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Five things social media can't do for your dealership...

Five things social media can't do for your dealership...


So I'm reading Econsultancy this morning, with Ralph's post, "What are the Five Biggest Lies about Automotive Social Media Marke... still fresh in my mind. With the ongoing buzz on Social Media, A post from Patricio Robles struck a chord with me. So, much as Ralph was inspired, so was I.


I'm not a Social Media naysayer at all, but I do feel that some dealers have unrealistic expectations for Social Media. So my advice, for what it's worth, is pursue Social Media, but keep your expectations in line. With the proper expectations you'll also be able to budget the appropriate amount of time (and money) to your efforts.

1.) Make you cool

Long gone are the days when being on Facebook or Twitter meant you were ahead of the curve. Today, 'everybody' is on social media, meaning your social media presence is only as cool as you are.

2.) Create great products & services

The feedback you receive from social media can in some cases help you improve your product and service offerings, but social media in and of itself won't turn crud into quality. That, at the end of the day, is always going to be your job.

3.) Quash criticism

Having a presence on Facebook or Twitter can enable you to respond more quickly and effectively to criticism, but being active in social media will not enable you to eliminate all criticism.

In some cases, the responses you give to criticism leveled at you via social media can only make things worse.

4.) Provide free marketing

Signing up for popular social networks may not cost you a cent, but that doesn't mean that social media is 'free'. Building, growing and maintaining a social media presence always requires an investment in time, and for every business, time is money.

5.) Improve your customer service

For many companies, social media has become an important customer service tool. But don't be confused: great customer service is provided by people, not tools.

If your customer service staff isn't capable of helping customers with their problems regardless of the channel, a Twitter account won't change that.

I would add a number 6...

Social Media will not sell you any cars. Salespeople sell cars. That said, Social Media can absolutely help you keep in touch with your current customers. It can help keep your dealership "Top of Mind" when they are ready to make their next purchase or service appointment. It can also help you garner the occasional referral. It won't sell the car for you, but you might get the occasional "up".


Inspired by and sourced from an article by Patricio Robels, originally published at

Views: 59

Tags: Automotive, Patricio Robels, Social Media


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Comment by Ralph Paglia on July 28, 2011 at 12:12pm
This is further evidence that reading something that inspires you to think about how it applies to the car business, then creating an "Automotive Version" of it to post on ADM is OK... As long as you give credit and a shout out to the author of the original article that inspired you in the first place.
Comment by Rob Hagen on July 28, 2011 at 8:37am

I disagree with 3 but you have to have a very passionate online community. We have actually experienced with clients where people in the community have come to their rescue when someone criticized them. It was really neat to see!


As far as 6, no it won't sell cars for you but it will get you more chances and since selling cars is like baseball in that you can't get a hit or sell a car every time, the more chances you get will eventually lead to more sales.


Strongly agree with 5!!! If you put on one persona on social networks but people experience something completely different once they hit the dealership doors, they will turn around and bury the dealership on those same social networks.

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