auto detailing sales pitch tips

The sales pitch. Get a winning template, and you can use it like a secret weapon to win customer after customer.

In detailing, there are many opportunities to try our your sales pitch on customers over the phone (when they contact you), as well as a mobile detailer, fleet washer, or even car wash owner. Your pitch will probably be a little more professional when selling to property managers face-to-face, so it’s important to have a gameplan going in.

In this blog, I’ll break down a few tips to keep in mind as a detailer when developing a sales pitch for different situations.

The Importance of a Good Detailing Sales Pitch

No matter how great your team is at detailing, sometimes giving your pitch and handling objections and questions can be harder than you think (if it’s not something you practice). Before I cover a few tips I’ve come across, I wanted to start with one of the most important details: your attitude.

Have a good attitude

It sounds obvious, but customers can tell if you’re having a bad day on the phone or in person. Being positive is key for any service-based industry, especially in detailing. Having enthusiasm is what customers will remember, as well as any less-enthusiastic experiences. We’ve all dealt with less-than-enthusiastic employees, and your customers will be able to tell if your staff is less than enthusiastic (especially on the phone).

You’re dealing with one of the most valuable assets people own: their vehicles. For this reason, it’s super important to communicate professionalism in everything that you do in order to gain the trust you need for someone to hand over their keys.

Tip 1: Practice Your On-the-Phone Sales Pitch

A customer calls, potentially interested in a detail. Most of the time, they’ll lead with along how much it costs for X or Y, so having a rehearsed sales pitch is crucial.

Winging it during a sales pitch may seem easy, especially if you’re confident in your detailing ability. Unless you have a lot of natural sales skills, you will have bad days where you can’t seem to remember every little detail.

If you follow a script every sales call, you can know what to do depending on your customer’s potential objections, and ensure that you stay on script to close the deal. That might mean listing out the steps in the sales process that you will follow every time, including getting customer’s information, asking about what services they are interested in, and finding a time that might work for them.

Explain the little details

In this process, you should be able to also sprinkle in information the customer may not know about, including additional services, the duration of the job, and other things that will allow them to make an informed decision.

As you follow the sales script, make sure to identify if a step has been skipped, or possibly overlooked. You’ll also find in the first few rounds of using a script, it can be difficult to sound conversational. Don’t think of it as a detailed list of things to say, but more so a list of guidelines for structuring the sales call. This allows you to make conversation naturally, rather than list off things you can check off.

Tone of Voice

It’s also usually a good idea to match your customer’s tone while talking to them. This ensures that you can structure your sales call to their mood. For example, you might want to get right down to the basics if that’s the tone that’s been set by the customer, or maybe just keeping things light and conversational if they sound friendly and engaged.

Something that will likely come up in the conversation is whether or not you offer a mobile detailing service. If you don’t, you might want to consider making it a service you offer.

Record Your Calls

Once you start to gain some traction, it may even be worth recording some calls in order to see where you went wrong, what turned the customer off, or why they never called you back. If you don’t have a customer relationship management  (CRM) system in place to manage all of this, check out my post Car Wash Software 101: POS, Booking, Marketing & More to get started today.

Tip 2:  Create a Professional Pitch to Win Contracts

Smartphone use continues to rise, and there is an expectation that service providers should come to the consumer on-demand, instead of the consumer coming to the service provider. Detailing is no different, which is why mobile detailing has exploded as of late.

Aside from your pitch over the phone, another option that is great for recurring and predictable revenue is approaching property managers.

Pitching property managers on mobile detailing services

Be sure to have a separate sales pitch for office managers, since many office parks require approval for vendors. In other words, you can’t just show up – especially for class A office space or other high-end offices. Are you environmentally friendly? Do you wash vehicles on water reclamation mats? How loud are your generators?

Questions like these are important to include in your sales pitch, and can lead to some serious business.

Dress to impress

When cold calling office managers, it’s usually a good idea to present well. A nice suit is great to have, as well as a leave-behind menu (or binder) of the services you offer. Office parks are great for repeat customers and consistent income since most companies will send out emails or messages to their employees on when you will be there.

Even if the property manager already has a detailing vendor on-site, one strategy is to offer a free detail to the first 5-10 people that respond. It’s not uncommon to see more than one detailing company at the same location and gives you an opportunity to sell your services differently than what’s currently being offered.

Tip 3: Be Transparent Up Front From the Start

Most people dive right into why their services or wash process is the best, but one strategy that I personally like is disclosing any potentially negative information first. Saying that you’re not the cheapest in town, and that it sometimes takes a little longer than most detailers is not necessarily a bad thing if you focus on quality.

You always want to end your pitch with the positives like why you charge more, your cleanup process, the range of services you offer, and any big-name clients you have. The customer will appreciate you being upfront and honest with them and is a strategy that most detailers likely aren’t doing.

Everybody has something to sell, but not everybody is as honest as they should be about the services or quality they promise.

The Door to Door Sales Pitch (& Why It’s Dying)

Pitching your detailing services door to door is getting increasingly more difficult for obvious reasons – the internet. When people need their vehicle’s detailed, they might launch an app, or call a local detailer they find through Google, Yelp, or other sites.

With that said, door-to-door sales can be relatively effective if you live in neighborhoods with a lot of older adults, but is not something that I would recommend for the majority of people. Even canvassing the neighborhood with flyers or postcards is not as effective anymore as running online ads on social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, local websites, or paid advertising (i.e. Google Adwords).

If you’re interested in a few marketing or advertising strategies, check out this post I wrote: Car Wash Advertising Basics for Increasing Business.

Car Wash Owners:  Pitching Unlimited Subscription Plans

If you own a conveyer or full-service type of car wash, you know that unlimited plans are gold. There’s an obvious benefit on your end to offering a monthly, unlimited service. You get a fee every month from a customer and can rely on that money coming in every month no matter what – like bad weather, or if they aren’t even in town that month.

But what about the customer? They’re usually most concerned that they will pay for the service and not use it enough, making it “not worth it.” In the sales pitch for a monthly service, these concerns are always going to come up, and it’s helpful to be prepared.

For starters, knowing the math of how many washes it takes to make the monthly subscription worth it is the easiest way to convince a customer it is worth their money. Maybe they get their car washed twice a month now, but the service costs the same as two washes. Let them know they’re already paying that much per month, but could be coming in anytime they want.

The freedom to have their vehicle washed anytime they want is really the main selling point to drive home.

Finally, make sure you let them know that if they end up not wanting to continue the service, that they can cancel at any time. Some worry that they will be stuck in the monthly plan, or that it will be a hassle to get out of the service subscription. Training your crew on what to say when a customer objects is crucial, and you may even want to have some leave-behind materials ready (just in case they need to think it over).

Pro Tip: Explain how easy it is with sensors to quickly drive up without having to pay at a kiosk. Say things like “You see that car driving through without paying, that’s one of our unlimited customers”. Social proof and making the customer feel like it’s the trendy or popular thing to purchase is a great tactic.

Conclusion

All in all, it takes time to really perfect a sales pitch. Some detailers will focus on up-selling premium services like steam cleaning, while others will stick to the basics but focus on their advanced detailing techniques, and why customers love the way they detail vs others.

It’s really up to you, but practice is the key to getting better at your pitch and will lead to closing more business. Switch up your script from time to time, but be sure to measure which one is leading to better outcomes. Have any other sales tips that have worked for you? Let me know in the comments.