1. Video emails. “Video emails are very effective tools with both prospects and existing customers,” said Cheryl Pabich of ARI. “When a customer purchases a bike, take the follow-up process up a notch and email them a video of your team thanking them for choosing your dealership. If you have not yet made the sale, entice them with one showing the unit is waiting for them to pick it up.”
2. Appreciation baskets and towers. “People always appreciate receiving a basket or tower of sweet and salty treats — especially when it’s completely unexpected and not associated with a special occasion, such as a birthday. This kind of gesture stands the test of time. And remember to include a hand-written note, when possible,” Pabich advised.
3. Savings certificates or coupons with every order shipped. “Include a discount certificate or coupon for a future online or in-store purchase with every online order of parts, accessories and garments you ship. If you want to promote a new item, you can either feature product information and image on the savings certificate, or on a separate postcard, for example,” Pabich recommended.
4. Personalized birthday and holiday cards. “Sending customers a birthday card signed by the salesperson who took care of them is a great way to reach out,” Pabich said. “Rather than sending out the typical pre-printed holiday card, consider sending one that shows a picture of your entire team.”
5. Customer appreciation days. “Once or twice a year, throw a casual party with food, drinks and drawings. Offer attendees special discounts on future purchases online and in-store. It’s a great way to say ‘Thanks for your business,’” Pabich said.
6. Email and text SMS. “Email and Text SMS is the number one way to touch your customers in today’s market,” said Freddy Tedesco of Traffic Log Pro. “These forms of communication can be used to manually send one-on-one messages, generate mass email, or SMS texts through an e-newsletter or text campaign or create triggered events in your dealership CRM system to specifically target your pre- and post-purchase customers.”
7. Phone calls. “Experienced sales people have been practicing this method for decades: hitting the phones hard every day,” Tedesco said. “Reaching out to follow up with every customer will tremendously increase a dealer’s opportunities. The more calls you make, the more ‘no’s you burn through, the faster you will get to the ‘yes’ customer to earn that sale.”
8. Follow-up surveys. “Having a dealership call center reaching out to the customer is going to provide customer-generated, unbiased feedback on how your dealership is performing where it really counts — in the mind of the customer,” Tedesco explained. “This will ultimately uncover any loopholes at the dealership so you can correct them and increase the potential for generating more revenue.”
9. Billboards and TV ads. “Billboards and television ads are another great way to make sure your dealership is touching your local community, driving more business through the front doors,” Tedesco recommended.
10. Everyone says hello to all. “We put into practice Customer Relations 101, which has given our dealership a longtime reputation as ‘friendly,’” said Alysan Azman of Sheitan Motorsports. “Every person on staff says ‘hello’ to every customer they see. We make our customers feel welcome — every time they come into our dealership — not only when they make a major purchase.”