3 Steps to Improve Your Dealership’s CRM Today

By: Russ Chandler

Managing customer relationships requires delicacy and tact, and mismanaging can lead to your customers feeling like a number in a crowd, instead of a valued individual. To improve your customer relation management (CRM), you need to target individual customers and avoid treating them as faceless entities there to serve your ends.

Target Individuals with Your CRM

When you make a single customer feel valued and important, they’re more likely to make a purchase and continue to come back in the future. Keeping track of each individual customer’s purchases and information can help you do this.

Follow Time Schedules

If you make an appointment with a customer, try your hardest to keep it. This doesn’t matter if it is a phone call or an in-person interaction. Stay on time and meet the customer’s expectations. If, by any chance you are going to be late to your appointment or need to cancel, let the customer know in a timely fashion, apologize, and offer to reschedule.

Communicate in the Customer’s Preferred Method

With modern technology, there are plenty of ways to get in contact with your customer. To improve CRM, you need to start communicating with customers in their preferred method of communication. If they like email, then email them. If they prefer a phone call, then give them a call. Communicating with their preferred method will show that you’re willing to tailor your approach and relationship to the customer. The customer will look on this favorably.

The Right Message to the Right Person at the Right Time

This sounds simple, but it can be hard to do. You should have detailed contact information for each customer—phone number, email address, home or business address—but knowing which channel to use will depend on the message. You need to identify who is who on the customer end of the relationship, and find out at what stage different people need to be contacted, or if they need to be contacted at all.

For more tips and tricks from the best and brightest in the auto industry, download our ultimate recap of NADA 2014 here.