Automotive BDC templates are critical to efficiency. Your BDC’s templates should include both word tracks for phone calls and full email templates. If you have strong templates and a BDC that utilizes them you will be well on your way to success.
[Tweet “Steal these BDC templates, plug them in, and then chill… “]
A dealership without strong automotive BDC templates is a dealership that is wasting time and losing customers. In this article I’ve selected 15 of my favorite email templates. Feel free to start using these today.
Template Headaches and Solutions
For too long automotive BDC templates were designed by marketing teams and used primarily for first responses. If you have a first response with large images, video links or tons of links to your site, it will get relegated to spam!
Here are 15 Great BDC Templates to Steal…
Non-Effective First Responses
Which of the available automotive BDC templates is best is not obvious. The worst automotive BDC templates are ones that end up in spam.
I’ve seen multiple times that BDC reps will send a first response that includes a video message, personalized for the customer.
You would think that setting yourself apart would be a strong strategy. The problem lies in the fact that this email (and others with similar videos) go directly to the spam folder. Therefor, this video message is eliminating potential customers that:
- Are not somewhere with Wifi (or a strong LTE connection)
- Don’t like to watch videos from sales people
- Have a strong spam filter that doesn’t like video links (Gmail for example)
Automotive BDC Templates #1: Better First Response
Instead of this, I recommend following the guide that I laid out in the bottom of my article “Internet Lead Response Best Practices“.
Applying what was detailed there, I need to take the tenets of a good email first response and convert that into a word track and email template. To review, here are the tenets to use for your automotive BDC templates:
- Quick response time
- CMW – clear message writing (advance the sale, minimal clutter)
- Confirmation of the specific vehicle’s availability (pictures are a plus)
- A fair price (Don’t make the mistake outlined in my previous article!)
- A reason for “why now” (Is there a sale ending? Special incentives? Lot’s of action on this car? Low inventory?)
- An introduction of the salesperson (short and sweet) with reference to accomplishments/accolades
- Invitation to come down today at a specific time (or tomorrow if it’s too late)
Using these, this is what I’ve come up with for an easy to use first response template:
Subject Line: STOCK NUMBER @ DEALERSHIP NAME – SALESPERSON NAME
I’m emailing you to confirm that the car you clicked on, STOCK#, is here at the dealership.
I have some availability today at HOUR:15pm and HOUR:45pm, would either of those times work for you?
Not only is this vehicle available to be seen today, we also have special internet pricing for this unit. If you are able to come by in the next 72 hours, the price for this vehicle will be lowered to LOWERED PRICE.
It’s great that you inquired today because SPECIAL REASON WHY NOW.
My name is NAME , and I have been working at DEALER NAME for YEARS. Here is a link to my yelp reviews, where you can get a feeling for my level of customer service.
Thanks again for your interest and hope to meet today,
SALES PERSON NAME
SALES PERSON PHONE
That’s rather plug and play wouldn’t you agree? It addresses 6 of the 7 must haves, leaving only response time up to the BDC manager. Use these guidelines to improve your automotive BDC templates.
Lackluster Appointment Confirmation
What does your dealerships email look like after an appointment has been set with a customer?
When secret shopping I’ve noticed that not every dealership actually sends an appointment confirmation after setting an appointment.
It doesn’t take much to realize why you need to be sending appointment confirmation emails! That being said, it seems to be surprisingly rare to have automotive BDC templates built out for appointment confirmations. Many of the emails I see when secret shopping for appointment confirmation look like this:
RE: HONDA CRV
sounds great jeff, i’ll see you then
There are a couple of problems with this:
- Lack of polish
- Lack of efficiency
- Lack of pertinent information!
Automotive BDC Templates #2: Better Appointment Confirmation
Compare that automotive BDC template to this one:
Dear FIRST NAME,
Thanks! Looking forward to our appointment for TIME and DATE at DEALERSHIP NAME.
To save you time, here is our street address:
STREET ADDRESS WITH GOOGLE MAP URL LINK
If you want to confirm or reschedule please respond to this email or text me at SALESPERSON PHONE.
This is what I look like when you come in:
SMALL PICTURE OF SALESPERSON
This email is polished, efficient (you just fill in the time and date), and has all pertinent information!
Suspicious Birthday Email
This is what I call the “suspicious birthday email”. This is an email that seems very “computer generated” to customers and builds no rapport:
Hi FIRST NAME,
Here at DEALER NAME we wanted to wish you a Happy Birthday! Let us know if there is anything we can help you with on your BRAND car.
I actually much prefer a text message for birthdays, which I’ll show below template.
Automotive BDC Templates #3: Better Birthday
If you are going to send a birthday email, keep it short and organic. This is my birthday template:
Hi FIRST NAME,
Just wanted to wish you a happy birthday. Hope all is well.
That doesn’t seem like a template (which is the goal).
Here is a better idea- have your salespeople text their sold customers directly the Happy Birthday messages:
The text is just so much more organic. That being said, this article is about BDC templates, so forgive this aside!
Surveys Vs Yelp
I’ve seen this email coming from our reps plenty of times:
Hi FIRST NAME,
I would like to thank you for your purchase with me at DEALER. I am glad I had the opportunity to assist you with your MAKE purchase. I am confident that you’ll discover plenty of enjoyment from your new MAKE. Hopefully your experience with me and my dealer has been nothing short of ‘Truly Exceptional’, as I have done everything I possibly could to make it that way. Please don’t hesitate to contact me with any questions or concerns you may have -now or in the future.
Furthermore, you will be receiving your Sales Survey via email very soon. (The second Survey from JD Power is the important one).
Thank you for joining our MAKE family! I look forward to seeing you in the future for all of your MAKE needs……….and wants! Enjoy!!!
Now the intention of this email is clear, but the execution is lack luster. Not only that, most dealers forbid sales people from asking for perfect surveys via email. These emails can be effective (even if this one should be re-written).
This is a 136 word email that is trying to say 3 words and one number:
Please give me 10s
The problem is that the message the salesperson was trying to convey would have been much better in a phone call or text message.
I don’t knock the practice of asking for perfect surveys. Salespeople are paid on a system that is inherently flawed and is full of response bias.
Automotive BDC Templates #4: Better Yelp Request
This email can be repurposed to ask for Yelp/Google reviews after the customer has completed a perfect 10 manufacturer survey. The benefit is that you know you have a customer that likes you, so the email is safe to send:
Hi FIRST NAME,
I would like to thank you for your purchase with me at DEALER.
Do you use Yelp or Google reviews by any chance? If you could write a review it would greatly help me grow my business:
The beauty of automotive BDC templates like this is that the BDC rep can send it as soon as they see a perfect 10 survey come through. Easily incorporates into the BDC daily process without any check in with the salesperson.
BDC Template #5: Lease End Manager
This is one of my great automotive BDC templates that I’ve used in order start back up conversations with lease end customers. Often times I’ll have this sent out on an automated schedule six months, three months, and one month before maturity:
Dear FIRST NAME,
My name is SALESPERSON and I will be your Lease End Manager for your current BRAND. As you move towards your lease end date I will be able to answer any questions you have. If you are interested in leasing a new car, buying out your current vehicle or anything else I will be your contact here.
You may be eligible to get out of your current BRAND early. Are there any new cars that interest you? Let me know if so- I can get you quotes using our BRAND Loyalty program.
The BDC can use that on behalf of the lease end manager to start up a conversation, which is great for the lease end department.
BDC Template #6: Payments Waived (Lease End)
When I started at Audi in 2012 I heard over and over again about how our competitors would waive remaining payments for lease end customers. Finally in 2017 Audi jumped on the bandwagon, and we generated a huge amount of business with this email template:
If you go through our Lease End department you can qualify for this new special:
Since you currently have 4 payments left on your Audi sedan you can walk away from those payments and get into a new Audi sedan today!That means you can take advantage of our huge specials we have running for our *Rocktoberfest sales event without having to pay the last few payments on your lease! *(INSERT DIFFERENT SALES HERE)
Please contact us for more details! There are some terms and conditions that apply that we need to share with you.
These emails generate traffic! Only requirement is that you have a brand with this type of special running.
BDC Template #7: Long Term Unqualified (CONTROVERSIAL!)
This one is a divisive email template, but powerful when used correctly! I’ve actually had a customer go from being a 40 day unqualified lead into a sale because of this email. While buying the car they mentioned how that “funny email made me feel bad for not responding” so they got in contact.
I say: Whatever works!
So here it is:
Subject Line: Harassment
I know we have been sending you a lot of emails and you have been opening them, but not responding.
Could you kindly let us know if you are still in the market? Are we emailing too much? Is there a time that is best to get a hold of you?
Here at DEALER, we value our customers and their time. We look forward to hearing from you.
Not everyone is going to be willing to start using this email template. For as much slack as corporate gives me for this email, I have never received (ever) any bad feedback from an actual customer.
When you send an email, know that you are competing with the internet as a whole. Look at how each video poses a question:
- Why does this McGriddle cost $120?
- What is the ONE JOB?
- What’s the impression like?
- What tears? Why?
- $10 Million? Why?
These are effective marketing lines that get people to click.
My email with the subject title of “Harassment” is the same. The person that sees that email goes “oh man! what is this email”, and that’s perfect. It’s perfect because this email only goes customers that put in a lead but never answered any of our lead responses.
It gets them qualified, and that is the job of the BDC!
Automotive BDC Templates #8: Lost Business
What is measured is managed. If your dealership is like so many others, once a customer buys somewhere else they are dead to you.
This is short term thinking. It can be incredibly helpful to learn where and why that customer bought elsewhere. That’s obvious when you say it out loud!
Subject Line: PendingDear FIRST NAME,I understand that we recently lost your business to another dealership. For my own records could you let me know what dealership won your business (and why)?We will be marking your pending sales event to lost.Thanks!SALESPERSON NAME
Automotive BDC Templates #9: Appointment No-Show
You can set your CRM to auto send this email when an appointment is marked “no-show”. Even if it’s not automated, you can make this into a part of your process.
FIRST NAME,We were not able to meet for our recent appointment time. We understand that sometimes things come up that take precedent.When can we reschedule a time to meet? I have some time available tomorrow at 1015am and later in the afternoon.Please let me know if there is anything we can do in the meantime to help you along your purchase process.Thanks!SALESPERSON NAME
Automotive BDC Templates #10: Appointment Cancelled
Same idea, slightly different message.
FIRST NAME,That’s no problem!I have some time available tomorrow at 1015am and later in the afternoon, would that work for a reschedule?Please let me know if there is anything we can do in the meantime to help you along your purchase process.Thanks!SALESPERSON NAME
Automotive BDC Templates #11: Just Spoke
This is a great message to send after making the first contact that didn’t result in an appointment. This way your customers will have the contact information floated up to the top of their inbox.
Not a complicated template but useful to have as part of the process!
Just spoke to you on the phone! Here is my contact information down below so we can continue our conversation.
If you would like to check out the car in person, please give me a call or reply to this email to set an appointment!
Automotive BDC Templates #12: One Year
I grabbed this one off of Autoraptor’s list. I like the idea of a one year email. The best thing about an email that is applicable to all customers one year after purchase is that this email can be 100% automated.
You can have your CRM set up to send this automatically to all customers after one year:
Hi FIRST NAME.
We haven’t talked in a while, so I wanted to touch base to say hi. How have you been doing? Are you happy with your MAKE?
If you’re ever in the neighborhood or at the dealership servicing your car, drop by my desk! I’d love to catch up.
Let me know how you like your MAKE whenever you have a free moment. I’ve heard a lot of great feedback from other folks who own that vehicle, so I’m interested to hear if your experience is similar.
Automotive BDC Templates #13: Voicemail
I find that utilizing a variety of contact methods at the start of a sales event is a very effective way to find out what method the customer wants to use to communicate.
When a customer provides an email and phone number, I like to start with a phone call. When I often end up leaving a voicemail I always try and send an accompanying email.
That way, when the customer sees the missed call and voicemail they will also see the email at the same time.
Hi FIRST NAME,
Just left you a voicemail, looking forward to chatting soon. If you prefer email just respond to this message!
Automotive BDC Templates #14: Another Long Term Untouched
I find a ton of implementing this simple template for checking in with long term unqualified customers.
Hello NAME,I hope this email finds you well! This is SALESPERSON from DEALER. I would like to know if you were still in the market for an Audi?It would be my pleasure to assist in narrowing down your ideal MAKE and ensuring your purchase or lease experience is not only efficient, but also a great experience!DEALER currently has a large inventory of new and Pre-Owned vehicles, and I would be honored to offer you nothing but the best value on your purchase with us.I appreciate your time in advance and look forward to hearing from you soon!Thanks,SALESPERSON
Automotive BDC Templates #15: Continuing the Conversation
Back to the clickbait email subject line. This is for customers that are qualified (they’ve been in conversation before) but have since gone dark. The one trick with this email is the that the subject line is “re: I was just thinking about you” which:
- Includes the “re:” which piques interest
- Is not a subject line people often see
Subject Line: re: I was just thinking about you
Just checking in! Please let me know if you have made any progress on moving forward with the new MODEL or if there is anything else I can do for you!
Automotive BDC Templates #16: Looking for a Quote
If you are receiving vanilla quote requests from customers that don’t pick up the phone, this email can be a good tool to open the conversation. This email speaks to their preconceived notions and can play well with those looking for a “nonsense” buying experience.
We understand the reasons people shop online. Pricing is often one of the main reasons. We want to win your business. We understand that competitive pricing, combined with strong inventory and stellar customer service are key.
In order to get you the best price we need two keys pieces of information from you:
1. Share with us your best approximation of the car you are looking for. The more detail the better!
2. Share with us how soon you can reasonably make a purchase. Pricing estimates are more accurate (and aggressive) the sooner you are buying because we know what incentives we can offer and what sales goals YOU can help us achieve!
Let’s make this process quick and painless. Please answer these two questions ASAP.
Please also peruse our yelp reviews- they will help you feel confident in my salesmanship (remember that people are much more likely to write a negative review than a positive one!):
REVIEW: Template Headaches and Solutions
We hope you enjoyed and stole some of these 15 killer templates. Let us know if there are any you would add!