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TAKE POLL Texting with customers often?

Alex Snyder

President Skroob
May 1, 2006
3,022
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Alex
Looking at things from a national level it appears the effectiveness of getting a response from customers by...
  • Email is less than 20% of the time
  • Leaving a voicemail is around 20% of the time ...lower on home phones and higher on cell phones
  • Texting or SMS is over 80% of the time
Are your people texting customers? If so, are they doing it from their personal phone number or are you tracking things through a texting tool your dealership provides?
 

Rdpatrick

Boss
Oct 6, 2012
61
18
Awards
1
First Name
Ricky
Yes, we all have our cell phone numbers on our Business Cards. Also, my cell phone number is on every outgoing email with "Text or call me at ________" in my email signature. It seems that some very resistant customers will respond to texts when nothing else works.
 

craigh

Super Moderator
May 19, 2011
1,740
1,222
First Name
Craig
^ this is the correct way to do it.
With all the "outbound SMS" laws, it almost has to be started by the customer every single time OR you have to have the necessary privacy waivers in place.
 

Tallcool1

Boss
Mar 17, 2014
396
239
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1
First Name
Clint
We text with our customers. Everyone uses their own cell phone number which is on their business cards as well as our website. In hindsight, I wish I had set it up a little bit different.

If I could go back, I would set up Google Voice numbers for everyone. This way, I would have control of the number. As it stands now, many of my customers have a salesperson's personal cell phone number as the dealerships primary number. Simply put, if a salesperson leaves to go sell cars at another dealership......well, you know.

In my opinion, stupid mistake on my part.
 

Alex Snyder

President Skroob
May 1, 2006
3,022
1,785
Awards
1
First Name
Alex
If I could go back, I would set up Google Voice numbers for everyone. This way, I would have control of the number. As it stands now, many of my customers have a salesperson's personal cell phone number as the dealerships primary number. Simply put, if a salesperson leaves to go sell cars at another dealership......well, you know.

In my opinion, stupid mistake on my part.

It isn't too late to setup phone numbers for each sales person. This is a good idea even outside of texting because you get to control what's on the sales agent's business card. You could also route those phone numbers through a call tracking solution to get some good analytics on each sales rep. Even though it is a total pain in the ass for vendors who have call tracking solutions, I highly advise you buy your own phone numbers. Don't do it through a vendor you may cancel one day.

For any lurkers... Like domains (think of email addresses and your website), phone numbers are too important to your business to just stroke a check and not think about the long term ownership of those assets.
 

skeetle

Full Sticker
Apr 4, 2011
64
29
First Name
Megan
If I could go back, I would set up Google Voice numbers for everyone. .

I used to have a "Grand Central" phone number (anyone remember that?) & then Google acquired Grand Central in 2009 - so yes, I've had Google Voice set up & that's the only phone number my customers get. It's great, for when I go on Vacation I can forward the phone number to the store so none of my inbound calls are missed!
 

Jeff Kershner

Founder
May 1, 2005
3,853
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Jeff
I still have my Google voice number. @Alex Snyder there are a few phone tracking services that will allow you to keep those numbers even if you leave their service. I believe Century Imteractive is one of those. @MikeHaeg

Correct me if I'm wrong, if you're using Google voice on iOS you do not have MMS capabilities.
 

Jeff Kershner

Founder
May 1, 2005
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Jeff
If I were on the sales floor I'd be the rebel because if my dealership did not provide me a service in order to text with my customers I would definitely do it myself. However I would follow some best practices and go for the customers permission before just randomly sending them a text message.

My signature line would include an invitation to text me and my first initial email correspondence would ask the customer if it would be okay for me to communicate with them by text.
 

Rdpatrick

Boss
Oct 6, 2012
61
18
Awards
1
First Name
Ricky
If I were on the sales floor I'd be the rebel because if my dealership did not provide me a service in order to text with my customers I would definitely do it myself. However I would follow some best practices and go for the customers permission before just randomly sending them a text message.

My signature line would include an invitation to text me and my first initial email correspondence would ask the customer if it would be okay for me to communicate with them by text.
This is basically what I did. I created a Google Voice number and put it on my business cards, outgoing email signatures, and on paperwork that I sent customers home with.

I've found that some people will never call you or email you, but if you leave a voicemail/email with the words "Call or text me at XXX" then they will often send you a text. Any way that I can make it easy for people to contact me is good, IMO.
 

Jeff Kershner

Founder
May 1, 2005
3,853
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Jeff
Who are we kidding it's hard enough to get sales people to send an email directly from their CRM, and here we are thinking that they might text the customer?

I still hear sales people say "I'm not going to text the customer from my own phone unless the dealer is going to help me pay my phone bill"... really?

On the flip-side, I have a few dealerships that use the Walkaround Video to send customers a link within a text message to their walk around video.
 
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