Car Sales and Social Media
As we all know – everybody wants the freshest and hottest lead for the dealership.
Salespeople have always had a very tough time generating new leads for themselves.
Long gone are the old school days when you could pick up the phone, make a few calls to reach a new prospect, and land a meeting at the dealership or test drive.
If you try cold calling today, it takes, on average, at least eight phone calls.
And when you reach them, do you know what happens? They don’t want to talk to you!
In fact, more than 90% of customers never respond to or buy from cold dealership calls. Given these challenges, how can we stand out? How can we generate more leads?
We do this through social selling at the dealership level.
What is Social Selling?
Automotive Salespeople using social media to provide value to potential customers by answering questions, responding to comments, and sharing content throughout the buying process – from awareness to consideration until a customer is ready to buy a new or used vehicle.
Social Media Statistics
Just look at the sobering statistics related to social media usage.
- Facebook: 2.3 billion users
- YouTube: 1.9 billion users
- Instagram: 1 billion users
- Twitter: 329.5 million users
- TIkTok: 800 million users
Car Sales are a Social Business
Everyone likely has a Facebook friend in the car business. When those in the market see salespeople in their Facebook news feeds, they become more familiar with them.
When they see a car salesperson repeatedly and they’re being genuine, they begin to see them as a friend and begin to really trust that salesperson. Eventually – and perhaps without ever actually meeting them – they see them as their friend in the car business; the one person they’re going to call the next time they need a new vehicle.
Today’s customer wants to find information fast, and they don’t want to come to the dealership to get it. That is where digital marketing and specifically social media come into play.
Dealers need to provide a wealth of data and engaging information to compete for their business.
If you don’t give them the information they are looking for, they will visit another dealership.
While there was once a time that you didn’t need a Facebook page and other social media accounts to compete, that time has long passed as we enter an ever more digital world.
Not only must you have active accounts, but you have to have engaging and valuable content.
Social Selling Defines Brand
With social selling, you get to decide exactly what your brand is and what it is not. Additionally, the more you repeat this brand message, the more it becomes a reality in the minds of prospects.
Strong automotive dealers have defined its brand as a group of honest, hardworking, yet fun salespeople looking to sell a few cars.
They’re community-minded and good people to know if you’re ever looking for a new vehicle. At least that’s what their social posts are saying about them. The dealership brand is exactly what you decide it is when you leverage real social selling.
Social Selling Produces Differentiation
Let’s say you’re a Volkswagen dealer in a highly competitive market. If all you want to do is get down in the mud on price while you spend thousands on Google every month to buy clicks to your website, then social selling is not for you. You believe that a Jetta is a Jetta is a Jetta.
With social selling, you can create differentiation between your brand of Volkswagen Jetta and your competitors’ brands. The trust and familiarity you build separate you from the other dealers in the same market. You still need to be priced competitively, but you no longer have to offer the lowest price every time to win the deal.
Social Selling Drives Buyers
Just as running a great “loss leader” in the Saturday print newspaper once drove ready potential customers to your dealership, so does great social selling today.
Whether you’re an individual salesperson creating your own brand on Social Media or the dealership’s social media manager. The key is building authentic content, stong familiarity, trust, and differentiation you’re creating puts you on the top of some car shoppers’ lists.
This means they’ll visit you first when they’re in the market for a vehicle. Giving you the first (and best) chance to sell them a vehicle.
Social Selling Helps Authenticity
With social selling, you create authenticity in advance of the dealership visit. This means – pay attention – that when someone in your network decides they want a new vehicle, they often come to you first before they spend hours shopping online. Before they find value and relevancy based on the interaction with social media.
They come to that dealership first because they trust. Being authentic. They want that dealership to help them find the right vehicle (relevancy) at a good price (value). In essence, this turns the transaction upside down and allows the dealership to make better grosses because the dealership defined what’s a good value.
Social Selling Next Steps
If you’re a sales manager or dealer principal and you’re spending any time at all trying to decide if social selling makes sense for your dealership or especially for your individual salespeople, the time has come to stop talking about it and start doing it.
If you have the experience and the resources, you are equally capable of creating a social media strategy for your dealership.
But, often working with a professional certainly can help to ensure that you will generate the best results. Meaning, less time spent on testing out different tactics hoping to uncover the one that moves the needle for your dealership.