By Heather MacKinnon
Remember the former three-ring binders known as “Evidence Manuals” that you used to see on the desks of sales associates or service writers? Evidence manuals have been useful tools that your staff has relied on to help validate what they are offering a customer when that customer was already in the showroom or service department.
Today, your dealership staff can give prospective customers access to the digital-age equivalent of an Evidence Manual with employee-specific online reviews. Online reviews at the employee-level have considerable influence on your prospects and are a powerful tool in persuading customers to visit your store while passing up other local dealers.
With employee-specific reviews, dealer employees can rely on a personal online review page to bring down the barriers of distrust that exist in this business as well as to differentiate themselves from the other salespeople and/or service writers with whom their customer may be communicating.
Some car dealer review sites, such as DealerRater, offer comprehensive, employee-specific review pages where one can include a personal bio and photograph for each dealer staff member. Employees are able to build and showcase their respective reviews on these pages and also link them back to the employee profile section on the Dealer’s own website.
If you are not using employee-specific review pages to generate “review” champions in your sales or service departments, you are missing out on a powerful closing tool as well as the opportunity to differentiate yourself from competitor dealers and drive more traffic to the store. By fostering an employee review culture at your dealership, you can expect to:
• Bring down the barriers of distrust and persuade more customers to visit your store.
• Adopt the digital-age equivalent of the 3-ring bound “Evidence Manual” and hyperlink a prospect into an employee’s “Evidence Manual” even before they enter the store.
• Ensure your sales and service team has some “skin in the game” with employee-specific review pages.
• Take advantage of this WIN-WIN scenario knowing that every new review for the employee or department “champion” is a new review for the store.
Many dealers are using employee-unique reviews to their advantage. These dealers recognize that a review for the employee represents a review for the dealership. As you establish “review champions” in your sales and service departments, you can expect your Dealership review counts to soar.
Heather MacKinnon, Vice President of National Accounts at DealerRater, can be reached at [email protected]alerrater.com.