Social Sales

Ron Henson
Recently I was looking to buy a vehicle for my wife. I thought twitter would be a good place to search out the progressive dealers in my market so I posted the vehicle I was looking for and tagged 4 dealers in my market that sold that particular brand. So DrivingSales Community, how many responses do you think I received? What are some of the processes in place at your dealerships to handle inquiries via social media?
Clint Jones
My guess is that you received ZERO responses. Facebook, we have no problems with. Our business Facebook is linked to two employees personal Facebook accounts so they are active all day long via their cell phones and computers. Twitter on the other hand, Ron I don't know. I will check, but my guess is that I would have been one of those 4 dealers that didn't respond to you.
Ron Henson
Thanks for the candid response Clint. I will finish this story, but I would love to hear from more of the community before I let the cat out of the bag. In the Consumer Experience study that DrivingSales completed it was interesting to note that the #1 cited influencer when consumers are deciding which dealerships to visit was referrals from friends & family, and specifically via social media.
Ron Henson
Hey Sheri, Sounds like you have that process dialed in! Are you (The dealership) active on twitter?
Andrew Metcalf
Hi Ron, I've done a few large-scale campaigns for a few of my dealers - all mostly Facebook though Instagram has been proving successful as well. Like Sheri, we found FB has been garnering the best results via boosted posts, but even more so dark posts. The one question I have is measuring the sale. Our numbers are interesting, I'm showing most social buyers are engaging from social post to site but not submitting a form, rather coming in. We can correlate the sales to social by the vehicles we post (old inventory) and sold date. Sheri are you seeing anything similar? Twitter has been a tough nut to crack for direct sales, but I've seen success in brand messaging/stories and testimonials.
Ron Henson
@Chris, I respectfully somewhat disagree with one of your statements and agree with another. * I agree that we can't be all things to everybody. That's an impossible task. I also agree that the in-deaelrship experience is absolutely vital. * I somewhat disagree that the test drive is high up the list of importance for today's customer. In my case, the first time I ever drove the vehicle I referred to in this post was when I drove it home after buying it. Of course I am referring to a new vehicle and certainly pre-owned is a whole different story. Our research has shown that the experience the guest has with communicating with the dealership pre-store visit coupled with the experience they have when they actually do come to the store is much more important to them than the test drive. I think that speaks to the quality of new vehicles today as well as the deep desire for customers to find dealerships that don't engage in traditional high pressure sales tactics. Just my two cents. Thanks for participating in the forums!

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