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Another Lost Opportunity for a Sale May 3, 2010

Posted by David Dirks in business strategy, Keeping Your Customers, Sales Strategy/Tactics, Sales Tactics, Solving Business Problems.
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There are times when you realize that it’s the little things that count more often than not.  That’s no less true when it comes to businesses who miss an opportunity to capture or in this case, recapture a sale.  Let me explain.  A few weeks ago, I made an appointment to take my car into the dealer for service that it really needed.  For whatever reason, I was not able to make the appointment.  Worse yet, I forgot to make a call to let them know that I wasn’t going to be there.

Here’s the service opportunity lost: no one from the dealer bothered to call me back to find out if I needed to reschedule.  It’s happened before with the same dealership.  The service manager there would find comfort in taking a page from the sales & service book of my dentist, who handles this transaction entirely differently.

If I make an appointment for dental work, the office calls me a few days before to remind me of my appointment.  If I should miss it, you can count on the dental office calling me the next day to find out when I want to reschedule.  Then I do and I go for the dental work.  In effect, the dentist has recaptured a sales opportunity that would be otherwise lost if they didn’t bother to call me back.

The service manager at the car dealer is missing out on a lot of business over the course of a year just simply by NOT calling customers back if they miss an appointment.  Recapturing that service sales should be just as disciplined a process as we see from the dental office.

If you’re in a service business that books customers by appointment, make sure your have a mechanism in place to recapture those of us who forget to make the first appointment.  Don’t count on customers to call you back and reschedule.