11 Tips On Reputation Management For Car Dealers

Henry Ford Reputation

We live in a society that is well connected today. Therefore, businesses cannot afford to remain complacent. It would also be very unrealistic for businesses to assume that they would be able to truly succeed in connecting with customers in order to build their brand without the help of social media and managing their online reputation. Time and again, statistical data has shown that car dealerships that strive to hone their skills in reputation management experience incredible increase in traffic, sales and customer loyalty. The aim of this article is to provide information to car dealers as to how they can build their online reputation and also keep it.

How Can Car Dealerships Build Their Reputation?

If you own a car dealership and have been neglecting to manage its online reputation, then it is time to wake up. This is because reputation management has the potential to improve the bottom line of your business. Moreover, customers definitely do not like to work with car dealerships that have a bad reputation. These are precisely the reasons why you should consider reputation management as part of your business strategy. To build your car dealership’s reputation:

#1: Start with social media platforms such as LinkedIn. You should choose your social media on the basis of number of members the network has and how many of your customers are its members. As a result, you may opt for a modest presence on Facebook and put in a significant amount of effort on forums such as LinkedIn and other industry specific sites that have a business orientation. However, you must keep in mind the fact that whatever you post on these sites will be visible to search engines as well as your customers. You need to, therefore, provide professional content.

#2: When it comes to making reputation management efforts for car dealerships, videos can be used even outside the YouTube. Just getting videos up on YouTube and expecting that they will be ranked and viewed will not work. Effort must be made to promote the videos in multiple locations. Other social media platforms can also play a key role in making the video successful. Whenever you want to post a video, post it in YouTube and also in Facebook. This is because some people prefer to watch videos on Facebook, while some others have more trust on YouTube videos. Either way, they make a good combination.

#3: Always make use of a conversational tone when communicating with your existing as well as future customers. You should never speak in a condescending tone or belittle a customer who is experiencing any kind of problem with your service.

#4: If the content that you provide is only advertisements, then people are likely to block your posts and mark it as spam. You should also include information on new cars, tips on how people can resolve certain common issues and advice as to how they can improve the fuel efficiency of their vehicle by maintaining tires and vehicle weight.

#5: Offer contests and coupon codes in addition to sales information so that customers keep coming back to your website in order to get good deals.

#6: Keep your branding efforts simple. Choose and use the same color palette for your website and content. Make use of a font that is very easy to read. If you are not already using a logo, then use one that is easy to understand. You can even take the next step and trademark your logo and slogan to discourage misuse of your brand.

#7: Ensure that your website follows quality standards. Never leave any part of the website’s directory empty, especially those on help, contacting key personnel, etc. An incomplete website gives the impression that it is simply a new flyer for your business. This can hurt your reputation.

#8: It is equally important to maintain up-to-date information on your website. Customers may not tell you that you have out-dated information on your website, but they will, in all probability, provide bad reviews about your business.

How Can Car Dealerships Manage Their Reputation?

Reputation equals

#9: Car dealers believe that their job ends with the sale of a vehicle. It is not true. Sales and service department staff members in your car dealership should always ask every customer they deal with to leave a review. It is the reviews that help you to stand above your competitors. A recent survey showed that more than 75% of car buyers looked at online dealership reviews and 91% used the ratings of the service departments of dealerships prior to deciding to buy a car.

#10: Constantly monitor the reviews about your dealership provided by customers. Contrary to conventional wisdom, studies show that more than 80% of the online reviews about dealerships are positive. However, negative reviews can really hurt you. You should address negative information as fast as you can. Typically, damage control involves complaint resolution and publicizing the outcome.

Sites to monitor and place reviews include:

Google My Business
BBB
Citysearch
Foursquare
Glassdoor.com
InsiderPages
MerchantCircle
Superpages.com
Yahoo Local
Yellow Pages
Yelp
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest

#11: Always remain honest with all your customers. If something goes wrong, be gracious enough to admit it. In fact, if you show a great deal of transparency in regards your failures, your dealership’s reputation will improve more than what a massive public relations campaign can provide after a disaster. Honesty and transparency will also help you to retain the trust of the customers in your dealership. Remember, if your customers lose their trust, it may not be possible for you to get it back.

Conclusion

Reputation management

In summary  a poor reputation will cost your car dealership a great deal of money in terms of inflated advertising budgets and lost business as you try to deal with the damage. Reputation management is, therefore, extremely important if your goal is to take your car dealership to the next level of performance. Some input in the form of 11 tips has been provided in this article to get you started in reputation management. However, as you work to improve/maintain your reputation, you must remember clearly that a friendly attitude and courtesy in your dealings with customers are essential to get positive reviews from them. The harder your staff members at your car dealership work to make a customer happy, the better your reputation will be irrespective of whether people buy a vehicle from you or not.

February 23, 2015 - Written by

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