An Open Letter to All New Automotive Sales Professionals (Showroom & BDC)
To all of my “new hires,” “green peas” etc….a warm welcome to the automotive industry! If you’re looking for an industry with huge earning and growth potential, you’ve found it.
The purpose of this letter is to help you succeed and NOT become part of two major pain points in auto retail sales: mediocrity and attrition (they go hand in hand). See, while there are great opportunities for sales professionals in this industry, unfortunately, many do not rise above the level of mediocre and in turn, they leave without ever reaping the rewards (we’ll get to that) of hard work in auto sales.
I believe this is because many salespeople in automotive fail to:
- See the opportunity
- Believe they’re capable
- Do what it takes to be successful: commitment, training, planning and maximizing their use of time and tools.
My hope is that as newcomers such as yourself, realize their opportunity and commit to working towards their goals, that it will also help to alleviate the high turnover rate felt by dealerships across the U.S.
So, as you’re just starting out, I’d like to share some words of encouragement and guidance to help you get where you want and can be.
Millionaire selling cars? Yes, that could be you.
This is one of the few industries where, as a sales professional, you can actually make as much money as you can earn. I mean that literally. You can even become a millionaire car salesman (or saleswoman). You might be thinking there’s no way for you to become a millionaire selling cars – and you would be wrong. If you want it bad enough and are willing to do whatever it takes to be successful (legally, ethically and morally speaking of course) it is entirely possible.
As an example, let me just mention a few people that I know in our industry who have done/are doing incredible things:
Tammie LeBleu –Tammie passed away a couple of years ago at age 49, but when she was alive she was one of the best. Tammie was the number two Nissan consultant in the U.S. delivering:
- 47.5 units a month
- 400.5 in one year
- She generated:
- $300,000 per year as a showroom sales consultant in Bossier City, Louisiana (population 62,000).
- More than one million dollars in personal income in a little over three years!
Frank Crinite – He delivers 100+ units per month at a single-point dealership – Pizza Honda in Pennsylvania!
Ali Reda – In 2017, Ali broke Joe Girard’s Guinness Book of World Records for selling the most cars in one year. He sold 1,580 units! That is more than 130 units per month!
If you doubt for a second what I am saying. Google them, find Frank and Ali on Facebook, friend request them. They are car salesmen on the front lines – not trainers, not vendors. They are two of the absolute most successful automotive sales professionals in the world.
Now that you know they exist and there are two human beings walking this earth that are selling MORE than 100 units per month on the showroom sales floor, you should NEVER accept mediocrity. Never settle for single-digit car sales. I am not going to lie and say that everyone reading this will sell 100+ units per month, but I promise you that everyone who sells cars can sell MORE than the national average of 9.6 units per month. I believe every automotive sales consultant can – and should – be delivering between 20-30 units per month.
Here is some advice that I want to impart to you on your new journey:
1: #1 is right from Ali Reda…
“You must believe you are capable of the incapable.” Meaning, if you cannot truly believe you are capable of delivering 40, 50+ units per month, you will NEVER sell 40, 50+ units. Most people in this industry psych themselves out. They think they can’t even sell 20 or 30 units per month never mind 50, 60+. Remember the powerful law of attraction: what you visualize, you materialize.
2: Don’t get sucked into the masses.
There will be people in your showroom (sales consultants and even managers) who are negative and complain all the time. They blame everyone (but themselves). They moan and rant about the OEM, traffic, lead source providers, how prospective buyers are liars, or about F&I not being able to get deals done, etc….
Misery loves company, but you cannot let these people distract you from doing what you have to do for yourself and your family. Do you think for a second that ANY successful sales consultant delivering 30, 60, or 100+ units per month is wasting his or her time complaining or huddled up smoking cigarettes with the masses? I don’t think so.
3: Practice, Drill, Rehearse.
Train, train, and train some more! I cannot stress this enough. Personally, this is what helped me. I went through an intense training immersion before I ever hit the showroom sales floor. I went on to average 30+ units per month before the internet, social media, video, etc.…
You can better yourself by taking advantage of:
- OEM training and certification. There are actually new hires who game the system or pay other people to take the test for them. This blows me away. Why wouldn’t you want to master your product knowledge?
- Free training and educational resources out there like this very magazine. Dealer Magazine is a great resource to subscribe to. I’d also recommend signing up for their free newsletters. Bookmark their website DigitalDealer.com.
- Free Facebook groups like Facebook.com/MillioniareCarSalesman with 8,200+ auto sales professionals, managers, and owners who are highly active in helping each other to be better at selling cars.
4: Remember there are eight ways to sell cars!
The average sales consultant ONLY utilizes two to three ways to sell a car at most but there are
- Service Conversion
- Prior Customers / Orphan Owners
- The Lost Art of Prospecting
Imagine how much money and opportunity is left on the table when a salesperson focuses on just two to three out of the EIGHT sales opportunities!
KEY TIP: Create a tactical plan BEFORE the new month begins as to how many units you are going to sell and where you’re going to get those opportunities. 30, 40 or even 50+ units might seem so difficult…maybe even impossible. Sure, if you look at it from the total number it is intimidating, but if you break it down to the eight different ways to sell, it actually becomes very realistic and manageable!
5: Time management/organization
Be careful of distractions disguised as opportunities. There is nothing more sacred than your time, especially when you are commission-based. Everything you are doing is either making or losing you money. PERIOD. The last piece of advice I want to leave you with is to avoid jumping from dealership to dealership. The grass isn’t really greener on the other side. You should develop roots within your community and within your organization. The most successful professionals in our industry have strong roots and relationships within the community.
Author: Sean V. Bradley, CSP
Sean V. Bradley, CSP is an entrepreneur, published author, speaker, and award-winning international trainer. He is an eight-time NADA/ATD convention speaker and a FranklinCovey Certified Facilitator. He has earned the coveted “CSP” designation in the National Speakers Association. Sean is also a member of the elite “Million Dollar Speakers Group” in the NSA, as well as a State Association Speaker and Trainer. He has spoken at over 217 NCM and NADA 20 Groups. Sean has personally trained over 25,000 automotive sales professionals in 1,100 unique roof tops.