A lot is being said about social media. It is the new buzz word. Everyone seems to have an opinion about what might or might not work in the ever evolving social world!
Every major car launch, promotion and marketing campaign has a social media component. A few key observations over the years prove that, 71% car buyers said information online impacts their buying decision, 23% buyers have other friends for recommendations even on social media as well while only 50% said a television advertisement has impacted their purchasing behavior. Auto brands have used social media to amplify their presence on television, build audiences on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to get consumers more excited than ever about showing how to own a new pair of wheels.
As a social media professional and a car enthusiast I thought of exploring the combination – How successful automobile companies have been in their social endeavor and How to explore the potential of the Social world for the Automobile sector!
- Captivating Visuals
One of the most important aspects of social media marketing is looks! If your images are eye-catching enough they will get traction. If your visuals are breath-taking, it might go viral. Also, with the introduction of Facebook call-to-action buttons for the organic posts, having appealing visuals will take your engagement to a new level.
- Innovative Strategy
Ford Motor Company had to establish a connect with its young users before launching the redesigned model of Fiesta in 2009. They launched a campaign in which 100 drivers were picked from thousands of entries who would get to drive a Fiesta for a year! They would also get free gas, insurance, and video cameras to record honest reviews about the car and were asked to tweet and post videos along the way. This Fiesta Movement created a big chatter on social media, helping Ford gain more than 1.8 million fans on Facebook and 206,000 followers on the company’s Twitter page! The campaign worked so well that Ford is revamping it to introduce the 2014 Fiesta.
- Building Your Community
People following you on these social channels are your loyal fans. Even though some of them might be following your competitor but that’s when you need to add an edge to your brand over the others. Give them that “extra” we all talk about and your followers will go all ga-ga over you! BMW has released several mobile apps – one of them The Ultimate Drive app provides users with road maps where they can mark their favorite drives, leave tips and provide ratings for various roads!
- Challenging Ideas
In 2012, BMW launched a campaign on their YouTube channel for the promotion of their brand new 2012 BMW 3 Series Sedan! The contestants were to submit a video running approximately 5.9 seconds – a reference to the time it takes the vehicle to go from 0–60 mph – showing how much they “desire” a new BMW 3-Series Sedan.
The top 30 entrants in the automaker’s “0 to Desir3 in 5.9 Seconds” contest were put up for public vote. BMW ended up receiving over 2,000 entries, generating more than 2.4 million video views and gaining 1.7 million impressions on Twitter!
- Reputation Management
Early 2012, the innovative Chevrolet Volt went on sale and quickly earned praise from customers and industry observers alike. However, the vehicle soon found its reputation battered due to false product claims in the media and public misunderstanding. Even though the electric, fuel-efficient Volt won every automotive and technology award and earned top safety ratings their sales were behind projections.
Chevrolet needed to change the conversation and re-educate consumers. They did this by identifying and leveraging the power of influencer engagement on social media. It resulted in increased high level of awareness by 1,200 percent, positive opinion of the car by 512 percent, increased purchase consideration by 370 percent and spurred 90 percent of participants to say they would recommend the Volt!
- Monitor Your Social Media Buzz
Being present on social media is like providing people with another platform where they can post positive/negative things about you. It is the brand’s duty to keep an open eye and respond in a timely and apt manner. If you’re pro-active you can reach your customers faster than the car dealers! Iristrack is one such social listening and online brand & reputation management tool. Monitoring your consumers’ sentiments and responding in a timely manner will not only make your happy customers ecstatic but will also win over a disgruntled one ☺