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From: Jared Hamilton
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Harness the Power of Texting for Your Dealership in 1-2-3

f3c540ac0f2faf13d94c56af19ad4f17.jpg?t=1Is it time for an official texting strategy at your dealership?

Considering that 81% of car shoppers use smartphones at some point in their research—and that at least 86% of mobile users in the U.S. text—the answer is yes. Texting is almost a reflexive behavior, making it a convenient way for consumers to interact with businesses like yours. If you’re prepared, that is! Here’s how to get started:

#1 - Take the Dealer Text Test
With so many smartphones accessing dealership information, someone’s probably tried to text you. So try it yourself. Text the phone number used on your website or in your latest print or online ads. What happens? You’ll probably get an error message or nothing at all. Is that acceptable in the age of the always-on, always-connected customer that Automotive News talks about?

A smart fix is to set up an official dealer text number that customers can use to reach your sales or customer service team.

#2 - Combine Text & Convenience
As you create your mobile text strategy, keep personalization and convenience top of mind. (That’s what so many love about mobile technology, after all!) For instance, you can use texting to give shoppers...
 

  • Easy ways to ask questions, request appointments, etc. - Adding tap-to-text buttons on your mobile site and ad listings makes this communication even easier.
  • Quick responses - Give your team the tools they need to text from anywhere, so they can respond almost immediately and engage leads when their interest is highest.
  • The power to continue conversations the way they want - Offer texting as an alternate means of communication to all your leads, even the ups. They may prefer it to follow-up phone calls that never seem to come at the right time (and you may prefer it to emails that get little response).

#3 - Take Simple Steps to Reduce Risk
It’s easy to forget about the risks involved in business-to-consumer texting, so build safeguards into your strategy that address the latest Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) compliance requirements:

  • Find software to manage one-to-one dealer text - If employees text with customers from their own mobile accounts, your dealership can neither capture those leads in the CRM, nor monitor the messages for compliance. But the right mobile text software can help you track it all. (Look for one that automates opt-out permissions, tracks text transcripts and provides documentation to help reduce compliance risks.)
  • Create an official texting policy - Map out the processes you’ll take to gather customers’ consent to text, what’s expected from your team in terms of availability, etc.

These three steps can help you harness the power of texting for your dealership’s sales and customer service strategies...the right way.

Got more questions about texting and TCPA compliance? Download our eBook, “What Should Your Dealership Know About TCPA?”

Leila Mozaffarian

You can activate your landline number (including toll free numbers) to text. Here is my email: lmozaffarian@zipwhip.com, schedule an appointment with me and I can show you a free demo. 

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