There’s a disturbing trend I’m seeing in the automotive industry when I visit websites. Perhaps it’s been like this for a while and I simply took my eye off the chat ball. When I see chat windows that instantly prompt for the customer’s contact information, it makes me cry a little inside.
This isn’t what chat is supposed to be about. I’d love to have that debate with anyone. Chat is an alternative means of instant information. In other words, it’s more akin to phone calls than to anything else. If you believe in having a barrier of entry for your customers to chat, then you should have your receptionist answer the phone with, “Thank you for calling XYZ Motors. Can I have your name, phone number, and email address, please? No? Okay, thank you for calling.”
Presence is 50% of the game when it comes to social media. You have to be in front of people, accessible, and able to bring to them the other half of the social media equation: message.
A message without a presence brings to mind the old saying about a tree falling in an empty forest. If a Facebook post goes out and nobody saw it in their news feed, did it really get posted at all? Of course, having a presence is great but if the message isn’t powerful, engaging, and resonating, it won’t do your dealership any good.
In this podcast through AutoSuccess, I talk about the ways that dealerships can improve their presence and focus on what really matters: driving more business and keeping customers as happy as they can be.
Through two decades in the automotive industry (I think it might be three, technically, but I’m in denial), I can count on one hand the number of conferences I’ve truly supported. I speak at many events and attend a dozen a year, but I don’t truly support them. Some, like NADA (where I am right now writing this post) and SXSW (where I’ll be next month) are big enough that they simply don’t need my endorsement. Most could use any support they can get to expose them, but I often hold back.
The Super Bowl has concluded for yet another year and for those of us within the automotive industry it sure was interesting to see the various automotive commercials that Toyota, Kia, Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen, Hyundai, Audi, and Lincoln created. As we grabbed for more nachos while football took a break and the anticipated Super Bowl intermissions commenced. This year there was a strong winner, a motor company that made great strides to appeal to their demographic and put the driver first. The winner hands down for this year’s automotive Super Bowl commercial goes to… the Chrysler Group.
Over at Automotive Digital Marketing, there’s been a long discussion started by Jim Ziegler about Carfax and its place in the automotive community. I haven’t chimed in because, quite frankly, I’m not needed there. The discussion is self-perpetuating and there’s no shortage of opinions.
We don’t get to post often enough about the automotive industry here simply because it’s more of a general social media blog, but this itself is newsworthy enough. The Internet Sales 20 Group is being held in Chicago from October 23-25 and promises to be a game-changer in the automotive arena. As a result, KPA is not only sponsoring but offering seven scholarships to help dealers attend.
Nissan pushes forward in the social networking arena with more and more innovative ideas. In promoting their new 2013 Altima, they’ve reached out through Facebook with live chats, contests, and interactive events that bring the drivers and the engineers closer together. Once again, Nissan pushes the envelope by tapping in to your inner inventor.
The “Innovation Garage” is Nissan’s newest foray into bringing drivers into the fold. They are actively requesting anyone who’s ever thought, “Wouldn’t it be cool if…” to bring their A-game and put their best, most innovative ideas to the test. Simply visit their site, NissanInnovationGarage.com, login with Facebook Connect, and submit your greatest idea to be voted on by a jury of your peers.
What do you get out of it? Glad you asked. The winner will receive a 2013 Altima, a $50,000 grant to begin making that phenomenal idea a reality, the opportunity to put that idea out on Kickstarter, and of course, bragging rights. What are you waiting for? Go submit an idea and get started on the dream.