A large component of dealership success comes from the ability to provide customers with not only the best possible experience at your physical dealership, but off-site as well. This is especially true among ongoing inventory challenges. Faced with high prices and fewer options on the lot, your dealership’s customer experience can make or break a potential sale.
Providing customers an easy, efficient and transparent customer experience starts with providing proactive and resourceful messaging. As technology advances, dealers are more empowered than ever to leverage data as a means to tailor their brand messaging to each customer while enhancing both their internal and external operations.
What is Brand Messaging?
Encompassing all of a dealership’s messaging to its customers, effective brand messaging is any external customer communication relevant or particularly useful to your buyers. Crafting effective messaging starts with connecting with buyers at where they are in their buyer journey – on their terms. This requires dealerships to craft messaging that builds off any previous touchpoints and leverages any available insights to engage buyers with personalized communications in their preferred format.
How Can Dealerships Craft Messaging?
An important aspect to brand messaging is to start by leveraging advanced dealership marketing technology. Combining data from a dealer’s CRM, DMS and sales platform (with high-quality, third party insights), empowers dealers to use data to craft personalized messaging. The insights provided by tools like Mastermind empower dealers to personalize their messaging to each recipient by tailoring the timing, messaging, offer and more to maximize predictive customer engagement. This is especially important to building trust with buyers, which 91% of buyers rank as important to them when deciding where to purchase their new vehicle.
To build trust with buyers, dealers need to demonstrate that they understand each customer and can best meet their unique needs. Look for natural opportunities to keep in contact with your buyers with personalized messaging that speaks to their specific and evolving needs, through their preferred medium. Ensure every touchpoint builds on the last, in a useful manner, meeting your loyal customers where they are at in their buying journey, to keep them engaged over the years.
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How Can Dealers Uphold This Communication Method
Combining detailed insights from your CRM, DMS etc., with third-party data like financial records and household demographic information, ultimately gives dealers a clearer view of their audience. This is not only critical to crafting effective brand messaging, but it also fuels more efficient and effective lead generation by empowering dealers to proactively engage customers before the competition.
Using data to craft messaging also fuels more effective customer interactions by informing future conversation and improving the handoff between departments. Tools like Mastermind help create a seamless transition between marketing, sales, F&I and moreThis is implemented by arming every department with detailed customer insights and data-driven talking points, built off of dealership brand messaging and any previous interactions.
These insights are also key to keeping customers retained over time. By engaging buyers long after the initial sale with consistent communication that may change based on their ownership journey, dealers are empowered to build long-term loyalty with customers. This fuels loyalty sales through conveniently timed service notifications, helpful program updates and more.
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How Does Data-Driven Messaging Serve Customers?
Improving the efficiency and efficacy of a dealer’s marketing efforts isn’t the only benefit of using data to craft customer communications. Data-driven messaging ultimately benefits customers as well, ensuring they are kept up-to-date on the details and updates they care about most. For example, as customers hold onto their vehicles longer and the vehicle’s average age on the road reaches 12.2 years, customer communications related to services (i.e. recalls) are particularly valuable to many customers. They also provide dealers a leg up over exclusively online retailers.
This was one of the key reasons why Mastermind now features enhanced recall data, empowering dealers to have more informed customer communications that ultimately benefit the buyer. With these enhanced insights, dealers can reach out to high-value customers in their portfolios with open recalls to schedule repair appointments benefiting both buyers and dealers.
As technology has evolved, so have the challenges – and opportunities – offered to dealers. To stay a step ahead, it’s important dealers leverage data to:
- Improve their internal and external communication and operations
- Craft proactive, personalized customer communications
- Offer an excellent dealership customer experience
- Keep customers engaged through tailored loyalty messaging
By taking a data-driven approach to consistently and intelligently engage customers, dealers are empowered to create a seamless customer journey that equally benefits buyers. This starts with using data to proactively engage buyers before they return to market, and it continues well after that initial interaction to ultimately build long-term dealership loyalty.