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GM has just raised the bar.  Greater than 99% of leads must be responded
to within 5 hours; response times must average less than an hour. 
That's the new standard.  Can the best minds in the business respond
here with how you are going to get that done? 

I met the old standard in Q1 and finished in the top money sector, but my methods
aren't necessarily going to meet the higher standards.  I need a new
approach to get the job done this quarter

Tags: Deficit, General, Metrics, Motors, Response, SFE, Sleep, Times

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Hi Everyone!!

Dealer e Process can "Stop the Clock" 24 hours a day or just during the off hours with our Rapid Response program. Our off hours program covers the hours the dealership is closed AND includes one 24 hour period as well for those dealers that are closed on Sunday or have no coverage on a day off.

+Emails are answered by live agents
+Works with all CRMs
+No long term agreements
+Average response time is under 10 minutes
+NOT a "mobile phone" answering system
+ Quick start up!!
+Get back to sleeping at night :)

Please feel free to contact me with any questions!!
I use an after hours service to answer my leads. They start at 10:pm my time and go until 7 am, then they answer them all day Sunday, or from 8 pm to 7 am. As far as leads during business hours, I have that down to 5 minutes. That has kept me at 100%. Give me a call and I can go into more detail if you would like. 409-550-5428
At the start of the quarter, I was handling all after hours leads for all four of our dealerships. Needless to say, that didn't last long. We then hired a third party company "LeadPro" to respond to the leads, and yes they did manage to stop the clock. However, they also send emails with disconnected phone numbers and out of date info. So, my owner has since decided that we are going full staff 24/7. Yes, you read that correctly. We will have someone live and in person at the dealership all of the time. He will probably be the first third shifter in the car biz, but we will get the response times and the quality of response that we want.
I would suggest that a different provider who will use your templates in your CRM is much more effective than the knee-jerk reaction of hiring someone to wait around for leads all night. Now, if you had someone who could clean the dealership and check for leads every half-hour...

I'm not convinced that GM's response time plan is all that effective overnight. I noticed a very interesting thing about our after-hours leads. Our tracked open times in our CRM (VinSolutions) are really long. We may respond at 1am, but they may not read it for two days!
That is very true. We actually use iMagicLab and the open times are very different from the times that the leads come in. Interesting fact is that we have decided that GM holds on to some of the leads and sends them in the middle of the night just for fun. My owner was on vacation to Florida and while he was in Epcot, he visited the GM booth right off of the Test Track ride. He gave them his info and what vehicle he would be interested in on a Tuesday at 10am. We didn't receive the lead until Friday morning at 2am??? So,I see what you are saying, however we are planning on the night shift person to do other things like uploading vehicle photos, updating inventory etc.. while they wait for leads. For the first quarter of this year, I checked the data and 47% of our leads came in after hours. We will see how it all works out.
If he fiolled it out at an event like that, it would have been considered a handraiser, right? If so, then they do not count towards the clock anyway. I use Evaluation to handle our after hours process, and they do a fantastic job.

I know that I have submitted test leads either from, or from my own website, and sometimes they hit immediately, and sometimes it is several hours before I ever see them in my ILM.
I can guarantee that GM holds some leads for batch processing; the reason given to me was that there are both technical and "secretarial" reasons for delays.

On another note, @Amanda: GM's own data for January showed about 16% of the leads nationally were from 11pm to 4am x7days. A closing ratio of 8% on the 16% means . . . you're covering those hours to close about 1.3% of your leads.

IF you assume "Midnight Leads" are as good as any other.

I'm looking at a service to answer our leads with a live response using a template in our CRM during all our closed hours. $600 a month, but . . . with $10k a quarter on the line, it's justifiable.

Wish you luck!
How much would it hurt GM sales to only count the leads 8am to 10pm? We're about to start paying VinSolutions (who have outsourced the program) to answer our after-hours leads. GM raised the bar to avoid spending as much money, but any dealer that's done the math is simply hiring someone to answer the leads. It would be cheaper for GM to select a company and pay them $2,000 a quarter per dealership to respond, since all they appear to care about is speed. (No, we're not paying VS $2k/qtr. - in case it sounds that way.)
I believe that GM's business would not be hurt at all if they merely held the night leads until the next day; they hold some leads now, anyway, for various reasons. It isn't like what time zone you're in complicates things much for GM, that would cost less to adjust for than the Digital Rewards.

GM has created a market for overnight leads. They also tried an eBay effort that went south. In both cases, I suspect that what could have been, and still could be, a good program was designed and executed by people who imagine what the Internet can do rather than by people who actually use it. Ivory towers . . . nothing strange to find them in corporate America.

//soap box ON
What GM *should* be spending money on is not just answering leads but also on enabling dealer social media, etc. and measuring Digital Rewards on that. This type of program, I guarantee, is authored by a person at GM with 3-4 weeks of yearly vacation, works few weekends, who offices above the 20th floor of some building, and who has never, ever sold a single car on a floor, much less the Internet. Measuring lead response on a 24x7 clock is a lazy and non-productive way to apply pressure to improve business, which is supposedly what Digital Rewards are all about.
//soap box OFF
Try calling the dealer business center on Sunday... see how important 24/7 responses are to GM.
oooooo . . . I think that left a mark! :)

Well put.
Is GM alone in this, or is anyone aware of other OEM programs similar? It seems vendors are quick to jump to offer this service - but only for GM dealers?

Anyone have proven success with whatever vendor they use to answer off-hours leads?


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