10-Point Checklist to Proactively Retain Loyalty Customers

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In May 2022, brand loyalty dropped to an eight-year low. S&P Global Mobility 10-Point Checklist to Proactively Retain Loyalty Customers Faced with record low incentives, low inventory levels and high buyer demand, it's more important than ever dealers take a proactive approach to improving customer experience and building customer loyalty. Amid inventory shortages, focusing on customer retention is critical to both short-term and long-term success. Loyalty customers are an invaluable supply of highly profitable sales, less likely to negotiate and more likely to generate service and other fixed ops revenues. They also contribute to referral business. GET STARTED WITH THESE 10 KEY STEPS: PLAN AHEAD As inventory shortages linger on, it's especially important to take a proactive approach to identifying and engaging loyalty customers. By engaging customers earlier in their buyer journey before they return to market, dealers can ensure their loyalty customers get the vehicle they want with an exceptional customer experience. But the first step in any successful loyalty customer retention campaign – or any marketing campaign for that matter – is setting goals and preparing your team for success from the start. ̆ Task a member or a small team from your sales department or BDC to serve as a loyalty liaison. ̆ Analyze the data in your dealership's CRM, DMS and sales platforms to identify which loyalty customers pose the most significant risk of defection ̆ Look for both immediate and long-term opportunities. • Short term, such as those returning to market in the next 1-3 months, customers out of warranty or over lease mileage. • Long term, such as customers approaching the end of their lease or finance term in the next 12 months or customers who could lower their APR or payment. IDENTIFY ALL AVAILABLE OPPORTUNITIES In a market this complex that's always changing, customer retention requires a targeted and intelligent approach to solving buyers' challenges. Leveraging dealership marketing technology to analyze data from your DMS and CRM, look for opportunities to proactively pave the path for customers to return to your rooftop and purchase their next vehicle. ̆ Leverage pre-orders and reserved sales to proactively engage customers returning to market in coming months instead of forcing them to pick from a limited inventory when they're ready to shop (potentially impacting dealership loyalty and CSI scores). ̆ Look for every opportunity to retain loyalty customers who have already returned to market, including exploring pre-owned options or lease extensions to bridge the gap between contracts if their desired vehicle is not currently available. In a recent survey, 41% of survey respondents say they plan to pre-order their next vehicle. Cars.com 2022

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