The ‘Net’ Effect of Blogging and Social Networking
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Strong – January 2009 Newsletter
(text version of newsletter below)
The ‘Net’ Effect Of Blogging and Social Networking
This month we discuss two new trends getting a lot of attention – blogging and social networking. And because the internet is the new ‘digital newspaper’ you can do both and increase attention for your dealership.
An abbreviated version of “web log,” term describing web sites maintained by an individual offering an ongoing chronicle of information, commentary, description of events, etc. Bottom line: blogs promote a specific interest – your company!
Social Network Definition:
A social structure made of nodes [which are generally individuals or organizations] tied by one or more specific bond, such as values, ideas, visions, etc. Bottom line: social networking communicates your company’s interests and builds relationships with site members.
Readers are accustomed to daily updates on a variety of topics; here is a partial list for a dealership:
- Postings on new and used vehicles at the dealership, focus on the ‘specials’; price/incentive changes; used vehicles condition, value, KBB.com retail pricing; include vehicle video and photos
- Service Department specials, updates, recall notices
- F/I postings on added value of products offered
- Comments on timely topics, from the bailout to “best time to buy”, the advantage of good credit and employee news
Blogs are easy to get from your current website provider. If you are comfortable at adding or updating to your dealership website, then you would be able to run a blog.
Daily Blogging Is Key!
The more you update a blog site, the higher it will come up in a search engine! Invite your staff to contribute their expertise since multiple daily entries are a good thing.
SNI – Social Networking Investigation
Social Networking Investigation will uncover area organizations such as car clubs with whom your dealership is involved – Mustang Club, 4 Wheelers, eco groups, etc.
There is a protocol with visiting these sites: provide an up-to-date and full profile; post comments on several discussions to gain credibility, but do not blatantly advertise or promote. This and limited member amounts are a drawback, but ultimately worth the time.
Create A Dealership Social Network!
To gain more exposure, build your own social network site focusing on:
- Life at the dealership
- Post a monthly e-newsletter
- Add video of product presentations and possibly even the humorous out-takes
- If your dealership collects vintage/special vehicles, tape a walk-around of each
- Simply post information about current employees and their community work
The challenge is gaining members and keeping them involved with network, but ‘word of mouse’ will bring a surprising number to a great site.
Best Effect On the Net!
As with anything, it depends on the time and effort you or your GM, or qualified staff members dedicate to generating added exposure for the dealership. Blogs and social networks are powerful tools for expanding dealership influence.
Remember the first time you heard someone say, “I saw your TV ad?” Get ready for comments like “Love your blog!” and “I enjoyed reading about your people helping with the Food Drive!” It’s a new day, and time to stay ahead on the digital curve.
John Paul Strong
John Paul Strong combines his two decades of automotive marketing experience with a team of more than 140 professionals as owner and CEO of Strong Automotive.