Before I dive into why I believe all car dealers should be blogging perhaps it might be easier to understand why they don’t:
- Do not know how
- Not enough time
- Do not know what to blog about
Even though all of the above reasons are very common, it still does outweigh the benefits of blogging. Consider this, most dealers today have a Facebook page, a Twitter account and maybe even a YouTube channel and are focusing all their social media efforts using those tools. The major disconnect that dealer’s often overlook is the fact that not all of these social media websites might be around in the next few years. Simply look at MySpace as an example, albeit they are trying to make a comeback. Why would a dealer put so much effort into a web property that they don’t even own.
I’m not suggesting that dealers stop using the social networks that their customers are on but I am merely suggesting that they build up their best social media tool first – their blog and then syndicate the content to the appropriate social media sites. Why not build your own web property first which you control and will always own the content.
Now lets look at debunking the reasons why many dealers don’t blog.
Do not know how – Most web providers that dealers use can add a WordPress Blog to your website. If they cannot, you might want to consider using another provider. In the beginning I would not be too concerned about the look and feel other than I strongly recommend you add your website’s navigation header to the blog theme making it easy for customers to be able to get to your main website’s content. Getting started can be as easy as watching a five minute Youtube video tutorial or asking your web provider for assistance.
Not enough time – The reality is you have to make time by scheduling it into your daily routine or designate someone at your store to do it for you. Because using WordPress to blog as so many positive search engine optimization factors, it is just one of those marketing initiatives that can’t be overlooked. I have found that it is always easier to create a blog schedule and include ideas of what to post.
Do not know what to blog about -
Let’s begin by writing about what’s new with your manufacturer. Not sure what’s new with them? Visit their blog or Facebook page for inspiration.
You can write about products coming down the pipeline. Being the first to blog about a vehicle can typically get you a lot of eyes on your site.
You can post testimonials, commercials on YouTube, video walk arounds, and my favorite, what’s going on in the community this weekend, month or year.
You can post images of people you sold cars to. When I sold cars, we always had a board on the wall with pictures of satisfied customers.
You can talk about new employees, promotions within your dealership and of course current sales and incentives.
Now let’s take a look at the technical side of blogging. I promise not to bore you.
Consider this. Search engines love fresh new content on a website. Adding new content on a regular basis will send a message to the search engines to visit your site on a more regular basis making your site more crawlable. A question I get asked alot is “Can I copy an article off another website and post it on my blog” The answer is absolutely yes providing you keep the links intact and you indicate who the source of the article is. I like to encourage dealers to at least write a brief summary of the article in addition to the post to assist with seo. Consider this, people share content on Facebook and Twitter all day long. Your blog is no different.
When you create a post, you can take a screen capture, and use that as your image to upload to Facebook. We all know images will draw the user’s attention. Include a description of the post and a link to your blog and you now have more visitors to your site. Once they are there, you’re going to want to try and convert that customer into a lead, right? But what kind of lead? If they are not ready to buy, how can we get them to come back? The answer is creating an opt-in form which gives people the ability to sign up for your future posts and newsletters. You’ve probably heard marketers say that the money is in the “List”. It’s no different for the car business. We want to capture as many email addresses as possible to keep them engaged over time so when they are considering purchasing a vehicle or know of someone who is, we want them to think of you.
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