They park a PPC campaign on your dealership name. They use your dealership name in their SEO work. They hijack your Google Places results (just found and undid one of those!). And your Bing. And Yahoo. And so on. All because you’re not watching your digital presence and stopping it.
And you cooperate as theft victim, as well. You push your customers to review you on third-party review sites that sell ad space around your reviewsto your competitors. You pay to drive your customers to online inventory sites that lead shoppers off to other offers. And I’ve even seen links within a dealer’s Internet Autoresponder that invite customers to visit these sites to get stolen by competitors! In one particular case, a dealer’s Autoresponder was sending the shopper to a review site where they had 2-star reviews…
And this is all before these other competing dealers make any honest effort to reach out via a marketing campaign to conquer your customers in your area. And perhaps you help, as well, by not reaching out to your sold customers to get them in to your service drive—and your competitor has a strong customer retention program that keeps them once they get them.
So grab your Google Places, Yahoo, Bing, etc. Get ready for Google’s new “+1” strategy. Protect your dealership name with trademark and/or vigorous efforts as you can, plus SEO/PPC efforts of your own and (perhaps) a letter or two from a lawyer. Give great customer service and get great reviews from your customers in both sales and service. Get your sold customers in to your service drive. Set up a great customer retention program.
And stop being a victim of Grand Theft Auto - Customer!