Our GPS pilot program is ending on a high note! This program, also called the New York Region Lease Retention pilot program, was launched in April 2016 with a brand-new communication strategy for 106 dealerships’ lease-end customers. We implemented a strategy to begin reaching out to these lessees one year out from their lease end, to combat the roughly 40% of lessees we saw defecting when six months were left on their lease.
After working with each individual dealership, consulting on best practices, and working closely with the New York region, we have great results from the two years this pilot program has run. First, we proved that consumers who engage early and more often have higher conversion rates. These customers are guided through their lease-end journey with our email communications and are beginning their shopping journey earlier than most lessees. Second, with the implementation of this program, GPS has positively impacted both the retention to the brand and to the dealerships by focusing on the lease retention process that happens at the dealership. And third, the New York Region sold more cars and outperformed the nation in retention and volume. This is exactly the end result we strived for!
To get the big picture, we looked at brand loyalty data from Polk to determine how the New York region’s lease retention fared over the past two years. If we look at lease-end trends one year before we launched the GPS program, New York usually follows suit with the nation. If the nation takes a dip, we see that New York experiences a similar trend, and so forth. After seeing the full impact of the 12-month strategy, the New York region closed the gap with the national retention rate for the first time in two and half years! With the New York region having the highest lease penetration in the country, this speaks volumes of how our dealerships are connecting and engaging with these customers to ultimately make them life long Toyota customers.
With lease maturities expected to continually increase, we are excited to continue our partnership with the New York region to keep the lease retention trending upwards!
The GPS Program is a new product feature that is now available to add-on to your DSplus product suite. If you would like to learn more about the GPS pilot results and how your dealership can take advantage of this program, please reach out to your Account Executive today!