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Don’t Fear the Sea of Social Data. Utilize It.
7. Don’t Fear the Sea of Social Data. Utilize It.
It’s really easy to sit back and assume that social media is a function of creativity. That makes it easy to dismiss; it can’t be important if it’s all about fun and poking, right?
The reality is that social media is a function of data. It always has been, even if the social sites themselves didn’t realize it at first. That’s where the real value in social media lies. The data that the sites both collect as well as procure offer the real value to car dealers wanting to take advantage of social media. If used right, the data can guide your content rather than the other way around.
The biggest problem that most dealers and even marketers face is that there is simply so much data available on these sites that it’s hard to isolate it. Keep in mind, by “hard”, I’m not saying that isolating the right data is difficult as an action. The most difficult part is having the willingness to take hold of the bits and pieces of the most useful data rather than trying to take advantage of all of it. When you try to go for too much, you end up with less.
Think of it like finding a treasure chest beneath the ocean. By nature, many will try to lift the chest to the surface. Upon realizing that they cannot easily lift the chest, people often either keep trying in vane or decide to come back later to grab it when they had more strength or help. The problem with the first choice is that it’s usually impossible. The problem with the second choice is that it is often hard to find the treasure chest when you come back later with help.
The right answer is to take bits and pieces of the contents of the chest rather than trying to lift it all at once. By pulling the contents, a diver can grab all of the treasure over time. This is the same content with social media data. Don’t fear it. Don’t look at hundreds of millions, even billions of people with hundreds of data points about them and get scared because of the immensity. Just like eating an elephant one bite at a time, utilize social media data one byte at a time.
You have at your fingertips residential, demographic, financial, preference, relationship, education, and even buyer-intent data. The geographic data is really the only one that you’ll want to use every time you plug in a campaign. Otherwise, you’ll get too much data. Once you limit your data set to be within driving distance to the dealership, take advantage of the rest of the data one piece at a time.
For example, you could then apply college graduation date information to target those who likely qualify for a college graduate buyer’s program on your website. You could apply specific ads to specific people based upon finances; target luxury brands at high-income people while targeting special finance at low- to mid-level income people in driving distance.
These are the tips of the iceberg. Social media offers more data about individual buyers in your market area than any other service, even Google. Take advantage of it. Don’t let the mass of it overwhelm you.