4 Reasons You Should Care About Facebook, Twitter & LinkedIn26 Sep, 2012 By: Darrell Amy, Dealer Marketing Systems imageSource
Social media is a fantastic tool that sales people can use to build relationships that lead to sales. While social media is a great sales tool, today I want to focus on three practical reasons that your dealership should have an active social media presence as a company. Now, I know that as a business owner some of us think, “Why would I want to focus time and resources on platforms where all people do is share personal and often inane aspects of their lives.” Well, read on and learn what your competitors know.
True, a small percentage of people in real life and on Facebook feel compelled to share details that none of us care about. However, just because there are a few people in real life that over share, does that mean you don’t have any relationships? Of course not--business is built on relationships. In the same way, you should not be so quick to write off social networking sites like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. Each of these can play a valuable role in your dealership strategy.
Ten years ago companies made big promises about how websites could lead to new online sales. What we’ve learned since then is that while dealer websites haven’t yet become a huge boost of new “e-sales,” they play an important role in many aspects of business including getting found in Google, supporting the sales process with good information, facilitating service calls and helping recruit great employees.
Many dealers were skeptical about the importance of a website because they couldn’t see beyond skepticism of sales happening on the web. In fact, many delayed putting time and energy into their web presence and woke up a few years later to find out that the web was here to stay.
In the same way, I think we should apply the lessons we learned about websites to social networking. Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn are now a part of our business culture. They are here to stay. Therefore, we should look for ways to use them.
We learned that there was more to your website than just online sales. Similarly, there is more to social networking than just generating sales leads.
In this article, I want to explore the three reasons other than sales leads why you should care about Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn at your dealership.
Your Impression as a Technology Leader
Your company needs to be positioned as a leader in technology. That means your online public “face” plays a critical role. Can you credibly call yourself a technology leader and not use the latest technologies to market your company?
What happens when someone is looking for your company online? These days they are just as likely to find your company Facebook page as they are your website. (And, by the way, virtually every business has a page on Facebook whether you know it or not.).
When they visit your Facebook page, what do they see? Do they get an unbranded site with 5 fans and an update from four months ago? Or, do they find a fully branded presence that sells your company & links through to your website, and is updated with information regularly?
You need to actively manage your social media presence. You should have fully branded company pages on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. These pages should be updated at least once a day with relevant content. Otherwise, you risk looking like a company that does not execute consistently.
(What do you put on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter? Each platform is different. Stay tuned for an upcoming article on how to use each platform.)
Your “Email” List
Social media can give more reach to marketing that you are already doing. Most dealers collect prospect emails to send out newsletters and drip marketing campaigns.
The good news is that you can grow the impact of these campaigns simply by adding in social media.
When we are getting ready to click “send” for an email campaign for our dealer clients, we also post links to the email on their Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn pages. Sales
reps can also put these links on their social media pages. This dramatically increases the reach of the campaign, helping to create more leads.
Your Place in Search Engines
Yellow Pages have long been replaced by Google when it comes to finding companies. You used to be able to trick out Google by putting “meta-tags” and all kinds of behind the-page information on your website. That no longer works. With Google’s new algorithms, you need to provide fresh content on a regular basis.
While adding blog posts, news articles and case studies to your website creates a baseline for getting on page one of Google, you can boost this with social media. Earlier we noted that your Facebook page is often found in Google, sometimes before your website. You can also use Twitter to get found online. Think of Twitter as a public text message service. Tweets are short bursts of information similar to a text message. Each of your brief Tweets are publicly viewable and indexed by Google. That means when you publish a new case study on your website and also Tweet a link to it, you double the search engine impact of the case study. Not only do your Twitter followers learn about the case study, people searching for a new copier or managed print services partner may find you on Google through theTweet as well.
On top of all of this, correctly using social media can help you develop relationships and build market intelligence that can lead to more sales. Training your sales reps on how to effectively use social media can lead to new sales.