The “Middle Man” and how to overcome the obstacle…..

Posted: April 2, 2012 in Automotive, creating content, Customer Service
Tags: , ,

Seeing this on a daily bases when I was in active sales 9 out of 10 times there is a middle man blocking your way to the decision maker. What do you do when this happens? Many & this is how you can take advantage of reaching out to make an impact for the middle man may be blocking your efforts to provide quality tools for the owner’s quality business.

The Middle Man can be a variety of positions within a dealership. The Internet Manager, BDC Manager, E Commerce Manager etc. The one that really gets me is the Finance Manager. 9 out of those 10 times they all claim they are the decision maker…….! If you think that you are going get them to sign the contract you better think again. Those words “I am the decision makers” gets you geeked up and ready to provide a killer product demonstration. But when it comes down to it, they are not the decision maker. Go to the main decision maker, Owner, Dealer Principal or CTO.

I am not throwing now hate on the Internet Managers, BDC or E Commerce, but what I have found is 99% of them are not the decision maker. Now what does that mean to you? Take advantage of these helpful tips to get to the decision maker and keep them in the loop with your products as they can be valuable for what the owner wants to have for their business, not the position of the Middle Man.

Introduction: You get a lead, you respond and of course you speak & communicate directly with the Internet manager. Ask them point blank “Who is the decision maker?” if their response is “I am” don’t buy it. Be blunt and request that the Dealer Principal, GM or CTO be involved with the product demonstration. If they push back on that, request for their managers name.  It doesn’t hurt to ask and call for the order.

Conference, Conference, Conference Call! Always set up a conference call after the follow up of the product demonstration with all parties that were involved. This prevents from mixed information, mixed communication and again gives the opportunity for you to CALL FOR THE ORDER. Having management & all decision makers can help make a larger impact for your success at closing a deal.

Follow Up…. Did I say Follow Up!  Yes we have all been there, ignored emails, massive amounts of voicemails. No worries. All departments within a dealership are very busy and don’t let that kill your confidence of earning their business.  If you provide that you are active in following up and requesting for the order to return your call or even an email can get a response from them. Respect their decision making time.

EDUCATE with Follow Up! This falls into the Follow Up listed above. If you were able to compile the contacts for the decision maker(s) you can provide valuable and educational information to them. This helps give the impression you are consistent on keeping up with the market trends, analytics, new data and whatever you can your hands on!

Don’t Give Up! If it comes down to being ignored or pushed off to voice jail (voicemail) then do a bit of research. Check out their website, you can find out a lot of information from the staff page or about us page and take the risk of contacting the owner. What do you have to lose? Nothing!

Taking advantage of the opportunity to reach out to the decision maker is half the battle but getting over the middle man is another.  Ask for the order and you will receive it. Like I said it don’t hurt to ask!

All opinions are solely based upon the author only. Jennifer Schrader

  1. Steven Paul says:

    Great article Jennifer! Believe it or not even independent auto inspectors like me run into this same problem too… “Who do I talk with to schedule the inspection” you get the “used car mgr” the “internet mgr” and even more confusing the “new car mgr” which doesn’t make an ounce of since either… I’ve even had to get the “OK” from the GM before… Although you article is geared at selling or working with dealers… I think it even more important that dealership owners know that they need to set hard guidelines in their stores that outline who does what so they are all on the same sheet of music and know what their real jobs are for each department..

  2. Thanks Steven. I have experienced this so many times that when I hear that phrase “I am the decision maker”…… I twitch under my skin…. Dealership Owners / GM’s / etc should be very involved with their digital marketing regardless if it’s a website vendor, live chat, inventory.. you name it! All should be involved. Thanks for commenting on this post!

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