If your customer was hanging out regularly somewhere, would you want to be there too? With 11 Twitter accounts added every second, it’s safe to say you need to be marketing your store on Twitter.
Twitter marketing is disconcerting for many dealerships due mainly to the fact that most dealership personnel aren’t users. Twitter is a different language than all the other Social platforms and speaking it incorrectly will get you nowhere fast. Two important points to consider:
What Twitter IS:
What Twitter is NOT:
- Broadcast Tool
Everyday dealership peeps ask me crucial questions about Twitter marketing. To help you, I’ve listed 5 useful steps here to follow to start building your presence and generate leads with Twitter marketing:
1. Define Your Strategy. Many new to Twitter often say to me, “I don’t know where to start”. Just like building anything that’s worthwhile, you must start with a solid foundation. Your Twitter profile should be defined by who you want to attract and engage with. In a dealership’s case, it’s your current and potential customers in your surrounding community. To succeed on Twitter, you must strive to know everything there is to know about your customer so you can create and share tweets that matter to them. Start by answering these 5 questions:
- Who is my customer?
- What are their interests?
- What problems can I solve?
- What desires can I satisfy?
- How can I help them buy?
2. Connect. Build your followers by following those you want to connect with. Twitter suggests people for you to connect with but in order to grow your followers more effectively, there are tools to help you. A great way to start is by reaching out to thought-leaders in your community. Local celebrities, radio/TV personalities, local sports heroes, civic leaders and influential bloggers. Follow them and remember that their audience is most likely your audience. Start following those that are following your local leaders.
Create awareness in your store with QR codes linking to your Twitter profile. Train front-line personnel to help customers find you. It shows you care about the customer who’s on Twitter that you’d like to connect with them where they are.
3. Build Credibility & Trust. This is where the “networking” part of Social networking comes into play. I always talk about how dealerships are now building relationships using Social Media prior to the sale (unlike before where we sold to many we’d never met before their visit to the store). Twitter is where we build that relationship. Your content is what attracts and engages.
Awesome content is what separates the great from the mediocre. Sharing content you’ve written, typically in a blog, has the most impact on your followers. Your blog establishes you as the “likable expert” concerned with providing answers to questions your customers have. Spending time and effort to provide valuable information to your followers builds credibility and trust.
4. Make Search Work for You. How would you like to listen into conversations going on right now, in your area, about the products and services you sell? Twitter search does that for you. Search for phrases like “by a car” or “car repair”, and seconds later you see what people are saying. One smart salesperson I know did a search just like that. He found someone complaining about a competitor so he followed that person. He tweeted them saying, “Wow, so sorry to hear you had such a bad experience. I hope the rest of your day goes better.” That person thanked him. The salesperson kept corresponding with him and a few days later, he sold him a car.
5. Leverage Tools. Twitter is conversational and you have to be present, in real time, to converse. How can a busy person keep up with all of the writing, posting, listening and analysis? Make good use of the tools available. Here are a few I use:
- Google Reader allows you to aggregate all your favorite blogs into one place. It’s like your own personal newspaper. It saves so much time when you’re looking for articles you want to share. (Free)
- Bitly.com is a URL shortener. You only have 140 characters to share content so you need to shorten those long URLs. Bitly is fabulous because it gives you valuable analytics to see how many people are engaging with and sharing your posts. You can also create QR codes with Bitly and get the same great analytics. (Free)
- Hootsuite.com is a Social Media dashboard. It saves time by letting you set up posts to schedule out into the future. Spend an hour or two every few days to schedule your content. You won’t have to always remember to post and it frees up your time so you can spend it interacting with your followers. (Free)
- Refollow.com makes it easy to discover, manage, and grow your Twitter Social circle. You can manage your followers, establish new relationships, unfollow or block users, sort by importance and a lot more. Using this tool will grow your followers faster and more efficiently than doing it manually. (Free to start; $10/month for active users).
Your Turn: I’m curious, have you tried marketing on Twitter? What results have you seen?