Social media FAQ: How to use social media in the motor trade

June 29, 2016 15:05

Social media as an effective business tool

Social media websites like Facebook and Twitter are certainly very popular. While many use them for keeping in touch with friends and acquaintances, and to get the latest news and views or to participate in wider discussions, they can also be serious and highly effective business tools. This social media FAQ helps explain how the independent motor trade can use these important community platforms to attract interest, generate leads and increase sales.

FAQ1. What social media can motor traders use?

There are a range of social media platforms that are relevant to independent motor trade businesses. Here are the main ones with some ideas:

  • Facebook – create a company page and share updates. Consider posting motors for sale, special offers such as ½ price MoTs in August; or how about backing a winter tyre sales promotion in October with an article on why to fit winter tyres. Consider petrol head gossip and other things of interest like motor sport events including F1, Goodwood, Le Mans and track days.
  • Twitter – create an account and customise your account page. Get the news out about offers and start driving traffic to posts on your Facebook page and your company website. Start conversations like: ‘Is Chris Evans actually any good or is he trying too hard to follow Clarkson?’ Or: ‘Did Mini get it wrong with the Clubman?’
  • Instagram – is image based so consider something creative; share pics of unique, custom or concept cars, 15 seconds of video evidence of service issues to be on the lookout for…
  • LinkedIn – focused on business users, so create a company page and consider targeting trade customers such as cab firms, luxury cars, or commercial fleets. Think about putting out useful info, connecting with fleet managers, or advertising to relevant people.

FAQ2. What’s the best way to do social media?

There are a range of social media platforms that are relevant to independent motor trade businesses. Here are the main ones with some ideas:

  • Social media is something you can do yourself - or you could outsource it to an agency or a freelancer. If you’re (un?)lucky enough to have one, another option is to make use of those spare parts usually found hanging around your home playing computer games, often known as teenagers!
  • Build networks - by connecting with and following businesses and people that share your interests or that are in your space; think about networking with businesses offering complementary services that link with but that don’t directly compete with your business. How about local insurance brokers (there are a few left!) Or mobile auto touch-up services?
  • Plan social media activity - create a plan to schedule what you are going to put out (content) and when you are going to put it out, collectively known as a ‘campaign’; decide which social media platform(s) you want to run it on and, how you are going to attract followers; think about having a strong call to action (CTA) such as ‘call us’; ‘text us’ or ‘drop in and see us’.

FAQ3. How do we initially promote our social media channels?

One of the big things to consider is how to get the word out about your social media presence. It’s all very well having created the content and running campaigns but how do attract initial interest?

  • Signage – put up signs on vehicles and in-garage; just like you do for the phone number, consider putting account addresses on the main signage above the door
  • Web - Make sure social media accounts are linked from your company website
  • Print - account names on stationery, business cards invoices
  • Consider having a compelling CTA - if space permits on your signs think about wording such as ‘Visit us on Facebook for deals on wheels! or run competitions to get followers.

More efficient garage management with Motasoft VGM

The effective use of social media has an impact on your business. It will generate ‘leads’ often seen by increased numbers of enquiries and followers and connections on the social platforms. Turning these into business requires thought and regular and consistent brand messaging to support your business and present it as attractive.

To maximise the return from social media, the most successful independent garages need to be super-efficient, so consider the benefits of Motasoft Virtual Garage (VGM). VGM provides a range of outstanding benefits that accelerate your ability to put jobs through your workshop.

Just click here to find out more about how Motasoft Virtual Garage Manager equips your garage to better deal with increased volumes of business that results from effective use of social media.