A master teacher grew tired of his apprentice complaining, and so, one morning sent him for some salt. When the apprentice returned, the master instructed the unhappy young man to put a handful of salt in a glass of water and then to drink it.
“How does it taste?” the master asked.
“Bitter,” spit the apprentice.
The master chuckled and asked the young man to take the same handful of salt and put it in the lake. The two walked in silence to the nearby lake, and once the apprentice swirled his handful of salt in the water, the master said, “Now drink from the lake.”
As the water dripped down the young man’s chin, the master asked, “How does it taste?”
“Fresh,” remarked the apprentice.
“Do you taste the salt?” asked the master.
“No,” said the apprentice.
At this, the master sat beside this serious young man who so reminded him of himself, and took his hand, offering, “The pain of life is pure salt; no more, no less. The amount of pain in life remains the same, exactly the same. But the amount of bitterness we taste depends on the container we put the pain in. So when you’re in pain, the only thing you can do is enlarge your sense of things. Stop being a glass. Become a lake.“ ~From “The Book of Awakening” by Mark Nepo
I’m contacted daily by enthusiastic and frustrated individuals working in auto retail who desperately want to know more about Social Media marketing. They’ve taught themselves some basics and now they’re stuck. I can hear the pain in their voices when they say their boss wants nothing to do with Facebook, Twitter, Blogging or any other Social platform. Some say their bosses give them the opportunity to market the store on Social Media but give them no budget for training or the actual marketing and advertising that comes after that.
In today’s auto retail, the customer demands a different way to buy. They’re connected to other buyers and they share information through word of mouth using Social networks.
Dealerships need to be part of those conversations. We have the ability to reach the buyer in so many cool ways but there are many dealers who still want to live inside the glass. They feel the pain when the old ways of advertising aren’t working any more but avoid opening up to new media.
To my friends who struggle everyday to make the most of their time and effort on Social Media: stay the course and take action. Devise ways to convince your boss that nothing is free in business. These Social platforms were designed to have people visit them, spend their time and that’s where dealerships need to be. Everything worthwhile costs something. Once you’ve got the basics down, you have to face the music and get expert Social marketing guidance.
You CAN sell cars and service on Social Media; you just have to know how to do it right. You can walk on water, you just have to know where the rocks are!
Instead of staying stuck, consider these 5 questions and answer them thoughtfully:
There is no reason your struggle needs to be contained in the glass. Sprinkle the salt in the lake. There is a path to every goal. Be willing to do what it takes to get there. Identify who can help you and develop your plan for success. Ask your boss for a meeting and unveil your plan. Use the language and phrases your boss will warm to, that are familiar to him. Show how the budget he’s going to spend will make sense on the bottom line.
You’re so close! It’s time to move past your pain and go directly to successful Social Media. Show your boss (and your customers) how Social Media engages your community, fosters lasting sales relationships, improves your online reputation and closes more sales.
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