In 2012, big brands of different American industries saw a significant growth by using content marketing strategies. Most of the big brands accepted the power of content marketing as a primary tool in retaining their networks. Some industries however call for the more traditional channel of retaining customers, like auto dealerships.
Big companies set aside a big chunk of their operational budget to marketing and initiatives geared to retaining customers. However, most small businesses do not have the resources that big brands have. For service advisors, retaining the customers is a huge challenge that they have to deal with.
The following are some tips that auto dealers can implement in their respective companies to increase customer retention. These tips are often used and become a foundation of success to a number of big brands in the automotive industry.
1. Keep your customers hooked with Social Media.
One of the latest methods in keeping your customers attached with your company is by hooking them with the company’s social media accounts. You can always give incentives to those customers who become your follower, fan, or even a friend. What’s best with social media interactions is the fact that you can already get an idea about how they think of your company, service, and products without the need to conduct interviews or surveys that could take days before you get a result and it still need to undergo a process of consolidation and interpretation.
2. Invest in Building Communities.
Having a personal relationship with your customers is the key to building your customer database. When your customers signed to become your friend, fan, or follower on social media sites, they will have your name and your dealership on the top of their head every time they need to service their car or buy a new one. In the internet platform, you need to engage them by publishing new and updated contents, initiate a discussion, and offer information that only you provides. It is also imperative that you update them with latest promos and offering of the company.
3. Play Favorites.
Social Media is a great avenue in promoting general events and services and it is also an excellent place to offer deals that cannot be found anywhere else. So, for customers who are online, you can always offer freebies of your brand which will eventually hook them in your company. Playing favorites means that you have to favor those customers who are more active and participative when it comes to your social media activities. You can give more discounts or freebies to them.
4. Be Aggressive in providing Superior Support.
Support in this sense is not limited to responding to the queries and concerns of your customer. Support has taken a larger scope which means you need to treat your customer as your partner. By this, you need to know your customer deeper. Learn their basic motivations, interests, and career concentration and you have to ensure that your presence is felt.
5. Improve the skills of your workforce to meet the demand of your customers.
The service advisor team needs to be aware of the things needed for them to be able to build relationships. This can be done by improving their people skills which is geared toward the satisfaction of customers through the changing technologies, customer experience, and shifting customer preferences.
6. Keep a Customer Focused Operation.
It is imperative that companies continue the concept of ‘small business service’. This means that you need to keep an excellent level of service to customers even if the business is growing. While customers may come in multiple channels, it is important that the service is provided in a genuine and meaningful ways. Thus, the team needs to exert extra effort in keeping this level of attachment to customers.
7. Keep your company updated with what your customer needs.
The advancement of technology requires service advisors and auto dealers to become updated with the popular and latest trends. Nowadays, you can shift focus to mobile computers like smartphones and the platform that it requires since most people are connected to the internet even if they are mobile. You can also probe on the activities that they do or even the music that they are listening to and use these information to your advantage in connecting with them a lot better.
8. Complaints are Gifts in Disguise.
While this may be easily said than done, it is important to know that regardless if your customer is right or wrong, the way you are handling their objection is a manifestation of your commitment that you wanted to provide an excellent customer service. Ideas that you obtain from objections can be used as a tool for future improvements.
9. Invest Time with Repeat Customers and Referrals.
When you get a customer to buy your product or service, your commitment does not end there. Instead, you are only beginning on a longer journey together since you can always offer them other products or services that will go well with what they have purchased. When they are satisfied with your services, there is a greater chance that they will be referring their friends or relatives to you and thus lets you expand your network.
10. Tell your customers where you are.
Especially when you are relocating, it is strongly encouraged that you tell them where you are transferring and encourage them to visit you in your new place. You can send out cards about your new location, launch a grand opening, and simply notify local business organization about your transfer.
Big brands or not, you can always increase your retention rate by applying the tips above. These are tested strategies that helped big brands protect their market position and lead them to success. Auto dealers can adapt and replicate the same success. All you need to do is make a strong commitment that you wanted to serve your customers to the fullest, implement the tips, work hard, and see how your efforts bring in more profit.