Experience over price: How to boost brand and dealership loyalty – Bob Lanham | Meta

According to a recent study from Meta, 80% of people who have a good purchase experience are more likely to be loyal to the brand. Today on Inside Automotive, we’re pleased to welcome back Bob Lanham, Head of Automotive Retail for Meta, who dives deeper into Meta’s loyalty research.

Experience over price starts with marketing and the messaging that is presented to customers before they ever set foot in the showroom. For example, Lanham was recently watching his local news station which is flooded with automotive advertising, which is a problem because no consumer will possibly remember the individual messaging from each ad.

Meta research shows, that the number one reason why people stay loyal to the dealership is customer service. Younger generations also have increased rates of loyalty. Boomers are the least loyal, says Lanham. Why is that? From his perspective, the auto industry has trained boomers that buying a car is all about price and haggling. Gen X and Millennials are more loyal, however, Gen Z is the most loyal. Lanham says with this information in mind, auto marketing has to change.

Meta’s study also reveals that 20% of people buy the same make but from a different dealer. This leaves 80% of people whose business can be earned. This stat is particularly interesting because OEMs are vying for more control over the online sales process through national portals. While Lanham doesn’t know what OEMs intend to do with their dealer network, he does know that the first touchpoint for almost every customer is marketing.

Price might generate interest, but customer experience generates loyalty. In fact, Lanham says that the top two reasons consumers visit a dealership’s Facebook page are to read reviews and find out what kind of experience they’ll have.

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