More than 4,000 Stokes Honda North customers have purchased cars from Prince Sinsuat in the 12 years he’s worked the showroom floor. Sinsuat says he is so passionate about sales that he “dreams about selling cars” even when he’s not at the dealership.
“I’m fired up all the time. ... There’s no negativity allowed here,” he explains. “I think that’s what takes me to the next level.”
Despite taking one month off each year to spend time with his family, Sinsuat sells an average of 25 cars a month at the North Charleston, S.C.-based dealership. Last year, he achieved Gold Level in Honda’s 2012 Council of Sales Leadership by surpassing the automaker’s 190 new car-sales requirement and achieving a customer service index (CSI) score of 99.5.
“Being around the Honda product line for this long, [in terms of] the product knowledge, he’s the strongest at our store,” says Jason Stone, Stokes Honda’s assistant general manager.
Sinsuat demonstrates this knowledge online as well as in the showroom. He maintains personal channels on YouTube and Vimeo, where he posts reviews of vehicles, customer testimonials, dealership events and more. His YouTube channel hosts nearly 100 videos.
“There are customers who will ask me, ‘Hey, what do you drive?’” Sinsuat says. “Of course, when we’re in my office, I’ll show them my YouTube account and all of my videos: what I sell, what I drive and what my family drives.
“I do some testimonials with my own personal vehicle [to show] what kind of great gas mileage I get in the vehicle. So when they see that, they’re like, ‘Wow, this guy is serious!’”
Sinsuat says potential customers also go to his Facebook profile, where he posts a mix of personal and sales-related information. He claims this allows his followers to see that, in addition to being a salesperson, he’s also a family man. “When a customer sees a salesman, their defense is already up,” he says. “I’m a human being too, just like them.”
Customers who have never purchased from the store will even ask for Sinsuat personally because of his online activity. In fact, his name appears as a top Google search result for the dealership. “They’ll say, ‘I Googled Stokes Honda and you’re all over the place,’” Sinsuat explains.
Sinsuat hasn’t always been “Your Honda Guy.” He got his start in sales selling women’s footwear at age 21. Two years later, he was selling items like books and watches door to door when a manager at a local dealership asked him if he’d like to sell cars instead.
“My eyes lit up,” Sinsuat says. “And ever since then, it’s been awesome. I love it.”
Sinsuat first joined the Stokes Automotive Group in 1999. He began at the group’s Mazda and Volkswagen stores. In 2001, he transferred to Stokes Honda North and has been the dealership’s No. 1 salesperson ever since.
“It’s his passion for the customer and taking care of them; creating an experience,” Stone says. “If that were a sales technique, which it’s really not ... I think that would be his greatest attribute.”
Stone also points to Sinsuat’s willingness to study his craft. “He is always seeking out new information on how to improve himself and his abilities,” Stone explains.
The reason he’s so committed, Sinsuat says, is because he treats selling cars “like it’s my own gig.” So, when he’s not in the showroom, he’s posting content online or sending out mailings to potential customers. He advises against using “sales tactics” with customers. Instead, he recommends providing guidance and product knowledge to sell cars.
And that approach keeps Sinsuat’s customers coming back again and again — and recommending his service to their friends and family.
"I always tell my customers, we can replace all these cars. We can't replace customers," he says.