Customer surveys might not be the first thing you think of for automotive marketing, but an auto shop can really benefit from learning a little more about its customers. Survey responses can help you attract new customers, pinpoint how to improve your services, and learn how to make changes to your marketing strategy to highlight your strengths. The real question is: What makes a great online survey?
Ask yourself: Out of all the survey requests you’ve seen, how many of them have you filled out?
We see requests to fill out surveys so often because the data collected can be invaluable. Surveys, when businesses use them well, collect customer data by asking the right questions in the right way, tailored for your ideal customers. The information you get will be able to improve your marketing strategies, service methods, and customer service efforts, and you will learn more about crossover points between those areas of focus.
That said, you could get very bad data from a poorly written survey. It takes a lot of work and a compelling style to convince your customer to fill out your online marketing survey, and to answer your questions honestly. Here are some tips for creating a better automotive marketing survey:
You want to use a voice that your customers will respond to positively. When you write the copy for your survey questions, and any information or help text you include, it’s important to be engaging and friendly. Use a conversational tone that lightens the mood and makes the task of filling out a survey a little easier, maybe even fun!
More than that, it’s important to speak to your ideal customers directly, not just a broad audience. Ask yourself: Who is filling out this survey? Auto body customers? Exotic car owners? Not sure what a customer Persona is? Read more about automotive buyer Personas here!
It will get easier as you start learning from your surveys. One thing a survey will teach you is how to attract more of the kinds of customers you want, and how to hone your copy for your ideal customers. As you learn, update your survey text to keep your customers engaged.
A survey should teach you about your customers’ experiences and desires. It should give you insights into how they respond to different stages of your automotive services. What initial impression does your auto shop make? How are your automotive technicians interacting customers? Do customers understand the work that is being done on their vehicles?
To that end, it’s a good idea to avoid questions that ask for a specific answer. Leading questions influence the customer by using language that pushes them toward a specific kind of answer, and will work against your automotive marketing survey’s goals.
For example: How great was the automotive technician you worked with?
This question offers evaluation criteria too specific for a valuable answer. This kind of question will either guide your customers toward telling you how their experience relates to the term “great” (rather than giving a more honest, open response) or they will dismiss the question, feeling that it’s trying too hard to manipulate them.
The real guideline here is to keep your questions clear and concise. A clear question will not include any leading language.
Offering even a small benefit for filling out your survey will help with your response numbers. The customer is doing you a huge favor by filling out your survey, so let them know you’re thankful with a coupon or discount on your automotive services! A small token like a gift card to Amazon or a coffee shop can be a motivator as well.
It doesn’t have to be a huge reward, but an offer will not only convince your customers to open the survey in the first place, it will also let them know that you understand they are giving valuable time to fill out your survey.
Your customers should always feel like they are a part of your business story, participating in your growth by going to you for their automotive needs. A business story tells your customers about how your business started, what your vision for the future looks like, and how your values brings something unique to the table.
Want to learn more? Read our detailed look at building a business story for small businesses.
Your business story should inform how you present all of your marketing material to your automotive customers, including your surveys. Try to make your customers feel like the survey is a way of participating. When you ask them to fill out the survey, make sure you communicate how it will be helpful to you, and how it will ultimately help you better serve them in the future. Keep in mind that the fact that you are asking for their opinion about your automotive business shows that you care about them and are making an effort to offer them your best.
Along with an offer, give them a Thank You Page that addresses your appreciation for their effort. On the Thank You page, you can use a Call to Action to bring them to your website. If you have any blogs or news updates about your business, you can link to them as well!
Thanks for reading our tips for how to boost your automotive business with effective surveys. Get in touch to grow your business with automotive online marketing!