Never Stop Building Your Dealership Brand | ADI Agency
Never Stop Building Your Dealership Brand
Like everything else about your dealership, your brand awareness is constantly evolving. Or, maybe we should say revolving. Why? Because the need to proactively increase awareness of your brand never goes away. And successfully marketing your business is a cycle that never ends. Around and around and around they go.
In order to grow your dealership, you need to grow your marketing audience as well as nourish existing customer relationships. Dealership brand awareness is the first step on every buyer’s journey, so in order to constantly reach new prospects, you must constantly introduce your brand to new people.
As a truck or heavy equipment dealer, that’s a little more complex because you have to consider two types of branding – your own business dealership brand plus associating yourself with the OEM brands you sell. That way, if someone who has never heard of your dealership is searching for a particular brand of truck or loader, their search results will reveal your dealership as the source for whatever they want. Dual branding introduces you to a quality new prospect.
Conversely, if someone knows and trusts your dealership brand, they are more likely to seek you out for guidance in choosing a machine. Now you can introduce them to the brands you sell.
Brand awareness is a continuum
Branding doesn’t end once someone learns your name. It is a continuous process, just like the buying journey. Name familiarity alone won’t sell machinery or services, so awareness is just the beginning. It opens the door for you to engage with this prospect, using your targeted marketing efforts to convert them into a lead. From there you can teach them more and more about who you are, what you sell, and why you should be their preferred brand when it’s time to buy.
Once you’ve transformed them into a customer, building brand awareness continues. Do they know you have rentals? Do they know about your value-added services such as extended equipment warranties? Increasing their awareness of everything your dealership has to offer strengthens your brand in their eyes. You are The Resource for all their needs. That builds loyalty.
Ultimately, customers who are most loyal to your dealership brand will become advocates. They are committed to doing business with you and only you, but beyond that, they will commit themselves to encourage others to connect with your brand, through social media sharing, etc.
Keeping the circle spinning
In order to elevate brand awareness to the next level, and then the next – building your way to loyal customers-for-life — you have to take proactive steps. If you don’t, the circle will stop spinning. As a B2B business, here are some things your dealership can do to keep building your dealership brand:
- Remember that trust is key at every stage. For prospects just learning about you, the fact that your website and blog provide a wealth of helpful, pertinent information builds trust as well as credibility. For existing customers, the fact that you continue to target them with useful emails and other communications proves you know them as a business and you’re actively working to help them succeed.
- Show your human side. A Sprout Social study from 2017 shows that the traits consumers most wanted to see in a business were honesty (86%), friendliness (83%), and sense of humor (72%). You can be “you” and still be professional – in fact, these statistics prove that humanizing your dealership is critical to building a brand that attracts interest and loyalty. Prospects have certain expectations about the products and services your dealership sells, but they won’t choose you if they don’t like you.
- Take full advantage of social media. Everybody’s doing it, as the saying goes, and if your dealership isn’t an active part of the mix, you will never – ever – reach your full share of valuable prospects. Share is the operative word, because the more you share your branded content socially, the more you will increase brand awareness. And every time someone else shares your content, it builds trust as well as awareness.
Once you recognize that building your brand is an ongoing cycle, you can transform that knowledge into an upward spiral – building your business along the way.