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Chevrolet Salesman Gains 40,000 Followers on TikTok and Instagram
A Transparent Approach to Selling Cars
Selling cars is only part of what Lindsberg Pettway does in his job as a Chevrolet salesman. A former high school principal who’s now the floor sales manager at Feldman Chevrolet of Livonia in suburban Detroit, Pettway says he brings transparency to the process. This is the basis of his presence on TikTok and Instagram, where in four months he’s amassed a combined 40,000 followers by sharing car-buying tips and offering glimpses into dealership life.
Humorous and Thought-Provoking Content
Pettway’s steady stream of humorous and thought-provoking content covers an array of topics. Pettway, 50, sometimes provides advice for buyers with low credit scores or explains how people with repossessions on their records can get approved for a new car.
One of his more amusing videos shows how a salesman feels after spending eight hours with a customer who then buys from another dealership. A dejected Pettway mopes around in the dealership to the backdrop of “How You Gonna Act Like That,” a heartbreak anthem from R&B singer Tyrese.
Pettway isn’t afraid to wade into more serious themes either. His most popular video shows how Black customers can be stereotyped by Black salesmen just walking into a dealership. That clip has been viewed nearly 3 million times on TikTok and received more than 49,000 likes on Instagram.
A Growing Fanbase and “Unc” Status
Followers sometimes come in specifically to buy a vehicle from Pettway. He attributes three of his sales directly to people seeing his TikTok videos since starting the account in February and has fielded at least 20 calls from viewers looking for tutelage.
Pettway has even earned “unc” status from some commenters, a term of endearment that’s short for “uncle.” He says that title is recognition of his maturity.
“I say this very, very humbly, but it’s kind of a reflection of who I am,” Pettway said.
A Different Approach to Car Sales
Pettway began selling cars in March 2017 after 18 years as an educator. He’d lost his job at a school after sustaining a knee injury breaking up a fight and found himself unemployed for eight months when the car business came calling.
Pettway, who is also a personal trainer, learned of the Feldman Chevrolet job after a client asked him if he wanted to sell cars. The client’s nephew was the store’s general manager.
Pettway does not only tell his customers to buy a car, but also explains in detail about how their finances work. He will go through a customer’s credit report to find delinquent debts or signs that they cannot afford the car they want. In some cases, he advises them to wait before making a purchase.
Criticism for His Methods
Not all observers are thrilled with his methods. “I have gotten criticized for doing this,” Pettway said. “Someone sent all my managers at my dealership, the [general manager], an email saying that they should fire me. Said that I’m a threat, what I’m doing is so unnecessary, but that just goes to show that I’m going down the right path.”