Making more time for customers

How Dilawri automates customer service through text message.

Dilawri

Who they are

Dilawri Group of Companies has served car buyers in Canada since 1985. It is both a family-owned business and the largest automotive group in Canada, thanks to 67 franchised dealerships located across five provinces. The Dilawri family and more than 3,500 team members offer customers a high quality of customer service and a diverse range of buying options, drawn from 30 automotive brands.

Location

Canada

Industry

Automotive dealerships

Founded

1985

Website

dilawri.ca

The rationale for customer service via text message

For any business, keeping customers informed is crucial to the maintenance of long-term relationships. Auto dealerships with service departments need to be a support to their customers and remind them of upcoming appointments, inform them of the need for routine maintenance, and ensure that they are satisfied with the dealership's level of care.

In the past, phone calls have been the go-to way that dealerships make this kind of contact. It does serve its purpose and enables the dealership to stay connected to the customer, but voice communication is becoming less popular in the digital age. Now, many customers find voice calls more intrusive than other forms, and dealerships are finding that calling each customer is more time-consuming than it needs to be.

Too many messages, too little time

The service representatives at Dilawri were making two kinds of phone calls. The first were what the dealership calls “productive” calls, in that they have the potential to drive more revenue and increase business. These include calls that remind customers of overdue service, inquire about maintenance tasks that the customer had previously refused, or inform the customer of factory recalls. Such calls are critical to keeping customers involved with the dealership, and agents were not having enough time to complete them.

These agents were also busy with “mundane” communications, a category that includes appointment reminders and car pickup notifications as well as feedback invitations. These are not calls that build relationships or directly lead to the booking of a new appointment.

Nevertheless, Dilawri knew that these messages are important to helping customers work auto service into their busy daily lives. No one wanted to get rid of them, but they were taking up a disproportional percentage of agents' time. They were one-way communications that did not directly generate revenue, and they didn't require the expertise of a trained service professional.

"Kimoby enables us to confirm appointments and follow up with customers in less than an hour. That gives us a lot more time to focus on revenue generating calls."

Dhania Sanon, BDC Agent

Dilawri Group of Companies

What they used

Appointment Reminders

Automated reminders and attendance confirmations via text message.

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Automated Messages

Triggered text messages based on workflow rules and customer activity.

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Satisfaction Tracking

Automated customer feedback via text and real time sentiment analysis.

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The solution - Automated service messages via text

To free up more agent hours, Dilawri Group of Companies decided to craft an automated messaging strategy. The company wanted to be able to use text messages to schedule vehicle maintenance and follow-up appointments, send appointment reminders, and confirm appointments. Meanwhile, the same platform would be able to keep customers informed about the status of their vehicle and text service reminders to vehicle owners.

The plan included a collection of text message templates, into which Dilawri would merge the names of customers, the dates and times of appointments, personalized vehicle information, and the company's own contact information. These include:

Hello customer name, the guest experience remains company name’s highest priority, we hope that your last service visit went as expected for your vehicle model. Kindly reply YES or NO regarding your satisfaction. Thank you, company name company phone number.

Hello customer name, just a friendly reminder of your appointment on appointment start date at appointment start time at company name for your vehicle model. Kindly confirm by answering YES to confirm or NO to cancel. Thank you, company name company phone number.

Using a computerized system, the company would be able to send these messages to the intended customers without taking up agents' time.

The benefits - More time for customers

Since introducing these automated text messages, Dilawri agents have noticed a number of significant improvements in their daily workflow. These include:

  • Faster appointment confirmations and follow-ups. Since introducing automated text messages, Dilawri has reduced its time spent on such messages to under an hour, as compared to between 90 minutes and two hours when phone was the only solution.
  • More time spent with customers. Now that agents no longer have to do a one-way job that a computer system can easily accomplish, they have more time to do what they do best – help customers have the best experience possible.
  • More positive interactions with customers. When a dealership calls a customer to confirm or follow up on an appointment, it intrudes on the customer's day. A text message is significantly more convenient in that it allows the customer to reply quickly and without interrupting his or her other activities.

A final word

The customer is and has always been Dilawri Group's highest priority. By automating customer service follow-ups through text message, the company is able to spend more time making sure that it meets each person's needs.

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