Nearly everyday, a dealership asks me this burning question: How can I increase my engagement on Facebook? What they’ve come to realize is that while it’s “easy” and “free” to set up a Business Page, it’s quite another to create fan engagement and foster a community. This is marketing folks and like all other forms of marketing, it takes a well-defined strategic plan to be successful. Marketing on a Social network takes a further step. You need to engage your Social customer so they’ll feel comfortable buying from you.
The goal for automotive Social Media marketing is to ultimately generate leads. These are not the “leads” you buy, they are the leads you nurture, support, engage, and listen for. Posting status updates on Facebook that create conversation are tricky. You have to investigate and learn from our audience what they want to know about, what keeps their attention. Posts need to be all about the audience. Unfortunately, too many dealership pages are all about the dealership.
This burning question is blazing because there is no hard and fast rule–the answer is elusive. Social is not like the linear forms of digital marketing. Social Media is social and that, by definition is non-linear. After all, how can you predict human interactions? The good news is there’s one thing that remains constant in a social environment: people will most-likely interact with you if you ask them thought-provoking questions. Subjects can run from childhood experiences to the emotional milestones in their lives. It’s like when you hear a song from your past that meant something special or reminded you of a great experience…you always feel that feeling when you hear that song.
Since the introduction of Facebook’s new design, engagement has never been more important. If people are not “liking” your updates and/or aren’t posting comments, whether you have 100 or 100,000 fans, your updates will never make it to their walls; they’ll never see your updates. I’ve been using a fabulous tool called Post Planner. It allows you to schedule your posts in Facebook and they’ll be custom branded with your company name. With the App you also get “Status Ideas” and I’ve been testing some for the last few weeks. The response has been amazing. Here are 10 that have boosted engagement with fans:
1. What was your first car?…and do you wish you still had it?
2. When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?
3. Who doesn’t love that new car smell? If you could afford any car in the world, what would you drive?
4. What’s your favorite comfort food?
5. Who makes you want to be a better person?
6. Where’s the most embarrassing place your cell phone has gone off?
7. What would you try if you had no fear?
8. What was your favorite sitcom growing up?
9. What’s the best book you’ve read in the last year?
10. What’s the last piece of advice you took?
These posts engaged customers and got the conversation moving. Keep in mind, these posts/this tactic is only a small portion of what your Facebook Page Content Strategy should contain. Customer video testimonials, blog posts, service specials, recent news, community events and, of course, really a great deal on car are all part of a winning Facebook marketing strategy. You always need to communicate your store’s personality so your audience will know why to buy from you. Listen, solve their problems, develop trust, interact and be consistent. That’s the formula for Facebook results…that’s what generates leads.