Tag Archive | "profit increase"

2012! – It’s All About You

I just got home after visiting with one of our dealer groups. Wow, what enthusiasm and excitement their salespeople and managers have, and it shows in their results.

These guys are not only holding their own as business moves back to normal, they had their very best year ever in 2011. You have to love pure ambition, especially when it’s combined with so much enthusiasm and the great skills they’ve worked so hard to develop.

It’s all about YOU!

I’ve been there, done that, as the salesperson who didn’t get enough training and got stuck in the 6-8-10 car rut, where I learned that it wasn’t my fault. How did I learn that?

Easy, I had the negative help from the huddle and even the negative things our managers said out loud about us being in a tough market, with a tough product to sell in tough times. Plus we spent more time at work explaining why we couldn’t sell than we spent in learning how to sell or doing what it takes to sell.

If you’re living your life in sales in that last paragraph – you’ll either pinch yourself and wake up, or you’ll keep the poor-me blame-game going about how life is so tough for you in sales. But…

  • Can you sell more if you just came to work and worked all day? Yes
  • Can you sell more if you give more people demos? Yes
  • Can you sell more if you learn to handle price and close the sale? Yes
  • Can you follow up and sell more? Yes
  • Can you prospect and sell more? Yes
  • Can you do a better job on phone and Internet leads and sell more? Yes

I meet a lot of salespeople who say they could sell more “if”…

I met a salesperson in Florida who, a year earlier, couldn’t speak English. He started selling cars in a market that was down 50 percent. He learned English, and was on track to hit $100,000 his first year selling cars.

Did the word “tough” apply to his possibilities in sales? Of course! But he didn’t let anything affect his attitude, his goal or his level of success. He just did what everyone else tried to tell him couldn’t be done. I guess it’s a great thing he didn’t understand English in the beginning. He got successful before the lazy salespeople could make him understand success wasn’t possible.

That’s like the blind guy we talk about. He made $137,000 his first year. His disadvantage was not seeing. His advantage was not being able to pre-qualify people.

When Success Magazine asked him how he sold so many cars, he said, “I don’t know, but I bumped into four buyers my first day at work.”

Business is coming back, and you have a real opportunity to make 2012 not just your best year, but you have the chance to turn pro in sales, and that change will stick with you forever.

You don’t have to get from 10 to 30 tomorrow, but make a commitment to sell three more every month by the end of the second quarter. Do that four times and in one year you’ll have gone from 10 to 22 and more than tripled your income.

Do it for you and your family because you can, not because you have to.

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100 Percent Turnover (Here’s How To Get It)

One of the things an agent can do for a dealership is to handle politically sensitive issues between the sales department and the F&I managers.

One of those areas of F&I development where the agent can be very helpful to the F&I manager is by helping institute policies that make sure every customer is being turned to F&I at the time of the sale. This problem most commonly occurs when the sales department sells a car to someone, writes up the purchase order, and arranges for the customer to pick up the vehicle at some future date without seeing the F&I manager.

Then, the customer shows up a few days later with a bank or credit union check in their hands to pick up the rig. Many times in this situation the dealer could have gotten the financing on the deal if F&I had seen the customer. But they didn’t get the chance.

This practice is a real cause of frustration for the F&I manager and a cause of friction between the sales department and F&I. The F&I managers complain to management but tend to get nowhere in dealing with this problem.

Since this practice can be very damaging to the dealer’s performance numbers, it is an opportunity for you to immediately increase the dealer’s income if you can get control of it. But how is this done?

There is a solution, but the trick is for you to get it implemented.

This is a policy issue that needs to be controlled by the General Manager or Dealer Principal. They need to make referring 100 percent of the customers, at the time of the sale, a firm policy. However, you may need to make a compelling case to them as to why they should bother. You need to motivate them to take firm action.

You need to be smart. Here are some facts:

  • No lender will give a loan without a purchase order. None of them.
  • It is very important that the purchase order is correct, compliant, and approved by management, right?
  • The purchase order should be printed and professional looking, obviously.
  • And who’s the most qualified to assure all of the above? Of course, F&I.

Therefore, it makes perfect sense for the GM or Dealer to set a policy that EVERY purchase order will be generated in the F&I office before it leaves the dealership.

“But wait,” you say, “I can’t get the GM or dealer to do that. They just let Sales run things the way they want to!”

So, you have to give them a reason to implement this policy. Here’s what you do:

For the next month, have the F&I managers keep a log of every customer that isn’t turned to them at the time of the sale. Then, at the end of the month, generate a report for the GM or Dealer Principal. In this report you want to show them the number of people that were not referred to F&I and then multiply that number by their average dollars per finance deal, (not per retail).

The resulting figure is the potential lost income from those deals, if the F&I department had seen them and been able to get the financing.

Here’s a recent example from an actual dealership:

Retail Units Delivered: 96
Customers Not Turned at Time of Sale: 26
Average Income Per Financed Deal: $966.30
Potential Income from those deals if financed: 26 X $966.30 = $25,123.80

This dealership lost the opportunity to make an additional $25,123.80, simply because they didn’t give the F&I department the chance to get the financing. It’s simple math.

If you take the time to keep track of those customers that aren’t turned and do this report, you will get management’s attention. Now, they may not react immediately. Be patient. This will work.

If it doesn’t change after the first month’s report, do this calculation again for the next month (and the month after if you have too). Sooner or later, the dollar amount you are revealing will have an effect. (In the example above, the second month’s report is what got the policy implemented).

The effect of approaching the problem this way is that you are showing, first, that there is a good dollar reason for 100 percent T.O. at the time of the sale. Secondly, you are showing the dealer that you are staying on top of what is going on in their F&I department.

Do not show any emotion or debate this with anyone. It is not about how anyone feels about it or anyone’s opinion. All of that can trip you up. It is simply about net profit. Just calmly show them the numbers. Don’t sell, just report.

I once had a GM say to me after reviewing this report, “Yeah, but we don’t know how many of those people would have financed.” And I said, “You’re right, and we never will. All we know for sure is that we lost whatever potential income was there and we’ll never get it back.”

It drives them nuts, believe me. They will do something about it, sooner or later.

Every Dealer and General Manager is unique and different, but every one of them I’ve ever met wants to make more money.

By the way, when you get that accomplished, you will be the hero of the F&I managers, as well. Try it. It works.

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Volkswagen’s Nine-Month Results Soar

FRANKFURT—German car maker Volkswagen AG confirmed its full-year forecast Friday and said profits and revenue jumped in the first nine months of the year, helped by rising vehicle sales, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Volkswagen said profit after tax rose to €4.03 billion ($5.61 billion) from €655 million a year earlier. Revenue in the nine months to Sept. 30 came in at €92.55 billion, up nearly 20% from €77.16 billion a year earlier.

The company said it anticipates 2010 deliveries to customers will be significantly higher than in 2009, “due among other factors to the positive business growth in China.”

Volkswagen, with a stable of brands that includes Audi AG, Skoda, Seat and Bentley, as well as its own VW brand, earlier this year stated that its wants to overtake Toyota Motor Corp. to become the world’s largest auto maker.

Volkswagen warned, however, that growth will slow somewhat in the fourth quarter of 2010. The muted growth outlook for the remainder of the year echoes recent comments by company executives that several of the world’s major auto markets have started to show some weakness after months of rising sales.

As in previous quarters, favorable exchange rates boosted earnings and Volkswagen said it expected that will continue to be the case in 2010. With the relative weakness of the euro against the dollar, earnings generated in the U.S. and China are inflated when converted into the common currency. The Chinese Renminbi is tied to the dollar.

Operating profit in the first three quarters of the year jumped to €4.83 billion, up more than three-times the €1.52 billion achieved in the same period a year earlier. Pretax profit also soared to €5.44 billion from €1.07 billion.

Volkswagen said that pretax profit was boosted by €863 million in contributions from equity-accounted investments—which include joint ventures in the booming Chinese market—and “measurements of put and call options related to the takeover of sports car maker Porsche.

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