In today’s world, so many people use social media as a way to not only socialize, but to learn about something they are planning to purchase. This is no different for people looking to buy a car. As a car dealer, it is important to learn how to use social media as a way to reach your potential customers.
There was a helpful study completed that shows the truth behind how car buyers use social media. The study shows that at least 68% of people thinking about buying a car use social media in at least some way to help their car research. On top of that, 26% say their car purchase is directly impacted by social media.
With this research, it is clear to see that social media can be a great tool for car dealers to reach their buyers in a useful way. Knowing this, it is also important to know what to do on social media as a dealer to ensure you are reaching the right people at the right time.
Social Media for Car Dealers
Having a social media presence is crucial for marketing as a car dealer. Research shows that at least 45% of car buyers contact the dealership online before they visit in person. If they can’t easily find your dealership, there is a low likelihood that your dealership will be on their list to visit.
One of the best things you can do as a dealership is create different social media accounts such as Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, and add them to your dealership’s website. This makes it possible for customers to find your social media even if they find your website through a web search first.
With your social media accounts, you can easily interact with potential customers. If they have any questions, they can message your social media and get a response from you or someone on your team. This helps people build confidence in your dealership.
Simply having a presence on social media can help:
- Build trust
- Build brand awareness
- Instill customer loyalty
- Drive traffic to your website and dealership
Impact of Social Media as a Car Dealer
Using social media as a car dealer means you have an impact on your current customers and potential customers, but what exactly is this impact? How does having a social media presence make a difference?
- Access. By having social media as a car dealer, you are giving customers and potential customers access to you for any questions they might have.
- Flexibility. Using social media gives customers the flexibility to browse through your content at any time. They can shop for cars at your dealership day and night.
- Personal touch. Your dealership can make social media personal, giving customers a feeling of sense that you and your team are more than just car dealers.
- Quick responses. Social media messages can be sent and viewed instantly, giving customers quick access to responses about a car you have on your lot.
Best Social Media for Car Dealerships
To get the most out of social media for your car dealership, it helps to know what platforms are the best for reaching your customer base. Not all social media is created equally, and most people only use specific platforms for specific reasons.
41% of people that took part in the study above stated they use YouTube as part of their car buying process. This means utilizing YouTube is a great way to reach customers. Creating content for YouTube can be intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be!
For example, you can create a Q&A video with some of the most commonly asked questions about the car buying process. You can make a video about a popular car and talk about all of the features the car has. Consider utilizing a 360-degree camera for these shots!
To make it more personable, you can do a “Meet the Crew” and interview your staff. Customers like to know who they are buying from, and doing this type of video is a great way to make introductions to them.
Facebook is another great social media platform to reach buyers. 37% of the study participants stated they use Facebook in their car buying process. For this reason, it is essential that your car dealership has a Facebook profile.
On Facebook, you can link to your YouTube videos, share clips from YouTube videos, share pictures of your dealership and the cars you have on the lot, and even post status updates. Recently, Facebook has even added a “Reels” section where you can post very short videos to gain attention.
Facebook also allows your customers to directly message your profile, making it easy to interact with your customers online. You can quickly respond to their messages and answer their questions before they even leave their house to head to the lot.
Another really great thing about Facebook is the ability to run targeted ads. Facebook automatically sends your ads to the home feed of people in your area, meaning only local people who have a higher chance of purchasing a car off your lot will see the ads and increase your sales.
21% of the study participants shared that they have used Instagram while car searching. The biggest way to use Instagram as a car dealer is by sharing personal stories from past customers. This gives potential customers a way to get to know how you do business through the eyes of other customers.
On Instagram, you can share Reels (short videos), Stories (sharing posts that disappear after 24 hours), and posts to your feed. This gives the ability to share your stories in different ways and increases the likelihood of being seen.
Social Media Strategies to Implement
Now that you know which social media platforms are best for a car dealership, it is time to think about the best strategies to implement to reach customers efficiently.
- Target Customers on Facebook. As stated above, Facebook makes it easy to target a specific demographic of customers. You can share your posts, and ads, directly to your preferred customer base.
- Social media is two-way. It is extremely important to remember that social media is a two-way street. Customers can reach out to you and you can reach back out to them. Make it a priority to make sure you keep this two-way street up and running.
- Encourage and ask for reviews. Social reviews are read by just about everyone who will stumble across your dealership on social media. By asking customers to leave reviews, you are increasing the chance that one of those reviews will influence someone to choose your dealership.
- Fully commit. Social media will only work if you and your team are 100% committed to making it work. The platforms need to be constantly updated and checked and customers need to be responded to in a timely fashion.
- Take advantage of ads. Pay for Facebook and Google ads to be found easily by customers in your area.
Using Social Media Ads
One way to use social media to reach potential buyers is by running social media ads. By using ads, your dealership can show up on someone’s social media feed without them even being aware of your dealership.
For example, Facebook shows ads when users are just scrolling through their home feed. All the ads they see are targeted toward them by the business with the help of Facebook. You can easily add details about your business and Facebook will show your ad accordingly.
To run an ad campaign on social media, all you need to know is who you are trying to show your ads to, create original and creative content, and make sure your ads are mobile-friendly. Following this will greatly increase your interaction rate.
Quick and Effective Tips to Follow
When you are putting together your social media strategy for your car dealership, keep these effective tips in mind to reach more buyers!
When you know how many new customers you want to reach, it is easier to make it happen. Set a reasonable goal at the beginning of each month and work your strategy for the month around the goal.
Experiment with Different Content Types
Social media content isn’t a one-size-fits-all operation. For example, what works for a fast food restaurant won’t work for you as a car dealership. Try interactive content, static content, story content until you find what works best!
Use Different Platforms and Their Unique Features
Instagram and Facebook offer reels, which is very popular content. You can use these platforms to post reels about cars and your dealership that can be seen by mass amounts of people!
YouTube and Facebook allow for longer video content, making it possible to post more in-depth content your customers might like to see.
One of the best things anyone can do while trying to build a social media presence is make things personal. People want to know that you are more than just a car salesperson. Share information, within your comfort level, that will make it easier for customers to connect with you.