Facebook page an investment in your sales future

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LAS VEGAS, NEV. – “People who go to Facebook aren’t hot prospects to be wooed by ads and specials,” Kathi Kruse told her audience. “They may be nine months away from buying. They are likely to be just starting out.”

She said dealers should keep that in mind when designing a Facebook page.

To be part of the buying process, dealers should keep ads off the page,” she urged.

“Be helpful. Be interested. Be a likable expert who can teach and they will look to you when they’re ready to buy.”

Kruse, a 30-year veteran in auto retail and a social media consultant to auto dealers for the past four years, was speaking at the 13th Digital Dealer Conference held in Las Vegas, NV, in late October.

When designing a site, she advised dealers to do think carefully about the image they want the page to portray.

“It should emphasize your values. Who are you? What do you stand for? Everyone sells cars and services them. Why should they buy from you?”

She said if a dealership has a lot of pickups truck customers, for example, the page should reflect that.  

“An F150 customer is different from a Focus customer. What are their interests? How do you connect with them in the context relevant to them?”

To make their page an enjoyable stop, dealers should consider connecting with local bloggers who have interests that might appeal to their customers, for example, food and ski enthusiasts. Since most dealers support local charities anyway, why not include some affiliation with them online?

Content should include photos and videos and, above all, customer comments.

“Take time to listen! But you can’t get a feel for what’s working unless you post regularly as often as three times a day,” Kruse said.

She recommends posting when most people check their email – morning, lunch and early evening. Keeping the page fresh with by posting regularly also keeps up the connection between the dealership and turns visitors into fans.

All this means organizing and that calls for a content calendar.

A content calendar is a schedule of when content should be published, who will be responsible for creating it and where and how it will be distributed.

And she recommended inviting staff to contribute.

“In the future, every employee will be trained on social media. They produce content and build lasting sales relationships with the social customer.”

She said the page needed to be conversational as well, meaning the staffer in charge must reply promptly to “engage” with fans.

She recommended hiring a “community manager,” someone’s who is always on hand to start a conversation.

“Generating leads on Facebook is ROI. Before, we paid millions of dollars to get people to walk into the store. Now, we can do that with less money, some time and effort spent building relationships on Facebook.”

    For more information, call 712-251-6440, visit www.krusecontrolinc.com or email kath@krusecontrol.com.