On my other website, Boston Auto Blog, I’ve discussed the importance of having a sound social media marketing strategy for car dealerships, but it’s essential for any industry. Over the past three months I’ve spent much time looking over companies’ social media strategies, while also taking notes on the businesses who aren’t taking social media platforms seriously. The findings were alarming for the businesses who weren’t consistently posting content, engaging with followers, or didn’t have any social media presence. We are now living in a time where marketing on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are vital, similar to when big conglomerates moved to neighborhoods, killing the small businesses off in the process.
As in the early days of the shopping mall and companies who could market, advertise, and mass produce products on a grand scale, new businesses who have the foresight of marketing on social media are stealing market share away from local perennial powerhouses. In 2015, it’s a friendly environment for young startups because they can use social media to their advantage as the virtual word of mouth. They can engage with followers even before their doors open, update their future customers on news regarding their startup, and already make an impact before their grand opening. The local stores with a strong tradition of being a great place to shop at is no longer good enough, especially if they’re not using Facebook or any other platform.
This year, there has been a new car dealership that’s moved into the local area. Months ahead of time they were posting updates and promoting their dealership with Facebook ads, so when the doors were finally ready to open, they had immediate customers. In turn, some dealerships in the area started scrambling and began promoting their Facebook fan page, but it was too late. The new dealership was not only promoting, they were also posting native content of their showroom, cars, nail salon, and memorabilia store. So far after 6 months since their grand opening, they’re by far the most popular dealership and have a following of over 8,500 fans on Facebook, which is more than dealerships who have been open for decades.
Traditional businesses who operate the old-fashioned way are playing a very dangerous game. By not going digital and updating their marketing strategy, they’ll get beat by the companies who are primarily marketing on social media. In fact, I haven’t seen one commercial from that dealership. Their popularity arose from word of mouth, social media marketing on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, and engaging with the local community. They were already a member of the neighborhood before the store even opened, and no one can deny that it had an impact on the local area.
Social media marketing will continue to help grow the companies who use Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter effectively, and will kill off the businesses who don’t take social media seriously. It’s already become apparent that this new dealership is taking business away from other showrooms in the area. For any company out there, the new kid on the block who is reaching out to the community should be putting fear in the hearts of the hometown boys who’ve owned the local turf for decades. You either update your marketing strategy, or you’ll be forgotten like the town diners and local stores that were eaten up by companies who could advertise on a mass scale.
Marketing on social media is serious. Without a sense of urgency, and not putting in the time and dedication to grow your Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram followings, you’ll be opening the door for others businesses who understand the importance of online marketing, and they’ll gladly take your customers away from you.