Congratulations, you’ve set up your very own car dealership and you’re ready to take the auto-world by storm. You’ve probably already printed out your flyers and posted them through the doors of your local community, but did you know that there are loads of ways you can advertise your business online?
Social media isn’t just for selfies and holiday snaps you know! It’s actually a fantastic tool for business owners, like yourself, to get the word out there about their car dealerships. Set up a company Facebook page and invite people from your local area to ‘like’ it, they’ll then be able to see updates and offers you post.
Twitter is another great tool you can use to enhance your business’ exposure. You can tweet directly to your followers, and answer any queries quickly. As your social following grows, it’s great fun to host social media competitions. These don’t have to be overly complicated, we find that a simple ‘like and share for a chance to win’ are often the most popular!
Having a blog on your company website can really help you to connect with your customers. Your car dealership blog could be full of hints and tips for car owners, from cool car accessories to the best way to get bird muck off a windscreen. Why not take a look at some motor blogs to get some inspiration?
Unsure of how to set up a blog? Log onto wordpress.com, this is a simple to use blogging platform that will enable your blog to look professional - there are loads of handy YouTube tutorials too, which brings us nicely onto our next point.
However, keep in mind that a successful blog has posts regularly - at least once a week. A dormant, unused blog is useless.
Set up a YouTube channel
If you think that YouTube’s just for teenagers, you couldn’t be more wrong. Setting up a YouTube channel is a fantastic way to gain some more exposure for your business. If you get a desirable or interesting vehicle through your doors, why not use your smartphone and video what it looks like inside? You’d be amazed at how many car fans out there would be interested in viewing these types of videos.
If you’re a dab-hand at fixing cars, you could even post some video tutorials on how to change a tire, change the brake fluid or anything else that will be useful for others to know.
Regularly contribute on industry-specific forums
There are loads of car forums online - pistonheads is a good example for an ‘all-rounder’, but there are also loads of manufacturer-specific ones too. The trick to posting on these forums is to actually engage with the people on them. By all means put your company name and address on your signature, but don’t just spam loads of boards with a sales pitch.
Chat with car owners and answer any motor queries, and by all means recommend you business if you have a specific vehicle that someone is looking for, this way you’ll get a good reputation within the forum. This could mean more traffic to your website, and in turn, more customers for your business!
A great way to build a relationship with potential and existing customers is by using email marketing techniques. To obtain email addresses, you need to trade this information for something valuable. We’re talking about giving away a car, but taking the time to create a really thought-provoking ebook on finding the right vehicle for you, for example, should do the trick!
Useful platforms to help with your email marketing campaigns are Mailchimp and Aweber. But remember - don’t oversell as this will only serve to alienate customers. Why not produce a monthly newsletter with everything you’ve been up to? Mailchimp has some brilliant and FREE newsletter templates which are great for getting started.