AutoPlay have long focussed on pre-sale lead management as our bread & butter. How you manage leads is one of the most influential factors when it comes to running an efficient, transparent and productive sales team.
Over the years we've received a number of requests to be able to manage post sale activity through AutoPlay as well as pre-sale. In the past we've even imported these follow ups into the main lead Dashboard (a mistake as it clutters the screen and the user loses focus on converting their sales opportunities).
Now it's possible to complete follow up on CRM Follow Ups and Prospecting Activity within AutoPlay as well via our new Prospects & CRM Follow Up screen. This screen allows users to manage all their post-sale activity from within AutoPlay without having to access their DMS in day-to-day life.
The new CRM & Prospect screen is separate from the Lead Dashboard. This is done in order to ensure your lead Dashboard does not become cluttered with 12 month follow ups or brochure requests that have not yet been qualified as a “lead”. This allows easier filtering of follow ups and keeps priority on active sales opportunities.
There is a reasonable amount of customisation allowed in this screen. We separate the actionable records into the following categories we call ACTIVITY TYPES;
· Marketing – “Soft leads” that have not yet been qualified and as such cannot be considered leads to manage in the Dashboard. For example, Brochure Requests or registers of interest
· CRM Follow Up – Customer relationship based follow-ups not likely to result in an immediate sale, but required in order to build long term relationships and foster repeat business. For example, 1, 6, or 12 Month Follow Ups
· Prospects – Prospects are more likely to buy than Marketing or CRM follow ups. Prospects can be as a result of proactive prospecting by salespeople, or by communicating with customers when they are most likely to make a repeat purchase. For example, End of Finance Term or End of Warranty.
This is done to ensure that we can deliver accurate reporting to our users. Similarly, we allow dealerships to further categorise their follow ups into ACTION TYPES. For example, CRM Follow Up may be the category used for;
· 1 Month Follow Ups
· 6 Month Follow Ups
· 12 Month Follow Ups
The Prospect & CRM Follow Up screen works much the same as the Lead Dashboard. We know the volume of work salespeople are faced with can be daunting. That’s why we only show them the actions they need to complete right now – achieved by defaulting the date range to Now +/- 3 days.
When a user needs to complete a follow up all the need to do is open the record, and click on the COMPLETE PROSPECT button. If the customer can be linked to a lead in AutoPlay we will also display a VIEW LEAD button that opens up the historical lead.
Finally, you can also click on CREATE LEAD in order to mark the Prospect or CRM Follow Up as done and be taken into the New Lead screen to qualify the lead and treat it as a valid sales opportunity. This gives dealerships a fantastic measure of just how effective their CRM Follow Ups or prospecting activity really is.
If you choose to activate this new feature you will gain access to 2 reports as pictured below. The Prospect & CRM Follow Up Report shows a big picture breakdown of the split between the type of activity being completed, and also a more detailed breakdown of exactly what each salesperson is spending their time doing.
The Prospect Conversion Report has a conversion funnel based on sales from leads that originated as Prospects. Additionally, it also shows how many leads were closed back into prospects which gives dealerships a measure of any leads that would have previously never been closed as many salespeople are reluctant to make decisions on lost sales opportunities.
At present with the initial pilot dealerships we have chosen not to allow the users to manually create their own follow ups. Instead we have concentrated on working with DMS providers to integrate with them, and receive the follow ups that normally live within the DMS. In the future, we plan to have the following options available;
1. Integration – send CRM or Prospect follow ups from DMS
2. Manual – Manually create CRM or Prospect follow ups within AutoPlay
3. Automatic – Automatically trigger the creation of CRM or Prospect events when the lead is marked as SOLD
4. Upload – Upload a CSV file of records in bulk
This product has just finished being developed and is being launched with a select few dealerships. We initially have begun working with AutoLine and Comsol, and are in discussions with AutoIT. Due to the level of customisation and moving parts the set up and testing process for this functionality can take some time - even if we already work with your DMS. If you do not use Comsol F2 or AutoLine but are interested in this functionality, please get in touch. We will start discussions with your provider, but be warned this process can take a number of months.
During the set-up process, it is a good opportunity to review the amount of CRM Follow Up you enforce upon your sales team. One of the biggest reasons many users stop using their DMS for following up is due to the sheer volume of follow ups that are generated from the DMS. There is little point transferring this problem to AutoPlay so we strongly recommend that dealerships use this as an opportunity to review their follow up plans, and set a consistent list of required follow up such as 1 Month, 6 Month 12 Month, 24 month and 36 Month follow ups.
The is a reasonable amount of work involved in setting up the Prospect & CRM Follow Up screen for each dealership. In order to cover these costs, we will charge dealerships an additional $200 per month for access to Prospect & CRM Follow Ups. If you already pay AutoPlay $100 per month for integration, we will waive 50% of the fee to ensure you pay no more than $200 to access this service. This fee covers unlimited users and is based upon each integration set up and maintained.
To request set up of the CRM Follow Up and Prospect screen please email email@example.com and we will set up a call with you to begin the process.
Here's a sneak peak at the latest article by Matt Darby before it is published in Autotalk.
Recently I’ve noticed a trend amongst NZ & Australian brands and dealer groups of embracing new tactics to attract and retain customers. In particular, there’s been a big focus on Marketing Automation and Remarketing. For those who don’t spend day-to-day immersed in this world it can be a little overwhelming - is it all buzzwords and a good story or is this the future of marketing? Additionally, when everything is “critical” to your dealership success how do you make the decision on what to prioritise?
First off, some definitions…
1. Lead Management – A bit of a catch-all term, Lead Management is the process of tracking and managing sales leads with the goal of converting to sales. Lead management is AutoPlay’s bread and butter and can be summarised as what you do with leads once you receive them.
2. CRM – Customer relationship management has been popular for a number of years now and is based around the idea that the more you know about your customer’s previous interactions with the customer the more chance you have of meeting their specific requirements and creating long term relationships. CRM takes a 360-degree view of customer relationships and is intended to encourage repeat purchases.
3. Marketing Automation – Generally refers to software that allows certain marketing actions to be automated. Most marketing automation involves automatically scheduling social media posts and automatically triggering email communication when customers are most likely to be interested in your product and/or brand.
4. Remarketing – Remarketing is about reaching out to customers who have already visited your website and position targeted adverts in front of them as they travel around the internet. Google remarketing is one of the main players in this space though new options are plentiful from Facebook through to online newspapers that are now moving into this space.
A dealership considering all four of these angles will undoubtedly be doing well. However, sometimes skills, resources and budget all constrain us to focus on what we can. Too much emphasis on managing leads can result in customers feeling like transactions and ignores the effectiveness of CRM as a long-term sales strategy. Similarly, too much focus on CRM can result in all your salespeople’s time spent following up after sales and not enough time generating new business.
Unfortunately Lead Management and CRM take sales resource. There is software to make this easier, but at the end of the day databases need to be managed and sales opportunities need to be followed up on. On the flip side although Marketing Automation and Remarketing can involve some up-front planning, their very nature is designed to automate things that a marketer would struggle to achieve manually.
So, does this mean that dealerships should prioritise setting up Marketing Automation and Remarketing over getting their Lead Management or CRM in check? Well…no, not necessarily.
Instead of looking at these actions on a continuum along a timeline, we need to view all of these sales and marketing activities as an ever-repeating cycle.
Each step complements the rest of the process. If any step in this process is weak or absent altogether then your dealership isn’t making the most of opportunities available. However, from my perspective, the most “critical” part of the process is lead management.
Marketing Automation and Remarketing help generate and foster leads so that they are ready for the sales team to follow up on. If your sales team don’t manage leads well and are losing sales opportunities through bad practices, then you are just wasting your money chucking more leads you won’t convert at your sales team via aggressive Remarketing or Marketing Automation.
Conversely you are going to find it hard to effectively run a Marketing Automation programme if you don’t have a good lead management system capturing customer info, or a good CRM system that is giving you a 360-degree view of the customer.
Although clearly a holistic approach works best, the first step should always be to maximise your Lead Management and sales processes and systems to increase your conversion ratios. Once this is in place focus on improving your CRM procedures and how you approach long term relationships. Once these core building blocks are stable start exploring your Marketing Automation and Remarketing options. For a dealership doing the basics right Marketing Automation and Remarketing can help generate more quality leads that the dealership is well placed to get the most out of.
Matt Darby works for AutoPlay who provide lead management tools for dealerships in NZ and Australia. To find out more contact AutoPlay on firstname.lastname@example.org
Recently we’ve been getting a lot of different request to customise the compulsory fields when loading a new lead. The default that AutoPlay prefer is that you need the customer name, and at least one method of contact from Email, Phone and Mobile. We feel this strikes the perfect balance between collecting enough information, and not putting barriers in place of salespeople loading leads. However due to the volume of requests, in the next 17.1 release in March we’ll be able to customise what fields you make compulsory when loading leads.
The customisable fields are as pictured above and include;
If you want to customise what fields are compulsory just email email@example.com along with the fields listed above that you want to make compulsory. The functionality will not be released until approx. 13th March, however you can contact AutoPlay any time to request we customise you mandatory fields.
In 2017 it’s fairly likely we don’t need to sell you on the concept of video (if you do, check out this great post HERE). In short video helps you rank higher in search results, and increases the chances of converting to a call-to-action. But what you might not know is how using your video on Social media like facebook and Instagram can grow the exposure of your property videos exponentially. Not only will your video reach a greater audience, but in addition more people will engage with the video on social sites like facebook than by simply listing on your brand site or one of the main portal sites.
On the 16th of February we worked with Luke Crockford from Harcourts Ponsonby to post a link to one of our AutoPlay Property videos on YouTube on his facebook page – check it out here (https://www.facebook.com/LukeCrockfordRealEstate/). Within days the video had 50 more views than when just posted on a listing site just by linking to YouTube from facebook. Great when you consider it cost him nothing extra to post AND helped him further build his online profile.
However the real value came when he uploaded the video file AND boosted his post on facebook. For under $50 the video was viewed more than 3,016 times. The post reached 7,555 people who clocked in over 1,200 minutes watching the video. Additionally, 18 people clicked on the call-to-action link that was added to the post. Not bad for less than a round of beers at most bars these days!
It’s important to note that video doesn’t have to be expensive in order to be effective on Social Media – and in some cases it can actually have the opposite effect. At AutoPlay we’ve worked with Shaun Hogan of GetSocialPlus who provides social media management for Real Estate agents and offices in Australia.
Shaun came into contact with AutoPlay via a shared customer who utilised AutoPlay property videos. Over the course of his travels Shaun had encountered some of the same resistance we see at AutoPlay – the notion that video has to be actual filmed and produced video in order to be effective. Seeing the advantage of AutoPlay’s cost effective, automated video solutions and unbeknown to us he set out to measure how effective AutoPlay videos were against professionally filmed and edited videos on social media.
Over the course of 4 weeks he posted a video on the agents facebook page that was watched over 2,300 times. Impressive in its own right but even better was that AutoPlay outperformed the much more expensive filmed video in all facets. In fact, 234% more people watched the AutoPlay video to its conclusion compared to the professionally filmed video.
In addition, the post itself reached 15% more people than the professionally filmed video, and 35% more people clicked on the post. Impressive figures and well worth the time spent.
With AutoPlay property videos taking less time to schedule, create and upload this means your video can be up on facebook quickly. Furthermore with the integration AutoPlay have with major property systems, our streamlined professional recording service and low cost make AutoPlay the perfect choice for social marketing.
Contact AutoPlay on firstname.lastname@example.org today!
AutoPlay Sales Pipeline is a pre-sales lead management tool designed for dealerships, dealer groups and automakers