You visit an auto dealership and after a good round of negotiations end up with the car you want at a price you are happy with. But after you purchase the car what happens? Do you go back to the same dealership to have your car serviced? Do you go back there when you are looking for your next vehicle? What is your loyalty to that same dealer?
Well the studies prove that there is not much loyalty to the car dealer after the car has been purchased. As a matter of fact only 24% of car owners end up taking their car back to the same dealership for service. The lack of loyalty has been something major car manufacturers are trying to help dealers with. The launch of credit cards that award points for car services has been one example (Toyota Credit Card, GM Credit Card).
However, that has not really improved the margins for dealerships. The dealerships spend hundreds of thousands of dollars a year to bring in sales to their dealerships but once the purchase is done, not much happens with their customers.
This is an area Social Media can really help dealerships bring back those customers to their dealerships. Customer loyalty needs to be built up after the purchase of a vehicle.
So what can the dealerships do?
1. Launch their own Facebook Fan Page and Twitter account, have new customers provide them with their e-mail addresses at time of purchase and send them links to connect.
2. Once the customers are connected, provide them with exclusive deals and coupons for car service, events that they sponsor and even give aways for visiting the dealership.
3. Provide "Car of the month" a new and pre-owned vehicle to be featured on their pages for these customers. Provide a good deal with its own unique code (so that you can track it for ROI purposes).
4. Have monthly events at dealerships, have your fan base come over for free snacks and drinks encourage them to upload photos of the event on the page.
There are a lot more things auto dealerships can do to build a community for themselves and create fans for life.