All the chatter today is about advertising on Facebook and it is some really exciting stuff. However, like we often do in the Automotive space, we become so enamored with the newest most exciting thing that we forget about foundational elements of our business. Automotive dealers should continue to post on Facebook!
Here’s why it is more important than ever! Consumers are not only making decisions about what car to buy but what dealer to buy it from before they ever set foot in a dealership. That’s right they make decisions on who you are and if they want to do business with you all before they ever call you or meet you. 30 years ago when I started in the industry selling cars my boss told me the most critical thing is building rapport. People want to buy from people they like and they like people they can identify and find commonality with. I think that is still one of the most critical things that we can do! If you look at your best sales rep you will see he is the guy that everyone likes and identifies with.
Social media is one of the best ways to do this and connect with customers, even the ones that aren’t your friends on Facebook. The number one thing consumers tell me they use Facebook for in the car purchase process is to find out what the dealer is really all about. That’s right, they go to Facebook and look you up. What are your customers saying in reviews on Facebook? What is the culture of your organization like? Is Facebook going to tell them someone they already know and trust is connected with your Facebook? This is an extension of your brand Mr. Dealer. Who you are, and what you value. If your dealership promotes a culture where employees are encouraged to enjoy what they do and help their customers do that as well wouldn’t you want people to know that! You probably go to great lengths in the dealership to have that environment show through from the way the showroom is set up to how sales people greet and interact with customers.
If you are unconvinced of the importance of this you need to do something today. Look at the traffic to your dealership website and match it up to the traffic to your showroom. No customer is going to your website because they just like looking at cars online. If they are on your website or on your Facebook page they are a real shopper! For every 1 customer that walks into your showroom there are 100s trying to decide if you are “their kind of dealer”. Believe me when I tell you every day there are winners and losers at connecting with consumers, which do you want to be.
So what should you do? Work really hard at having your values and culture resonate for the shopping consumer. That means get involved in social media in that way and if you have someone doing it for you get involved with them, because they can’t do it without you. The most valuable content on social media today is hyper-local/in the moment content! Get your whole organization involved in capturing that. If I were running a dealership today here are some of the things I would do on Facebook:
- Show happy customers with their new cars. Why not take a video of that moment when the customer lays eyes on that beautiful driving machine! It’s never more exciting than that moment when you own it.
- Highlight owner events and employee events. Happy customers, happy employees who love your dealership.
- Show your community involvement not because you are doing it but because of the worthwhile organizations your business has decided to support. Whether you are stuffing back packs full of school supplies or supporting that group that rescues animals and finds them good families. Promote those organizations!
- Videos Videos Videos – we all love the walk around video but what about the video that shows what the delivery process looks like, or better yet what the customer can expect when they come in to shop for a car.
- Testimonials on video are extremely powerful!
- Images and videos of car shows, exciting new vehicles, that 1 in a million trade in that won’t be on the lot long. America has a love affair with cars!
Social media and more importantly Facebook have become a part of our lives. We connect with family and friends, we keep up with what is going on in the world and we get a chance to find out what people and companies are all about before we ever leave the house. If you are not doing this today you are missing out on one of the most important elements of your business and if you think it’s not, think again! Look at the decisions you make in life on where to eat, who to buy from, and what product you want to own and I’ll bet you Facebook probably played a part!
Oh yeah and advertise there too! Great reach, great data and an engaged consumer.
If you want to find out more about the important things to consider from a content, marketing or compliance standpoint, reach out. We can help. Call 877.421.1040.READ MORE >