Social media is not simply an advertising platform. Businesses that are successful with tools like Twitter, Facebook, Four Square, and blogs aren’t simply pushing out an advertising message. They’re connecting with customers. Before you can sell, you have to connect.
Frequently posting your units and inventory in your Twitter stream or on your Facebook page will work against you. Constantly shouting a sales message will bore people. Failing to connect to your customers will make social media pointless.
Marketing through social media requires balance – to be successful, you must do much more connecting than selling. Pushing your inventory will do little to help you connect and build relationships with your customers. Instead of posting an inventory stream, focus on getting to know your followers. Listen to what they talk about, what they’re interested in, and learn how to contribute. Be interesting (trust me, 20 inventory updates a day is not interesting). Provide tips, join in conversations, and offer resources (Need topic ideas for Twitter or Facebook? Check out this, this, and this). Before you can push a self-serving message out in the social media world, you need to build trust and credibility.
Once you’ve established a bit of credibility, you can begin to sprinkle in promotions. Follow a 10 to 1 rule. For every 10 tweets/posts, 1 can be a promotion for your dealership. And by “promotion” I don’t mean a piece of inventory. Announce sales events, share images of special (unique, worthwhile, extra interesting) units, and highlight great deals. Promote, but keep it interesting and do it in moderation.
If your RV dealership is simply using social media to post your inventory, you’ll never truly connect. In fact, you may end up getting blocked by many potential customers (a constant stream of inventory can get annoying). Instead of trying to sell on social media, shift your thinking. Connect first.
*Image via Bill Ward’s Brickpile’s photostream