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6 tips to humanize your auto shop on social media

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Auto shop owners often run into some issues when it comes to humanizing their enterprises via social media. Consumers tend to see companies as impersonal entities no matter their industry, but when your firm deals in machinery and moving parts, it can be especially tricky to add warmth to your image. That being said, "tricky" and "impossible" don't have to be synonymous - you just need to know how to approach social networking with a human touch.

Published in: Automotive, Social Media
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6 tips to humanize your auto shop on social media

  1. 1. 6 tips to help humanize your auto shop on social media
  2. 2. For many auto shops, the main obstacles between them and successful social media marketing is the set-up process, followed by the time and expertise it takes to stay engaged while keeping up with constant changes.
  3. 3. So cheers if you’ve already made it past setup and your first few posts. Now, you may be tempted to relax and crack open a brewski once you've created your accounts—but don’t! It takes more than just setting up a profile and posting regularly to engage users.
  4. 4. Auto shops tend to have issues making themselves relatable via social media. Since you deal in machinery, it can be tricky to add warmth to your image. This is often made worse by automated posting.
  5. 5. So step away from the robotics and join the party! Use the following tips to inject some humanity into your social networking.
  6. 6. Personalization goes a long way. More often than not, small business owners delegate social media management to one person or a small team of marketing professionals.
  7. 7. Consider having them sign posts with their names to forge a personal connection with your audience.
  8. 8. Your Twitter followers, Facebook fans, etc. will perceive such messages as being "written by [person's name] from [company name]" as opposed to "just another post by [company name]."
  9. 9. Promoting a new deal or showing off your shop? Get your people in the shot. For instance, rather than merely posting a close-up of your latest coupons, get your social media manager to post a selfie holding them.
  10. 10. Along those same lines, encourage mechanics to pose in their work area. Doing so will not only show customers where their cars will be serviced, but also who will be doing the work.
  11. 11. Casual and conversational. Highbrow and educational. Practical and informative. There are a lot of tones to choose from, but the most important thing is to choose one that fits your brand—and stick to it.
  12. 12. A strong voice is critical in giving personality to your company via social media. Stay consistent with the tone you use across other channels too... a lack of cohesion will undermine your brand authority.
  13. 13. Company accounts are expected to post promotional messages about sales, new products and the like, but you need to do more than that.
  14. 14. Counteract this one-way messaging by asking page admins to engage in conversation, ask questions, listen to others' comments and concerns, and respond when appropriate.
  15. 15. Encourage them to even go out of their way to like followers’ photos and comment on their posts (without seeming intrusive, of course).
  16. 16. Try being a little less corporate and a little more personable. Have fun. Put the “social” in “social media.”
  17. 17. Remember: people follow people on social platforms because they want to see engaging, interesting content.
  18. 18. If you see something worthy of a share—whether you're scrolling down your Twitter timeline, perusing your Facebook feed, catching up on Instagram pics or paging through Pinterest boards—post it!* *Within reason, of course. Don’t post anything that’s bound to incite controversy or cause people to associate negative feelings with your shop.
  19. 19. But don’t just repost something without contributing anything original. Include your own analysis or reactions too. And don't forget to give credit to the original poster!
  20. 20. Bad reviews can be especially damaging for those in the auto industry. Cover your assets and handle your reviews. If you or your staff made a mistake, own it, apologize for it and make it right.
  21. 21. Shoppers who read brand responses that offer a refund, upgrade or product exchange are 92% more likely to purchase, and product sentiment increases by 88%. Bazaarvoice, January, 2014
  22. 22. The more genuine you are in responding to reviews (and the less canned your responses are), the more people will see you and your staff for what you are: human.
  23. 23. Everyone makes mistakes. If customers see the people who make up the company, they’ll be more likely to forgive.

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