We are all involved in the art of selling.  Whether it's selling a good, a service, or even yourself, successful selling is a major contributing factor to our success.  We read books, attend seminars, role play, and practice, all in order to become better salespeople.  The concept of selling is of course fundamental to any Automotive Dealership.  So why is it that when constructing a Help Wanted Ad, Dealers seem to forget about this most basic of principles?  Differentiating your dealership from your competitor’s stores should be the MAIN GOAL of any effective help wanted ad.  YOU HAVE TO SELL YOUR STORE!

Help wanted advertisement needs to be looked at as an investment instead of a bother or a necessary evil.  Let’s take a look at it from a ROI perspective: Let’s say that you have 3 under-performing salespeople at your store averaging 5 units a month at $1,500 per unit.  Replace those 3 with salespeople averaging 10 units a month at $2,000 per unit (a modest upgrade) and you are looking at an increase of $37,500 per month and $450,000 per year!  Now doesn’t it make sense to budget a measly $5,000 or $10,000 a year for Help Wanted Advertising?

First, be specific with your details: “Top salesperson earned $10,575 last month,” “#3 volume Ford dealer in the state,” and “Up to 35% commission,” sound better than, “Six-figure income potential,” “One of the top dealers in the area,” and “Great pay plan.”  Specific details about your store will lend instant credibility to your ad and will be certain to grab the job applicant’s attention.  Next, paint a vivid picture of your store (and I don’t mean tell us what it looks like).  You can avoid being a faceless job posting by giving a brief history of your store, discussing the work environment of your dealership, listing some of the amenities offered to your customers, and talking about your roll in the community.  These are some good basic concepts to improve your help wanted ad, but when it comes down to it, the best way to attract applicants is to put your money where your mouth is.

A “Minimum First Year Guaranteed Income” number is a very strong way to attract salespeople to your store.  Now, before you swear at the computer, close this window and go about your busy day, take a deep breath and allow me to explain how it works.  In most areas $40,000 is considered a good starting number for a minimum guarantee, so we will work with that (if your store is in a more affluent or higher cost of living area you may want to consider upping the number to $50 or $60,000).  Basically what you are doing is guaranteeing a new hire $40,000 income in their first year of employment with your store (income includes all commission, draws, salary, bonuses, spiffs, etc…).  The stipulations are as follows:  employee must remain employed with the dealer for 12 continuous months, employment is employment at will and can be terminated at any time by either the employee or employer with or without cause or notice, if employee meets these requirements and is under $40,000 total income at the end of the year the dealer will pay out a one-time bonus not to exceed $5,000.  So let’s break this down logically.  First, if a salesperson isn’t tracking $40,000 at say 6 or even 9 months then chances are they are going to either quit or be let go.  Worst case scenario, you pay out $5,000 to someone who is obviously committed to your store, spent a year grinding it out on the sales floor and gaining experience, and wants to get better.  I’d say that person deserves a year end bonus and a second year at your store.

The next time your store is thinking of ways to improve their bottom line, suggest thinking of ways to improve your Help Wanted Ads.  The truth is you can’t improve the former without improving the latter.

What are some ads the ads you use to attract talent?