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Putting the car customer first in email communications

Jeremy Evans

Email is a car customer’s favoured method of communication from a dealer, but the personal touch is vital, Jeremy Evans, managing director of Marketing Delivery, told delegates at the AM Digital Dealer Conference.

Marketing Delivery, which runs eCRM and social media campaigns on behalf of some 200 dealers nationwide, has found consumers will respond to emails if the event is relevant, with some dealers undertaking six or seven touchpoints during the service reminder process and bookings being made about two months after the first communication.

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Sent between a new car order and delivery, emails keep customers informed and help establish a relationship. Emailing information on service plans or finance options with links to the dealer website typically results in a third of those who open clicking on the link for accessories for their new car, providing upsell opportunities.

Even people who did not convert following an initial inquiry often respond to follow-up emails, said Evans: “It shows we are taking you seriously and we value your enquiry.”

According to Marketing Delivery’s analysis, based on 2,000 sales enquiries over three weeks, of those that convert, 31.3% had an email address and were actively contacted compared with 16.1% who did not provide an email address against an overall conversion rate of 25.4% and an email capture rate of 61.7%. In the ownership cycle, 28% prefer email communication.

Evans said: “The data is there, make it work for you. You can keep going but you need the data in order to dictate the message which goes out.”

The most successful campaigns work in conjunction with the contact centre and emails must always be mobile optimised.

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