Keep Your Dealers Engaged By Design
Brands are all about people. To connect with people you need to involve them in a more intriguing brand experience – new approaches that surprise, delight and support your customers from sales and marketing to customer service.
Whether requesting a brochure or ordering a spare part, today’s customer expects that little extra – to be made to feel special. Why? Because with so much choice and available information we want reasons to feel good about our buying decisions.
For those brands in direct control of the customer sales and aftermarket experience this means the constant review of each and every touch point that exists within the customer experience and from there delivering relevant and effective brand activity.
You could argue that this is applicable to all brands, which would be true. But there are brands out there that rely on third parties to take their products to market and look after them, it’s here where the nuts holding the wheel in place need to be tightened and regularly checked.
At Greensquare we have over thirteen years experience of working within the construction and agricultural machinery markets. From our close interaction we have built a unique insight into the commercial vehicle manufacturer, dealer and customer relationship.
As a result of our expertise, one particular vehicle client asked us to undertake a dealer branding research project on their behalf. The organisation wanted to know our thoughts on how their unique brand messages were being communicated by their dealers. They also hoped that their dealers would open up to a third party and tell us what they really thought.
A recurring theme emerged during each visit; it was obvious that there were several branding issues that required attention. Somewhere down the line a disconnect had occurred between the dealer and the manufacturer. The net result was a brand that was suffering on the front line.
Our subsequent report highlighted a number of disconnects along with our suggested solutions broken down by short, medium and long term fixes. For example, dealers spoke of the lack of incentives to take their customers around the manufacturer’s production facility. By using the power of design thinking we introduced a unique factory visit experience.
From the physical environment to the interaction between manufacturer and dealer, visitors now receive an engaging and informative experience that reinforces the brand’s heritage, communicates its unique appeal and demonstrates a unity between manufacturer and dealer, which is vital to the success of the customer journey. Through visual and verbal articulation we can expand brand activation by delivering rich and engaging interactions.
For brands and their marketing effort simply delivering sales incentives isn’t enough. Whilst this may motivate the dealer sales person, brands need to think about the entire customer journey. To deliver the desired customer experience the dealer has to be fully signed up to the process.
It’s important to remember that your dealers need to feel special. Stocking your product is one thing but feeling part of something unique and truly remarkable takes time, effort and thought.
Those brands that regularly consult their dealers in relation to their marketing efforts will ultimately be the ones who succeed. It’s a question of constantly reviewing each customer touch point and providing something special. Experiences drive behaviour and all experiences need designing.
As I said at the beginning of this piece, brands are all about people. When we think in terms of the direct customer journey we think of building desire, building relationships and building loyalty, it’s the exact same with dealers.