I’ve gone in-depth on the importance of a strong social media presence for car dealerships. Now it’s time to take it up a notch and discuss content, primarily content of the cars and services you offer. As I’ve said many times before, only 5-10% of dealerships are actually using social media effectively, and not just selling hard trying to make a quick sale. The more I talk to marketers in the industry and car dealerships who market on Facebook and Instagram, the more I realize that social media is meant to build a connection, one that takes a lot of time and effort.
How to build that connection is the question many car dealerships ask themselves because they’re not seeing engagement from current followers and are seeing absolutely little to no results using social media. The answer to their problem lies within the native content they post, or the lack thereof. Dealerships who primarily use the same content from the car brand itself, share third party articles, or revert to hard selling give up with Facebook and Instagram within a few months. The ones who are still operating their accounts post inconsistently or with very little interest because they don’t see the results they want. Again, it all comes down to native content.
Combine your dealership’s showroom, car lot, a smartphone or some other camera, and social media and you’ve got all the content you could ever want. For example, I’ve seen a decent amount of car dealerships who sell the entire Fiat-Chrysler brand (this includes Dodge, Jeep, and Chrysler). They have a wide selection of vehicles that go from high performance vehicles with the Challenger and Charger, to luxury sedans such as the Chrysler 200 and 300, to off-road capable SUV’s that cover the entire Jeep lineup. It’s not possible that these dealerships can’t put together a collage, a handful of posts, or interesting content centered around these vehicles.
The showroom is usually where the best vehicles are stored. Take photos of them and post those pictures to Instagram. If winter is around the corner, start promoting your Jeeps by posting great content displaying them on your Facebook page. You might say, “But I’m not seeing results”, and that’s because you’re not using social media in a way that appeals to your customer base. Social media is all about visualization, eye candy that makes people Like, share, and comment on the photos or other forms of native content you’re sharing. Just posting generic photos of cars, with the hard selling copy such as, “We’ve got the SUV’s you need for this winter, so come test driver one” won’t work. Not on Facebook. If the customer really needs a vehicle, he or she will visit your showroom, there is no need for selling hard on another platform.
Take photos of the exterior and interior. Show the center console and interior features. Because cars have become more technologically advanced, consumers now want to experience being in the drivers seat to get an idea of what they’ll be expecting when they test driver the vehicle. The best way to do that is by posting pictures of the interiors, both on Facebook and Instagram. Another idea is to share photos of the cars you have in front of your store. Make the customer aware of what your dealership looks like, and use the nice cars you’re selling to your advantage. Your cars are your decorations, don’t be afraid to display them.
Social media is changing how consumers shop. Unfortunately the automotive industry is far behind the curve. To become relevant to your target customer base, you have to market in a way that is relevant to them and how they interact on the Internet. It’s essential to speak their language, and give them what they want when they’re scrolling through their news feeds.