Loyalty reward programs are great, but it seems these days that every business has one. To keep your customers coming back time and time again, it sometimes takes a little ingenuity. Why not host an event to give back to your existing customers and maybe also catch the eye of new ones?
July 12th is the second annual Prime Day, a “holiday” created by Amazon to reward members of their Prime program, which already gives members access to free shipping, streaming movies, and Amazon-exclusive shows. On Prime Day, which is basically a mid-year Cyber Monday, Amazon Prime members can save on products across all categories on their site with timely, exclusive deals popping up throughout the day. This year, they will also be offering countdown deals leading up to Prime Day. If you could host a holiday for your automotive dealership, how would you celebrate with customers?
Many communities do “First Fridays” where all the stores in a town will stay open late and offer special sales and events. Sometimes, this is a regular occurrence in small towns to promote small local businesses and foster a sense of community, and in other places this can be done to tie in with winter holidays. Either way, a shopping event exclusively for existing customers feels like a treat and offers your dealerships a way to reconnect with customers loyal to your automotive brand.
Upscale apparel retailer Nordstrom hosts an annual Holiday party exclusively for customer who spend over a certain number of dollars over the preceding year in the store. While their event is catered and employees and customers dress to the nines, the exclusive party also offers extra points on purchases to encourage retail opportunities that evening.
Some of our automotive associations have hosted live art events at local auto shows and events. They will take a vehicle and have a talented local artist design a mural to be painted directly onto the vehicle! These live art shows have been successful at drawing attention and directing traffic to their booth, as well as tying into a digital contest for extra promotion.
Many breweries, vineyards, and gourmet food stores will offer tastings so customers can not only try their product but also get more of an idea of it can and should be used. Just like a sommelier might recommend food pairings for your merlot, a luxury automotive dealership could offer a test drive event with a special track. Or perhaps a DIY service night where members of your dealership’s service department host tutorials on basic automotive preventative care while customer browse the showroom? This is an event that is both educational and fun for clients, as well as a lighter way to push vehicle offers and automotive care services.
People love to know that their money is going towards a good cause. Sponsoring a charity fund-raiser or hosting a one-day sale where a portion of proceeds go to benefit a local or high-profile charity is a sure-fire hit. This builds rapport with customers by showing that you are engaged with your community, and benefits your bottom line.
One of our associations has worked to support a local children’s hospital by sponsoring charitable events for them and donating a portion of the proceeds from every vehicle sold. This worked to not only benefit the hospital, but was also a success from a sales standpoint for the client. In June, they pledged to donate $50 for every Acura sold as part of a month-long fundraiser for the hospital, along with other local retailers.
A Sales Event is more than just the sales or pricing, it has the opportunity to turn shopping into an event and a unique event is a great way to create a customer experience that is both profitable for you and memorable for the customer.