Why Automotive Dealerships Need a “Fanpage” on Facebook

With over 400 million users, Facebook is one of the most popular sites in the world. At one point, Facebook was the most popular non-search engine site in the world, second only to Google. Not only that, but over 100 million users access Facebook using their mobile phones. Many users access Facebook daily and many of those people access it multiple times throughout the day.Facebook has undergone aggressive updates since its inception, one of the most prominent being the advent of the Facebook “Fanpage”. A Fanpage is an opportunity for businesses to create a ‘page’ on Facebook from which they can build a social network; a community of ‘fans’ who are interested in what they are offering. At the time this article was written, there were over 60 million businesses with a Facebook Fanpage.FACEBOOK FANPAGES FOR AUTOMOTIVE DEALERSHIPS
For some reason, the automotive industry has been slow to jump on the trend. Lots of dealerships already have a Fanpage, but few are utilizing Facebook to its full potential in terms of branding, advertising, new lead generation, and the creation of a true social network/community.There are lots of tips on the internet that teach you how to build an attractive Fanpage – one that will attain (and REtain) a constantly increasing number of fans. One of the most important is to build an enticing ‘landing page’. A landing page is the first destination that a user sees when he or she comes across your Fanpage. Instead of directing a user to the main page of the Fanpage, they are instead directed them to a landing page that clearly explains who you are, what you do, and why they should “like” you (become a fan).With so many choices and so many businesses with Fanpages already, research has shown that users have a higher likelihood of converting into a fan if they are first directed to a landing page; of course, the landing page needs to be designed in an enticing enough manor to induce them to join. Whereas step one is getting the user to “like” your Fanpage, step two is providing relevant, interesting content that is compelling enough to make them stay. Therefore, retention is as important as the initial attraction, as users can leave a Fanpage as quickly as they can join one.DESIGNING, BUILDING, AND MAINTAINING YOUR DEALERSHIPS’ FANPAGE
It is important for dealerships to know that Facebook Fanpages are entirely customizable. Web designers can tailor the Fanpage specifically to the needs of individual dealerships. They can be set up to advertize specials, promotions, and events, as well as integrating live inventory updates, so fans can actually shop through vehicles while on the Fanpage.As useful as all of this is for dealerships, it is important not to lose site of the purpose of Facebook from the onset – Facebook is a community used to build a social network of fans and to create awareness. The most important thing is to work at it. A Fanpage cannot be created and then left to build and maintain itself – it needs attention to get the most out of it. It is important that a person at the dealership is assigned the responsibility of maintaining the Fanpage.With most dealerships having a staff of at least fifteen or more, there’s a good chance some of them are already on Facebook (and are familiar with its networking formula). When a dealership builds a Fanpage, they should begin generating a fan base by leveraging the Facebook networks of their employees – get staff to join the Fanpage from their individual Facebook profiles, and begin by having them invite all of their friends to the Fanpage. With the average Facebook user having over 200 friends, dealerships can probably invite a thousand or more people just by having their staff invite their Facebook friends. From there, the Fanpage will have a snowball effect. When a person becomes a Facebook fan of your dealerships’ Fanpage, their entire list of friends is notified that they have joined. This is the snowball effect that makes Fabebook so popular.WHO SHOULD BUILD YOUR FANPAGE?
So, should dealerships take on the responsibility of designing their Fanpage themselves? NO! Proper Facebook Fanpages should be left to the expertise of a developer. It is VERY easy to build a Fanpage – an internet layman could probably do it. However, in order to get the best results, dealerships should just pay to have it made. It’s a small investment for a social marketing tool that can attain major results.