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Are customers buying (your) product or (your) brand?

boost blog #6

It pays to think about what you are selling. Yes, you are selling cars, but you representing a vehicle brand, or multiple brands and hopefully selling your brand as well.

If you are selling your brand, what is it exactly that you are selling?

More importantly what are customers buying. A car from their local dealer? A cheaper Hyundai from their local dealer? Are they buying a Hyundai* from Maclean motors? Hopefully they are buying a Hyundai from a dealer they trust, that has a great reputation (that they have read about and heard about) and that puts their customer's first with their 6 point customer pledge.

Simply put, your brand is your promise to your customer. It tells them what they can expect from your products and services, and it differentiates your offering from your competitors. Your brand is derived from who you are, who you want to be and who people perceive you to be.

As we edge increasingly towards an online buying process it becomes more important than ever that you and your team are able to clearly articulate what your dealerships stand for. We haven’t seen the kind of disruption yet that comes when a go-to site like or comes to New Zealand, although we are close with TradeMe.

These sites remove another step of personal interaction in the sales process, which from a customer's point of view is usually a bonus. Dealers however need to work harder to differentiate themselves during the remaining parts of the sales process to prevent a chase to the bottom.

Be ready to answer the question, ‘Why should we buy a car from you?”

To build your brand is not easy. Your brand should be amplified in every transaction, touchpoint and social media comment that you make. Your staff should understand and be able to explain your point of difference, as well as being proud in what you are working to maintain. Beware of hollow promises and empty words. People trust people. Brands don’t need more ads. They need more people sharing them in trusted contexts.

Its too easy to fall into the trap of offering deals online to get extra sales, but in reality all you have done is dropped the starting point for negotiation.

This article is useful to help you define your brand, or of course you could employ someone like Boost Auto to help.

Lastly, dealerships that are able to clearly articulate their brand (throughout their business) are likely to get higher CSI and NPS results. Why? I will leave that one hanging for you to think about.

Defining your brand? What to focus on:

  1. Differentiating your business – why are you different?

  2. Looking after your customers at every touchpoint.

  3. Delivering best value and service every time.

  4. Treating customers as valued individuals.

  5. Understanding your customers and the process they go through in buying and servicing a car.

  6. Removing the process steps which you think you need – which are not customer friendly.

  7. The value you add.

  8. Lastly, beware. Don’t confuse value with low price.

*Insert any brand here

Boost Auto works almost exclusively in the automotive environment, helping distributors and dealers improve their effectiveness and efficiency, through sales, marketing and workflow improvements. If you have a business pain point call us or email us for an informal no obligation discussion to see how we can help you (or how might we achieve more sales without spending more money....).

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