Car Dealers Can Avoid Failing with Social Media.

Effective social media is based on having great things to say.

We know that your ultimate goal is to sell more cars, but that’s not how you start out. You start out by showing you are by far the best people to buy a car from.

You wouldn’t propose on a first date or walk into a networking event and start selling the deal of the month before you have even taken your coat off. You get to know the people you are speaking with and they get to know you. And that’s how social media works.

Establishing you as the go to person for one of the biggest purchases many of us make after our home and pension.

That may sound like a lot of effort, but then selling always has been.

We do it to get more traffic to our website and ultimately our showroom. We do it to build trust with people long before they are ready to make a purchase. We do it to make sure your happy customers remember to refer you to their friends and family.

Here are the five most common mistakes I see from all types of firm, but especially car dealers.

Showering me with your stock list

If I have bought a car from you, the last thing I want to see is a long stream of more cars to buy. If I’m no longer looking and that’s all you post, I’ll switch off and potentially stop following you.

By all means share great deals or special offers. But that should only make up a small part of your posts. I’m happy to see one or two product pushes a week, after that, you’re just cluttering my timeline.

Only copying and pasting other people’s content 

If I want to see what a specific car brand has to say, I will probably follow them. Again, by all means share what a manufacturer has to say if it’s a big deal, but don’t become over-reliant on this.

When you do share other people’s content add some value to it by saying why it’s a big deal. For example, “I think this announcement from Kia is great, click here to read our blog and find out why ….”

Only talking about yourself

The fact that you are the only Land Rover dealer for 50 miles or that you have been in business since the sixties is great. But they aren’t really compelling reasons for me to do business with you.

Show me what your customers say about you or show me some pictures of them collecting their new car. Link to reviews that have been written about you on your Facebook page.

Show me how often you answer the phone in 3 rings or how quickly you can get me the car I want to test drive.

Not listening 

This is the cardinal sin of social media. It is not a broadcast medium, it is a conversation medium. Share great content when it is timely and your followers will comment and share it with their followers. Don’t let that go unnoticed.

Reply to comments and thank people for following you or sharing your posts. The leads and the elusive customer loyalty are hidden in the interaction.

Not branding 

Your customers can choose to go anywhere to buy their new car. If they have signaled they are in the market, they will be bombarded by messages left right and center. Most of the manufacturers have got their heads around remarketing now, which means if you look at a car on their website and an ad for that model will follow you around the internet.

So your branding must be striking and accurate. Reflect the brands you sell and have a clear photo of your forecourt as your background image for Twitter and Facebook so that I know that I’ve arrived at the right place when I get there.

The Internet isn’t going anywhere. Your website can be the most cost effective way to create footfall for your showroom. And social media can be the most effective way to get people to your website and start conversations.

Author: Simon Ryan

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