In most metropolitan areas, there are typically a few dealerships of the same OEM that customers can choose when purchasing a vehicle. For instance, if I were to consider buying a Ford around the Tampa, Florida area where I live, I would have five Ford dealerships within a reasonable driving distance to choose from. When a customer is presented with multiple purchasing options, they are going to ask themselves “Which dealership should I go to?”
This question shouldn’t be surprising to anyone experienced in the retail automotive industry. Most dealerships heavily advertise their dealership via traditional and digital media –all trying to capture potential customers’ attention away from other dealerships in their area. The common advertising messages I am seeing right now are a new low price here, financing incentives there, and discounts, discounts, discounts! Though I agree that price and discounts do get consumer attention, I feel the public is now conditioned to seeing most dealers advertising deep discounts and showing their most aggressive prices. Additionally, people feel the dealerships are still making a bucket of money. This is especially true in our pandemic economy, as customers have been flooded with messages of historic discounts both in and outside of the automotive industry. So, if customers are getting lost and confused in the noise of deep discounts, what makes YOUR dealership stand out? Why should they buy their vehicle FROM YOU? If you are struggling to come up with a powerful message to the question, you may want to give great consideration to developing a Why Buy Message.
Why Should I Buy From You?
A solid Why Buy Message is a statement or value-add that separates you from the typical vehicle transaction. A great example of a Why Buy Message is on the CarMax website. From their home page, to their about us page, and throughout their website, you can see the following messaging:
- “The way it should be”
- “See cars in your budget”
- “Get your test drive delivered (no obligation to buy unless you love it)”
- “95% of customers recommend buying from us”
- “Only the best wear our sticker”
- “No haggling and no pressure, ever”
- “7-day money-back guarantee”
Did you notice there was no mention of finance rates or deep discounts in their messaging? Pricing shouldn’t be the main advertising message used to convince a customer why they should buy from you, because anyone can discount or undercut a vehicle. A Why Buy Message should highlight all the things other dealerships won’t do for their customers.
CarMax isn’t the only model out there with a tailored Why Buy Message. Other dealerships offer great Why Buy Messages too. Some examples I have seen include:
- “Lifetime Powertrain Warranty”
- “Free Carwashes”
- “2-year free maintenance”
- “Free Oil Changes”
- “Free Loaner Vehicles”
- “Family Owned Since…”
- “Community Involvement”
- “Customer Satisfaction Results”
- “List of Awards”
How To Build Your Own Why Buy Message
I recommend your dealership personnel gather to brainstorm what you can offer through your Why Buy Message. To get the ball rolling, I suggest sending out the following discussion points beforehand to get their minds thinking about the business and what makes it different from the store down the street.
What makes your dealership special?
What are the other same-brand stores in our marketplace offering?
What are some other Why Buy Messages in our market?
If you have only one shot at getting a customer to see you, what could you offer them that other dealerships won’t or don’t?
What are you going to say and do to convince the customer that you should be their first choice to visit when buying a vehicle?
After generating your list, it is important to see if these topics are truly unique in your area. To accomplish this, I also recommend that you visit other well-respected dealer websites to see what their Why Buy Messages are. You will find great ideas from others who spent countless hours of time developing theirs.
Become a Leader in Your Area
On average, according to the 2019 Cox Automotive Car Buyer Journey study, car buyers who purchased from a dealership visited 2.3 dealers before making their purchase. Put yourself in the customer’s shoes. If they have five like-brand dealerships near them to buy from, which will they choose? Yes, they may check them all out via the web, but all will be eliminated by the dealership that has a Why Buy Message that is strong and adds additional value.