How do you engage customers in intriguing ways? It seems as if everyone is trying to do the social media blitz, the ad campaign or the big event. The result, I’m told, is that dealers are spending between $500 and $1,000 in marketing dollars per new motorcycle sold. Even if that number is off by 30 percent, yikes!

Here’s a question: If everyone is turning left, why don’t you turn right?

Here’s what I mean: We do a lot of talking about how selling motorcycles is a relationship business. But salespeople don’t really interact with their customers (or their prospective customers) as much as they should. Your business development center does the outbounds, perhaps your third-party Cayman Islands-based follow-up company does the check-in calls, and salespeople engage with whomever happens to wander into the dealership during your new, significantly reduced winter hours.

Where is the relationship?

The other challenge is that when your salespeople do reach out to your customer base, it’s either to invite them to an event (you know the one you’ve done dozens of times) or to see if they’re ready to trade and buy.

“Hi Steve, my name is Mark and I work at the Harley store. You don’t know me from Adam, because I’ve only worked here 15 minutes, but would you like to trade your motorcycle and buy a new, more expensive one from me?”

Gee, I can’t imagine why that approach isn’t more successful.

Business is done when two people engage in a trusting relationship. When each party knows they have the other’s best interests at heart, strong relationships can be forged through meaningful conversations.

Those conversations can happen anyway technology allows, but they have to be conversations.

Every Day, Every Way

The first idea you want to wrap your head around is to have as many meaningful conversations with customers, or prospective customers, as possible in a day. You should think of yourself as running for political office and trying to spread the word about the great things that are happening at the dealership.

It’s as simple as that. At your dealership, you might have:

• A new store manager
• A new motorcycle that was just delivered
• An updated line of riding gear
• New touring accessories in stock
• A cool antique bike added to the collection
• A finance promotion
• An upcoming event
• A revised and more buyer friendly sales policy

Now armed with this reason to talk, you’ll also get customers to open up and share what’s going on with them. This is how you  discover new opportunities. Get out of the walls of your dealership (both virtually and in reality) and interact with others.

Sales accselleration® is created when you put yourself in front of as many buyers and prospective buyers as possible every day.