Can-Am Maverick & a lesson in Lead Capture…

I recently visited our local power sports dealership here in Mesa, AZ and had an interesting (although typical) experience.  Can-Am came out with a new side-by-side a while back.  With 101 HP, 14 inches of suspension travel, top speed of something like 75 mph it has been engineered from the ground up for comfort, performance and agility.

Me, being a lover of motor sports and this kind of vehicle specifically (I’ve been “building” my own since 2006), had to go look at in person.  So one day on my lunch break I stopped by to take a look.  I was a little disappointed… (not by the machine though).

Whenever I go to a car dealership I feel as though I’m fresh roadkill with vultures circling overhead as I pull into the parking lot.  While going to this particular motor sports dealer isn’t quite that bad, it proved to be a less than stellar experience.

I found my way over to where the Maverick was sitting, intercepted halfway by one of the sales reps on the floor that day.  He immediately goes into each feature of the Maverick he so dutifully memorized, verbally throwing up all over me, not taking half a thought to ask me any questions.  At this point he has no idea what my experience is with motor sports, why I’m interested in the Maverick, what features I would find most important… nothing.  He’s not set any sort of foundation in building a relationship of trust.

People readily buy from those they know, like and trust.  I believe this is built by the company (or in this case, the sales rep) providing value.

After having verbally thrown up all over me, he gets a page over the loudspeaker.  At this point in time he turns to me and the other guy looking at the Maverick and asks, “Are either of the two of you going to buy today?”  Without the response he was looking for he turns his back and briskly walks away.

Aside from the other issues I could point out, I see a HUGE lost opportunity (and this is how far too many companies go about their business).  Changing how they approach these types of situations would have a significant impact on a business’ success (especially those with high-ticket items).

You see, this sales rep made the incorrect assumption that if me or this other guy weren’t buying today, we’re as good as dead to him.  This is the old way of thinking… and must change!

The way I see it, there were two warm leads right in front of him, clearly interested in what he has to sell.  Why not get our contact information and offer to send us some information over the coming weeks or months (or heck… even the coming years)?  Now, mind you sending us sales crap or calling us every other day to see if we’re ready to buy isn’t what I’m talking about.  What I mean is meaningful, and TARGETED, information/education about that in which we’re interested in.

I would appreciate more info on the Maverick, anything they could send me to help me better understand what it is, how to upgrade/customize it, and even take care of it.  For goodness sakes, get me going down the path of owning this sucker already.  Before they would know it I would be back in their showroom ready to make a deal.

Now you maybe saying, “Sure, that’s a great idea but it’s simply not practical to easily collect data and then follow up with them, I just don’t have the time to do so.  I need to focus on those ready to buy now. Besides, no one would give me their contact info just to follow up with them.”

To which I would say, “Stop being so narrow minded.”  First of all, if you’re truly there to serve your clients/customers and provide value for them, they will sense that and will gladly give you their contact info… especially if you’re offering to educate them on something that they WANT to be educated.

Secondly, there’s all kinds of software solutions that makes lead capture and follow up not only painlessly easy, if done “right” can build HUGE value for your customer/client.

Think of how much differently this could have been for me, the other guy and the sales rep.  Aside from taking the time to actually ask us questions, the sales rep could have asked for our name and email address (and possibly phone) with the offer to send us videos and insight on the Maverick.

The follow up system could be set up to send us the info based off of OUR input, behavior and preferences.  It wouldn’t even require the sales rep to do anything.

Then, over the coming weeks or months, each prospect receives valuable information, building that relationship so that we know, like and trust this dealership (which is far from how it is now).  It’s all automated yet personalized…  So called “tire kickers” become buyers and everyone wins.

I think that’s how it should be done!