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Hi All,

Thanks for your interest.  To keep up with the times, texting seems to be a good choice for getting a response from an Internet customer. Here are a few examples of what I've tried.  So far nothing is really generating a good response.

I'm using Google Voice for my texting service.

I start with the customer's name since my text number is unknown

I identify myself and the dealership

I ask a question to try to get the response. 

 

I know that there is no magic bullet when it comes to selling, but I do want to increase my closing rate and I feel texting has a place in Internet sales.  Has anyone found a text message that produces a reply from the consumer and could be worth calling a "best practice?" 

 

Junius..Freedom Ford..Can you stop by the dealership today?...Bill G

Richard...Freedom Ford...:Can we discuss your Ford Van request?..Bill G

Ryan..Freedom Ford..Have you checked your email for Quote.. Billy G.

Nathan..Freedom Ford..Still interested in a Fiesta?...Bill Gordon

Vicki..from Freedom Ford...Are you still in the Market? .... Bill Gordon

Tracy..Freedom Ford..Can you make it in this weekend? ...Bill G

 

Thanks,

Bill

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Most of the lack of response comes from a lack of listening to the customer's original request (or interest, as you put it). I can look at an internet lead history, see 15 unanswered call, texts or emails from us to the customer, reread the customer's original inquiry, respond to it specifically and directly and start a response. Dealers always have a response, but many times it is not fast enough or direct enough. I would only suggest those two things to happen with your texts.

I would also recommend placing your dealer name at the end of the text. Otherwise, it seems like an advertisement, right away. In the above texts, I would respond in this manner:

"Julie, I have a silver Fiesta with 29k miles. Will that work? Bill Gordon, Sales Manager, Freedom Ford. Thank you"

After that text, future texts would just have my first name and dealer name at the end of a short direct response.

Jason Manning
Notice I threw in "silver" and "29k miles." That is to create an objection or sale. It is my best attempt to create more dialog and response, either way.

Jason,  Thanks for the input.  I am implementing your suggestions into my process.  Bill

Let me know your results. The art of the text conversation requires a helpful valuable hook, right away. There is no room for too much advertising.

If you wouldnt mind I would appreciate some feedback on a tool that our company created for doing just that. It is a two-way text, call, and group text web application that allows you to not use a dedicated number we provide, a smart call routing feature, as well as customized or template messages. It is called AutoReady.

A couple of the big dealers in town here in Baton Rouge are using it for service, but one is actually using it for their internet marketing as well. 

Andy, I just watched a video that featured Acura of Baton Rouge and SMS for the service department.  I implemented a similar process using Google Voice for a Ford Service Department several months ago.  As far as I can see, using Google is very similar to what you are doing at AutoReady and you can even direct the Google Voice number to a specific service writer. 

What my post is trying to accomplish is finding the best possible way to stimulate a response from customers who are in the market for a car purchase.  Different from the service customer who needs the information, a buyer does not necessarily want to communicate with a sales person, which buyers demonstrate daily by not returning phone calls and emails.  Really I am looking for ways to trigger response from buyers, which in turn allows the opportunity to build a rapport and set an appointment to visit the dealership. 

I must say that your AutoReady service is very valuable and should be a must for service departments that have not implemented SMS as a real-time and convenient notification tool. 

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