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Social NOT-working: “Why Does Social Media Seem Not to Work for Me?”

Posted on: September 12th, 2012 by credit

Have you ever asked yourself this question or did one of your marketing staffs pop it in a meeting? Almost all dealerships have gone social but not all are experiencing success with it. Why? One reason for failure is committing lots of mistakes. Social media marketing is not that easy and learning how to use its power effectively requires ample time. Learn from the following social media mistakes.

No one knows you have gone social.

This is sad. You went social because you want to keep pace with the competition—dealerships and car shoppers have gone social—but you are not getting any attention because practically, no one knows you have gone social. If you have decided to take a new marketing endeavor for your dealership, let the people where you are or where you can be found. By adding social media buttons to your blog posts and dealership website, or telling people through your TV or radio commercials to visit your social media pages, you are already announcing your existence in social networking sites. Unfortunately, many dealers forget to do this.

You have a wrong purpose for a good content.

It’s true that it is important to produce good content in social media marketing. Good content is to inform, help and attract prospects and to generate dealership leads. But it should never be the main purpose of content to sell. The goal really is to collect information from prospects and then work on

turning them into sales. Take note that conversion takes place outside the social media work. How then will you be able to make your content generate dealership leads for you? Be an expert in using calls to action. These are devices that tell your prospects what to do next. Strong calls to action exhibit urgency, clarity, and precision.

You have abandoned traditional marketing.

If you are serious about getting more dealership leads, do not abandon your traditional lead generation strategies. Know that not all potential car buyers and your customers are on social networking sites. Therefore, you still need to work your traditional lead generation system in order to acquire more leads. Otherwise, you are missing out on a lot of opportunities.

SEO is uninvited.

In case you haven’t realized it yet, social media marketing and search engine optimization (SEO) complement each other. Your social media marketing efforts would not be totally successful without employing some SEO techniques with it. SEO is the most encompassing Internet marketing strategy. Thus, your social media content still has to be keyword-based so you will drive more traffic. Without SEO, it will be almost impossible, especially for small dealerships, to gain popularity in the social media sphere.

Starting a Habit of Following Up Car Dealer Leads

Posted on: September 4th, 2012 by credit

Studies show that many car dealers, and other businesses, fail to make the most of their leads because they don’t follow them up. One of the reasons is they are not just used to it. If they keep moving toward this direction, they will keep on losing sales which they could have acquired had they pursued their leads further. The following are some tips for effective lead follow-up and if you are one of the car dealers who are not taking follow-ups seriously, you can start developing the habit with these points:

Be Quick

Responding to your car dealer leads quickly is crucial in converting them into sales. Your response time is directly proportional to the likeliness of converting a lead into a sale. Moreover, studies show that consumers value getting answers to their queries fast. Getting back to your leads quickly is important because your competitors are also working fast. If you respond to your leads late, your competitors can snatch the interest of your leads out of your hand.

Provide Information Generously

The car buying process usually takes a long time. Normally, car buyers would not immediately purchase a car from a certain dealership. That is also why developing a habit of lead follow-up is important. Patiently wait for the lead’s decision and when he or she comes back to you to learn more about your offer and dealership, don’t hesitate to give honest and complete answers. Give them the information they are asking for. In order for this to make an impact to your follow-up efforts, train your sales people to have excellent product knowledge.

Utilize Every Medium Available

Giving your car dealer leads a call is not just the only way to follow them up. You can send them promotional messages, newsletters, greetings, and the like via email and direct mail. You can also invite them to join your social media community where they can learn more about your offers and company and interact with other car shoppers. This can also make them more interested about your dealership. If you have the budget, go extra mile and go mobile. Reach your prospects and customers through their mobile devices by sending them text messages and making your dealership website accessible right in their phones.

Motivate Your Sales People

Generating, following up, and converting car dealer leads are not easy tasks that can be done by you alone. You need a team and your sales people are the ones you can rely to to make these efforts effective and successful. Thus, motivate them to generate more leads and close more sales and to do these passionately and excellently by giving them incentives. This way, they will work hard, taking lead follow-up seriously, to make more sales for the dealership.

Mobile Marketing: Things Car Dealers Must Remember

Posted on: August 29th, 2012 by credit

As technology continues to advance, car dealers should never be left behind from the newest techniques being used in generating leads for car dealerships. In 2011, about 15% of more than 5 billion phone users in the U.S. are smartphone users. Moreover, a research group found that the mobile advertising and marketing sector expanded to more than 50% in 2011, making it the fastest-growing sector of the year. Indeed, mobile marketing is growing and is becoming more effective.

However, not all dealers are successful with their mobile marketing efforts. The reason is simple: They are not doing it right. There is something wrong with the way they use the power of the medium or it could also be their strategy that is defective. In any case, here are some important things that dealers must remember when doing mobile marketing for their dealerships:

Purpose. Mobile marketing has more than a couple of functions. Dealers can use it to make their service more accessible and convenient for their customers, allowing them to easily set appointments with them when they need repairs or tune-up. Dealers can also send their car shoppers bits of information like quick tips, links to the latest car reviews, and the like. And lastly, mobile marketing for dealerships is mainly for promotions, but dealers should be careful not to overdo it.

Mobile Website. Having a mobile website is a must. Dealership websites must be accessible in a car shopper’s mobile device so dealers can increase their chances of acquiring more sales. Dealers do not have to make their mobile sites grand. They can just keep it simple as long as it provides the information and details that a mobile car shopper needs to know. Dealers have to also ensure the compatibility of the mobile version of their dealership site.

QR Codes. Quick response codes function like bar codes except that they contain URLs. QR codes are deemed by many as the easiest way now for dealers to promote their mobile sites and attract more leads for car dealerships. Dealers can include QR codes in their posters, direct mails, tarps, and the like to allow anyone interested to check out their website. According to a recent study, QR codes scans expanded to 300% in 2011 compared with the previous year.

Ethics. Last, but definitely not the least, dealers must consider some factors in sending messages to car shoppers. One is how they use the language. They must be careful to use simple and decent words even if they are creative with their text message. Another is the time of the day the y send messages. Dealers should not send messages in odd hours and days unless necessary. Finally, car shoppers must given the option to request the dealership to stop sending messages to them.

Effective SEO Techniques You May Not Have Yet Tried

Posted on: July 17th, 2012 by credit

Search engine optimization is the process of enhancing the visibility of your website in the search engine results pages so it will drive more traffic. SEO is not an easy task for dealerships and for other businesses as well. It requires constant work and monitoring. If you are already satisfied with the results your SEO techniques are currently yielding for your dealership, you might still want to raise the bar and try other techniques to generate and close more dealer leads.


Testimonials are statements from your previous and existing customers affirming your dealership’s products, sales staffs, or services. A good thing about having testimonials in your dealership website is they add credibility to both the website, which makes search engines notice it more, and to your dealership. They encourage your prospects to check your dealership out or even buy from you, somehow working as calls to action. Publish real testimonials in your dealership website. Genuine testimonials will work best.


One of the main purposes of your dealership website is to provide information. Aside from providing tips and news, another way to provide information is making a frequently asked questions or FAQs page in your dealership website. This should include questions that a car shopper would most likely ask a dealer. Provide short, helpful, and honest answers to these questions. Having FAQs page will drive more traffic to your site. It will cause your website to appear more in search engine results pages as car shoppers key in those questions in search engines.


Wikipedia defines infographics as visual representations of information, data, or knowledge which help communicate concepts by using symbols to process information. Infographics are attractive, easy to understand, presents immediate information, and are more pleasant to read. Having them in your articles or blog posts helps your website to drive more traffic. Psychologically speaking, some people are not very fond of reading texts but you can catch their attention through visuals.

Guest Blogging

There are two ways of guest blogging: One is having experts write for your website and the other is writing for others. You can gain more traffic in either way. In having people outside your company write for you, you can get content without exhausting your resources and you don’t also have to hire more employees for the work. On the other hand, writing or providing content for others gets you more exposure and more diverse audience and allows you to make those content link back to your dealership website thus, driving more traffic.

SEO is a basic and effective internet marketing strategy in generating dealer leads. Don’t be complacent with what you know about it now. Explore new ideas and opportunities to make your dealership more profitable.

Does Facebook Marketing Really Boost a Dealership’s Sales?

Posted on: July 3rd, 2012 by credit

Volkswagen’s Little Darth Vader and Ford’s Ryan Seacrest are automotive advertisement icons which made the two car makers’ promotion viral in and through the social media. These show that car makers and dealerships have been using social media to promote their brand and are expecting a rise in their sales through it.

It does not need statistics to tell that Facebook has been a popular marketing tool in the automotive industry. Obviously, more and more dealers realize its potential and efficiency in helping their business grow. However, social media experts and Facebook itself have a different view about the social networking site as a marketing tool.

In a report, the manager of Facebook’s global marketing solutions, Doug Simpson, said that Facebook should only be used as a branding tool rather than for retailing. Facebook is an effective tool for engaging customers which would result in word of mouth and recommendations which other forms of advertising cannot achieve, according to Simpson.

Moreover, he also said that Facebook is a useful source of data for dealers because through it, they would know about consumers’ behavior in the said social networking site. This will allow them to produce more relevant and effective content in their pages. However, Facebook isn’t also sure if using the social networking site for dealership marketing and sales efforts will indeed bring more sales to dealerships.

Meanwhile, the report also includes a Ford dealer’s opinion about Facebook as a marketing tool. For him, it is simply a place where “vehicle owners and friends can be heard.” Car dealers may be indeed successful in attracting prospects but turning them into auto dealer leads and then into sales, eventually, appears to be the greater challenge.

However, a recent report from Ad Age showed that a large number of car makers in 2011 have turned to newer forms of advertising, including social media. It shows that car dealers haven’t pulled out their sales tactics in social networking sites such as Facebook, despite others’ opinions on how it should be used in marketing, as they continue to see its sales potential.

Dealers use features of Facebook such as fan pages, ads, and wall posts to promote their brand, products, and services. Social networking sites are effective in establishing connections and building relationships with auto dealer leads. These are also places where dealers can build an image of trust and credibility for themselves.

In the final analysis, there exist two obvious facts: (1) Not all users who would like a dealership Facebook page will purchase from it and, (2) there are quite a good number of dealership stories where a social media campaign triggered an influx of sales. Facebook has indeed been a popular and effective marketing tool across industries. However, its role in increasing a dealership’s sales perhaps still needs to be looked at.

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