Did you know that more than 223 million Americans have an active social media account of some sort? What’s more, people across the country spend an average of around two-and-a-half hours each day browsing a social media platform of some sort. There’s no denying it, social media is part of our lives in today’s world, and, as a car dealership, you need to be making the most of the various channels available.
What comes with so many people spending a good chunk of their day on social media, is that we’re seeing a continuing rise in platforms that are becoming available for users to browse. Established in 1996, the first-ever social media platform is considered to be ‘Six Degrees’, with dozens of other networks created since then – some of which have survived over the years, and others, which came to an end naturally. Today, there are approximately 17 social media channels for those in the automotive industry to use, which begs the question, which ones should your dealership be on?
Who is your target audience?
Whether you’re new to social media or have been dabbling in posting updates for a while, it’s important that you take time to research your target audience. Consider who you want to engage with through social media and research which platforms are used by those audiences.
Here are a few tips to help get you started:
- The largest Facebook demographic is users between the ages of 25 and 39 years – with men accounting for the highest potential reach.
- Around 70 percent of Americans use Facebook.
- The majority of users on Instagram are aged between 18 and 29, with 66% of Instagrammers female.
- Twitter is most popular in America, with around 77 million users across the nation, 61 percent of which are male.
- A total of 197 million people use YouTube in this country, with 82 percent of all male adult Americans and 80 percent of all females using the video-sharing service.
- As of this year in January, LinkedIn had an audience reach of 180 million people, with the social media platform undoubtedly the top professional job networking service.
It’s worth noting, with so many options out there, it would be easy to want to try and be present on them all – our advice? Don’t spread yourself too thin. You don’t have to be on every platform, and actually, being on too many could actually damage your social media efforts. What’s more, if you don’t have the resource to post on multiple platforms, choose the one that works best for you and your dealership.
A handy reminder from us, that the SnapCell app seamlessly integrates with your social media channels, making it easier than ever to add video content to your channels at the simple push of a button.
Facebook is one of the oldest social media platforms out there, yet it remains a popular choice among automotive businesses, and it’s easy to see why.
Time spent on Facebook
Facebook is without a doubt the most popular social media network in America, with the platform recording more than 190 million account holders from this country alone. And, with more than 1.15 billion mobile daily users and on average, Americans spend around 30 minutes a day using the platform, the opportunities Facebook provides for dealerships are too good to miss.
Engagement and conversation
A huge benefit to using Facebook, is it sparks conversation, engagement, and conversation with audiences. Whether it’s communicating with your audience on posts or initial conversations with potential leads via the messenger tool, there are plenty of effective ways for your dealership to engage with customers via Facebook.
Invite conversations by posting crisp, professional-looking videos using the SnapCell app. Automotive businesses can create videos showing off their vehicles, a walkaround of their dealership, as well as produce piece-to-camera clips of staff talking, at the simple click of a button thanks to SnapCell.
It’s important to recognize that Facebook encourages that sense of community and prompts people to communicate, which means it’s essential that a member of staff is managing your page. For your Facebook page to work effectively, it’s vital that you have somebody on hand ready to engage with conversation and respond to incoming messages. Remember, customers might use Facebook to ask your dealership questions, or enquire about a car or service, and ignoring them might actually damage your business’s reputation.
Facebook ads and post boosting
One of the primary uses of Facebook for car dealerships is paid for advertising and post boosting. Ultimately, Facebook advertising or boosting your posts allows dealerships to interact with more than simply those who have liked or interacted with your page. Paying to get your dealership seen gives your business the chance to generate leads, reach new audiences, and increase your brand’s visibility – while staying in control of your marketing budget. Better still, Facebook advertising is reasonably easy to do, even for those who are new to social media.
In 2016, Facebook introduced Marketplace, which gives people and businesses, including car dealerships the ability to sell and buy products.
Facebook Marketplace is one of the five most popular online marketplaces in America and car buyers really do love it – it’s fast becoming one of the first places car buyers will go to if they’re looking to get their hands on a new set of wheels, presenting itself with real opportunities for dealerships across the country. Whether you’re putting vehicles or parts on Marketplace, if you aren’t already utilizing this totally free tool, then you’re wasting a real opportunity. Imagine, you could literally be listing your entire inventory on Facebook Marketplace, reaching local, national, and even international leads, within seconds.
Facebook Live and Events
The opportunities that come with Facebook are endless, but one of the huge benefits is using the ‘live’ feature to either host events or interact with a wide audience by ‘going live’. The pandemic has certainly changed the way automotive customers shop and, at the moment, we seem to be living in this hybrid world, with virtual shopping continuing to be just as popular as heading to a dealership in-person.
Facebook live and live events gives a wider audience the chance to shop with your dealership, without actually having to leave the comfort of their sofa (if they choose not to). It’s taking convenience for your shoppers to the next level.
The powers of YouTube help enhance the shopping experience for both dealerships and consumers. But how is YouTube helping to steer the future of car sales? In short, research has shown that watching a video can dramatically influence customers throughout the purchasing process:
- More than 75 percent of automotive shoppers reveal that watching a video has helped influence their shopping habits or purchases.
- 40 percent of car buyers admitted that watching a video of an automobile helped them discover a vehicle they hadn’t previously considered.
- Watching a video is said to encourage viewers to actually visit a dealership in person, with 60 percent of car buyers reportedly visiting a car dealership after viewing a clip of a vehicle they were considering.
We get it, using video marketing can be a scary prospect to many, especially those who are used to using more traditional techniques. However, with the digital revolution completely transforming the way businesses speak to their audience, dealerships need to adapt their communications strategy to suit the modern-day shopper. For SnapCell customers, creating videos for YouTube couldn’t be easier. Here are a few ways you can utilize the multiple features SnapCell has to offer to benefit your business:
- A video overview of the vehicles you have for sale, highlighting specific features
- A walkaround of your dealership, giving customers an insight as to what your business has to offer
- A virtual test drive for potential leads
- A video of a staff member discussing an up-and-coming event, campaign, or offer
- Informative videos from your technicians
Over the past decade, Twitter has been responsible for billions of dollars worth of automotive sales and continues to influence the industry today. In fact, to date, Twitter has seen the highest number of car sales for a social media network.
If used cleverly, you can use Twitter to advertise special offers, promote events, as well as show off vehicles you have for sale. And remember, Twitter is not only about the Tweets but about the network it allows you to build. You can connect with industry influencers, build relationships with fellow businesses and professionals, which can particularly work in your favor when boosting your dealership at a local level.
Other emerging social media networks to consider: LinkedIn and Instagram
As well as Facebook, YouTube and Twitter, it’s also worth keeping an eye on LinkedIn and Instagram.
Although LinkedIn has previously developed a reputation for simply recruitment, it’s starting to become a platform to grow your dealership’s brand, allowing businesses to post blogs, updates, promotions, and of course, job opportunities. If you’re looking at raising the bar in terms of growing your business’s reputation, then it’s worth exploring LinkedIn. LinkedIn gives your dealership to position themselves as industry leaders, not just in terms of automobile shoppers but job seekers too.
Instagram is a platform specifically for mobile users, engaging with audiences through videos and images. In fact, Instagram thrives off visual content, so if you’re looking for a quick and easy way to upload sharp imagery or videos of your vehicles, dealership, promotions, or even employees, then Instagram could be the perfect social media channel for your strategy.
Get social media savvy with SnapCell
Whichever platform you’ve decided to use, to make sure your social media strategy is steering in the right direction, you need to be creating fresh, engaging, and professional-looking content – and that video is no exception. Save yourself time, without compromising on quality by using the SnapCell app. Whether you’re a social media novice, or an experienced poster, SnapCell allows users to create eye-catching, sharp, and informative videos at the simple click of a button. Drive sales across your social media channels using SnapCell and schedule your free demo today.