5 Star Reputation – Digital Experts for Independent Dealers

A Car Dealer’s Guide to Twitter

Twitter is one of the most popular social media platforms in the world, racking up a staggering 300 million monthly users, with 13 million of those based in the UK.

Twitter provides dealerships with the opportunity of advertising and marketing the business for free and connecting with those who have an interest in the automotive business, all resulting in the generation of more leads and sales if it is done correctly!

Creating a business Twitter account should be on every dealership’s to-do list and should be implemented as a key factor in your dealership’s digital marketing strategy.

Twitter allows you to send short and snappy ‘tweets’, to your followers which can promote products, services, discounted offers, blogs, special events and so much more. So, let’s get your dealership up and running on Twitter!

Create an Account

Head over to the Twitter website, where you will find a box which says, ‘New to Twitter?’ Fill in the details, making sure that you use your dealership’s business name, rather than your actual name.

 

Signing up to twitter

 

Add in your work email address and create a work-related password (possibly the same password as your other social platforms to make things easier), and finally hit ‘Sign up for Twitter.’

You will then be sent to a page which asks you to fill in some more information, including your ‘Full Name’, ‘Phone or Email’, ‘Password’ and ‘Email’. In this section, just copy what you wrote on the previous page.

 

Creating a twitter account

 

 

For the username, it is important to carefully think about what you want your ‘handle’ to be. This is what your customers will use when they want to get in touch with you. We’d recommend using something as close to your business name as possible, so for example, Click Dealer’s Twitter handle/user name is ‘@ClickDealerLTD’.

If you are unable to use your business name because it has already been taken by somebody else, Twitter will usually present some other options underneath to help you by adding a couple of characters… So, it could be something like ‘@ClickDealerLTD1!’.

 

Twitter Handle

 

If your business name is particularly long, try to shorten it as much as you possibly can by using abbreviations, dropping the ‘Ltd.’, or missing out a couple of vowels. When a customer gets in touch with you, they will need to use your handle to strike a conversation.

Twitter only allows each tweet to be 280 characters long, and your handle will eat into their word count, meaning that they may need to tweet twice or won’t be able to express themselves properly. So, think carefully about what you want your username to be on Twitter before submitting.

Once you’ve completed the form and clicked ‘Sign up’ at the bottom of the page, you will be pushed to another page which invites you to personalise your profile. Select ‘Let’s go!’, and you can then begin to let Twitter know about your business’ interests so that the account is tailored to your dealership’s needs.

Personalise your Dealership’s Account

Now that your account details are inputted and you have a profile, it’s time to make sure that you’re seeing the right things on your Twitter feed which are related to the automotive industry.

Twitter will offer you a list of different topics ranging from fashion to business, select the ones which are most appropriate for your business and click continue. You will then be taken to a page which displays numerous accounts based on the interests which you selected on the previous page.

These accounts will be made up of other people and business’ who are interested in the same things as your business. You will be given the option on the right side to follow these accounts if you wish.

Following an account means that their content will feature in your Twitter feed and you will see it regularly, so you’re basically subscribing to their tweets. They will be notified if you follow them and will have the option to follow you back. Not all of them will be appropriate for your business, so scroll down the list and tick the ones which you do want to follow.

Now that you’re following some other people and businesses, it is time to customise your profile. You will be taken to a page which will encourage you to add a profile picture, where you can either take a photo or upload an existing photo. We would recommend uploading an existing picture of your brand’s logo. Simply click on the ‘Upload Photo’ button and select the company logo from your files.

 

Twitter Profile Photo

 

Once you have uploaded your profile picture, you will be taken to a page which encourages you to follow people you know. Twitter has the ability to invite people in your address book which is usually stored in your emails. We would recommend skipping this step for now and wait until you’ve found your feet with Twitter, before adding potential customers. The ‘Skip’ button will take you to your Twitter feed, where you will notice the people who you previously followed a few steps back. Now, it’s time to visit your page and see how it looks!

Customising Your Account

In the top left-hand corner of the computer screen, you will see a small box which has your company name, handle and your circular profile picture. Click on your company name and this will take you to your personal profile page. To edit aspects of your profile such as your cover photo, biography and location, click on the ‘Edit Profile’ button. This will take your profile into edit mode, where you can make alterations to the content and look of your profile.

Header Photo

Now that you are in edit mode, we would recommend adding a Header Photo to your profile. Your header photo is the large background image which features at the top of your profile, and allows the personality of your business to shine through. The image should be 1500px wide and 500px high, so make sure that you customise this using photo editing software before you add it onto your profile, otherwise some parts of it will be cut off and it will not sit right in the space.

Your header photo should match your branding and colour scheme for your business to keep it looking relevant and clean. We’d suggest putting an image of your stock, an image of your team or a branded image stating your contact details in this space.

Company Bio, Location and Website

You also have the opportunity to add some information about your dealership in the ‘bio’ section. You can add up to 160 characters to describe your business’ services in a nutshell. Try to add some keywords in here which will assist your potential customers when they are searching for a dealership in their area, and keep it as clear and concise as you possibly can.

For example, Click Dealer’s company bio is: ‘Click Dealer is a single solution for the independent used car dealer which helps you to manage your business, advertise & sell your used cars’.

As well as adding a company bio, you can also add your location and your company website in the boxes below. This will enable your potential customers to navigate to your website and view your online showroom and lets them know where you are based.

 

Twitter 6

 

Building your Online Presence

Once you have created your profile and are happy that it is representing your business in the best way possible, it is time to make some connections! Try to add some local businesses who have a good number of followers. You will know the affluent businesses within your local area, so search for them and give them a follow. They may even return the favour and follow you back.

The reason we suggest following other local businesses is because they may retweet your tweets if it is relevant to the area or to their business. For example, you may both support the same charity, and can spread the word by supporting each other’s charitable activities online.

We would also recommend following manufacturers and other local dealerships. This can give you the chance to build strong relationships with like-minded people. They may share information from other pages which is relevant for your followers, and it also means that you can keep on top of what they’re up to!

We would not recommend following your direct competitors, because you would essentially be promoting your automotive rivals… But following car parts companies, or a dealership which offers something a little different to yourself could be beneficial.

You may also want to consider following your customers. The way to capture this information is to ask them for their Twitter handle during the point of sale. You may want to take a photograph of them with their newly purchased vehicle and post it online. You can then tag them in the image and follow them with this information, which may encourage them to follow you back. Who knows, in the future they may retweet one of your posts to their friends and recommend your business!

What Should I Tweet?

It is important to offer a wide variety of tweets to your followers, so that they can see that you keep your content fresh, and this way you will also attract other audiences who may just like your content (this doesn’t mean that they won’t buy a car from you in the future!) Mix it up with a selection of tweets about your stock, events in the local area, funny videos, news articles and competitions.

It is also worth following top hashtag trends so that you appear within a wider selection of tweets to people interested in those subjects. For example, #MondayMotivation is usually a popular hashtag used by all sorts of people across the globe on Monday mornings, so jump on the bandwagon and use the hashtag to get involved with the conversation.

You could also tweet posts of your team hard at work, or generate some quirky competitions and polls to get your audience engaged with your content. Remember that you only have 140 characters, so use them wisely by keeping your comments short and snappy. This also applies to commenting to your followers who may tweet you. We’d suggest asking them to drop you an email or give you a call so that you can continue the conversation elsewhere where you are not limited to a certain number of characters.

 

Crompton Way Motors Twitter

 

Whilst we are talking about tweeting your customers, it is important to respond to every single customer who may reach out to you, even if you are dealing with a complaint. Twitter is a public social media channel, and everyone can follow your conversation with a customer. Make sure that you write comments with a polite and professional tone, as you would when you’re dealing with a customer in person. If you choose to ignore customer complaints on Twitter or respond in an unprofessional manner, this may put off other potential customers.

As well as communication with your customers online, it is useful to join in with other conversations to show that you’re approachable and have a friendly, conversational tone. Comment on people’s tweets, retweet and love them, and strike up tag questions to keep your conversations flowing! Being active online will allow your business’ personality to shine through and will present your company in a friendly and positive light.

As well as organically tweeting every day to your followers, you may wish to consider paid advertising to give your Twitter followers a boost every now and again. This means that you can create an interesting post which will appear on people’s timelines who express an interest in the automotive industry but may not necessarily be following your page.

The method is used to generate more brand awareness and to find more new followers. Make sure the content for the sponsored post is engaging and provides a link to your website to drive more traffic over!

For more information on Twitter, Click Dealer’s Paid Social Media Marketing packages or to find out how we can increase your number of social media leads, get in touch today by emailing marketing@clickdealer.co.uk or calling us on 01782 904 715. Alternatively, you can message us via our contact page!



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