Transitioning to Social CRM in your Dealership - Digital - Auto Dealer Today
Relationship Between Social Media and SEO social platforms, and that dealers need to think about an SEO and social strategy as one and the same. Bobby Bailey is the manager, Managed Social and Chris Nichols is the. jobs Find your ideal job at SEEK with dealer relationship manager jobs found in All Australia. View all our dealer relationship manager vacancies now. In the future to keep up dealers will have to transition from traditional CRM is about managing your relationships with customers you have.
Social online is not that different from social offline. The highly social individual you meet on the street may talk up a storm, ask a lot of questions and be interested in what you have to say. That same individual exists online, and online this person is often referred to as an influencer. This type of person can influence your business positively or negatively by influencing the people he or she connects with online. A study conducted by Dealer. Of those surveyed, 41 percent saw a post that caused them to consider an additional brand or model when vehicle shopping.
Then, they can begin engaging those customers. There are various tools to help monitor online conversations. If you have only one or two individuals in the dealership monitoring and engaging customers, HootSuite is a robust and inexpensive option which allows you to monitor Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Foursquare, PingFM, WordPress and mixi all from one dashboard.
Some dealerships have begun integrating SCRM by asking their customers to post reviews about their experience at the dealership through various review sites. Some dealers, especially franchise dealers, have been resistant to this early transition into SCRM because they are afraid they are asking the customer to do too much, since the manufacturer already surveys them. By not asking for review, those dealers are missing a huge opportunity to establish a different level of relationships with customers.
As every dealer knows, good data drives good decisions. A great place to begin is determining where your customers are spending their time. You need to be able to tie your customer database back to social networks in some manner. Unfortunately, no one in the automotive space that was interviewed has found a great solution for making this an easy task yet.
Then ask them if they want to join you on Twitter or Facebook. According to Cryder, his process is: Set up a dealership Gmail account most dealers already have if they set up a Google Places account. Delete all data in the file except the fields for customer name and email address, and save the file again. Upload the CSV file into the Gmail address book. Make sure you have your social network sites set up with the dealership Gmail address. This process allowed Cryder to connect with more customers via social networks, but it also allowed him to determine where to spend his time and where to market.
Cryder said this process is a good first step to help determine which social networks to spend time on. For those serious about moving forward on social initiatives, the price is reasonable. Fliptop claims it will find matches for 25 to 50 percent of the email addresses submitted. An added bonus of using Fliptop is the ability to export the data, which can then be imported into your CRM system.
After reviewing the data about where your customers spend their time, you will be faced with a decision.
Are there enough of your customers on each network to warrant spending time on them at this point in time? As Cryder pointed out, a small portion of his customer base was using Twitter, so their time is better spent elsewhere for now. They can always go back and reanalyze the data in another six months and shift their focus if needed.
Once you know where customers are spending time, you need to dig a little deeper and look for two groups of customers. One is your best customers which may be evaluated in terms of dollars spent or frequency of visits and the second group is top influencers. Influencers are those individuals who are usually very active online, are connected to a large number of people and are not shy about talking about those they do business with.
Then look to see if you have any overlap in the two groups. The individuals who fall into both groups are the ones you want as your cheerleaders online. They should be your top-priority customers for SCRM because they can affect your business positively or negatively. If one of these customers is coming to the store for service today, you should want to ensure they have an outstanding experience.
How would you know that? If you connect social media into your CRM, even if it is just to key the links to their social media profiles into a custom field, you could certainly flag those customers as VIP. Since social has the ability to affect every aspect of your customer lifecycle and tackling all aspects of SCRM is likely too much to bite off at once, you need to determine which phase s you want to tackle first and develop a plan.
Creating awareness should be mandatory for every plan. Same for email, social media—everything they use to interact with you should be a part of the customer record.
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Successful CRMs are based around, and [are] robust and flexible enough to fit, the processes that the dealership already has in place.
In other words, it should not be limited to a fixed set of tools or methods. It should be customizable enough to handle any process from the basic operation of customer follow-up all the way to sophisticated multidepartment interaction throughout the entire process of the sale and beyond.
Communication tools both internal and external must be robust and technologically relevant to maximize customer acquisition and retention. A state-of-the-art CRM today should also be about a multitude of options for dealership staff with the least amount of log-ins and the most amount of built-in tools that seamlessly integrate with each other.
In a word, no. And there are many reasons. Not every dealership has a dedicated resource in charge of maintaining the CRM and training employees on new capabilities. Someone who can rally the troops to embrace the power of evolving technology.
I think that most dealerships are utilizing CRM in some way. In my opinion, all dealerships could utilize their solutions to a higher degree.
In most cases, it boils down to time and accountability. We have a tendency to allow ourselves to become burdened with other things than managing activities and holding ourselves and others accountable, which is where our focus needs to be. This lack of focus happens during successful periods when we are busy and profitable. A few years ago, when the industry was struggling, every lead was crucial. Today, as the market continues to make strides, I think that many are not as focused on what they may consider granular items.
There are certainly some dealers who are doing a great job and moving into third- or fourth-level in their CRM usage and process. These stores are at the very high end of the success and profit spectrum. But they would be quick to admit that even they could do even more based on their experience. Social media is a goldmine for data. We can learn vast amounts about our customers through monitoring their social media activity, and we can use that to tailor messages accordingly, using the same channels they prefer.
It is more of an execution question. Social media is an area where there are still a lot of opinions, all of which differ. The reality is that social media is for social—not for business. I believe that some dealers think using social media outlets to broadcast specials, ads, or incentives is less expensive, if not free, and therefore it must be a better return on advertising investment.
I believe that most consumers are not looking to social media for automotive incentives. CRM software is often perceived as difficult to understand and use. What is the general state of staff training on and usage of CRM systems at dealerships — is it sufficient, and if not, what steps can be taken to improve it?
Technology has advanced so much recently, and the user experience is nothing like it used to be. But I believe any dealer would find a good CRM easy to get the hang of. I think that the training that is available industry-wide through CRM providers as a whole is very strong. However, there are many challenges that exist. First, every dealer wants training implemented differently.
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In many cases, they want to use their existing process or, worse, they want reinvent their process during the install. Deciding to do wholesale changes to workflows, templates, or even communication strategy while the trainers are on-site is counterproductive. Anything that detracts from actual CRM training and implementation will confuse your staff and minimize buy-in.