Social media is a wildly versatile application that has clear uses in an individual’s personal life, but it’s also a valuable tool for any company. Social media strategy is a key way for a company to reach its consumer base but the technology works both ways. Consumers can reach companies easier than ever before, and the auto industry can utilize this to provide better customer service.
“Social media tools are useful assets when it comes to addressing customer issues,” Serge Vartanov, chief evangelist officer and co-founder of AutoGravity, told the Center for Auto Finance Excellence. “Any time the company is mentioned on social media, the team receives a notification on Slack making it easy to follow any AutoGravity conversations.”
AutoGravity utilizes social media platforms such as LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram to spread its content and reach consumers. AutoGravity’s customer service and marketing teams monitor the various social media channels for any customer concerns, using tools such as Slack, a proprietary team communication software, and Hootsuite, a social media management platform.
Whenever a customer “expresses any information identifiable with their AutoGravity account,” the conversation will be taken offline, and the customer will be contacted by a member of customer service for a one on one conversation, he said. “If a follower engages with the company, we engage back.”
When interacting with customers over social media, JM Lexus, a dealership in Margate, Fla., finds it useful to respond to both the good and bad customer comments, Rose Faraone, marketing director told AFN.
“It’s important that as a company, we acknowledge that [the customer] took that time [to write a review],” she said. “What we do is we get back to them and let them know that we’ll have a manager reach out to them directly. We don’t want to be the middle person in the marketing department.”
JM Lexus utilizes an internal marketing department, so all the posts to its various social channels (Facebook, Instagram, Google Plus, Twitter and Snapchat) are written by the team at the dealership. The dealership encourages customers to leave reviews via sites like Google or Facebook, which the marketing team monitors.
There are quite a few options when it comes to the platforms that companies can be using and the audience is not identical from one platform to the next. Different strategies or “mini-plans” are necessary when interacting with consumers on different social media sites, Vartanov explained.
For example, Facebook is a “great way” to interact with customers and to react to customer service issue, while Twitter polls allow the company to “collect information about the market” and connect to dealer partners, he explained.