Back in March when the coronavirus pandemic was beginning to intensify, Ally Financial rolled out a relief package for its consumer contract holders that included the option of deferring payments for as long as 120 days.
On Wednesday, Ally Financial unveiled a package of seven initiatives intended to help dealerships in their efforts to return to business safely as they sort through the impacts of COVID-19.
Ally’s suite of new offerings includes:
• A set of free, customizable templates for Facebook and Instagram posts, including artwork. The posts may evolve based on changing COVID-19 needs. Some topics for the posts include new-car buying, maintaining a clean dealership, caring for employees, thanking first responders and frontline workers. Additionally, Ally can review a dealer’s social media presence and make suggestions on how to better connect with customers through social properties.
• A turnkey email campaign template that dealers can use to reconnect with customers. Key messages could include dealership incentives, profiles of local volunteers and philanthropic efforts by the dealership, and sanitation protocols taken to keep customers safe.
• Using Ally social channels to highlight charitable dealership work to help drive customer engagement and raise awareness for local organizations.
• F&I product descriptions, videos and digital brochures to help dealers educate consumers during the online buying experience.
• A grand re-opening kit that includes a variety of items that help dealers let customers know the dealership is safely open for business. The kit would include items such as decals that help remind customers to stay six feet apart, signs about hand washing, sanitizing wipes for cars and desks, and individually wrapped pens for customers.
• Donations on behalf of dealerships to support local community food resources. The donation can be done in a lump sum to the charity, a virtual test drive format or tied to a food drive at the dealership.
• Free virtual classes for dealership employees focused on topics dealers are working through as they get back to work. About 400 people participated in recent, virtual expense management classes. Several auto and F&I sales and management classes are available.
“The pandemic has created significant complications for dealerships that the industry has never experienced before. Ally’s goal is to help dealerships drive customer engagement and increase traffic to their websites while also helping dealerships stay safe as they get back to work,” Ally chief marketing and public relations officer Andrea Brimmer said in a news release.
Ally indicated the social media programs and virtual classes are currently available to dealers. The other activities will be available in the coming weeks.
All dealers who work with Ally are eligible to participate in the activities. The company said dealers should contact their local account executive with questions.
“This packet of services provides grass-roots solutions that help dealers kickstart their businesses,” Brimmer said. “It’s part of our commitment to doing right by our dealer customers and remaining focused on helping them find ways to rise from the hardships facing the entire industry.”