Sunday, August 30, 2009

The Dealer Principle! Part 1

The problem with Dealerships is Trust. Customers have a sense of wonder and excitement in their hearts most of the time they come to purchase an automobile from the new car dealership. Many customers dream of that new Mustang on the showroom floor. They fantasize about the roar of the engine starting and revving up by pressing the accelerator. Our customers begin to lose trust in us about the time they enter our establishments. They want to love us as much as they love thier cars. Our process sets the tone for one of trust or one of deception.

The generations of the fifties and sixties surf music set the tone for our love of the auto industry. That baby boomer generation is still around. They may be migrating towards the greener pastures now, but make no mistake they are still around today. That generation and their kids and grandkids are more and more knowledgeable about cars, computers and the environment. They certainly do understand how to Google a car dealership and find out any and everything about the store. They know the invoice, the sticker price and what their next door neighbor paid for the car. They most likely are an educated consumer. If they are not educated, they know someone who is educated.

This is the best customer we can have. A customer who knows the business and understands what we do. However, this customer is not one who accepts anything but the ultimate in customer service. This customer wants to be treated like a customer who is making an investment in our dealership. They are making their largest or second largest investment in their lives and they should be treated this way.

We must respect the customer for their knowledge and their choice to purchase from your dealership. Remember the customer has choices today. They can buy from you, or not. Even The New General Motors has dealerships just a few miles away. If the next dealership is too far to drive, well the customer will just purchase at Ford, Audi, Honda, Toyota or another brand.

The dealership industry is revolutionizing itself right now. Customers can even purchase cars On-Line. Some forward thinking manufactures are developing new model for auto sales and delivery. Car dealerships must covet the trust of the customer and keep it in a sacred spot. Once it is lost, that trust is hard if ever to regain.

To learn more about customer RETENTION please give us a call at 205.358.8717

(Next week, how to over come the trust issue)

Steve Shaw
M5™ Management Services

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