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Jared Hamilton
From: Jared Hamilton
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Oliver Czavar

Oliver Czavar Service Manager

Exclusive Blog Posts

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The Biggest Mistake Dealers Make When It Comes to Customer Retention

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Achieve an 85% Email capture rate with these easy steps


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Making customers happy and keeping the shop full. Seems like a win/win proposal and exactly what I wanted to accomplish. I saw the value a few years back of being able to communicate with our customers via email. It was instant, I could do it regularly and the cost was very minimal. So I embarked on a major email gathering campaign when customers came in for service. Fortunately Ford at the time was starting a customer rewards program so it was a perfect value proposition to our customers and this helped me to reach an 85% email capture rate.

It certainly did not come overnight and it wasn’t my magic wand that made it happen. It was hard work and dedication to establishing a process that educated our customers the reason for collecting their email. I assured our customers that we would not improperly use or abuse their email. We will simply use it to make sure you get our latest specials specifically for their vehicle and we wanted to reward you for your loyalty. Next, I trained my staff the importance of email to our store. When training them I explained that this is the way we are going to communicate to our customers because it can be performed at little to no expense and I can give a customer a timely, pertinent message that is tailored to their specific year make and model of vehicle.

As I see it the biggest benefit is to the customer. We all have reward cards in our wallet and/or purses from one store or another. At times we choose to go to that specific location due to the rewards or benefits that are offered. Every customer likes to feel rewarded for his or her loyalty to your dealership so in this case I see it is a win/win. Most of all I make sure we do not overfill their inbox with junk. When I send them an email it is tailored to their vehicle and very specific to their vehicle needs. Here is how my process works.

  • Leverage your email capture program with a customer rewards program
  • Over communicate the importance of your new program to your customers and the to staff
  • Utilize the rewards program reports to create vehicle specific reminders that are delivered to an inbox at the time the customer needs service.
  • Keep your customers engaged in the rewards program by discussing how many rewards dollars they have to use at your store and if they have a free oil change to use.
  • Create custom lists that your BDC can follow up on

We all know how key customer retention is today. Allowing you to maximize your marketing spend by keeping in touch with a majority of your data base with very little expense, makes it possible for you to allocate your dollars to fund other traditional prospect marketing campaigns. This will help you keep your bays full and producing all while keeping your customers happy.

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