How to Persuade More Customers

So you’re a salesperson in the car industry, you sell cars for a living.

But have you ever thought to look at the definition of the word “selling”?

Selling is defined as “to persuade someone of the merits of your product or service”. Persuasion is the art of influence! And that’s what we are to do when selling cars. We are suggesting to our customers that our vehicles match their needs, wants or desires and that most importantly; we are the right person and dealership to buy it from.

We are influencing them through persuasion.

Now if a customer walks in and tells you exactly what he wants, how much he wants to pay for it and all you have to do is check the price with your manager, that’s not selling, that’s order taking.

When I was working at a Toyota dealership many years ago, the new Corolla had just come out as well as the Aurion and Camry. I was working in a busy area of Sydney where, let’s be honest, I didn’t have to sell many, I just took orders. In fact, I was taking orders for 15-20 cars a month!

I thought I was a great salesman until I decided to go and work at Porsche in a market that was hit hard by unstable financial times and wow, did I learn quickly that I wasn’t going to be able to just take orders any more – I was going to have to learn to sell!

I’m going to tell it to you straight, if you want to remain mediocre, keep order taking. But if you want to excel in sales and reach 30+ cars a month, you’re going to need to work on your persuasive skills to take the next step.
So today, I’m going to give you 3 key tips on how to be more persuasive.

Now before we start, please keep in mind persuade does not mean manipulate!

Our motto at Reaching Your Potential is “changing the automotive industry one salesperson at a time”. Our reputation in the motor industry isn’t great; in fact, car Dealers were voted the least trusted profession in Australia last year, and we won’t resurrect our reputation if we manipulate people through old sales thinking and closing techniques that trick people into a deal.

1. Ask benefit questions

Benefit questions help you tailor not only your presentation to the customer, but most importantly you get information to use to persuade them throughout the sales process. These benefits, if honed in on, will be the number one reason they buy today.

Eg. Why did you decide on that specific model? Why did choose to come in to today? Why did you decide now was the time? What will the car give you that you don’t currently have?

If you were to find out they have never had cruise control and they travel the freeway every weekday you could say, “let’s get you in a vehicle by next Monday so you never have to be without cruise control again, how does that sound?” This reinforces the benefits, not just the feature.

2. Be Passionate & Energetic about your products

We know we are in the most competitive market place ever, but if you are thinking about your customers going to look at your competition next, you’ve lost already. You need to be completely sold on the fact that your brand is the only good option they have.

Eg. “I apologise if I get a bit excited when showing you the Lancer, but I believe it’s the only right option for you. I’m glad you came to see it because it’s a perfect fit for your needs.”

3. Find a friend and/or common ground

The old saying, “no one buys from salespeople they don’t like” isn’t always true but customers are much more likely to buy from you if they do! So how do you get people to like you? You need to find common ground. Something you have in common with every customer.

Eg: Maybe you have a mutual friend or acquaintance? Ask where they went to school? Tell them you think you recognise them. Ask which football team they go for? How many kids they have?

The more you have in common, the more rapport you can build and the more persuasive you can be.

Remember the definition of selling is not manipulating our customers and it’s not order taking, but PERSUADING and influencing customers of the merits of your products and service! Be more persuasive this week, and get ready to sell 30 cars a month!


Dave Benson  
CEO/Sales Expert
Reaching Your Potential

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