Getting it Right – a Social Media Plan for an Auto Dealership

Social media plan for anI have been looking for my next opportunity. There have been a number of different companies I have been been seeing online. While working at Plaid, one of the biggest crafting companies in the world, it taught me to step outside my box and learn a new industry. I was literally thrown in and it was sink or swim. After it was over it was one of the most enjoyable experiences I have ever had, in my professional life.

That got me thinking what industries could use a make over in the world of social media marketing. The one that stood out the most is the Auto Industry. I”m talking about car dealers not the big auto makers. When you think of going to an car dealership you just think of going to buy a new car. I think car dealers can change this and carry on a relationship with people long after they buy a car.

As in all industries you want repeat customers. I think many dealerships are missing the boat on social. The ones I have seen are focused on new car sales. Which should be a focus but they should engage on other areas as well. This is my plan for an auto dealerships.

Social Strategy – Types of Posts

  • New Car Sales – Sales and release of new models
  • Car Tips – auto maintenance,  tips & tricks, and new safety features coming on the market
  • Service – Promote their in house service department, including coupons
  • Contests – Give away smaller prize packs – free gas, car accessories, brand swag

 Content Marketing  – Types of Posts

  • Advice column – such as Ask A Mechanic, people get to ask advice on topics about their car. It could be as simple as “How to change the clock” to more advanced. How to get ready for holiday travel/road trip
  • Tips and Tricks – Have a person at the dealership to write up things people can do with cars they may not know. The new technology in cars people know less of what can be done with a car. Services such as Apple & Android in cars is a great example.
  • Travel Advice – Have people at the dealership write up one tank trips. Trips that can be done on one take of gas from the city they are based. It could be expanded to longer trips.
  • New Models – Do an in depth write up of new models that were released. What is new in the cars?

You maybe asking why do some of these? My answer is you want to develop a relationship with your customer. Most people buy cars every few years. If a dealership can get customers to engage with you over these years they don’t need a car. That dealership will be top of your consideration set when you do need a car.

How did I come up with this idea? I bought a car a few years ago from Capital Buick in Marietta, GA. Due to the news feed I haven’t seen them in my feed. But one time they posted a trivia question and I answered it. I thought they were just engaging fans. It was but they were giving away a free tank of gas! I thought this was amazing. I think more brands should do this and build longer relationships with customers and not just for a one time sale.

Tim is the founder of Element33. A social media agency specializing in education, management and strategy for small businesses. He comes from a traditional marketing agency but has embraced all things digital. He considers himself a marketing nerd and believes that all marketing is tied together. This means no matter what silo you are in, social, email, seach, etc, changes in one will affect the other!

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