Re: Lincoln Tries Cheese to Lure Mercedes Buyers to Showrooms
Last time I visited the dual Ford/Lincoln dealer for a recall (abt 1 year ago), I tried to imagine myself as a Lincoln customer instead. First thing to dull the experience, was the service entrance. All vehicles regardless of brand, type, or age, pull up to a large bay door, which (after waiting for someone to notice) opens for you to pull in. You are now presented with cars in various states of repair on one side, and the service counter (from the 80's) on the other side. You wait in line behind Ford customers, and the employees are running back and forth, and the phones are ringing off the hooks. It smells like a service bay of course. You provide your information, and sign the old style printout. From your position at the counter, you can see some of the lifts with mostly Fords being worked on. I didn't wait for my car, but looked at the waiting room, which would have been home at a tire store. You walk back out a side door, and to the parking lot, which has no sidewalks or safe places to walk.
On the return trip to pick up my vehicle, I noticed parking was very scarce, and my wife had to double park to let me out. There are no signs to lead Lincoln owners to exclusive parking, because there wasn't any. I walked back in the service bay, and up a small ramp, where everyone had to pay (or in my case sign) and get your keys. The checkout is a glassed in area with a small pass-through akin to a walk up check cashing facility. Through the glass, You can see the ancient desks and file cabinets cluttered with folders and files as you wait for someone to come to the window and print out the old form on a daisy wheel printer. The attendant slips the printout under the window slot, and after you sign, she tells you to wait outside untill someone drives the vehicle up to you.
What Lincoln should do:
You pull up to the dealer, and right away see the Lincoln name over a drive through roofed area. You get out, the automatic door opens for you, and you walk into a pleasant lobby, and are greeted by a well dressed person, who takes you keys, offers you refreshments, and enters your order via tablet. They promptly hand you keys to your loaner, and walk you out to it. You recieve an e-mail and text when your car is ready, and they ask where an when is a convienient time to drop it off and pick up the loaner.
"It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts."