There’s a full-circle power shift happening right now. Thanks to Social networks and the incredible openness of the Internet, dialogues have grown (for free) between people living world’s away from one another, who might never actually meet in person. This colossal power shift back to the consumer means direct, daily contact with other consumers. We’ve come back to a place where buying decisions have a Social component. This means more sharing, gossiping, engaging, informing, and advising. Than came advertising.Before,advertisers treated the consuming audience like a caged bear. Well folks, the bear has escaped.A PR person reached out to me recently saying her client’s goal was to “get more Facebook fans”. After we spoke, I realized that even these seasoned PR/advertising professionals have not fully bought into Social Media. While the marketing components are still present–creating awareness, generating leads–many advertisers still think the bear is caged. They’re feeding the bear the same old stuff, trying to push the mess into the cage like before and expecting the bear to eat it.Audiences everywhere are bored with and have zero tolerance for being brow-beaten by orthodox old-school advertising. Today’s we need to stop interrupting what people are interested in and BE what people are interested in. Social Media is the platform to achieve that. Your audience was the caged bear and now that it’s escaped, the bear can eat anything it wants, including you!
Yelp Social network
Google Places: SEO and Social
Google Places shift away from 3rd party site reviews.Customers are looking for good dealers. Give quality info, engage them – feel comfortable - they buy.
How we succeed at selling cars today. Welcome with Facebook page = Upping themCommunicate the great experience you deliver
Shoppers spend 11 hours online researching their next car.
Buyers spend most time on 3rd Party sites.
Most influential source for shopping= Internet2nd most: Word-of-Mouth. Social Media is word-of-mouth.
Speedy delivery of referring buyers.Social is buzz, people talkASK: Has anyone sold a car recently through Word of Mouth?
Changes were driven first as a generational reaction to traditional marketing
Gen Y-ers were born into a world of hype.Their BS-detectors are highly sensitive & calibrated with Social feedback.Where Baby Boomers rejected conformity, today’s generation of buyer rejects pretense.They’re connected, clever and highly-perceptive.
Consequently...Tried & true selling methods that worked as recently as 2 years ago work less well today.We have to step up our game and build a community where savvy shoppers want to buy from us.
Interconnectivity.Have to deliver ALL that our marketing materials promiseClaims of biggest and best mean nothing when....Alignment: buyer & seller – shared values & perspectives
WHO You Are
eMarketer: 84% of Americans say online reviews influence their decision to purchase
Meet customer where they are. Build relationships, establish trust and convert leads to sales.
Handle operational changes to make Social Media marketing a success?This means your duties as salespeople are changing.
Your customer is connected and has a network on various platforms.The switchboard is a social platform. Now we have more.Cohesiveness with your team members and the customer.
“I’m not on Social Media”. If you’ve sold 5 cars, you’re on Social MediaConversations - with or without you.
Leverage relationships you already have.ASK: Who’s had some repeat buyers lately?
Where’s the best place to build your online community? Facebook.Leverage conversations by participating
You have them in front of you, you’ve established a relationship. They know about you because they’ve done their research. ASK for email address, cell phone, LIKE you on Facebook, talk about their experience on Yelp or Google Places. These are all tools to reach different market segments and demographics.$517K customer: 12 cars average over lifetime. Sell to him once now or many times over his lifetime. Create the return buyer!
These are the places where customers are talking about you. It’s out there for anyone to see, with one click.
BMW of Sterling:18 Total Reviews – 14 are 1-Star and ALL are on Page ONE“I feel the same as many other reviewers here – I would not buy from this dealership again”IRL they deliver a 5-star experience to their customer. Why do they have a 1-star online reputation? They have no internal process.
Online Reputation is all about an internal process, just like CSI. You must be proactive so that your real-life customer experience is what’s conveyed in your ratings. You, as the salesperson, have the unique opportunity to create awareness and ask for a review. You have their undivided attention.Grassroots participation from the rest of the staff, all front-line personnel (sales, service & parts, cashiers) Create awareness with your customer: ask for and capture reviews!
ReferralsTestimonialsScript…everyone will feel comfortable and know what to say.
After 3 decades in the car business and the worst recession in my lifetime, I’m excited about the the new wave of buyers Social Media draws into the store. We have an opportunity to create a bond with customers that’s never been available before.To manage Social Media means to embrace a very lucrative tool, a tool that drives business to your store, your department.Feed the Bear.Tap into sources to celebrate your store and foster the community.Create great word of mouth, generate leads and build lasting sales relationships with repeat buyers. It’s Social Business and it’s ready for the taking.
Online Reputation Strategies for Securing Your Reputation & Building Your Social Store Kathi Kruse Kruse Control Inc. @kathikruse