Chris Collins

SELLING MAINTENANCE IN THE SERVICE DRIVE: SERVICE ADVISOR TRAINING

Go with me on this quick story. In the end it will help you in selling maintenance in the service drive. So, the other night I had an intense dream. And I know what you’re thinking, out in the midwest- Chris moved to California and completely went native. Not so, I’m not a foofy vegetarian who’s all about brussel sprouts. That being said, I do think dreams are occasionally revealing. I suspect my dream was inspired by a conversation I had with a chemical rep recently.

Of course, this sparked a curiosity about dreams in general. Let me tell you, researching dream analysis lead to some interestingdiscoveries. So many people are constantly dreaming about absurd sex fantasies and the analysis that accompany these accounts are some real gems. Some other common themes include mansions, death, kissing, and pizza. I myself don’t dream that often which supposedly means I’m not entering REM sleep… but I digress. Where was I? Ah yes, my dream. So in my dream I was cornered by a ferocious bear. Luckily, I had a shotgun and plenty of time and room to aim but I froze. It was as if I was in a solid block of ice.

AND I BELIEVE THIS IS A COMMON FEELING AMONG SERVICE MANAGERS WHEN SELLING MAINTENANCE.

Hear me out.

The chemical rep I mentioned earlier started out in the industry in the 80’s selling and servicing coolant machines. Once a month he’d spiff the service advisors $2 for every coolant exchange sold. One service advisor in particular, Woody, would sell over 100 coolant exchanges every month (compared to a combined total of 4 between competing service advisors, which is a ridiculous disparity). So he would come and give Woody his $200 and give the others their $4. And one day he couldn’t help himself anymore and confronted the other advisors. He asked why is it that Woody, who’s at the same drive with the same customers, the same opportunities, is out selling them 50 to 1. The advisors claimed it was because Woody cheats by suggesting coolant to customers who are due for an exchange.

THIS, OF COURSE, IS NOT CHEATING.

It is your duty as a service advisor to check the history and advise your customers accordingly. A lot of service advisors freeze, just like I did in my dream, and consequently aren’t taking proactive steps. The bear in my dream represents how hard it is to sell customer pay labor these days. Selling Maintenance is really all we have. At least a quarter of your CPRO count should be alignments, the easiest maintenance to sell. When you ask customers about maintenance, your closing ratios are going to be considerably higher than the 0% you have when you don’t ask.

This summer, as leaders, we need to get out of our offices and onto the service drive and melt the ice, so to speak. If you’re a service manager, role play with your service advisors on how to sell maintenance, hold them accountable, and check ROs to make sure they’re either offering or on a decline line to market to it to customers at a later date.

So let’s have the best summer ever, get out on the drive and sell maintenance!

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