By Lee Ernst
That’s right, the Cellpocalypse is coming — and if you’re not prepared you could risk losing the right to contact almost 45 percent of your customers! Mobile phones are now the primary number for many of us, and that affects your dealership more than you may know.
On average, between 40 and 50 percent of phone numbers listed as “home phone” in your database are actually mobile phones and about 45 percent of total appointments made from an average dealership’s outbound appointment setting calls (sales and service) come from calling a cell phone.
That’s why it’s absolutely imperative that you obtain prior express written consent by October 16, 2013. The Federal Communications Commission’s recent rule changes pursuant to the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, state you MUST obtain prior express WRITTEN consent for all “auto dialed or prerecorded telemarketing calls to wireless numbers and for prerecorded calls to residential lines” starting on this date. The term “auto-dialed” can be interpreted pretty broadly and includes things like leveraging your CRM, so basically, it’s good bye to calling cell phones!
So just obtain written consent! Essentially any consumer acknowledgement is recognized as a valid signature as long as you clearly and conspicuously disclose to the consumer the consequences of consent. It cannot be ambiguous and cannot come with a catch. And what constitutes a valid signature? A voice recording, email, website form, telephone key press or text opt-in from the consumer would all be considered a valid signature.
There’s only a few months left to save nearly half of your customer contacts, not to mention nearly half of the appointments you regularly generate from outbound calls. You must begin the wireless customer contact restoration process now, to ensure the future of your business.
Lee Ernst is Agent of Customer Communication Intelligence at DMEautomotive, the industry leader in science-based, results-driven automotive marketing that provides a range of marketing services to the biggest and most innovative automotive organizations in the industry. For more information, email [email protected]m.
*The information provided herein is for educational and informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. Readers should always obtain the advice of independent legal counsel related to their own specific and unique circumstances.