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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So a couple of weeks ago - I was in the market for a new 328i. I emailed all the dealers in my search area and made follow up phone calls describing the car I was looking for and the time frame for puchase (2 weeks). Of the 5 dealers in the area - only two bothered to respond.

I was pleased with both CA's I worked with in locating and negotiating a price on the 328i. And I eventually did a lease from one and they were great all the way through the process.

But I'm curious why three dealerships in the area didn't follow up after I both sent an email and made phone calls indicating my desire to purchase/lease a car in the near future. . .I know it's "just a 3-series" but my next one might be an M and I'll definitely be inclined to look elsewhere three years from now. Actually - unless the dealership I leased through screws up on service over the course of the lease - I'll be inclined to give them my business in the future (assuming a fair deal).

I'm curious why the silence. In the past when I've bought Toyotas and Nissans - it seems like as soon as I express any interest at all, I get phone call after phone call and email after email asking me if I'm still in the market. . .Honestly - it's too much from them. But I'm surprised by a complete disregard. Is this common for BMW dealers?
 

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It is common because BMW is just now understanding what a BDC is. (Business Development Center). Most car dealers do not have one setup. It is basically a fast reaction call center whos goal is to schedule appointments. Since the cost of starting and operating a BDC is only worth it with good technical and managerial personel in place, most dealerships perefer not to "chance it". Meanwhile putting the response responsibilty on 1/2 trained sales people who do not know how to operate the new customer tracking computer technology they were given. (in most cases just a couple weeks prior to your "lead" coming in. You will get contacted eventually! meaning 1-30 days, and after initial contact you will most likely receive no follow-up calls.

It is the nature of the beast. General Managers are looking to save the dealership money and most will not gamble on a BDC. The ones that do and hire wisely reap the benefits, while the ones that do not hire wisely tell tales of financial ruin inadvertantly scaring the other dealerships. Mercedes has these same issues and has created a certification program for their BDC centers...BUT long live BMW! I can't bring my Mercedes in every week for maintenance! LOL ;)


Just my 2 cents
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I guess. . .but how about me just being a good old fashioned lead. I mean - I was trying to contact car salesmen about the purchase of a car - I'd think they would have been interested in that - or does one have to show up to a dealer wearing an expensive suit to get attention. . .

Anyway - no harm done from my perspective. I got the car I wanted at a good price from a dealer I like. I'm just surprised that the other dealerships weren't a little more interested in my business. . .oh well.
 

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I tell you ..I'd be very careful about buying a car from a dealership that doesn't even respond to you. Wether your buying a 3 series or 7 series, it shouldn't matter. Customer service IS customer service. Keep searching and you'll find a business that RUNS THEIR business from a customer service is important attitude.

I would go there personally and see how it's run, and if you are given attention etc .. it could have been an electronic error with email .. but NO returned phone calls .. THAT is not a good sign to me .. :((
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Oh no question about it - they didn't get my business this time and never will. Why wouldn't they want my business though? I called, was polite, mentioned the car I was interested in, didn't even start to discuss prices, told them I was going to purchase within 2 weeks. . .a simple phone call from one of those dealers could have earned them an extra sale this month and more down the line. . .seems strange. Like I said - no worries for me - I found dealers that were willing to make the small effort that got me to come in.
 
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