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Century old motor dealer supercharges new communications plan

Debbie Hartwell

Automotive dealer group Hartwell Plc has supercharged its communications strategy in the year the established brand celebrates 100 years of business.

With ten sites throughout England, the independent new and used car firm has prioritised customer satisfaction since it was founded in 1919. But fast forward to 2019 and the progressive century-old company has its eyes set on how to maintain those satisfaction levels, during one of the most turbulent times for the motor industry.

Hartwell has invested in a new multichannel marketing automation engine – Force24 – to power more timely, relevant and entirely personalised communications with customers and prospective car buyers. GDPR-compliant marketing campaigns will now be sent to the right individual, at the right time, with a wholly individual message – in only a few clicks. They can then be directed to a microsite with content tailored entirely to their motoring preferences and aftercare needs.

Debbie Reeve-Cook, Hartwell’s head of marketing, said: “The car buying journey has changed beyond recognition, with multiple digital touchpoints now heavily influencing the customer’s decision-making process. We have tried to remain abreast of this evolution, but with technology advancing all the time, we knew we could do even more.

“This couldn’t be to the detriment of efficiency though. We were looking for an automated marketing platform that could really delve into the whole customer journey. We can now create and send highly-targeted, ultra-responsive and fully-compliant emails, with the option to integrate other tools such as SMS when relevant.

“The really exciting part though, is that we can see every recipient’s interaction in granular detail, allowing us to tailor the next stage of that individual’s experience with us.”

Digital insights captured via Force24 are fed through to the sales team, when the time is right to speak directly with a customer, to maximise the chance of lead conversion.

She added: “We know customers are time precious, so we no longer have to waste time getting to the heart of their requirements. The behavioural insight provides this for us.

“The platform is feature-rich but easy to use, and with free user training for life we should have everything we need to power best-practice communications, long into the future.”

 

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