We all have that secret sauce for our favorite dish. The one that spices up an everyday soup, microwaved meal, or bland snack. The ingredient that creates a perfect sense of harmony when it settles on the taste buds.
Similar to cooking, there is a special ingredient in the world of automotive. With such a saturated, competitive market, dealerships struggle more than ever to create new ways of generating business. While mostly overlooked, social selling takes the cake when looking for ways to directly impact a dealership’s presence. Here are 4 key tips for utilizing social selling and why it continues to serve as the secret sauce for selling more cars in automotive.
Are you selling cars or a lifestyle?
For as long as commerce has lived, consumers shopped for cars but were sold on trust, connection, relatability, and existing relationships. Many dealerships miss the component of humanizing their team. Social media is a gold mine when it comes to leveraging personal backgrounds and connecting with the car-buying audience. Start sending personalized videos from the sales team that your audience would find interesting based on which features would most fit their lifestyle. For families expecting another child, encourage singing with your children on a long road trip to give a sense of fun and safety while simultaneously showing off the car. Versus a bachelor who may want the sportiest vehicle on the lot. Salespeople can leverage this content on social media platforms to get shoppers excited about their next big purchase for every phase of life.
Beat the stereotypes.
Year after year, dealerships bear the burden of falling under the manipulative and sly stereotype. While this may have rung true decades ago, it’s imperative to break free from this predetermined notion ingrained in so many car shoppers today. Social selling is a perfect opportunity to engage with customers through social media and invite them to share feedback on any car buying experience. Showing confidence and human touch in open conversation builds trust between a dealer and consumer. Salespeople who leverage authenticity and capitalize on personal branding show higher engagement levels from social media at large. If you don’t have your own personal Instagram or LinkedIn account, now is a great time to open one and find your potential buyers within minutes.
Get Millennials in the door. Or better yet, employ them.
Want to know the best way to reach millennials, think like millennials, and speak to millennials? First, do a little research. Secondly, brainstorm what this age group identifies with as car shoppers. Many are in the first buying process of their lives and look to Facebook, Instagram, and Yelp for reputable answers before ever visiting your site. Living in these platforms gives you a competitive advantage so you can reach millennials first. If a shopper comments on a social media platform, jump on that opportunity and answer. Bring that shopper into your personal account, build the relationship, and draw more shoppers into the showroom.
Become proactive, not reactive.
There are many ways to ensure the success of your social media campaigns including a proactive approach as opposed to a reactive one. Finding out information about potential leads and using it to reach out with the relevant buying information can leverage the conversation for a more successful outcome. Once the shopper feels important and relevant, it will be much easier to push them down the sales funnel. Start meeting shoppers at the right time with the right messaging by re-tweeting tweets, connecting on LinkedIn, and commenting on comments and feedback. The proactive engagement will make your social selling more successful.
Why influencer marketing is a must.
Influencer marketing is trending now more than ever. They are trusted, creative, and help grow your dealership’s social presence. Investing time and energy into influencer marketing could change the game of how shoppers view your dealership before ever stepping foot in the door. An influencer can create something unique for your followers and give your team unique insight into your current demographic, influencing crucial business decisions on something as simple and available as social media.
The secret sauce is the secret sauce for a reason.
It’s no question that Facebook is a crucial tool for social selling and a wonderful starting point for any dealership’s engagement strategy. But in order to make a real impact, other forms of social such as LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube are key ingredients for the recipe. These avenues are gold mines for dealership marketing when used correctly and should never be overlooked in the social selling world. And the greatest part of it all is that social selling is a fairly simple task. It involves engaging on platforms many GM’s and BDC teams already utilize in their everyday routine. All it takes is a little bit of creativity, consistency, and collaboration.
Research shows that social selling strongly matches the buyer’s behavior. Shoppers are spending more time online than in the dealership. Studies show that 59% of shoppers start the research process online before ever walking into the store. With these statistics, its crucial dealerships start implementing social selling (in addition to social media marketing strategies) in order to capture their audience and maintain a competitive edge.
Start uploading to YouTube, my friends.