Media Feature: Follow My Lead

Excerpt as published in the May 2015 issue of Canadian Auto Dealer:

That’s where Winnipeg’s DMT Development Systems Group Inc. comes in. The company specializes in building manufacturer and dealer websites. More than 600 auto dealers across Canada are clients of DMT, a company founded by owner Glen Demetrioff in 1999.

Demetrioff began his career on the sales floor of a Lexus/Toyota dealership, where he came up with a program that automatically determined leasing and financing payments — saving countless hours traditionally spent with calculators and spreadsheets.

Now employing more than 100 people, DMT designed a lead management software tool called RAPID! Response, guaranteed to respond to any queries in 30 minutes — compared to a typical response time of up to two hours, by which time the customer may have moved on. “Everybody uses the same terminology,” said Demetrioff, “but we’re the only ones that can show them hard results.”

One such customer is the Finch Auto Group, which owns Mercedes-Benz, GM, Hyundai and Ford dealerships in western Ontario. “Previously the leads would come into a store, they filter through a sales manager who would then print them out and forward them to a sales person, hoping that they’d get back to them,” said Shannon Maloley, Finch Auto’s vice-president of Business Development.

“But there was no follow up, did they call them back? What happened? Did someone get back to them in a timely manner? Or were they interrupted (by a customer) and no one actually got back to them? When we started using RAPID! Response, one of the things we loved about it, was that it was very ‘plug-and-play,'” said Maloley.

All the different leads the company gets, whether it be from third-parties such as autoTRADER, or from their website — all lead sources are aggregated and put into a sales funnel. Then the leads get distributed to all salespeople at the dealership. The quickest salesperson locks the lead and has 20 minutes to then respond — there is a template but they add their own “flavour” with their picture on it, with customer testimonial, and information about the dealership.

“But the very best thing about it is when they respond, it cc’s the manager on the response. So we know, real-time, how long it took to get back to them, and we know what they said,” said Maloley.

Unanswered questions, or unsatisfactory responses, can then be dealt with as a “coachable moment” by the dealership’s management. “No system should ever advertise — and we don’t — that by having this product, you’re going to have ‘x’ number of sales,” said Demetrioff.

“Our philosophy is that we empower your people by increasing the opportunities to get someone into the dealership. At that point, it’s up to the management and sales team,” said Demetrioff.

Online leads can present a myriad of opportunities for salespeople, and will do so if they are managed well and are handled quickly.

By Lesley Wimbush, Canadian Auto Dealer

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