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Everyone Focuses on Internet Lead Response Time. Instead, Message Response Time!

Jonathan Schultz
November 28th, 2017

I would lose my voice once a month from yelling, “Lead”!

Every time an internet lead rolled in, DriveCentric CRM sounded the lead alert, which was that of a tick tock clock. Trying to keep the response time as low as possible was the goal. Why? Because if we can respond to the lead fast enough, we can be the first one to set the appointment. Sure, this is an important metric, and I do not condone slow lead response times. Though quality and variety of
communication is as important, but that’s a topic for another blog post. Here I want to focus on
message response time vs lead response time, and here is why.

Dealers across the country are focused on getting a response as fast as possible to that initial lead.
Great, but what about after you have engagement with the lead and you begin communicating? What about after your up has left the showroom floor and emails in a question? What about after the customer has taken your numbers home and is shopping you and texts your sales person to see if you will waive the admin fee? What is your response time to THOSE leads?

It’s funny how our only focus is the first message the customer sends in. “Lead” We yell at our sales
teams or BDC agents. The lead after the lead, is what I call any follow up message or question from a customer, often goes ignored, even unanswered! The email, text, call or social media message in
response to, or because of our communication often takes well over an hour, if any response is given at all!

Have you ever tried to measure how long it’s taking your sales people to read and respond to an
incoming message? Do you know what % of emails are not being responded to at all? Do you know how fast your BDC people are sending a text back to a customer after they text in a question?

I’m not trying to say partner with DriveCentric because it monitors these metrics. I’m only trying to help you understand the importance of message response time. The average off site customer will send in emails, text and social media messages most of the time. They will ask additional questions before coming back to your dealership to buy the car.

These are not only internet leads who have not visited your dealership, the hardest to reach fruit on the tree. These also include visits to the showroom floor, customers that have your proposal, and the lowest hanging fruit: customers that are “sold” and not delivered! If you saw the “lead response time” to these messages, you would realize there are customers begging for help, that are being ignored!

Respond to each message with lighting fast, relevant, value based responses and you can get more of the low hanging fruit back into your dealership to buy a car. Or, just continue focusing on internet lead response time. Ignore the other dozens of incoming communications to your dealership each day, and forfeit easy sales. It’s a free country, you decide.

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