DATA Technology Fuels Customer Relationship Management in the
Competition in the automobile industry is more intense than ever before. Auto makers have to fight for more share of garage with fewer marketing dollars. And auto shoppers are more demanding and savvy than ever before.
Thanks to the Internet, auto shoppers expect the manufacturer or dealer, whether they sell or lease a new or pre-owned vehicle, will provide personalized service and attend to their individual needs and preferences. Customers and prospects use 'Net search and content engines, auto chat rooms and sites such as the Kelly Blue Book, Edmunds.com and MS Car Point to search for the best values and understand as much as possible about their prospective vehicle before they enter the dealer's showroom.
How can dealers and manufacturers meet these expectations?
Dealers and manufacturers need to communicate with each other—and with the customer —through relevant and timely communications that demonstrate they understand a customer's needs.
This can be achieved through Customer Relationship Management (CRM). Using powerful technology, CRM enables an enterprise to deploy information to any location that can connect to the Internet, and predict when someone is about ready to make a purchase.
Customer Relationship Management Principles
To fully appreciate how CRM can benefit an enterprise, we need to understand the underlying principles.
Collaborate with your customers. Encourage customers and prospects to provide you with their preferences and timelines, by asking them what would make them happy, save them time and make things more convenient.
Manage customers. This means making the customer's life more convenient by sending out timely and relevant communications that show you remember what they've told you. It also means insuring that the same customer information exists and can be readily updated in all the places where the customer comes in contact with the company.
Get permission to market to customers. In today's privacy environment you need to seek customer permission and acceptance. Once it is given, use it wisely.