Think about it, it’s the second biggest purchase of your life. So you’re going to invest some time into researching not only the car you want, but who to purchase it from.

In any Australian city there is normally more than one dealership for the same brand of car and the majority are in close proximity from each other, well, close enough to drive from one to the other when doing your pre-purchase research.

So as a purchaser, what are you looking for once you’ve chosen the car you want?

  1. A good price.
  2. Is the car dealership reputable?
  3. Do they offer a high level of service?
  4. What’s their customer service like?
  5. Are they still going to be interested in me once I’ve driven the car out of the dealership?

If you ask any dealership what makes them different from the rest, they’ll all answer with “we have a great reputation and superior service”. For some this might be true but how do you decipher?

Point one on the list you will be able to work out yourself, but what about the others? Well, you could ask friends or relatives to see if they have done any business with the company in question or know anyone who has. But, what’s a quicker more reliable reference? Facebook.

Here’s an interesting fact, 74% of consumers rely on social networks to guide purchase decisions according to a recent survey conducted by SproutSocial.

Think about it, if you’ve decided to purchase a Ford for example and you have two dealerships to decide from because each are offering the same vehicle for the same price, how do you make a decision? Well, let’s check them out on Facebook and see what others have to say about them?

Dealership one has a page, it’s alive, it looks good, they post interesting content regularly and seem to have some good engagement from their followers, there’s some great reviews on the page, there’s also some complaints but you can see they’ve handled the complaint well and in good time and the customer is now happy again.

Dealership two, well they have a page but their last post was over 4 months ago, there’s complaints from 6 months ago that have been ignored and they haven’t even set up the page properly because they don’t have a logo uploaded yet.

So ask yourself, which one are you going to give $40,000 to for your next car? The choice is obvious and it’s not just us saying that. According to an online survey we conducted last year, 71% of the Australian public would not make a purchase, consider going elsewhere or hesitate to do business with a company that has a stale Facebook page or does not have one at all. That’s powerful!

Through direct experience we’ve had through our dealership clients, Facebook is an imperative part of their marketing strategy, in fact it should be considered the cornerstone. We’ve sold vehicles on Facebook through having a conversation with people at 10pm on a Sunday night who have commented on a post – quite literally booking them in for a test drive for the next day. The result? Within 24 hours, the vehicle we posted had been sold.

Instead of looking at ROI consider COI – what is the Cost Of Inaction? In this case if they’re not on Facebook or doing it properly – it’s lost sales.