AutoSuccess - May 2017

A DEALER’S APPROACH TO RETENTION

Ken Shreve 2017-05-11 15:27:49

We’re a talkative bunch at our dealership and the thing we really enjoy are conversations we have with our customers. Sports, weather and, yes, even automobiles. Over the years, we’ve paid attention and learned a thing or two from these conversations. Vehicle owners tell us that keeping up with regular scheduled maintenance is the one thing that most find costly and inconvenient. They do understand how important this is to ensure safe and dependable transportation, but still find it to be a burden. These conversations are what lead to the inspiration for our “Lifetime” program. We decided we could help our customers feel a little better about taking good care of their cars. Our program was designed to make the “expense and inconvenience” of regular vehicle maintenance as friendly and convenient as possible and save our customers some money. If we do our part and take care of our customers by saving them time and money maintaining their car, we like our chances that they will tell everyone about us. We look at things this way: These are the best advertising dollars we can spend. And we invest in the people who matter most – our customers. Here’s how it works: With a new or used vehicle purchase, the customer is automatically enrolled in this exclusive program that provides these benefits at no charge. It’s the way we do business. The benefits include: Lifetime Oil Changes Buying your next new or used vehicle from us ensures that all your oil changes will be “on the house” or, to put it another way, free. Lifetime Tire Rotations Replacing tires can be expensive, so we help extend their life by providing you with a complimentary tire rotation when you are in for an oil change. We don’t want customers to spend money on new tires sooner than they have to — we’re sure they could use that money for other things. Lifetime Car Washes The oil changes will keep your vehicles’ engine clean inside, but we’re going to go one step further and help the customer keep the outside of their vehicle clean as well. They just bring their vehicle by the dealership anytime we’re open and we will run it through our automated car wash. Again, we’re not going to charge them a thing — all the car washes are on the house. Lifetime Engine Guarantee When a customer sees a vehicle on our lot, our Factory/ASE certified technicians have checked it over and we have confirmed it is mechanically sound and meets our requirements to be offered for sale — be it to an employees’ family member or a stranger. In our view, one is as important as the other. We know that we must stand behind what we sell — that’s just good business and what we have built our reputation around. As part of our program, we are going to take this a step further than the typical dealership. As the old saying goes, we put our money where our mouth is by including a lifetime engine guarantee with each new and used vehicle purchased from us. For customers who receive our complimentary oil changes and periodically perform minimum levels of preventative maintenance on their vehicle’s fuel and cooling systems, we stand behind the engine for as long as they own their car. We are not here to sell our customers services they don’t need at prices that are not competitive. That’s not how we do business. We are here to help customers maintain their investment and manage their transportation costs by providing legitimate services at competitive pricing. Service industry data consistently shows that the primary cause of vehicle engine failure is the lack of regular preventative maintenance on an engine’s oil, fuel and cooling systems. We want to do our part to help our customers avoid this potential expense — and it starts by providing them with complimentary oil changes. If the customer sees value in our lifetime engine guarantee, they can take it from there and stay on top of the fuel and cooling system maintenance. Either way, it’s their choice. Regardless of what they decide, the oil changes are always complimentary. Our service team can explain all details and benefits, as well as answer any questions they may have regarding these services. Our team will always keep the customer informed as their vehicle approaches the recommended mileage intervals of these services. It’s that easy to have lifetime peace of mind when the customer buys and services with us, and that peace of mind pays off when it’s time for them to buy a new vehicle. Multi-point Vehicle Inspection Finally, every time the customer’s vehicle is in for a complimentary oil change and tire rotation, we will also perform a multi-point vehicle inspection so we can keep them up to date on the overall condition of their car — brake pad measurements, fluid levels and condition, tire tread depths, condition of hoses and belts, etc. We don’t want them to be blindsided with an unexpected service bill or find themselves stranded along the side of the road because no one was paying attention. We want to be their dealership for life, so we understand we are in this together. The fact of the matter is simple: Vehicles require regular maintenance to keep them running efficiently, dependably and safely. The sooner we both understand the overall condition of their vehicle each time it is in our shop, the better we can help them develop a plan to keep them on the road and manage their transportation dollars. This regular multi-point vehicle inspection allows us to do this. For us, it’s never been about finding service work to sell the customer, but rather about performing the services and repairs they need at competitive prices to keep their ownership experience as affordable and hassle free as possible. That’s our story — it’s who we are why we do what we do. By being the dealership the customer has had constant contact with and has depended on, we build valuable relationships and customers for life.

Published by AutoSuccess c/o Silver Lake Press. View All Articles.

This page can be found at http://epub.silverlakepress.net/article/A+DEALER%E2%80%99S+APPROACH+TO+RETENTION/2787254/409147/article.html.