicians run the show. Without technicians, we can’t produce labor and we can’t put car parts on vehicles either!

Look in the mirror and ask yourself, “Is this a chance for me to reinvent myself and be more of a contributor to the positive side of the business? Maybe I should work a little harder, put up some bigger numbers, really be something different than I was before if I’m expendable!”

Next one is from YouTube:

“On a recent episode, you talked about the dumbest things advisors say after getting a ‘no,’ but what’s the best response to say when a customer says ‘no’?”

I let Jeremy answer this one first because mine’s gonna blow it out of the water…

When you get a no, you want to get into agreement with your customer; take the sales pressure off. For Jeremy it’s, “Okay, no problem. We’ll get this car wrapped up and get it back for you. Do you need a ride down here?”

And that’s when the door is closing, and everybody thinks that you gave up on the sale. But no, you haven’t given up on the sale! You have another trick up your sleeve, and that trick is to care for your client.

You, as a trusted service advisor, know that if you don’t help the customer take care of these concerns, it’s going to cost them more money down the road. Now is the time to open that door back up, and ask the customer the magic question:

“Hey, Mr. Customer, I’m just curious. When it comes to your concern with such-and-such today, was it more a budget or time concern?”

And then you handle the objection there. The customer is not on guard, because you’ve let the sales pressure go. They think you’re giving them the car back, and now you’re just having a conversation.

The biggest sales that Jeremy ever made have always been in the context of a conversation between friends, not salesperson and customer.

Now, my answer is going to be a little different than Jeremy’s, but neither one is wrong. I think Jeremy is quicker and wittier than I would be as a service advisor, and he’s better with comebacks and thinking on his feet.

If I get a no, I want to look back and think, “What happened earlier in the process that got me to ‘no’?”

One of the biggest things to get you to ‘no’ is asking a question that can be answered with ‘no.’

Let’s say we’re recommending tires and an alignment. So, we’ve done a walk-around, we’re petting the dog, they need tires and an alignment, so I say, “Hey, the computer here is saying you’re due for an alignment.”

“Oh, I just want the oil change today.”

While that might sound like a ‘no,’ I can open up the next phone call with, “Hey, so we inspected the car and it looks like it needs some things. What are your plans for the car?”

Now, when I brought up the alignment, that wasn’t a question that can be answered with ‘no,’ so to me, the oil change is a priority because it’s been on your mind… But now I have room to get to know you.

The best sales book I’ve ever read is The Game by Neil Strauss. You have to go into this book understanding that it’s about boys trying to pick up girls. The thing with Neil Strauss is that he’s short, bald, not the most attractive guy in the world, but he ends up dating very attractive women.

Aside from the fact that a book about guys trying to get girls is kind of douchey, it’s the process of how a nerdy guy has to reinvent himself, analyze every little thing about how he approaches somebody in a bar, how the body language matters, how your wording matters, how they can smell desperation on you, and all the things you need to do to reinvent yourself.

That’s what sales is about!

So if you got a ‘no,’ I would say that all lost sales can be traced to a mistake made earlier in the process.

This might be something service advisors can do for each other: go through a month’s worth of declines and call onto clients like, “Hey, this is Chris from Bulldog Motors and I saw you in here a couple weeks ago. We recommended brakes, and I was just curious why you didn’t have them done.”

Calling clients can help you learn more about that. What you’re going to find is that they just didn’t have the money at the time, or they didn’t understand. So whenever these surveys are done, the number one reason people don’t maintain their cars is because they weren’t told, and the second reason is they didn’t understand.

The other part of it is introducing the inspection sheet early on, so then you’re the hero and not the guy who gets, “Hey! I didn’t ask you to look at that!”

All those nuances have to do with petting the dog, or what happens when you don’t. The customer doesn’t trust you, because they had to come find you, and when they found you, you were busy on the phone, or you wrote them up while doing something else. 

You treated them like another transaction.

You didn’t call them. They had to call you, and now you’re telling them, “Hey, want to spend $2,000 with us?”

They don’t like you, they don’t trust you, you seem disorganized, and now they think you see them as a bag with dollar signs on it.

Another thing to think about is, how does your Service Drive appear to the customer? Is it a disaster? There’s stuff laying around, it doesn’t look organized, it’s chaos, it’s a labyrinth? Why would you want to spend money in a place like that? Customers want to spend the minimum amount of money on their vehicle and get out, because it’s not comfortable and they don’t feel welcome!

A lot of sales are lost and a lot of ‘no’s are created because you didn’t pet the dog. You think that it’s a transaction about a car and that car is a commodity. Anybody can service a car. The value that you have as an advisor is your relationship with your customer, that time building rapport and making it about everything but the car.

There’s guys out there that say service advisors are salespeople. I’m telling you right now: a service advisor that thinks that they’re a salesperson has never sold!

Go sell cars! Selling cars is the hardest job in the dealership! You start off at zero every day, while service advisors get built-in traffic! You’re selling them something they need. If they need to maintain a car or fix it, that’s not sales, that’s making a process more bearable!

For the Three Ways to Sell More Parts in Labor with Zero Sales Objections, we had Tal Riesenfeld, one of the founders of Sunbit, on the show. His name came up from a bunch of clients and, by coincidence, Jeremy uses him in his shop. For those who don’t know, Sunbit is a financing tool for businesses, so Tal was on the show to break down how financing can help you sell more parts in labor with zero objections and zero declines in three different ways, each with their own nuances:

Accessories

Accessories is a want-to-have versus a must-have. The customer wants this, but does he have $1,000 to spend at that very moment? Probably not. So what you can do is sell it to them for as low as $50 a month, which is obviously very different from $1,000 out of pocket. It’s a way to upsell and to make the customer comfortable that they can buy what they want.

Repairs and Additional Concerns

You’re going to sell bigger jobs that you normally would get declined because about 72% of customers that use Sunbit say that they wouldn’t have had repairs done if it wasn’t for having the option of financing. 40% of Americans didn’t have access to $400 even before the Coronavirus, but if it’s a big repair, they know they need to get it done otherwise it’d be unsafe to drive out of there without it. But without financing, 28% would have taken that risk…

Cost

If I’d recommend you a new set of tires for free, would you take them? Of course you would! Financing can’t help with the trust factor and the time factor is what it is, but the cost factor can mean a customer being able to drive out of there the day of. In today’s day and age, a lot of people are ashamed of the fact that they can’t afford $400-700 or let alone $1,200, but they want to feel safe and they don’t want an unforeseen breakdown.

Sunbit is going to launch at 230 dealerships this month, and we’re excited for where they could go in the future. If you want to reach out, the easiest thing to do is go to sunbit.com, send them your info, and somebody will call you and walk you through a demo. The process couldn’t be any more simple.

Check out the show if you want to hear more about Sunbit and more advice from Tal, and get excited about the summer because we’re going to be busy!

Stay cool and we’ll see you next time on Service Drive Revolution.

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