Michael Edwards: why the top MG dealer prefers a low-tech approach

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    patpending

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    Michael Edwards: why the top MG dealer prefers a low-tech approach

    Post by patpending on Tue Nov 25, 2014 9:07 am



    Despite the growth of the MG network, customers still travel to Michael Edwards. While 35% of them live within five miles of the dealership, 15% are from more than 100 miles away.

    Latimer said there is no need for sales training, mission statements or inspirational messages on the walls of the business to ensure staff do their jobs properly. Five people work for him: a driver/valeter, two technicians and two salesmen.

    “Everyone knows what their role is and how to treat a customer. We will all greet a visitor and offer them a drink. I’m here all the time and some customers only want to deal with me. This might be because being able to speak to the owner is very rare these days.”

    Despite a no-haggle price, the personalisation options available to customers on the car mean additional profit opportunities for the business. Latimer said it is from £150 to £850 per MG3 sold, but with F&I add-ons and accessories the margin is an average £900 – or 8% of transaction price.

    His approach to marketing the business isn’t sophisticated.

    He uses Auto Trader to market all his used stock. He avoids marketing via telephone (“too often people don’t recognise the number and won’t pick up”), uses text-only emails to highlight the latest offers to a live customer database of more than 1,000 people, and only uses SMS messaging for ‘ready for collection’ service alerts.

    Local newspaper advertising has also fallen out of favour due to its high price, low response rate and by the time the ad runs, said Latimer, “I’ve sold quite a few of the cars being promoted”.

    A recent promotion in Wigan Shopping Centre proved more effective. Two MG3s were on show for two weeks in July. The stand was unmanned, but contact details were displayed. “I can generate a better quality lead this way,” Latimer said.

    “If someone is genuinely interested in a car they will get in touch. I don’t have to get them to enter a competition to get their contact details. I know if I do it this way and call them later, people say they’ve never heard of me.”  

    The stand led to five sales. Latimer plans a return before the end of the year.

    He has also avoided the pull of social networks. He doesn’t tweet and doesn’t have a profile on Facebook.

    “Social networks like Facebook are hugely successful, but I see too many posts that say latest news and what they’re referring to is out of date or an offer that’s ‘valid until’ and you know it’s not a genuine assurance.

    “I also wouldn’t get the volume of followers to make it worth exploiting the communication possibilities sites
    offer, like some of the larger groups.”

    SOURCE: Automotive Management http://www.am-online.com/news/2014/11/25/michael-edwards-why-the-top-mg-dealer-prefers-a-low-tech-approach/37217/
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    mg-zs

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    Re: Michael Edwards: why the top MG dealer prefers a low-tech approach

    Post by mg-zs on Wed Nov 26, 2014 3:53 am

    Think he needs to give MG training study

      Current date/time is Wed Jun 28, 2017 12:14 pm