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Well, according to a recent interview in Automotive News, North American chief for Mazda, Masahiro Moro, thinks it is… However, in the article he states that there’s a difference between 2 percent and a “good” 2 percent, which mainly ties back into higher transaction prices and lower incentives. With a better customer experience, Moro feels Mazda can lower vehicle inventories and increase dealership profitability.
Of course, that’s not his ultimate goal. Mazda has seen brand loyalty grow from 30 percent in 2011, to 39 percent in 2016 – and that’s just the beginning. Moro would ultimately like to see it surpass 50 percent, but his current focus is on small milestones along the way, his ultimate goal being Mazda having the highest brand loyalty in the industry.
While certainly an admirable goal, it’s a steep hill to climb given Mazda’s limited models. That being said, he has the right idea… one which applies to any business seeking to increase customer loyalty, revenue or retention -- and that is small steps. Setting any goal too high without a plan to accomplish it can overwhelm employees and will more than likely fail.
However, don’t misunderstand me, knowing the destination is important. But, if you don’t know how you’re going to get there, and lack plans for each stage, it will be hard to accomplish. Society is constantly changing, as are your customers. What may work to improve customer loyalty and retention today, may look different five years from now.
It would be great if we could all simply make a business plan that played itself out to completion -- but life intervenes. So keep your mind open, your ears to the wall and eyes on the prize and be willing to change and adapt when and if it’s necessary. You’ll find that perhaps that 2 percent IS really enough… for the moment.