Twitter has become a platform for people of all ages across various demographics and locations to share updates regarding themselves, their business, and their hobbies. From hastags like #foodporn and pictures of what someone made for dinner to the process of looking for a new car, Twitter users actively share some of the biggest [and smallest] moments of their lives with their followers (and their followers). But for car dealers, most importantly, Twitter users share their car buying process in real time.
A new research study conducted by Canvs found there are over 327,000 tweets each day about either shopping, owning, wanting, or loving cars. Twitter partnered with Canvs to discover what role, if any, these tweets play in the overall car buying process. They found that conversations about cars on Twitter happen in real time and among real shoppers with real intent to make a purchase.
So how can dealerships take advantage of this mega opportunity? Here are a ideas to consider:
1. According to the study conducted by Canvs, there are over 2.4 million “car spotting” tweets per year, and over 70,000 include the hashtag “#dreamcar.” Dealers should engage with users who have a dreamcar on your lot and even encourage a Twitter campaign by asking followers to share their dreamcar with you. For example, “Share with us a picture of your #dreamcar and you could win a free oil change and tire rotation.” As followers share their dream cars, their followers will see the opportunity and may also submit their dream car as well. Not only could you increase your audience by gaining more followers but also potentially find someone whose dream car is sitting on your lot.
2. A Millward Brown study found Twitter users who see advertisements on both TV and on Twitter are 9x more likely to tweet to the brand, 4x more likely to retweet the brand, 3x more likely to tweet about the brand, and twice as likely to follow the brand. Here’s the takeaway: If your dealership is running ads on television, your social strategy should align with that effort to maximize results — whether you are running social ads or not. For example, if your dealership is running ads for a specific make and model, your Twitter content strategy should be about that same make and model. What’s key is making sure you relate the vehicle to everyday moments your audience can relate to and will want to engage with. A Honda dealership, for example, could tweet “We’re celebrating the Honda Accord this month! Share with us your favorite #AccordMemory and check out the 2015 Accord [URL]”
3. Over 75% of car conversations on Twitter are consumer driven. This means most tweets are from real people, not manufacturers or dealerships. It’s these conversations that dealerships must be able to tap into in order to maximize their Twitter strategy. Through tools such as ChatterUP, dealers have visibility into these conversations that are happening in their geographic area. By engaging with consumers while they are tweeting about cars, dealers can increase their odds of making a sale. Consider this, Twitter and Canvs found 60 percent of the car buying conversations on Twitter were in the “pre-purchase” stage, while 30 percent occurred during the purchase.
What’s most important to keep in mind is Twitter allows dealers to influence potential customers in real time. Canvs found in-market shoppers tend to tweet their intent to purchase a vehicle 72 hours before buying a car. That’s three days your dealership has to bring someone into the showroom. It’s imperative for dealers to share relevant and timely content with these motivated buyers!
It’s happening right now. Everyday on Twitter your customers and potential customers are having conversations about their current and next car purchase. It’s in your dealership’s best interest to share content that encourages your audience to engage with you and build a relationship, while aligning your Twitter strategy to sales events and advertising.