Social media plays a big role in our lives, impacting the way we interact with our network. In 2018, the automotive industry began to experience the power social media possesses on car shoppers and their expectations through the buying process.
As a result, there are several key trends that developed in 2018 and look to continue in 2019.
Shifts in advertising strategy
It’s no surprise that as consumers change the way they shop, dealers are adjusting how they market themselves. Dealers today are moving advertising dollars and putting more stock in targeting and retargeting consumers using Google and Facebook.
We’ve all been there, looking at something online and suddenly ads for that exact product begin appearing on your social feeds. It’s not an accident and dealers are now using this process to bring shoppers back to their listings.
Social media as a selling channel
Social media platforms host a limitless number of users that just continues to expand. One of the more popular channels, Facebook, recently introduced Facebook Marketplace – a buying and selling tool built into the existing platform.
The automotive presence on Facebook Marketplace grew substantially in 2018, large in part due to the 550 million users that login to the platform monthly. Over the last half of 2018, I’ve seen more than 600 dealers request inventory feeds sent to Facebook Marketplace. This is a growing destination to showcase your inventory to in-market shoppers. Facebook Dynamic ads for auto also played a part – connecting the website experience to the social media experience, helping dealers target their audience.
Dealership level merchandising on social media
Developing a complete, full social media business profile is essential for reaching and growing your shopping audience. Differentiating your dealership with relevant content, reviews and transparency are key points to make you stand out. The same principles also apply to your inventory listings on Facebook.
Remember, it’s about balancing the right inventory with the right customer experience – social media can help get you started.
As we move into 2019, it’s time to create a strategy, using these advancements, to target car shoppers on social media. Do you have a 2019 strategy for social media merchandising? Visit HomeNet at NADA later this month in San Francisco, we can help get you started.