Let’s face it, social media isn’t just a fad, it’s here to stay. Automotive brands and dealerships who haven’t jumped on the bandwagon are missing out on free marketing opportunities. These are the 3 must have social media platforms for automotive dealers in 2016:
Instagram has been popular for quite some time now and is the most engaging social media platform out there. Over 90% of users on Instagram are under the age of 35. Dealerships who either don’t have an Instagram account or don’t run a consistent profile could suffer from serious FOMO – “the fear of missing out.” Because people spend hours upon hours a day on social media like Instagram, you can see how missing out on this marketing trend could be a problem. The automotive industry makes for beautiful and easy photos; just search Instagram! The hashtag cars of Instagram (#carsofinstagram) is just shy of 2.5 million posts, with the hashtag car (#car) having over 28 million posts!
5 tips to successfully leverage engagement rates on Instagram: be consistent, use a content calendar, approach and/or work with influencers (BMW recently used Victoria’s Secret model Gigi Hadid to promote their M2 model), use hashtags, and tell a story.
Snapchat is the newest, latest and most popular social media platform. According to mediakix, “Snapchat’s daily video views have increased 400% year-on-year,” greatly surpassing Facebook. Snapchat is a great way to reach your dealership’s younger demographic as 60% of all smartphone users are on snapchat, with 60% of those users being between the ages of 18 and 34. With the 10 second time frame you have to engage with viewers, Snapchat acts as a ‘teaser’ and can be used to inform your customers about upcoming events (such as our Auto Sales Event and/or Upgrade Sale), new cars and products, service department news, and more! The best part of Snapchat? Posting a picture or video to your story allows you to see who actually viewed each post. If your followers have their Snapchat username set to their actual name (first and last), you can use this as a great call-to-action item to follow up with them.
Very different from Instagram and Snapchat, Twitter allows you to send and read short 140-character messages called “tweets.” It currently has 1.3 billion registered users and 310 million active users, with 55% of users being over the age of 35. Twitter is for people who prefer to read the news rather than look at pictures or videos, and for those whose attention span is limited. According to Savvy Dealer, “because of the number of accounts and the sheer volume of tweets daily, as an automotive dealer you want to be on Twitter yesterday.” Users are constantly engaged in Twitter due to the short length of entertaining content displayed. Here, you can let your followers know just about anything. For those who don’t follow you? That’s what hashtags are for. The hashtags will categorize your content into categories, allowing you to get noticed faster.
5 tips to successfully leverage engagement rates on Twitter: be consistent, use a content calendar (Hootsuite allows you to schedule content ahead of time for those individuals looking to save time), use hashtags, take part in conversation, and live tweet.
Implementing these 3 social media platforms into your dealership’s digital marketing strategy allows you to leverage many different users – the one who likes to look at pictures, the one who likes to watch short videos, and the one who likes to read the news. All of these platforms combined together can and will do wonders for your dealership brand. The number one tip for using social media as a brand is this: give your followers content they are interested in – that way, they will like, share, comment and keep coming back for more!