Proper management can drive additional customers
MaxOpp Marketing creates digital inbound marketing for dealerships. Among the most surprising success stories that the company has seen in recent months is the effectiveness of dealership Twitter pages.
Providing relevant and timely tweets is critical to the success of a robust Twitter page, according to John Vaughan-Chaldy, MaxOpp’s director of marketing. More dealers are turning to third parties to administer their digital presence. MaxOpps handles email, Facebook posting, texting and local search directory postings, among other digital initiatives, for dealerships nationwide.
“We take everything off the dealership’s table as much as possible and take responsibility for communicating with their customers,” said Vaughan-Chaldy, whose California-based company formed in 2010 and has already made a move from Fallbrook to Temecula.
Vaughan-Chaldy’s presentation on successful digital campaigns at the V-Twin Expo in Cincinnati drew an impressive crowd of dealers — and manufacturers — eager to stay abreast of the latest on the digital frontier.
“As part of staying current with best practices, we’re constantly researching. One of the things we kept coming upon was that in other industries, Twitter was becoming a more valuable resource for inbound marketing,” he said. “Even though people are very receptive to Facebook and emails, they’re seemingly even more receptive to tweets, or to Twitter.”
MaxOpp consequently launched Twitter pages for several dealerships to gauge its effectiveness.
“We didn’t do anything extra other than just start pushing basic messages, the same kind of content we were pushing out onto Facebook,” he said. “We noticed that when we started putting the tweets out there, we started acquiring initially one new follower per day. Then it grew to two a day. A couple of dealers acquire 3-3.5 followers per day.”
Key to the growth of Twitter followers is refining the type of message that is being sent out via Facebook.
“We started to see some trends, where we had higher engagement, and started watching that,” he said. “We were seeing higher usage and more likes.”
Dealerships that are providing a Twitter presence only on their email newsletters or Facebook pages are losing opportunities for growth. MaxOpp places links to the dealership’s Twitter page on the website home page and all subsequent pages.
“If your banner stays constant, it’s always going to appear in the same location on the page. So we started adding Twitter to every page and dealerships are adding followers because of it,” he said.
Not convinced that Twitter is way to reach potential customers? Vaughan-Chaldy at one time wasn’t too far removed from that thought.
“I didn’t really want to go down that road. I was really wanting to believe that Twitter was a fad and wouldn’t work. It works,” he said. “The problem is you really have to be on it, Twitter even more so than Facebook. One tweet per day is really not even enough. You should probably be at 2-2.5 tweets per day, which is what we provide to our dealers.”
Vaughan-Chaldy’s more than three decades of industry experience has included consulting stints with Yamaha and Kawasaki dealers in the U.S, and with executives from Japanese OEMs. Over the years, he’s come to understand how to help dealerships grow their bottom line.
“Our focus is in helping the dealerships increase retention and then find new ways to bring in customers without breaking the bank,” he said.
MaxOpps works primarily with metric dealers, but found that presenting at the V-Twin Expo expanded its business model.
“We work with every brand combination you can an imagine. We have independent dealerships that don’t even have a franchise that are just parts stores to others that have 13 franchises,” he said.
Regardless of the dealership’s brand, digital initiatives have one requirement: “Frequency. Frequency. Frequency. It’s key in all aspects of everything we do. You live and die by it.”