Social media is an essential digital marketing tool for car dealers and automotive marketers — 75% of car buyers and 68% of service customers say internet research, including social media and review sites, is the most helpful medium when choosing a car dealership, a study by Digital Air Strike reveals. Social media is ranked by customers as even more important than the dealer’s own website. Social media must therefore play a predominant role in your digital marketing strategy to reach customers and drive sales.

Target Facebook users

66% of car buyers or owners who have seen a Facebook ad say they have clicked on it — up from just 33% in 2014. Using Facebook ads can help dealers reach customers looking to purchase a new car. Facebook ads make sure relevant car ads are put in front of the right audience — people who are looking at car-related Facebook pages but haven’t yet visited the dealer’s own site.

Potential customers are shown cars and important details, including consumer reviews, and the make, year, model and geographic location of the vehicles. Dealers and marketers can upload any relevant information about the car to help customers make a purchasing decision. Since 84% of your consumers use Facebook, Facebook ads are a wise investment. Car ads have two times higher click-through rates than the average Facebook ad, Unified reveals.

Incorporate video marketing

Video marketing is an unmissable way for car sellers to reach their target audience and drive sales. 75% of automotive shoppers say online videos have influenced their shopping habits or purchases, according to Google statistics. Additionally, 40% of auto shoppers who used online video for research say it helped them discover a vehicle they weren’t previously aware of. Video marketing also helps shoppers take action — after watching a car sales video, 60% of shoppers subsequently visited a dealer either in person or via their website. For this reason, focus on making useful, engaging videos that offer real value to your target consumer — for example, practical car maintenance and repair tips, positive customer reviews, and the latest vehicle releases.

Pay attention to reviews

Don’t forget to encourage your customers to leave reviews on your social media pages — positive reviews make car shoppers 90% more likely to visit your website and 5.3 more likely to visit your dealership, a DealerRater and Dataium study tells us. Also be ready to address negative reviews that can be left from time to time. Swiftly responding to and helping customers who had a negative experience will control damage and make you look professional, reliable and trustworthy to other customers. Make sure to monitor reviews left over the weekend — negative reviews are 19% more likely to be posted on a Saturday, Sunday or Monday after weekend shopping.

With the ever-booming popularity of social media, a solid social media marketing strategy is essential for all car dealers. It’ll help you get more appointments, make more sales, and, ultimately, boost your business’s bottom line.