A couple of weeks ago, J.D. Power and Associates released a report titled “Beyond Satisfaction: J.D. Power 2012 Customer Service Champions—Brands That Deliver Service Excellence to Maximize Business Results.” The report concluded that consumers prefer brands with excellent customer service and don’t always focus on the lowest price. Auto related brands identified as “Champions” include Cadillac, Jaguar, Lexus and MINI.
Why is customer satisfaction important? J.D. Power finds a very strong link between levels of customer satisfaction and levels of customer recommendation and intent to repurchase. The report also finds that brands that provide exceptional customer service tend to consistently employ these specific practices:
- Hiring the right people and empowering them with the best processes; as well as the ability and authority to make judgment calls to resolve issues on behalf of customers.
- Understanding their customers and offering the right products through the right channels in ways that truly resonate with them.
- Being consistent in branding and delivery of the service experience, particularly across various channels and customer touch points.
For more information on the J.D. Power and Associates report, you can download the Executive Summary here.
How can these three best practices be executed in your auto dealership? By empowering your employees, sending relevant and targeted communications and ensuring that you have a strong branding message. That is, you should be able to explain to customers why it’s better to buy from you instead of your competitor. Then, make sure every employee is trained on the branding message and knows how to properly greet and treat every customer.
What processes does your dealership have in place to deliver excellent customer service? Are your employees empowered to make decisions and resolve customer complaints?