When’s the last time you had a solid, worthwhile conversation with each of your vendors? It’s something worth thinking about. If nothing else, recent events may have spurred some conversations and forced dealerships of all shapes and sizes around the country to take a closer look at some of their vendors.
Vendors will likely be held to higher standards moving forward and for good reason. Too many times vendors become like the local handyman to dealerships, with the plain spoken thought of ‘I got a guy’ turned to ‘I got a company.’ Being a trusted vendor is a privilege that does need to be earned continually and two key factors to being trusted are transparency and communication.
Marketing can be a gray area many times for a good reason, measurement.
Are you able to positively identify which of your marketing outlets are performing compared to those that may be underperforming? One of our biggest priorities at AutoSweet is just that, monitoring which channels are over performing/underperforming for our dealers, prioritizing those and communicating that back to the dealer. We do that a few different ways, the first is having information available at a high level in our 24/7 dashboard but that’s not where we stop. We have each online marketing channel broken out separately (i.e. Google Dynamic Search, Facebook, Conquest Email Marketing, Craigslist, etc.) to show the aspects that matter most to each individual dealership. The second way we communicate marketing value to dealerships is through regularly scheduled touch base phone calls with each one.
It should not take a pandemic to get your vendor on the phone to strategize or to review results. You’re likely reevaluating each of your vendors during this unprecedented time. Speaking of which, what is your message as we come out of this historic event?