Businesses and social media have developed an interesting relationship over the years, each contingent on one another to an extent. Social media is largely reliant on businesses for advertising and businesses are using social media increasingly to spread awareness about their brands. It’s a correlated relationship that works well, and can benefit both parties when they know what they’re doing.
However, rebranding a business can be a tricky maneuver in the digital sphere, especially for a car dealership. The root cause for rebranding is often done due to one of two factors. The brand’s strategy isn’t working, or the brand itself wishes to alter entirely to avoid further damage to its reputation. The latter often arises through negative reviews on sites like DealerRater and Yelp, where any user can write a positive or negative review regardless of their agenda. Regardless of whether a dealership’s bad reviews came from disgruntled ex-employees or justifiably dissatisfied customers, the point is often the same. To save a business, sometimes you have to rebrand it entirely.
Today, rebranding a car dealership often starts online with social media. By following the three essential tips below, any business from a car dealership to a lawyer can begin to successfully rebrand their business online and beyond.
Treat Social Media as a Communication Source, Not an Advertising Source
One of the biggest misconceptions about social media is that businesses should use it strictly for advertising. While it is true that social media can provide advertising, often for free, the actual advertising effect won’t occur until the business has established a communicative reputation online. If a car dealership’s Facebook account appears like it is run by robots, with repetitive deal listings and irrelevant photos, then it’s unlikely to do any good. However, if the page is filled with comments by consumers, responses from the dealership and engaging posts, visitors will realize that your dealership deeply values customer satisfaction. Establishing quality customer communication is the first step in rebranding any business online.
Improve Communication and Clarity with Employees
If your dealership is looking to rebrand due to customer complaint issues, there was likely an issue with one or more employees not being on the same page. As the owner of a dealership, this may be your fault for not preparing them adequately. In the rebranding process, make sure that your employees are all up-to-date on the revisions to the marketing and social media strategies. Also address the faults of the former business’ setup before it was rebranded so you as a team can help prevent past miscues from happening again.
Make the Changes Prominent to Your Audience
Rebranding is an attempt to significantly modify a business’ image. To do that, your customers have to be aware of the improvements being made. If you invested in a shiny new logo, incorporate it across your social media and web site immediately. If you devised a new dealership team with more experience and customer satisfaction than your old team, highlight that by shooting a quick video introduction of each new team member, and then posting the video compilation on social media (upload it to YouTube, and then post it on Facebook, Twitter, etc.). Informing customers of positive changes like these will show that you’re rebranding due to a desire for improvement, as opposed to reacting to failure.
Rebranding a car dealership requires tactfulness in highlighting positive changes to the brand. By emphasizing the three tips above, your newly rebranded dealership will be thriving in no time. Just remember to stick with what is working, and to avoid whatever forced your hand into rebranding in the first place.
Courtney Gordner is a passionate blogger with a love for internet marketing and social media! Read more from her on her blog, www.talkviral.com.