It seems like every day brings a brand-new way to connect and share with consumers, and as a busy dealership, it’s important to take the time to figure out what works best for you when it comes to reaching the most people effectively and in a meaningful way. After all, being able to reach potential customers early in the buying process is one of the most important things you can do when you’re looking to build consumer relationships, bring shoppers to your dealership, and sell more cars.
Most of your consumers are likely spending a good portion of their time doing online research and interacting with acquaintances via social outlets, so how do you get in on the great conversations they’re having and offer up information that will bring more shoppers to your dealership? By tuning in to the latest and greatest tools available and leaning into communication platforms chosen by consumers, you’ll garner more interest in your brand and be able to interact with more people as they research the brands they’re interested in.
To get the best traction with consumers, be sure to use a variety of methods to stay in touch. Keep the following in mind when it’s time to share, discover, and deliver information:
Experiential connections. More and more, shoppers depend on the experiences of others to guide them in their decision-making, so when it comes to getting the word out about your dealership, be sure to lean into the positive experiences of previous customers. Be sure to stay connected, offer great follow-up services, and remain active on your online platforms in order to encourage both previous and future customer interactions. Potential shoppers will take their cues from the experiences others have had at your dealership, so it’s worth your time to keep up with what’s being shared by them online.
Online reviews. 88% of consumers say they trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. That’s a cue for dealerships to not only pay attention to what’s being said about them online, but also to be vigilant in reacting to dealership reviews and responding to shopper comments. A great rep and review tool will help you see what shoppers are saying about you, and you’ll have the opportunity to react to feedback in a timely manner. If you handle feedback—even the negative kind—in a respectful, efficient, and professional way, it says a lot about the way you work as a dealership. Online reviews and feedback are a way of communicating with both the shoppers who have already done business with you and with potential future customers.
Livestreaming content. Livestreaming is quickly gaining larger audiences across the globe, because today’s connections are all about immediacy of information. And because it’s live, individuals, shoppers, and businesses are able to convey their messages in real-time, getting information to followers without missing a beat. With apps like Periscope, Blab, and Facebook Live, livestreaming is becoming the mainstream for just about everyone, and that means it’s especially important for businesses to get onboard. Not only will you reach consumers immediately, but you’ll also build trust, convey authenticity, and place yourself front-of-mind with on-the-go shoppers who are accustomed to accessing information quickly.
Social interaction. Apps like Snapchat, Instagram, Vine, and Pinterest dominate when it comes to user interaction, so be sure your brand is present and actively engaging potential customers with relevant and interesting content. Additionally, keep your eyes on emerging apps like Peach (created by the co-founder of Vine), Yik Yak, and the newly-relaunched Bebo to stay up to date with new and exciting avenues consumers are using to connect and share. Incredibly, chat apps keep users engaged for more than 30 minutes per session, a considerable amount of time when you take into consideration the quick-paced nature of today’s mobile users. Additionally, users on Twitter tend to stay engaged for around 25 minutes, with those on Facebook remaining engaged for around 37 minutes. The high level of engagement seen on these platforms suggests apps will continue to be a growing space for businesses to reach consumers in a natural, yet competitive space.
Consumers are constantly seeking new, faster, and more convenient ways to connect, and when your dealership works to keep pace with them, you’ll find yourself on the cutting edge of communication. While we continue to move forward, it’s important to realize the future is now—and by continuously exploring new ways to create meaningful connections and build relationships, you’ll be able to connect with more potential customers than ever before. You’ll broaden your audience and expand your reach simply by staying in tune with the ways consumers want to share, research, and communicate.