Category Archives: General Vehicle Sales

What’s Your Game Plan?

It seems like a simple question really … sell new and pre-owned vehicles, sell back end products and then service those vehicles. We want to do this in such a way that creates a positive environment for our customers both Internal (employees) and External (customers). We also realize that in order to stay in business we need to do all this while still making a little mullah for the good guys (you). As we all know though, it’s not that easy. Our lives are complicated by things that concern us, but sometimes those are things that we have very little or no control over, such as geopolitical events or business closings in our areas of responsibility. We all realize that and learn to deal with the things that we can’t control, put together our own game plan and then hope for the best.

You notice that I used the word ‘hope’. Don’t get me wrong, hope is a great motivator, sustainer and stabilizer and is essential to our survival in a world filled with doubt and unbelief. I bought a book entitled ‘Hope is Not a Strategy’ and found it to be a great book on sales strategy but the real reason I bought it was to simply remind me of the title which I found to be useful when contemplating decisions on investments. I also talk to dealers that when it comes down to it, hope they are going to sell more cars because they built a new facility or remodeled their old one. To me, that’s kind of like buying a new oven and hoping the cookies are going to taste different before ever changing the recipe.

Let me challenge you with a thought … is hope your strategy? Let’s take things a step further … if you were arrested and charged with having a well thought out game plan for improving your store’s results, then would there be enough evidence to convict you? The fact that you’re even browsing through a publication like this tells me that you’re serious about improving results. One of the most successful men that I’ve ever met in this business, Floyd Hamus, former dealer principle of the V&H Automotive Group in Marshfield, WI, once told me that at all times you’ve got to be honest with yourself. Examine your strategy for improving results at your dealership and be honest with yourself and determine whether your strategy is based on hope or on a well thought out game plan that is fully endorsed by all of the store’s stockholders. If hope is the winner, you may want to seek the guidance of other successful colleagues or that of proven consultants to help you put together your store’s game plan for success. Good luck as you develop a game plan for your improved results.

Written by Jim Jensen
Training Consultant
BZ Results

Why Should I Buy From You?

Here’s one of the great truths of selling — if prospects can’t tell the difference between your product or service and your competitor’s product or service, they’ll make their buying decision on price.

Now, this isn’t the only reason for the price objection coming up but it’s a major one. It’s absolutely amazing how many salespeople don’t or can’t differentiate their dealership, product, or service from their major competitor in their area. Want proof?

Stump the Salesperson
Try this test the next time you’re considering a purchase. Ask the salesperson, "Why should I buy from you?" Don’t be surprised if the person breaks into a foreign language that sounds something like this, "Um, uh, I, we, oh, let me see, ah, we, well um…" Most salespeople simply aren’t equipped to answer this fundamental question. And if they don’t know why you should buy from them, how can they expect you to know?

When I asked that question of a salesperson some time ago, I got the jaw-dropping response, "Because I need the business." Now there’s a reason for someone to buy!

Effective Sales Concepts
There are a couple of sales concepts you should be equipped with in order to avoid getting caught with your mental pants down. The first of these concepts is called a USP (Unique Selling Proposition), better know as an elevator pitch because you should be able to tell it to someone in the time it takes for a ten-floor elevator ride (with no stops between floors!).

The second concept is called a DCA (Differential Competitive Advantage) used to differentiate you and your dealership from each of your major competitors, sort of a mini-USP directed towards a particular competitor.

Let’s take a closer look at these two tools.

The USP is a short paragraph that gives your prospect a compelling reason to do business with you. The USP should mention things you do or offer that your competitors can’t or don’t.

Here is an example of a typical USP using the College of Automotive Management as an example.

[list:16hmngfd]"Salesperson, Inc. brings over 20 years of real-life, practical selling experience into the training room. We offer one of the broadest ranges of sales, management and internet training programs available in the United States today. Our size and flexibility allows us to customize or tailor these programs to meet our client’s specific needs. We train sales and management professionals to make a difference to themselves, the sales profession, and to their organization’s bottom line."[/list:u:16hmngfd]

Apart from the last sentence, which is a bit motherhood and apple pie, everything else in that USP is intended to contrast us with our major competitors.

Now remember, your USP should be a statement that you can support, and must promise only what you can deliver or fulfill.

The Differential Competitive Advantage or DCA, on the other hand, is less general in nature and usually designed to contrast you and your dealership with those of a particular. For example, let’s assume you’re up against a competitor who’s a lot larger than you and your prospect mentions their name to you. You might say:

[list:16hmngfd]"They have a good reputation. One thing that makes us different is our size. Because we’re smaller than they are, we tend to be more agile and can more easily adjust and accommodate the needs of our students." [/list:u:16hmngfd]

On the other hand, let’s assume you’re up against a much smaller competitor. You might say:

[list:16hmngfd]"They have a good reputation. One thing that makes us different is our size. Because we’re much larger than they are, we have the ability to get the job done without straining our resources." [/list:u:16hmngfd]

It’s Magic
The magic of the DCA is that it gives the prospect a reason to buy from you. Keep in mind that you don’t have to be better than your competitor, just different.

Remember, if prospects can’t tell the difference between you and your competition, they’ll make their buying decision based solely on price.

Build Your Own
Smart salespeople make a list of their competitors and then come up with one or two differences or things they do better than each of them. They commit the list to memory so when a prospect asks, "Why should I buy from you?" they don’t stammer around like a lovesick teenager asking someone out on a first date.

Avoid generalizations when you’re developing your DCAs. Only use things like we provide good service or… we have every vehicle in inventory for fast delivery or… we have the lowest prices, etc, if it’s true and your competitor can’t say the same things. The competition probably also feels they have good service and great prices.

Back to your USP for a moment. A fast way to build a strong USP is to string together a series of your DCAs into one paragraph.

Empty Toolbox
A salesperson without a DCA and USP is like a carpenter without a hammer and saw, or an auto mechanic without a set of wrenches — not well equipped and certainly not as effective as he or she could be. So don’t get caught with an empty sales toolbox. Develop your DCAs and USP today.

You Can’t Be Burned Out If You’ve Never Been on Fire!

Sales is a funny game isn’t it? You are in the zone or you aren’t even in the ball park. How many times have you seen a new salesperson just race it up to No. 1? Crazy isn’t it? It’s about attitude though isn’t it? The car business is a great feeling business. If you want to find out what kind of feelings you possess, sell cars.

I can remember my first manager saying this to me one day in his office when the world’s most positive guy, most optimistic person (me) said, “Well, I feel down today.”

My manager looked at me and said, son, selling cars is like being on a Ferris Wheel, you are either on the top of the wheel or you are on the way down the wheel. How many times have you felt desperation, small doses of depression, frustration, anger, hate or negativity? Have you ever said, “I don’t think I’m going to make it,” “I’ll give it one more month,” “This month is almost over, I’ll get ’em next month,” “If only the up bus would stop by more often,” or “We don’t advertise enough.” It gets so bad, that when people ask you how you are, you respond back with: “I’m okay; I’m just burned out dude.”

Question: Who is burned out? The salesperson selling eight cars a month or the salesperson selling 30 cars a month? How can an eight-car salesperson be burned out? They’ve never been on fire! It’s all about attitude and how you react to situations.

Oh sure we could come up with lists and lists of problems. Yet, right in front of you is the probably the best opportunity you will ever have. The ability to write your own paycheck. That is called potential. Doesn’t it beat working for minimum wage or being on a fixed wage per hour?

I would think the salesperson selling 30 a month would be burned out. Aren’t they always working their way to a sale? Aren’t they in front of more people, don’t they talk to more, write up more, ask more, follow up more, prospect more, ask for more referrals, do a little bit extra more, put in maybe a little more time and effort in their career? Then how come they aren’t burned out?

Answer: They aren’t burned out because they add fuel to their personal and professional fire everyday. They take time out for themselves, and when they are working their way towards a sale, they are actually fueling their fire with activities that stoke their fire and light them up. I was that salesperson when I sold. It seemed to me that “everything I touched turned to sold.” It’s all about attitude, it’s all about fueling your mind everyday with goodness, developing and attitude of gratitude, being happy where you are, chasing your passion which is helping people solve their problems.

You my friend aren’t selling people; you are in the service business, not the serve-us business. When you take the light of yourself and shine it on others, that’s when life gets good. It’s all about attitude. You can’t be burned out, if you’ve never been on fire.

Selling cars isn’t an easy game. There are few victories but many failures. Your numbers will tell you the truth if you are truthful to your numbers. There are more failures when it comes to selling cars. The word NO, is your constant companion who leaves you when you hear the word YES. A great salesperson, has to learn how to say NEXT and let things go when things don’t work out. A great salesperson can maintain their enthusiasm while their losing. Selling is a numbers game isn’t it? Play the numbers, maintain your attitude and control your energy and you will own the selling game. You can’t be burned out if you have never been on fire.

You’ve got to get fired up with a positive mental attitude, get rid of any energy leaks that might be draining you of your positive energy. Watching the misery news channel or reading the morning fish wrap won’t get you fired up will it. Most of us know what CNN stands for now, however, the “negaholics” in this world think that stands for Cable Negative Network. You can’t be burned out; you’ve never been on fire.

I remember this great quote by Vince Lombardi, “You are either fired up with enthusiasm or you will be fired with enthusiasm.” What about you? Are you burned out are you fired up to sell more? Look at the FNG, yes that’s Fabulous New Guy or Fabulous New Girl. Do you remember when you were the FNG? Remember how fired up you were when you started selling cars? Every up was the write up wasn’t it? Everything seemed like a deal in the beginning. How many times have you seen a new salesperson come in and just tear up the leader board?

Dark Clouds Are Coming – How many times have you seen the FNG though become the MIA? Yes, that’s for Missing In Action. Where do they go? What happened to them? What happened to wonder boy or wonder woman? Gone, adios, hasta la vista.

You see them at party and you ask questions like this, “Hey, weren’t you in the car business at one time?”

They answer back, “Oh are you talking to me? Well I got in and it was great in the beginning. I was shocking our dealership. It seemed like everybody I talked to bought. Yea it was like the stars were lined. Then things got bad, I wasn’t selling enough. Didn’t make enough money, and I just got burned out man.“

“Yea, can I ask you a question? How many cars a month were you selling when you got burned out?”

“Eight or so a month.”

“Oh really, let me ask you this question then, how can you be burned out if you’ve never been on fire!”

Help is here – It might be time to get fired up to sell more right now. Take some time out everyday to light yourself up by reading good books, listening to good speakers, hearing good words and I’m sure you can look into that sentence. Take your daily vitamins everyday starting with these in order:

Vitamin A – Attitude of gratitude- thankful for what you have

Vitamin B – Belief in selling and your abilities

Vitamin C – Courage, which means strength of heart

Vitamin D – Drive, just go past where failures stop or quit

Vitamin F – Faith, when doubt creeps in, faith has left you

Vitamin G – Goodness to others and it shall be paid back to you

Vitamin H – Hope, helping other people excel

I have learned in life to turn my set backs into comebacks. You can do the same thing too. So get fired up, I like what Vince Lombardi said, “If you aren’t fired up with enthusiasm, no problem, we will fire you with enthusiasm!”

Known across America as the Human Torch for his energetic, fired-up presentations, George Dans is a dynamic speaker who specializes in changing behaviors through a positive life attitude. George shares his powerful message You dont need to know how to get to your goal, you just need to know you will reach your goal with audiences around the world. He can be reached by calling (951) 898.9071 or via e-mail at

Your Road to Success?

What is success? Success has been defined as “the progressive attainment of a worthy goal”. While this is a good general definition, each one of us has our own specific idea about what success means to us. So, what does success mean to you? For some people it means status, prestige, and respect; for others it means power – the ability to influence and command others. But for most people, their definition of success includes financial independence and security.

What is financial independence? Like success, financial independence means something different to each of us. A better question might be: “What amount of income would make you feel financially

For some salespeople that might be $25,000 per year, for others it might be $100,000. The important thing isn’t the amount of money itself. What really matters is how will you make enough money for you to feel financially independent. Understanding how an auto salesperson’s business works is one way to make sure you don’t become just another statistic. In order to succeed in auto sales, you have to do what unsuccessful salespeople don’t want to do, that is, acquire the knowledge that successful auto salespeople have learned through trial and error.

And you don’t even have to go through the costly, painful process of trial and error learning. You can prepare yourself for business success by learning all the activities that go into making your business successful, and by making sure each of them is handled properly. The other key that determines business success is energy. Energy for business comes from self-motivation. Highly motivated people are successful because their enthusiasm for what they’re doing has a positive influence on everyone around them. A high-level of motivation also creates excitement, giving salespeople huge amounts of physical energy, enabling them to accomplish even more.

It’s important to have the right attitude
You need to know the business side of auto sales to become successful, but it isn’t the only thing you need. The right attitude is equally important – and in my opinion, even more important. Each of us is somewhat different. We each have our own opinions, beliefs, likes, and dislikes. Yet one thing that all successful business people have in common is there attitude. They are highly motivated. They know they can get the job done, and they know they’ll succeed. That makes them very positive about themselves and their business.

How you can get the right attitude
The right attitude is the one that winner’s have. It’s the “can-do, never give up” attitude. In order to get the winners attitude, here are some things you need to do:

Expect success
Experts in motivation say that 85 percent of success is based on your attitude, so keep your attitude positive. Look for opportunities in every situation. View setbacks as stepping stones rather than obstacles. Keep working your plan based on realistic goals, and don’t become discouraged by setbacks.

• See yourself as successful
Form of clear mental picture of yourself attaining your goals. See yourself enjoying the kind of success you want. And try to experience the feeling you’ll have when you meet your business and personal goals.

• Prepare yourself for success
Stay informed about what’s going on in the auto business. Read positive books and magazines. Listen to success oriented tapes at home and in your car. Attend seminars and workshops to upgrade your education.

• Associate with positive people
Spend your time with winners and eliminate the losers in your life.

• Act like a winner
Positive thinking and positive thought, to yourself as well as to others, are the ways to say stay mentally healthy, just as positive health habits are the ways to stay physically healthy. Get motivated and stay motivated.

Habits are the key to success
Everyone has habits. The difference between someone who succeeds and someone who fails is the kind of habits they have. Bad habits are easy to form, but hard to live with. Good habits are harder to form, but they will ultimately lead to success. Failures generally find it difficult to sacrifice the immediate pleasure bad habits may offer. That’s why they don’t accomplish much. Successful people, on the other hand, realize that success depends on them. They’re willing to put their long-term goals ahead of short-term pleasures by cultivating the habits that lead to success.

The major difference between winners and losers is inconsistency. Winners are consistently just a little bit better. They keep at it and they keep trying to improve. So strive to become just a little better each day.

Keep at it and don’t be discouraged by setbacks. The amount of persistence will measure your belief in yourself.

I know you can do it
It all boils down to how motivated you become, and how much business sense you attain. You can measure your motivation by your commitment to your business. If you’re committed to making your business successful, and you make the effort to prepare yourself with the necessary business skills, you’re bound to succeed – provided you stay with it.

So get yourself ready for business success. Be clear about your goals and get motivated to accomplish them. Learn as much as you can about the auto selling business. And do something every day toward making your dream come true.

What Are you Talking About?

I have a confession to make… I didn’t know what to say. That’s right, Jack Bennett: actor, trainer, motivational speaker, screenwriter, model, etc., was actually at a loss for words.

Let me explain. I am out on the lot clearing the snow off of my inventory, for about the tenth time this winter already and a customer pulled onto the lot. He’s driving a 1997 Mercedes E320. I’m not an expert in Mercedes models but this is the big one and it’s got the all wheel drive function. I’m not sure of the actual name for it; but I digress. The customer jumps out of the car and I watch him walk over to 2004 Infinity G35x we have on our lot.

I drop my broom and go over to meet him. “Welcome to Main Street Auto Sales,” I say confidently. He smiles and says nothing. I continue, “Anything in particular I can show you today?” His witty reply is… “Just kind of looking around.” I try again, “Looking to replace the Benz?” He says, “No.” I say, “Really, just adding to the fleet?” Finally he opens up a little bit, “Yeah, sort of, I just sold a ‘98 Audi I had. Is this Infiniti fourteen grand?” Okay, now he’s working with me I figure so I tell him the truth. “Yeah, my partner just went ahead last Saturday and lowered the price on six cars, this is one of them. Let me get the keys and you can take a closer look.”

So I do that. I open the car, he slides in and before I can talk he opens the glove box. Now I don’t know why, but he does. And here’s where I was at a loss for words. Here’s a guy who knows luxury cars (turns out he’s a doctor and his wife is finishing up her residency, so he’s owned a lot of them). I thought to myself for a second… “What the heck am I going to tell this guy about this car that he hasn’t seen in every luxury car he’s owned in the last ten years?” Heated seats… been there. Leather, memory, moon? Done that. So for a few awkward minutes, I was a little stuck.

Now here’s a big problem for me and I am ashamed to admit it. I don’t know enough about cars to know the difference in features and their subsequent benefits to get a guy like this excited. However, in my defense our 65-car inventory is down to about 40 right now so we’ve been changing the look so fast I haven’t been able to keep up. Plus, I spend a lot of time in the shop on the service end of things so at my age I have trouble doing more than one thing at a time. So back to my customer.

I dug deep into my memory banks and went to the old staples that I am sure all of his previous cars have had but most salespeople probably have not talked about: control deformation areas; collapsible steering columns; breakaway engine mounts, and the like. At that point he was getting comfortable, took the car for a ride and we went through all the motions. He wouldn’t buy it because he wasn’t sure he liked the ride but I made a solid appointment to get him back. Too bad, because I sold the car later that day.

Now where am I going with all this, and how you can use it to help your salespeople?
My point is, if you want your salespeople to sell more cars… specifically used cars, they really have to learn about them, and that is up to you. Can you get any and all information about the cars on your lot right now? Sure you can, or at least your managers can. Or even your salespeople can.

If your managers and/or salespeople have the time, and they do have the time, there is this newfangled deal called the World Wide Web and the Internet. Your people should get on the Internet and research the cars. And here is something really novel… read the owners’ manuals! Believe it or not, there is a lot of information in the owners’ manuals that salespeople can use as a sales pitch.

For example, do your salespeople, know how to reset warning lights on the information center on the 2005 Impala you have on your lot, or stop the beeping low washer fluid level on the 2004 Eddie Bauer Explorer? If they don’t, they should and that information is in the manual.

Bottom line? If you don’t have anything to say, the sale will not move forward. And the customer will leave.

Jack Bennett is the author of “You Can And Should Sell Cars,” He has been in the business for over 30 years and has trained thousands of salespeople across the country. He is now the owner of Main Street Auto Sales in Fond du Lac, WI.

What do Car Sales Customers Really Want?

One of the customer’s best kept secrets!

Today’s customers want to be treated professionally and politely. "Are you warm and fuzzy?" I need everyone to stop today and change shoes. Hold on… Don’t go out and rip the shoes off the "Newbie"! But do tell them to be prepared to have their tie cut off, if they are wearing one, when they deliver their FIRST CAR – glad that tradition is still alive!! I was at a store in Dallas last week, and there were about 50 or so "bottoms" of ties ever-so-proudly displayed in the bull-pen.

The shoes thing… what I am talking about is you taking a close look at your store from the customer’s eyes. The next time you drive into your store, drive into the store, and look at it from the customer’s viewpoint. How about the display of new and used vehicles? Are they displayed professionally/neat/clean/accessible? Tomorrow, walk into your showroom, and take a look at what you see –

[list:37jw8093]- Is your store ready to do business?
– Is it neat and clean?
– Uncluttered?
– Friendly?
– Warm?
– Inviting?
– "Professional?" [/list:u:37jw8093]
Sometimes, we get caught up in running the business and just doing "car-stuff" and occasionally, we fail to look at our business introspectively. What does your store look like to a total stranger walking in your doors?

What I am saying here is, are you giving yourself every advantage possible to invite the customer to relas a little bit, before someone "Ups" them. I know there are still stores out there that mgmt/ownerships insists the salespeople "Up" someone before they even get their foot on the ground, at their car… and if that is the way you still choose to do operate your professional business… then it is what it is.

I talk repeatedly about "assuming the sale". Ask and look today or tomorrow. Are you ready to do business? Are you professional?

Thanx for your time – see you later on down the road!

Written by Sam Milton – The King of Auto Sales
813 240-8919

What Does the Future Hold for the Automotive Industry?

“Markets everywhere follow three stages— innovators, imitators, and swarming incompetents..” Warren Buffet December 22, 2005 in an address to the Harvard Business School.

I love to rant and laugh while others enjoy lamenting and drama. That is just human nature. We all have our styles. One thing is certain, times are changing and so is our market environment. Having witnessed the same rapid decommissioning of established industry leaders in the Manufactured Home industry it will be interesting to see how this upheaval in the car biz plays out.

The Manufactured Home Industry was a HUGE money maker until…. Everybody started doing the same thing while riding the wave without watching the market collapse around them. (Me Included) Then there were none. Long gone is Greentree Financial, Oakwood Homes was gobbled up by Clayton when Berkshire Hathaway entered the industry, long gone are most of the Champion lines, no huge natural disasters in several years and the industry is on the rise again. It is cyclical, changed forever but those who were willing to adapt and get out of the box are still in the game hitting pay dirt in the current housing crunch.

In a recent call with a dear friend of mine we were comparing the that trend and the current going ons in the car business and it looks like we are headed down the same path. Daily we are receiving faxes from lenders where they will not fund certain types of loans. I am sure you have seen the no more V-6 SUVs and V-8 cars proclamations. Daily we hear of dealers in financial straights and the “Old Dogs” wishing for days of old.

Now is the time to decide where we are going to be today, tomorrow and down the road in the future. We need to choose to be an Innovator, an Imitator or just plain Idiots.

The Innovators will be responsible for the new car biz as we pull through our industry downturn. The things the Innovators do now, improve upon and move on from will keep them in the game and inspire the…

The Imitators

They will see the successes the Innovators have and seek to duplicate them after their effectiveness has peaked and they have moved on to more uncharted waters. They will still be trying to capture the magic created by the Innovators, without ever taking a calculated risk. They are happy and comfortable to know that they have never made mistake because somebody else has taken all of the risk.

Which leaves us with the idiots, the dead money in the game. I think they are still lamenting about the days of old and will have moved on to other fields or the grave.

Time will tell, where do you fit in? Are you an Innovator, an Imitator or a discouraged Idiot?

Written by Paul Rushing

What To Do After They’re Burning Gas

A Roll of the Dice

You knew it was crap shoot but you rolled the car anyway. Now you’re having trouble finding a lender who will buy it. What do you do?

The typical approach is to call the customer and blame the bank. "They want more down" or "I was hoping to get you a better rate but the bank just doesn’t believe in you as much as I do."

A better approach is to call and ask the lender for help. Yes, you heard me right. Believe it or not, lenders are interested in maintaining a strong relationship with you, provided this action isn’t par for the course. And it may not result in success but they could provide you with ideas you never thought about.

Case Study

It was a thin deal to start with but it put the dealership over the top in units for the month. And since the bonuses were paid out a week later, the sales manager needed this deal to stick. All four lenders including the captive and the customer’s credit union turned down the deal. Each one said the customer didn’t have enough high balance history, time on the job or income. Calls to the credit union were futile, even at the suggestion of more money down. The finance manager had a pretty good relationship with the captive lender so he made a call to the supervisor. He began by apologizing and admitted they had gotten excited about the bonuses and made a mistake. Still, no amount of restructuring made the deal look any better, except to ask for more money than the customer had to give. Then came the big surprise: The lender agreed to buy the deal in exchange for commission on the points and a promise that the dealership would control its enthusiasm in the future. Later, the lender told the dealer principal he bought the deal because the finance manager had been honest with him in the past, and he’d sent over some really good deals lately. Success with lenders often begins with honesty. Next there’s humility and a willingness to ask for help.

Written by Shaun Ryder

What to Do if Your Income Drops

In the business of vehicle sales, and basically, in today’s economy, many circumstances can lead to a loss of income: the economy could fall, the manufacturer doesn’t have a strong rebate program, interest rates could rise, or heaven forbid, illness, death, or divorce. Any of these can be a serious blow to families who are struggling to survive economically in difficult times.

It’s normal for an auto salesperson’s income to fluctuate from month to month. Many salespeople live with the highs and lows, and still continue to survive month to month. Sometimes the reduction in income is not expected, and your natural reaction will be to panic. If you suffer a loss of income, try to remain calm and don’t waste time and energy blaming yourself. Instead, take control of the situation by doing the best you can with the resources you have available.

Step One: Take Stock of Your Situation
If you’re living from paycheck to paycheck, and have no savings to tide you over till things get better, you will probably experience a lot of stress with the reduction of income. Take some time to study your current financial resources. Once you know and understand your situation, you can now develop a plan for making the most of what you have. A little knowledge will go much further than imagining the worst or ignoring reality and neglecting your bills. Start by examining the following:

Family Resources — List the income of all earners in the household. How long can you depend on those incomes? Are there other family members who are potential income earners, if only for this period of financial instability?

Potential Resources — Calculate the current market value of each item you own — what you can sell it for, not what you paid for it. Look at everything you own with the idea that its market value might help you pay your bills for awhile.

Family Financial Obligations — Once you’ve listed your family’s resources and potential resources, consider your expenses. Divide your expenses into fixed, variable and flexible. You can find these explanations in the chapter titled, Successful Money Management. Develop a way to pay at least your fixed expenses.

Step Two: Reorganize Family Spending
A reduction or loss of income usually forces a family to alter spending patterns. While this is painful, the pain can be minimized if family members communicate openly, and if the family works out and follows a spending plan — together. It is important that the family members agree on which goods and services are a high priority, which are less important, and which can be postponed or replaced by less expensive substitutes until finances improve.

Step Three: Prioritize Your Spending
Some expenses are more important than others. Putting your bills in a stack and paying them until the money runs out won’t work. You may not have enough money to pay your expenses, but you must get the most out of what you do have. Set priorities for your spending to make sure you meet the health and welfare needs of your family members and minimize the legal and economic risks of not paying some bills. Obviously, food and shelter for your family should be the first priority with the income you have available. After these are taken care of, hard choices may need to be made on which bills you must pay first. Regardless of who you pay, contact all of your creditors before your bills are due, explain your situation, and offer to negotiate new repayment terms. If your creditor agrees to new repayment terms, uphold your responsibility by meeting the terms you agreed to. If any changes occur that affect your repayment plan, contact your creditors immediately.

Step Four: Negotiate Your Payments
Most companies understand the hardship of losing income, and are willing to work to satisfy the obligation. Call each of them, explain your situation, give them a plan, and chances are, they will be most agreeable. You may be able to refinance a mortgage to a better interest rate or extended term, develop a payment plan for utilities bills and insurance payments, change the types of coverages you have, etc. But most importantly, call these companies before they call you.

Coping with the stress and hardships of a reduced income is not an easy task for you or your family. There are no easy answers or quick cures. Remember that you are the same person as before — but with reduced cash flow. You can maintain control of your situation during this period of financial change by reducing and prioritizing spending as much and as quickly as possible. This procedure will help you clarify your priorities, make decisions, implement your plan, minimize your anxiety, and strengthen and prepare you and your family for the future.

Using Automotive Sales Scripts

Learning effective automotive sales scripts should be a regular part of training for all automobile salespeople. Some salespeople will disagree because they think that using sales scripts actually lowers the chances of making a sale. They believe that using automotive sales scripts make salespeople appear to be phony, manipulative, and not very personable. This may be true in cases where salespeople sound as if they are reading sales pitches off of prewritten cue cards, however, well rehearsed sales scripts which have been slightly altered to match a particular salesperson’s personality and selling style are some of the most powerful sales tools in the profession.

Making sure that every minute of the workday is used productively requires daily planning and preparation. Creating effective automotive sales scripts is a big part of being completely prepared. In an automotive sales career a salesperson faces certain stalls, objections, and questions that are used by most of the prospects that come into the dealership. An automobile salesperson who is well-scripted can instinctively respond when faced with issues that occur in sales scenarios on a regular basis. He has practiced and prepared the best ways of handling those questions and objections before the next prospect even walks in the door.

Car salesmen and Hollywood actors are not the only ones who benefit by being well scripted. Many professionals in other fields are also well-scripted. Professional football teams often plan the first 25 to 30 plays of an upcoming game well before the opening kick. The coaches know exactly which plays they will run. After a certain point they evaluate how the plays worked, and then they continue to use the best ones. Other well-scripted professionals are defense attorneys who use the same argument that worked in the past to get their current client acquitted today, the surgeons who look at x-rays and books to perform an appendectomy for the 500th time, the pilots preparing to land or take off in a 747. All of these people have scripted out what they are going to say and do. You or I wouldn’t want to be on that plane, in a courtroom, or in an operating room if those experts were not well-scripted. Automotive salespeople need to be at that same high level of professionalism and knowledge with their scripts.

Salespeople need a variety of scripts for different tasks.

[list:3dk8g8rs]- Scripts for prospecting by phone to:
– Past customers
– Orphaned owners
– Referrals
– Recent prospects
– Service customers[/list:u:3dk8g8rs]
Scripts for tasks in person:

[list:3dk8g8rs]- Overcoming objections
– Bypassing reflex objections and stalls
– Presentation of vehicles
– Presentation of figures
– Closing the sale[/list:u:3dk8g8rs]
This is only a short list of the scripts needed to be an expert at the delivery of information to prospective buyers. To become successful you must learn to develop and deliver your automotive sales scripts with effectiveness. If you do, there will be no limit to your income. The different scripts will not change very much over time just like the basic questions, problems, and objections have remained consistent for years. Once you learn to effectively cover the most common scenarios, you will be unstoppable. There are not many new objections that have been created by buyers over the past 20 years that I’ve been in the business. If you have learned all the objections and can deliver your response to the objections well; you will be rewarded. You may need to make modifications and practice them regularly, but you will not have to go through the process of learning 40 to 50 new scripts and dialogues.

The difference between amateurs and professionals in automobile sales is in the amount of knowledge and skills they possess and their ability to effectively deliver information to prospects in a convincing manner. Everybody can throw a football, but they can’t throw it like Peyton Manning without dedication and practice. Manning has perfected his skill with long hard practice.

Professional sales people must perfect their delivery of words. They must practice how to overcome all the objections. They must practice how they will present certain vehicles. Many of us make different presentations every time we show a vehicle. That would be like Manning drawing up a new play in the huddle on every down. How effective would that be?

Don’t become discouraged about using automotive sales scripts by watching poor salespeople who have poor delivery. Scripts and dialogues are often knocked because of poor delivery. The most skilled automotive salespeople are well-scripted; you just cannot tell they are using automotive sales scripts. Constant practice makes the difference.

Good Luck and Good Selling
The Car Salesman’s Guide