Ask most people with pets and they say they fell in love with their furry best friend the moment they saw them. (Half of the married couples I know can’t even say that about their spouses). Yet, some with pets admit it took a little time for the animals to grow on them. There is a long line of Internet videos/memes showing husbands and dads who simply did not want a dog or cat, yet rather quickly, became inseparable. Much like puppies, vehicles have the same effect.
Sitting in the glass containers and metal cages at pet stores, they yearn for attention, much like a well-merchandised vehicle on your lot, only hoping that the right person comes in, sees them, feels that instant connection, and buys them on the spot. Many unclaimed animals are not so lucky. They don’t always have a write-down policy or auction they can be shipped to. Simply put, those running the adoption centers know that if they only could get the potential pet owner to take home that animal for a test run, they wouldn’t want to part with them after. (This is why so many people who foster pets have a lot of them – they simply accumulate them over time, unable to part with them).
Cars and trucks are like pets. If a shopper is undecided, if you can get the vehicle to their home or driveway and give them time to fall in love with it, you will have yourself a sale. I’ve written about going “over the curb” in the past and train regularly about the importance of offering at-home and at-work test drives. Yet, not near enough dealers are adopting the chance to give a customer time to get accustomed to that vehicle in their own backyard. People need to be able to see themselves with it. Understand all it can do. Get comfortable with it. Then they won’t want to let it go.
I’m not a fan of overnight test drives, per se. Definitely not for trucks, or you’ll find it was clear they just helped their friend move that night. But just a little bit of time at home with a vehicle is normally enough to get them to agree to keeping it. Like unsure father warming up to a kitten when it falls asleep on his chest, you realize you two just work well together. (See below)
So don’t turn your nose up at the first potential companion you see, and don’t feel the need to immediately switch to an alternative if a shopper isn’t sure. They too have done research in advance of this moment. If sparks don’t fly when they first lay eyes on their next housemate, get them to spend a little time at home with it. They may just need to spend a little time together before knowing it’s the one they’ve been looking for. Your goal is to help each vehicle find its forever home.
You know what else is like a puppy? Social media.