ActivEngage live chat and the Art of the Online Pitch

The Art of the Pitch: How Live Chat Gets More Runs for Your Dealership

Written By Eric Schlesinger

“There are 3 types of baseball players: those who make it happen, those who watch it happen, and those who wonder what happens.”
-Tommy Lasorda
Former pitcher, coach, and MLB manager

After a historical World Series last year where the Chicago Cubs took home their first win in 108 years, we are set to kick off a new MLB season on Monday, April 3, 2017. America’s favorite pastime is finally in full swing.

Believe it or not, there are plenty of similarities between a successful live chat strategy and a successful baseball team. For starters, there’s the famous AIDA sales model.

What is the AIDA Model?

The AIDA model is one of the widest known models by marketers and sales professionals. The purpose of this acronym is to help professionals develop powerful communication strategies and interact with customers in a systematic way that appeals to their needs and desires to prompt an action.

AIDA stands for Attention, Interest, Desire, and Action.The principles can be applied as follows:

  • Attention - How do we inform shoppers about our products or services? What is our outreach strategy? Which tools or platforms do we use? What should the messages be?
  • Interest - How will we get their attention? Do we have information available to back up our reputation?
  • Desire - What makes our product or service desirable? How do we interact personally to make an emotional connection? Online chat?
  • Action - What are the calls to action, and where do we place them? Is it easy for consumers to connect and where would they expect to find it?

Traditionally, people view the AIDA model as a funnel that shoppers go down during the sales process, but in the spirit of Opening Day weekend and America’s favorite game, your friends at ActivEngage came up with this useful analogy:

AIDA and baseball

Unfortunately,  the online environment makes it easy for shoppers to get distracted with too many purchase options and “wow features” on a dealer’s website that prolong their buying journey. And as a result, dealers are finding it harder to get shoppers to run the bases fast and reach home plate (your physical showroom). That’s where ActivEngage's live chat strategy comes into play.

The Art of the Online Pitch

The online sales pitch is not your average throw.

Much like baseball, live chat is primarily contextual. While there are best practices, such as practicing your swing, building arm strength, and keeping the batter guessing, when it comes down to it, context dictates the flow of the game. Similarly, the conversation flow in live chat will strongly depend on who is chatting on your behalf. You'll need a team of chat experts trained to:

  • Know your buyers and their needs (AKA the wind-up)
  • Ask guiding questions to push shoppers down the sales funnel (AKA the step)
  • Educate and personalize the online experience (AKA the throw)

All of these factors will vastly impact the consumer experience on your dealership’s website. Therefore, the pitch has to be in league with that of MLB greats, Cy Young and Roger Clemens.

ActivEngage Live Chat Gets Your Bases Loaded:

Your dealership live chat strategy should move online shoppers from first base to home (your physical store) to truly impact your bottom line. ActivEngage gets your bases loaded by:

  • Spreading awareness about special offers and other relevant USPs using proactive, dynamic chat invitations with custom content based on the shopper’s path.
  • Creating interest in a vehicle or service, and more importantly your dealership, by staffing your website with knowledgeable conversation experts that can carry auto-specific conversations and provide valuable information to potential customers
  • Prompting prospects’ desire to buy by creating powerful connections using carefully crafted conversation techniques that drive engaged buyers to the next step in the purchasing journey.

But at the end of the day, we understand it’s that final action, the follow-through, that drives your business. We’re talking about the moment the shopper becomes the customer. No other provider helps dealers close the deal like ActivEngage.

Bottom line? Every online conversation is a sales pitch. Every real-time interaction presents itself as an opportunity for our chat team to sell a customer on why they should come to your dealership. Our pitch average is the best in the automotive chat industry because we have mastered the art of online conversation.

So I leave you with the following questions:

Do you have the best players on your team? Are they performing to your expectations and getting shoppers across home plate (into your showroom)? If the answer to any of these questions is NO, then it’s time to make some changes to your lineup, and let ActivEngage start for your dealership. After all, even the best teams make adjustments at the start of the season!


"There are opening day pitchers, and pitchers who start on opening day."
- Roger Craig
Former pitcher, coach, and MLB manager


Ready to discover how ActivEngage helps your dealership succeed?