Whether you’re the Service Director or the GM, you know how vital the service department can be to the overall health to your dealership. The service department is often the largest source of revenue for a dealership, and yet, it often falls by the wayside when it comes to advertising. If that’s true for you, or if you need to build your service department, you’re in the right place. At D2D, we know how important fixed ops is, and we have some tips for a service department advertising strategy.
If you can, it’s a great idea to enlist the services of a service only BDC. Now, this might sound like a lot, and chances are your resources are limited, but this doesn’t need to be a whole department. Often one person can do the trick. You’ll want this person to be reaching out to customers in your CRM to schedule appointments and fill your bays! Which brings me to the next tip…
Utilizing your Service CRM
If you have a designated person to work the service department CRM, that is great! You’ll want to make sure they are calling and emailing to schedule appointments with anyone due for service or sold but never serviced. If your automotive advertising agency offers Database Marketing, get your service emails int the mix. Customers love professional emails with timely offers that give them a reason to come in to your shop. It’s also a great idea to implement some conquest email marketing to capture potential service customers. We can talk more about that one later.
Don’t Be Afraid to Advertise
As I mentioned earlier, service department advertising so often goes under the radar if at all. It’s time to add it to the marketing mix! A good service advertising plan can help fill your shop during slow times and keep new customers coming in all year. Some effective ways to advertise your service department include mailers, conquest emails, service search retargeting, and social media.
As with any dealership advertising, it’s important to strategize. The GM, Service Director/Manager should sit down every month and determine what the plan will be for the following month. Will you run a new special? Will you send out some emails regarding winter car maintenance? Dealers spend a great deal of time strategizing car sales, so the same should be spent on service. At D2D, we meet with service managers all the time to determine specials and tactics each month.
Ideally, you want to make sure you have the right amount of techs available to handle the business you have or the business you’re looking for. This can be tricky for some dealerships depending on brand and location. Start the hiring process early, so you’re prepared! This can help promote a good customer experience, and lead to more repeat business.
Collect your Stars
On Google, that is. Good service reviews are vital for any dealership’s shop. Encourage happy customers to leave reviews. Those who have been coming since they first purchased their vehicle, or even five vehicles ago, are your ticket! Don’t be afraid to ask for a review. Of course, as with any service department, there will always be negative reviews. Make sure you address them online and take care of the customer in any way you can. Often, the customer just wants to be heard. They might still come back if they see you took the time to help them out. It also helps when potential customers see you care by responding online.
Don’t let your service department go unmarketed anymore! The beginning of the year is a great time to start ramping of your service department to get those customers coming back all year. So, call your agency and start strategizing! For help with your service department, give us a call today at 877-958-4524 or contact us today.
Christine has spent the last 13 years strategizing, executing, and optimizing digital campaigns. She is certified in a variety of digital tactics including SEO, SEM, Social Media, Display Advertising, Email Marketing and Mobile Advertising and has been published several times on PRDaily.com. She has hosted digital trainings, been a guest lecturer for Graduate classes, and has spoken at the Digital Dealer conference. Outside of the office, Christine is a roller derby coach and also teaches Digital Marketing at William Paterson University.
For more information on how D2D can help, feel free to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org