In case you haven’t heard, social has a new meaning these days. Our communities have branched out into the digital world, but the need to create lasting relationships
with them is one thing that hasn’t changed. As a dealership business in today’s world, the marketing questions seem to be: “What is the best way to reach out to my community? Can social media offer a means of creating lasting relationships with people around me? How can I capture and convert leads by using social media?”
Recent arguments have been presented claiming that social media, used as a marketing technique for car dealerships, is unproductive. Many people are saying, “Nobody shops for cars on social media.”
However, knowing that Facebook, Twitter and other venues are the primary way that people connect in today’s world, shouldn’t social media be exploited as a means to create a presence in our communities? An excellent tool to begin is by using social media to drive customers to an engaging landing page.
A recent study shows that Facebook alone has nearly 1.4 billion users worldwide. Additionally, the average Facebook user will spend up to 15 hours and 33 minutes on Facebook every month¹. With this incredible amount of traffic, car dealerships who want to cut social networking out of their business plans might want to think again.
Lead capture is critical in car sales, and social media can make this job easier and more inventive. One way to get lead capture is to offer an instant gain for people who will come to your dealership. For example: a free gift given with every test drive, a free oil change for every scheduled appointment or a free hot dog for every visitor. Promoted through social media, these offers can really work by making you stand out from the competition.
Another method is to use social media to gather qualified buyers through lead conversion techniques. There are many options here, but some of the most common are pop up dealership coupons, a plug-in tool that gives instant trade-in calculation, a widget for online applications and a capture tool for people who leave your website to force them to take a second look at you. These are tools that are proven to work.
Reputation management is still best handled through social media. By encouraging satisfied customers to leave you positive reviews, you can go a long way towards establishing a stellar reputation. When you do receive constructive criticism, use it as a helpful tool to make changes to improve your business. Having an internal contest among your employees to see who can gather the most “5 star reviews” during a certain time period is a great way to generate great reviews from satisfied customers.
Focusing on these marketing techniques to incorporate leads helps you establish a solid social presence that works. Social platforms offer a convenient way to reach out to your community, and, if utilized well, can give your business a means of building relationships with the people around you. Social media can give your business a heart and even a sense of humor that people may otherwise not associate with a car dealership. Connecting on an emotional level builds better relationships. Social media, done right, really does help auto businesses work better.
We may live in a more complicated time, but the importance of finding a way to make your business stand out from the dealership down the street will always be a priority. And the best way to do that will always be connecting with the people around you by meeting them where they’re at—on a social site.