CDK's purchase of Auto/Mate may create a major disruption in the dealer management system (DMS) industry. Here is our take. DOWNLOAD
The mobile industry is not just booming; it’s taking over completely.
Consumers are also using their smartphones to stay connected in various other, new ways—such as tweeting a pizza emoji to have their favorite pizza delivered to them, using Passbook to replace physical loyalty/credit cards and boarding passes, and controlling various electronics and services simply with an app and touch of their finger. Smartphones are becoming the key to doing just about anything. In short, you want to make sure you’re not missing out on the opportunity to bridge the gap between your consumers via the device that is almost constantly in their hands.
Consumers are using various platforms and channels to connect with businesses. The options available to them seem never-ending, and because of this, it’s important to know where your audience is connecting. Nine out of ten consumers "almost always" have their mobile devices on them, which makes accessing information, apps, and social media outlets–to connect with you–constant and effortless. Some of the most popular social media outlets your consumers are utilizing day-in and day-out are as follows:
Facebook. Consumers say Facebook is the top tool for customer service. 82% favor Facebook as a social media channel for customer service. (ZDNet)
Twitter. This platform is particularly popular among those who are under 50 and the college-educated. Since 2013, Twitter has had significant increase among its number of users and their diversity. (PewResearchCenter)
LinkedIn. The greatest majority of small business owners agree LinkedIn is the best way to grow your business. It’s also the top channel to distribute content. 91% of B2B marketers use LinkedIn to share content. (LinkedIn)
YouTube. 72% of millennials, 58% of Gen X, and 43% of Baby Boomers use YouTube. Over 1 billion people use YouTube in general. (DMR)
Instagram. This platform contains over 300 million monthly active users—many of which use Instagram daily. 51% of Instagram’s audience is male and 49% female. It’s one of the few that currently has predominantly male users. (LinkedIn)
Pinterest. 75% of Pinterest usage takes place on a mobile device, and 93% of Pinterest users shopped online in the past six months. This platform is one of the hottest with shoppers and now even has the ability for its users to take advantage of an in-app purchase button (or buyable pins). (sproutsocial)
Snapchat. This app is purely mobile. It offers short-form video content from major outlets like CNN and ESPN. According to a recent estimate, a random user’s single clip received 25 million views, which is an engagement number any media or marketing department would do just about anything to have. According to FORTUNE, Snapchat is the app to interact on and watch now. (FORTUNE)
Connect. Throughout this article, words such as “links,” “connect,” and “bridge” appear often for a reason. It’s most important you provide the social media platforms and online foundations for your consumers to connect with you. Beyond your presence online, a key component of connection requires both parties interact. Provide content, respond to reviews and comments, and make sure your dealership’s employees are available online.
Rewards. Loyalty and rewards programs have been around since the early 80s. Currently, with mobile users having the option to control and keep their cards, rewards, programs, etc. with their smartphones, these programs are changing in a big way. This is good news for you; it gives you the chance to be creative and reach consumers in a way that will peak their interest. For example, you can send coupons and deals via text, offer rewards for following, checking-in, or sharing something about your dealership via social media, or shoot out a Snapchat with an expiring deal.
Mobile-friendliness. Perhaps one of the simplest yet most important things to remember can be easily overlooked. Make sure your website and features are mobile-friendly, or users will quickly leave and move to the next competitor.
Enable. Use consumers’ smartphones for good by offering solutions that help them minimize their time, cost, and effort. Your dealership could offer in-store maps, history logs for vehicles customers have viewed, price comparison features, search options for products and vehicles available, or an updating log of all vehicles currently sitting on your lot. The possibilities are endless as long as you’re finding new ways to make shopping fun and easy for your consumers.
Location. Remember to take advantage of local opportunities. Consumers connect to places and are generally even more interested when a business nearby gets involved in their community or offers local perks and partnerships.
Smartphones truly are becoming the strongest, quickest, and most efficient bridge between dealerships and consumers. More people than ever are using smartphones, and mobile is quickly becoming the main source of connection and online usage. Don't forget to make sure your dealership is present and mobile-friendly online and find creative ways to use apps, text, and smartphone features to connect with your audience.
The image used in this post was provided by freedigitalphotos.net.