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An active and engaging social media page can be great for creating publicity for your dealership and reaching out to new and current customers. There are many benefits, yet it can take time to do effective social media management for your dealership. So let's sort out the necessary from the unimportant, and focus on making your social media time more efficient and effective.
What social media platforms do I really need to use?
There are hundreds of social media platforms and it seems like some companies manage to be on all of them simultaneously. It is not necessary, however, to make a page for your dealership on every conceivable social media platform. Focus on quality, not quantity.
Twitter and Facebook are the most popular social media platforms and are more than sufficient for most businesses. Many customers visit your Twitter or Facebook page when they are trying to gather more information and see real comments and reviews from your customers. These are the two big social media platforms that you need to focus on.
What kind of information should I post to my social media pages?
Social media is an interesting mix of the informative and the engaging. A post should tell a customer what they need to know, or it should create interest, excitement, a heartwarming moment, a laugh, whatever. People who visit your social media pages are not just trying to find out about your inventory and promotions. They are also trying to get a sense of what your dealership is like. Do I want to take my business here? Is the staff friendly? Are they trustworthy? Are they knowledgeable?
In order to help your customers learn who you are, post pictures of your staff at work, interacting with customers and having fun at dealership events. Post automotive tips and reviews so your customers know that you are passionate about their safety and up to date on current industry news. And link to any articles, buyers' guides or other resources that can help your customers find more information.
How about promotions... how do I promote my products and services effectively on social media?
Social media is a great place to promote, because promotions can easily be shared with a much wider audience. Any visitor can share, like or retweet your promotion, increasing the amount of people who will see it and growing the list of new potential customers. Offer special social media deals and coupons to help engage visitors, and set up your automated social media solution to post frequently repeated messages that keep your promotions in the front of customers' minds.
Contests are a customer favorite on social media. People love having the chance to win something, and this is one of the best ways to get visitors to interact with your social media messages. Like us or tweet us for your chance to win! Contests can also be a great way to demonstrate that you are engaged with your customers, helping to build trust with new and potential customers: have your customers tweet or post a picture of themselves next to their car, or ask them to post or tweet their favorite thing about driving. Basically anything that grabs the interest of visitors and encourages them to interact with your social media messages.
How can I integrate my social media marketing with my other marketing campaigns?
Your social media pages should present your consistent brand that customers can identify with. Consistent branding helps customers to recognize your dealership across different channels and helps to build trust and loyalty.
Placing signup forms on your social media pages is an effective way to get visitors to sign up for your email marketing or text message marketing campaigns, helping to tie your marketing efforts together and building a larger subscriber base. Keep the signup forms short so visitors aren't scared off (or too lazy/busy to complete them), and advertise the benefits of signing up. Why would a customer want to receive your emails or text messages? Let them know if they will receive exclusive promotions, coupons, appointment reminders, contests, surveys, automotive tips or whatever else you offer that will provide benefit to their daily lives.
In other marketing campaigns that you send out, such as email marketing newsletters, text message campaigns or even snail mail campaigns, encourage customers to visit your social media pages and “like us” or “follow us.” This is a commonly used technique that encourages customers to interact with your dealership and lets them know that you have an active, up to date social media presence.
What's the best, most efficient way to manage my social media pages?
Hands down, the easiest way to manage your social media marketing and various other marketing campaigns is to get an all-in-one automated marketing solution. With automation, you can create hundreds of messages in advance and schedule exactly how and when you want them to go out. You can set your messages to automatically target specific social media visitors to create more personalized engagement. You can schedule your entire social media campaign for a month and then all you have to do is check it out once in a while. No tedious manual posting, no worrying about forgetting to post. Your social media pages stay fresh with constantly updated content and you simplify your day and your workload.
And automation is not just for social media. You can automate your email marketing, text message marketing, voicemail marketing and more. With automation, you can personally connect with each of your customers based on their needs, purchase history, individual interests and important dates. With automation, you can provide a highly personalized level of customer service that is not possible manually. You will always offer great customer service in person and over the phone, yet with automation you can do so much more for each of your customers. And automation saves you so much time you won't know what to do with yourself.
Try an automated solution for your social media marketing needs and your other customer communication. You still need to be personally involved, of course, but you can do so much more in a much shorter amount of time if you have a little automated assistance.