The recently bankrupt consumer may be the most profitable segment of the entire subprime automotive category. Of course, the dealership must have the right lenders, the right inventory, the right marketing program, a Subprime Manager that understands the programs, and the willingness to work these profitable leads.
The return on the marketing investment can be 10X! For example, a dealer in Oklahoma recently shared with me that he spent just $2,400 in one month and made over $30,000 in gross profit on the sales that month from the leads generated. That’s an unbelievable return on investment!
The Right Lenders
Most all Subprime lenders will buy a recently discharged bankruptcy, but you need at least one of a handful of specialty lenders if you’re going to target recently filed Chapter 7 Bankruptcies. Who are those lenders?
- Prestige Financial
- CPS (Consumer Portfolio Services)
- Crédito Real USA Finance
- Avid Acceptance
- Friendly Finance Corporation
- 1st Investors Financial Services
- United Auto Credit
The Right Marketing Program
There are a limited number of consumers filing for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in any market. To dominate this market, you need to have the right combination of tactics and a strategy that will convert the highest number of consumers into interested prospects.
Hit Them Early
There are new Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Filings in your market every week. You must be in front of these prospects as soon as possible after their filing. You must use a program that mails every week!
Make Sure Your Message Gets Delivered Quickly
You must use First Class Mail to make sure your offer gets into the consumer’s hands as soon as possible. It does little good to mail every week and then use “Standard” postage which can take weeks to be delivered.
Hit Them Often
Many of these consumers don’t know what to do right after they file. After all, this is typically a once-in-a-lifetime experience for them. Although many will respond immediately, you should also cater to those that are not sure by mailing them at least twice between their filing date and their discharge date.
Make Sure Your Offer Gets Opened
You are going to be competing with several other dealers for these consumers, so you must send something different. They won’t respond if they don’t open your offer.
Use a Professional Looking Offer
It’s amazing to see how many dealerships send these consumers a photocopied letter and wonder why they get little or no response. There are a limited number of these prospects and you must spend a little extra to send a professional looking offer if you want to maximize response.
Make It Easy to Respond
These consumers have been traumatized! You must tell them exactly what you want them to do to respond to your offer and you must make it as easy as possible to respond. You should also offer multiple methods to respond to your offer. Many like to just pick up the phone while others prefer to do business via a website.
Make Sure You Answer the Phone When They Call
These consumers are looking to speak with someone that’s willing to help them, but they aren’t willing to dig through a phone tree or wait on hold forever. If you’re not sure what I mean, try calling someone at your dealership. It’s typically a nightmare. You should use a phone number that rings right to a knowledgeable person that’s going to answer most every call.
Follow-Up on Every Lead
No matter how good your system is, you won’t get every prospect on the phone the first time. You should follow-up with every prospect by phone, email, and postal mail. You can easily double your sales by using a proper follow-up system.
Get Ready to Ring the Cash Register
Do all the right things while marketing to the recently bankrupt consumer and watch your profits rise! Good Luck and Good Selling!