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Hollis Goode Regional Vice President EFG Companies

Contributing Author:
Hollis Goode
Regional Vice President
EFG Companies

When presenting F&I products, are your F&I managers focusing too much on the product details? How’s that working for you? Are you happy with those product penetration rates?

Think about when you review long lists of information, you start to tune out, right? The same thing happens when F&I managers approach a product presentation from the standpoint of selling what the product does. Tallying off coverage levels, terms, systems, and parts is the fastest way to disengage from the customer and get them watching the clock instead of listening to the presentation.

At EFG, we teach professionals to approach the F&I product presentation from the standpoint of WHY. Why should a customer purchase a certain product? How does it benefit them? You could say that the product benefits customers by listing off everything it covers, but once again, that long list isn’t directly relatable to most customers. 

In order to sell WHY, you must understand the customer’s driving habits, as well as their wants and needs for their vehicle.

  • How long do they keep their vehicles?
  • Are they carting children from one after school activity to another?
  • Is the vehicle being purchased for a child going away to college?
  • Is the vehicle for a family that is growing or shrinking?
  • Does the customer live in a city or a rural area?
  • How long is their daily commute?

This is the type of information you need to know in order to prepare an F&I product presentation that is easily relatable.

So, how does your team gather this information? It all starts with the sales professional, and that means taking a collaborative approach to the entire sales process between both the sales and F&I teams. Before handing off customers to F&I, sales professionals and F&I managers should meet and discuss everything the sales professional learned about the customer during the test drive and price negotiation process.

We also recommend that F&I managers introduce themselves to the customer when they are still in the sales department. At this time, F&I managers should always continue to build excitement about the vehicle purchase and conduct a short needs’ assessment to determine which product benefits will most resonate with the customer in front of them. For example, if a customer travels in their vehicle a lot for work, or if they are sending it with a child to college, a VSC that is accepted in repair facilities across the U.S. would be beneficial to them.

With the information gathered from the needs’ assessment, F&I managers should be able to pinpoint specific benefits in each product they offer that will resonate most with the customer. This way, when they get to the product presentation, rather than exhausting themselves and boring customers with long lists, they can make the products relatable and demonstrate the value the products give your customers, creating greater buy-in.

This turns the menu presentation from a discussion where the F&I manager is still trying to sell F&I products to a discussion of how the customer can buy F&I products. Which coverage term makes the most sense for them? Are they concerned with the monthly payment? Can this be remedied via a larger down payment or extending out the loan terms? F&I managers can more easily discuss pricing and payments when they already have buy-in on the WHY from customers.

With more than 40 years of experience training Top Performers to increase productivity and maximize product penetration, EFG Companies know how to cultivate teams that enhance your bottom line. Contact us today to learn more.

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