How To Turn Shoppers Into Buyers

Friday, May 30, 2014 - by Monica Parker
Monica Parker
Monica Parker

Now that I’m back in the swing of things at the car business after spending the last few months helping small businesses grow with Connect Marketing, it strikes me that if small businesses work to engage and follow up with their customers the same way a great car salesperson does, they would be rich. 

Rich? Okay maybe not rich, but certainly more effective. Here’s a recent example for you. This week, I inquired with a small business about their services. The owner answered the phone and described to me her services and processes, which by the way sounded very convenient to her and very inconvenient to me. Concluding the conversation, she did not invite me to come in or ask my name. For her, I was just asking for information, but for me, she turned a buyer into a shopper. 

In the automotive business, a great salesperson will follow up with you till you’ve passed onto the next life. We perceive that you’re busy and will put off making a big decision like a vehicle purchase as long as possible. We’re in the business of selling cars, so we call, email, send carrier pigeons - all in hope of spurring you along to make a decision. Are we annoying? Yes, probably. Does it work? Yes, mostly. 

So, what to do as a small business owner with limited resources trying to grow your business? Plan for and cherish customer inquiries. Have a phone script or at least a few points to be sure and cover in each conversation. Create and implement a system for follow up -whether it’s your calendar or a customer relationship manager. 

In every conversation to be sure to capture or cover:
• Customer’s name, email and number
• Short verbiage on how to describe your business
• How you are different from your competition
• Why your customer should choose you
• Answers to a few basic questions – remember to ask questions so you know what your customer needs
• Next step – always ask the customer to do something whether it is come in for an appointment, learn more online, a specific time you can follow up by phone or email
• Then, follow up.

Lead the conversation – treat it like an agenda in a meeting that may run three hours if you don’t jump in and stay on task. Remember this is your customer – or she will be your customer if you give her a reason to stop shopping and start buying.

Monica Parker MonicaDParker@gmail.com 451-6372 
Monica Parker is the e-commerce manager for the Mountain View Nissan and Mountain View Chrysler dealerships. Originally from northwest Alabama, she moved to the area and graduated from UTC. After years working in the restaurant industry, she launched and managed the special events department at the Hunter Museum of American Art. Then, she managed e-commerce for BMW of Chattanooga where she focused on marketing/advertising, CRM management, and reputation management. Then, she joined the Connect Marketing team, where she continues to contribute as a guest editor in her new role at two of the Mountain View dealerships.


Chattanooga Chamber Leads State In tnAchieves Mentor Recruitment

The Chattanooga Chamber's staff led Tennessee in the goal to recruit mentors for this year's tnAchieves mentoring program. In its third year, the program pairs high school seniors with professionals and other volunteers to ease the transition from high school to college. Mentors began meeting with their students this month. With a goal of 387 volunteers, Hamilton County signed up ... (click for more)

Julie Baumgardner Honored As 2017 Chattanooga Area Manager Of The Year

Julie Baumgardner, president and CEO of First Things First , has been named the 2017 Chattanooga Area Manager of the Year .  She will be honored with the award during a luncheon  June 7 . Member organizations of Chattanooga Area Manager of the Year (CAMOY) award this annual honor, now in its 32nd year, to recognize an executive manager who has made significant ... (click for more)

State Says "Beef" Between 2 Bloods Gangs Started Over A Female And Led Eventually To Shootings At College Hill Courts

The state presented testimony on Monday about a feud between two Bloods gangs that allegedly eventually led to a 16-year-old shooting up a unit at College Hill Courts - killing one woman, injuring another, leaving a child paralyzed and injuring a member of the other Bloods gang. A city police gang expert said the bitter rift between the Athens Park Bloods based on the Southside ... (click for more)

Walker County To Raise Water, Sewer Rates To Improve Aging Infrastructure

 The board of directors for the Walker County Water & Sewerage Authority (WCWSA) has granted approval for the utility to move forward with a base rate increase to address aging infrastructure concerns.   Starting this summer, WCWSA will begin replacing older galvanized pipe. These older water mains will be upgraded from two-inch galvanized pipe to six-inch high-pressure ... (click for more)

Slaxxon Regret - And Response

Back in the seventies my three oldest brothers had a buddy named Steve Slack. “Slack” was a star soccer player at Baylor and he grew up on Lookout Mountain, which is where I grew up. He and Jimmy, Henry and Bill went to the University of Virginia where they were roommates in an old, beat up house that was painted pink. Naturally, the place became known as the “Pink Palace” but lest ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Oh Yes, I Loved West

One of my most beloved friends died early Saturday morning at the age of 67. Then again, West Oehmig’s only brother – King – died a couple of years ago at 63 so it wasn’t by happenstance I remembered Abraham Lincoln’s famous line: “In the end, it’s not the years in your life that count, it’s the life in your years.” Here are two brothers who lived larger than any other pair I can ... (click for more)