Categorized as Channel Marketing, Customer Experience, Return on Investment, Strategy

Rewards Programs and Brand Activity: The Secret to Dealer Engagement

Sales Performance

In the highly competitive automotive industry, brands strive to capture the attention and loyalty of their shared audience. In a recent examination of historical program data, Channel Fusion analyzed how three brands, each with varying levels of activity – high, moderate, and low – have been targeting the same customer base. The behaviors and outcomes resulting from their strategies have shed light on the importance of rewards programs and brand activity in maximizing dealer engagement and sales performance.

Rewards Program and Dealer Engagement

One key finding from the analysis is the significant impact of rewards programs on dealer engagement and loyalty. The most active brand, which not only implemented a rewards program but also layered promotions over it, experienced an impressive 224% growth in dealer engagement from 2019 to the present. On the other hand, the least active brand, which lacked promotional activities, only saw a modest 45% growth over the same period.


This stark contrast highlights the crucial role of brand activity in maximizing the effectiveness of rewards programs. While rewards programs can undoubtedly aid in fostering engagement and loyalty, they need to be complemented by a proactive and engaging brand presence to achieve their full potential. Dealers respond more positively when a brand is actively involved and offers additional incentives, thereby strengthening the partnership between the brand and dealer.

Rewards Programs and Sales Impact

Brand Sales Volume

Even during challenging times, rewards programs with layered promotions proved to be a game-changer for brands. The most active brand, which continued to invest in its rewards program and strategically implemented promotions, experienced only half the sales loss compared to its competitors. In contrast, the moderately active brand failed to leverage promotions in conjunction with their rewards program, resulting in a more substantial decline in sales.


This observation underscores the transformative power of rewards programs when combined with promotional activities. Such a combination can have a profound impact on driving sales, especially during periods of economic uncertainty. By providing customers with additional incentives and value-added offers, brands and their channel partners can effectively stimulate demand and maintain a competitive edge even in challenging market conditions.

Brand Activity and Dealer Sales Performance

Top Performing Dealer Sales by Brand

Another remarkable correlation was discovered between brand activity in rewards programs and dealer sales performance. Two top dealers selling at least two of these brands consistently sold two to four times more of the most active brand’s product than that of the least active brand’s product. This data suggests that participating dealer location sales can show a remarkable difference when a brand is actively engaged in promoting its rewards program.


When a brand demonstrates a high level of activity and investment in its rewards program, dealers are more motivated to prioritize and promote that brand’s products. This phenomenon speaks volumes about the importance of fostering strong relationships and alignment between brands and their dealers. By actively supporting and incentivizing dealers through engaging rewards programs, brands can create a mutually beneficial partnership that drives sales and boosts market share.


In the fiercely competitive automotive industry, rewards programs coupled with brand activity play a pivotal role in maximizing dealer engagement and sales performance. The Channel Fusion data analysis confirms that the most active brand, with its layered promotions and ongoing rewards program, witnessed a substantial growth in dealer engagement and managed to minimize sales losses during challenging times. These findings highlight the significance of proactively engaging with dealers, implementing promotions, and strategically leveraging rewards programs to create a win-win situation for all parties involved.


As the automotive industry continues to evolve, brands must recognize the potential of rewards programs as a powerful tool to cultivate loyalty, boost sales, and strengthen relationships with dealers. By staying active, innovative, and customer-centric, brands can position themselves as leaders in the market, driving growth and securing a loyal customer base in an increasingly competitive landscape.


About Channel Fusion

For more than 20 years, Channel Fusion has been delivering strategy, customer experience and return on investment outcomes for brands and their channel partners with a wide variety of solutions and industry expertise. We continue to invest in the overall ecosystem of our channel marketing offering to ensure our clients can provide their channel partners with an optimal customer experience to drive results. Our core technologies and connected platform are supported by a team of customer-centric “Fusers.” Let us know if you’d like to learn more about how we deliver desired outcomes for brands and their channel partners.


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