Whenever a new lead management or CRM system is put into a dealership there is always a conflict between salespeople who want the process to be fast, and marketing/managers/CRM people who want as much data captured as possible.
From a salespersons perspective, they need a process that that fits around their existing workflow. No salesperson wants to have to interrupt their flow by capturing extensive details from the customer. Marketing/crm staff come from the other extreme. It’s their job to ensure the database is complete as possible and it’s something that is often a key part of their responsibilities. From a marketing perspective, it’s nirvana to have every possible customer contact point (phone, mobile, email and address) as they each provide a different opportunity for marketing communication.
As with most things a balance needs to be struck between the bare minimum and overzealous collection of customer info. The issue with not collecting enough customer info is obvious - can a “lead” really be called a “lead” if there not enough info to follow up? If only a phone number is captured, then you lose the opportunity to follow up via eDM’s. Additionally, many people change phone numbers or email addresses from time to time. With multiple points of contact you have less chance of not being able to reach the customer in the future. In addition, the fewer contact details you have for a customer the harder it is to match with your existing database – causing situations where there are multiple customers called “Bob”, each with a different phone number or email address.
Conversely if selling starts to become more about capturing data, and the customer experience starts to suffer then the balance is clearly wrong. There is a school of thought that capturing adequate data is such an essential piece of the pie, that salespeople should be forced to capture certain fields when dealing with a new lead/sales opportunity.
The problem with this approach is that no matter how good your system, there is always a way around it. For every salesperson that sees the benefit of asking a customer for an email address there are two that will just enter their own or a fictitious email to get around the requirement. From a technology perspective, it’s very difficult to control a user who is determined to get around the rules, without resorting to draconian policies (that inevitably result in barriers for the salesperson to do their job well).
At AutoPlay, we have a flexible system that enables each of our customers to customise exactly what fields they want as mandatory when capturing leads. However, we believe best practise is to capture the following;
· A name – without this how will you address your customer. At AutoPlay, we recommend at least the first name but last name and company are also very helpful
· One of Phone, Mobile or Email – From our experience we don’t find value in forcing users to capture all of the customers contact detail at the initial point of contact. It’s obvious you need one method of contact, and good salespeople will get all 3, however a customer not having an email address they want to share should not prevent the user from loading a lead.
And that’s it. We don’t make address details or marketing questions like where they came from compulsory as it’s not always appropriate. Additionally, forcing salespeople or customers to answer marketing questions can actually backfire and lead to false results as many users will just choose the first option available. (Note – collecting this information is still vitally important but you need to sell it from management down to salespeople, and allow salespeople the freedom to enter it when it is appropriate to the customer experience).
The beauty of digital lead management and CRM is that it’s incredibly easy to identify who among your team is not putting the effort into capturing customer info, and the types of customer info that is not being captured. At AutoPlay, we have an out of the box report we call the Data Quality Report which does exactly this – providing managers with a detailed breakdown of how each salesperson is capturing customer info and providing opportunities for further coaching by managers.
If you would like to customise your mandatory fields when loading new leads please contact email@example.com with your request.
AutoPlay Sales Pipeline is like a gym membership....it's nice to have, but unless you use it consistently, regularly and continually you won't achieve results. And just like a gym membership, you need a goal to work towards.
To help our customers get the most from AutoPlay we've put together a list of best practice actions that you should be doing in AutoPlay, as well as some benchmarks to help you stay on track.
1. CAPTURE EMAIL LEADS AUTOMATICALLY
Firstly the easy part - are all of your email leads being captured to AutoPlay automatically. You should never have to manually load email enquiries to AutoPlay - if you are contact firstname.lastname@example.org with a link to the web form in question, a copy of the enquiry that is submitted and an outline of what source and campaign you want to map to in AutoPlay.
2. LOAD ALL PHONE & WALK IN LEADS
Slightly trickier is ensuring that all leads are loaded in AutoPlay - not just email leads and not just those most likely to result in a sale. Luckily there are several ways AutoPlay make this easier;
- Loading leads is easy with the ability to scan business cards, drivers licence and choose existing customers all save salespeople having to type everything from scratch
- Floor Log TV Report can be set up for managers in their office on a TV to view real time as new leads are entered in AutoPlay
- The Health Check email can be set up to be received daily or weekly and provides managers with a breakdown of how many leads are being loaded to the Sales Pipeline.
3. LEAD CONVERSION TELLS YOU A LOT
Conversion to Test Drive generally falls within the 35% to 50% range - Deloittes use 40% as the benchmark. Sales conversion should fall within the range of 15% to 30% - Deloittes benchmark at 20%. If you have a Salesperson who is achieving well in excess of this it's highly likely they are not recording all their leads - a fact you will know if they are achieving their Sales targets or not. Conversely if conversion is too low this could indicate a performance issue, but could also indicate that particular user has fallen behind in updating their own Sales Pipeline.
4. SET TARGETS
The Sales Pipeline allows you to set Dealership, Yard and Salesperson targets for Leads, Test Drives and Sales. It is highly recommended that you set salespeople targets as this provdes a very quick reference of whether your sales team is on track or not. If you are not sure what to set as your Lead and Test Drive targets it's a good idea to work backwards from sales at standard conversion rates. Just multiple sales x 2 to get your Test Drive target, and multiply sales x 5 to get your lead target.
5. NO LEADS AT AWAITING ACTION
If there is one metric that you need to be aggressive about maintaining, it's that by the end of the day you should aim to have zero leads sitting at Awaiting Action in Progress. Leads at Awaiting Action indicate leads that have not been touched or followed up on. It's easy to keep on top of Awaiting Action leads. You can...
- Filter the Dashboard by Progress
- Check the Daily Health Check email which highlights whether there are any leads that have been at Awaiting Action for longer than 24 hours
- Check The Sales Pipeline Report in reporting .autoplay.co.nz
6. NO OVERDUE OR STALLED LEADS
The Sales Pipeline is set up to show user the leads they need to action now - within a +/- 3 day window. A lead becomes overdue when there is a scheduled event that is not actioned. The dealerships that are most successful are those that on a daily basis ensure there are ZERO Overdue or Stalled Leads. Managers can easily stay on top of this by using the built in filters in the Dashboard, checking the Daily Health Check email or running the Overdue Lead Report in reporting.autoplay.co.nz.
7. TRACK WHERE YOUR LEADS ARE COMING FROM
Every dealership should be tracking where their leads are coming from. For email leads this happens automatically so salespeople only need to add this on Phone or Walk In leads. At a minimum dealerships should be aiming for 75% of leads with a recorded lead Source, and 50% of leads with a Campaign assigned (though the best dealers should aim even higher!). In addition it is highly recommended that dealerships add costs to their Lead Sources and Campaigns - this will automatically calculate a cost per lead that can help make marketing decisions more than "intuition". If you want to make Lead Source compulsory this can be arranged - contact email@example.com to request a change to your mandatory fields.
8. DATA QUALITY
AutoPlay has a purpose built report in reporting.autoplay.co.nz to measure how effective your sales team is at collecting data. Dealerships need to aim toward capturing 80% of leads with email addresses, 80% with mobile numbers, 60% with Phone numbers and 50% with addresses (though this becomes more important when the lead is converted to a sale). Integration with your DMS makes this much easier to achieve as users will be shown any similar customers from their database whenever they try to load a new lead.
9. DON'T BE AFRAID TO CLOSE LEADS AS LOST
Some dealerships shy away from the word "lost" and leave leads sitting open in AutoPlay forever. These leads inevitably fall into 'Stalled' and gather digital dust. It is far better to close these leads as lost. This helps keep your dashboard tidy and easier to manage. Lost leads can be filtered to in a click/tap and with the new Live Leads process you can retarget these lost leads incredibly easily with Live Leads eDM's.
10. USE THE TOOLS AT YOUR DISPOSAL
AutoPlay is incredibly feature rich. Once you've mastered the basic you are silly not to take advantage of all the tools at your disposal. Some of the features users often forget about include;
- Video email responses can make converting email leads to face-to-face a lot easier
- Live Leads remarketing can help dealerships retarget cold leads for no added cost
- Use the calendar properly - it will help you become more efficient managing leads
- Find out if DMS integration is right for you - it can save time and streamline your processes
- Use Appraisals including SMS to wholesalers, Manager approvals and the built in vehicle checks via CarJam, Motor Central and MotorWeb
- Use the Wishlist - it helps connect potential trades with potential sales
- Understand reporting - there is a wealth of data available via Sales Pipeline. Identify and understand a few select reports and you'll be well on your way to improving performance
If you have any questions about AutoPlay features you can contact our Support Team on firstname.lastname@example.org. If you feel like you need additional training this can also be booked via Support (charges apply for all offsite training).
We have a new job available for a National Sales Consultant at our Auckland location in Freemans Bay.
The draft position description and job advert are below.
NATIONAL SALES CONSULANT
• Automotive industry experience strongly preferred
• Opportunity to join a growing, vibrant “kiwi-as” business
• Auckland - Freemans Bay location
AutoPlay are a progressive Kiwi owned and operated business whose customer base is made up of many of the largest automotive brands in New Zealand and internationally. This position plays a key role in our business, the purpose of which is to cultivate revenue by identifying new selling opportunities by representing the AutoPlay brand and full product offering to our clients.
You will need to come to the role with a mixture of sales and business development in your background, along with great interpersonal skills and the ability to quickly build trusted relationships. We are a digital business so you’ll need to be technology savvy, passionate and inquisitive about how things work.
Many companies state it, but we are truly a flat-structured company and the full resources of the AutoPlay business will be at your disposable to ensure success. We always have a number of new and exciting features and products within our development pipeline and you will also have input into the product roadmap and direct access to product management for support
Our customers are based throughout New Zealand and there is an expectation that the role will require domestic travel throughout our fine country.
Our business was an entrepreneurial start-up 10 years ago and with the growth and stability we have built over this time, we are now expanding into the global market so this is an exciting time to be joining and one that will open up career opportunities if you love our business as much as we do. We offer a fun working environment, autonomy to get on and do your job. We work hard to live by our values which exemplify who we are, what we aspire to be, and how we do it. Our core values are: Kiwi, Ambitious, Bold, Empathy, Deliver.
Your key responsibilities would include:
• Working to a formalised plan of outbound sales management both via phone and in person
• Building relationships and maximising value of existing customers
• Working closely with the rest of the AutoPlay team
• Supporting the Marketing Manager with promotional initiatives
Your background, experience and attributes will include:
• Proven B2B outbound sales and experience preferably in a solution/software selling experience
• Automotive industry experience strongly preferred – even better if you’ve used the AutoPlay product!
• Previous experience using CRM systems
• Full clean drivers licence
• Strong customer focus with well-developed communication and interpersonal skills
How to apply? Please include a personalised cover letter and take the time to tell us why this particular role and business if of interest. Attach your CV and email your application to Jo Yearsley, AutoPlay HR Consultant at email@example.com asap. Applications close Sunday 10th September 2017.
With Fieldays June was a big month with significant increases in the number of sales leads generated across NZ Dealers. In July, even with Fieldays firmly in the rear-view mirror we saw 4.4% fewer leads captured by kiwi dealers than June 2017. Despite this there were 7.7% more Test Drives recorded and 11.5% more Sales.
In June we saw a massive number of leads generated by ‘Brands’ as many manufacturers ran marketing/lead generation programmes in the lead up to/during Fieldays. As expected July 2017 saw a significant drop of more than 55% fewer brand leads – returning normality to the list of top lead sources back towards online sources for most dealerships. In July 2017 ‘Web-Classified’ was the number one source of leads and increased by 18.1% from June. Similarly, it was a strong month for dealership websites with ‘Web – Dealer’ leads increasing by 13.6%.
For the second straight month, the high number of leads generated from ‘Web – Classified’ sources continued to generate a large number of Test Drives. On the back of a 30.3% increase in Test Drives from ‘Web – Classified’ in June, July saw a significant 72.2% increase in Test Drives. Balancing this out the second (Brand) and third (Direct) saw decreases in the number of Test Drives generated.
July was a productive month for Sales generated in AutoPlay with increases of 39.8% for the ‘Repeat’ source, 32.6% for ‘Web – Classified’ and ‘Brand’ increasing by 5.7%.
AutoPlay Sales Pipeline is a pre-sales lead management tool designed for dealerships, dealer groups and automakers