Beyond Ratings: How Reputation Management Drives Customer Satisfaction

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Even if your dealership has some of the best automotive marketing solutions in the industry, there’s another force at play that can help or hinder your store’s success—your customers. Depending on the customer satisfaction your staff are providing, your customers can greatly affect your dealership’s reputation through public perception.

Having the right reputation management strategy in place for your store can help boost your customer satisfaction index, meaning happier customers that not only return for sales and service but also become promoters for your business as well.

Elevate Customer Satisfaction with Expert Reputation Management

What Is Reputation Management?

For automotive dealerships, reputation management is the process of monitoring, influencing, and shaping the public perception of your brand. This includes managing online reviews, responding to customer feedback, and addressing negative publicity.

Your reputation management strategy can have a significant impact on your bottom line. According to a Local Consumer Review Survey conducted by Brightlocal, 46% of consumers feel that online business reviews are as trustworthy as personal recommendations from friends or family. That’s a lot of weight on online reviews! Having a reputation management plan in place can help your store use these reviews to your advantage—and address the negative ones you may receive to build trust and brand authenticity.

Smart Ways to Strengthen Your Dealership Reputation

1. Follow Up

Reach out to customers who visit for sales appointments (whether they purchase or not) and find out if there’s anything else you can do to help them make a decision, make their experience exceptional, or assist them through the process—keeping your communications genuine rather than heavily sales-focused or inauthentic.

Contact customers following a sale to discover if they are satisfied with their purchase or lease. Ask if there are any questions you can answer for them or features you can demonstrate or explain to them.

Don’t forget your service customers—follow up with them after their service appointment to find out if they are satisfied with the way their service appointment went. Is their vehicle performing as they’d expect? Do they have questions about any declined repairs? Do they know when their next service milestone should be and what it includes?

2. Send Satisfaction Surveys

As you conduct customer follow-up, include customer satisfaction surveys in your reputation management toolkit. Some customers may be reluctant to respond to phone follow-up communications, but may provide more detailed information and opinions in an email satisfaction survey.

Gathering this info is key to gauging true customer satisfaction and helping remedy any poor experiences. Be sure to contact these customers by phone and/or one-to-one email messages from the sales associate, service advisor, or dealership manager to find out what you can do to turn their poor experience into a better one.

Keeping up with your follow-up and survey results is crucial, so having a reputation management tool that automates this process can help your team save time while tracking and reviewing survey results and CSI. With tailored, timely marketing communications and results-based follow-up, you can ensure every customer is contacted and responses are captured.

3. Monitor Social Media

Many people find social media to be the perfect outlet for expressing their opinions and experiences—this includes your customers as well. If you call or email your sales and service customers and don’t uncover any issues but later find a negative review or comment on your dealership’s social media page, this offers an opportunity for your store’s reputation management.

Reach out to any customers leaving negative comments or reviews as soon as possible via a professional and authentic response online as well as through email and/or phone. This can help boost customer satisfaction by elevating their experience with your dealership, and they may edit or remove their comments or reviews (but don’t push them to do so). Build trustworthiness by focusing on genuine customer communications.

Build a Better Reputation with the Right Tools

Don’t let negative ratings put a dent in your dealership’s reputation. Add our industry-leading solutions to your reputation management tools to help you manage customer follow-up communications, track customer satisfaction survey results, and drive CSI scores. Contact us today for your live demo.

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