A Resource Portal for Automotive Dealers, Industry Vendors and Advertising Agencies

AdAgencyOnline.Net Shares Social Media Formula With Automotive Advertising Agencies; C2C + B2B = B2C SQUARED

AdAgencyOnline.Net is an automotive advertising resource / networking portal hosted by Ad Agency Online, L.L.C., (AAOL).  Philip Zelinger, the President of AAOL and host of the blog talk radio station featured on AdAgencyOnline.Net — WAAOL, All Automotive Advertising News All The Time — shared a simple formula with automotive advertising agencies to help them monetize social media for their auto dealer clients; C2C + B2B = B2C SQUARED.  The formula suggests that Customer to Customer, (C2C), comments coupled with Business to Business, (B2B), cross promotions can virally amplify Business to Customer, (B2C), marketing messages through social networking channels without offending the community.

Philip introduced his solution to use social media to sell vehicles and service during his blog talk radio show — Lunch With Phil Discussing Automotive Advertising.  This open business meeting shares best practices with the affiliated automotive advertising agencies, production partners and select automotive advertising vendors of AAOL.  The agencies are linked by a proprietary online communication / distribution system that allows them to leverage their resources in conventional and digital online advertising; now to include social media.

Social media is a growing phenomenon that has automotive advertising agencies scrambling for a way to use it to sell vehicles and service for their auto dealer clients.  AAOL represents a number of automotive advertising vendors who have developed applications that integrate social media with conventional and digital media by applying proven old world wisdom to new world technology.    Automotive advertising agencies are anxious to use social media without offending the social networking communities who consider direct solicitations an intrusion into their ongoing conversations that power the marketplace.

The social media marketing formula promoted by Philip builds on the elements of human nature that remain constant even in the face of the new technology that appears to have changed the landscape of automotive advertising.  Word of mouth advertising, reputation management, repeat and referral business are all recognized terms and priorities for automotive advertising agencies. Agencies have always reserved a portion of their retail automotive advertising campaigns and budgets for branding and long term messaging to increase dealer recognition through repetition of messages to develop retention and top of the mind awareness across multiple media channels. 

Conversations about shopping for a vehicle and/or service begin before, during and after the customer’s buying cycle.  Automotive advertising agencies recognize that they can’t time the market or their messages.  Unfortunately, limited budgets make it impossible to achieve sufficient reach and frequency using conventional media like radio, TV and print.  That is the problem that social media and the formula C2C + B2B = C2C SQUARED is designed to solve.

The Internet and the technologies that have helped it to mature have expanded the spheres of influence that carry the automotive advertising messages distributed through it.  Search Engine Optimization, (S.E.O.), has been supplemented with Word Of Mouth Optimization, (W.O.M.O.), as the conversation between customers about their vehicle shopping and service experiences, (C2C), are extended virally through social networking communities like Face Book, My Space, Twitter, Four Square and too many others to list.  Each networking community has its own personality and community rules — some written and some implied.  Their common benefit to automotive advertising agencies is that they can exponentially increase top of the mind awareness for their auto dealer client.  Unfortunately, the messages that are passed on can be positive and/or negative. 

The need to properly craft and position marketing messages within the community is more exacting than with conventional media and the results can be productive and/or destructive.   The copy and the message is still critical as they must be relevant and properly targeted to a qualified audience, however, the social aspect of the media must also be considered when selecting the channel and the method of starting the conversation on behalf of the auto dealer.  Most social networking communities perceive themselves as a place to converse with friends.  Commercial messages promoted on the sites are often seen as an intrusion on the conversation.  The C2C component of the automotive advertising social media marketing formula promoted by AAOL relies on new technologies that directly solicit customer comments that are then automatically posted onto Face Book, Twitter, etc. sourced from the customer, not the advertiser. 

ronsmap is a new automotive advertising marketing platform and search engine portal that leverages the inventory of thousands of auto dealers enhanced by their use of social media in a game changing manner that relies on C2C marketing.  Their direct inventory feeds from auto dealers and various channel partners coupled with their ontology semantic extraction method of accessing information on new and pre-owned vehicles posted on auto dealer’s websites has developed the largest online inventory on the Internet Super Highway; currently in excess of three million four hundred thousand vehicles. 

The leverage of ronsmap’s communal inventory attracts consumers to their site.  Customers are then invited to share their online shopping experience with their online friends using a unique Ask A Friend feature function that is integrated into the shopping process.  Customers select a conveniently positioned Face Book friendly button on the site and a description of the vehicle and the auto dealer is automatically posted onto the customer’s Face Book wall with a request for the opinion of their online friends.  More uniquely, the ongoing social networking activities of the request are monitored by the auto dealer who can then qualify and quantify the R.O.I. from his marketing efforts on ronsmap.

ronsmap’s allows automotive advertising agencies to promote and monitor a customer to customer dialogue within a social networking community specific to their auto dealer client’s inventory in a geo targeted manner without sourcing it back to the dealer.  This customer initiated activity allows automotive advertising agencies to promote their auto dealer clients using social media without offending the community.  The conversational leverage developed by these consumer centric messages differs from typical auto dealer marketing messages in that they are more relevant to the consumer.  They reflect the customer’s perspective of their shopping experience vs. simply passing along a dealer’s product, price and self serving sales pitch.   

The value of these online conversations for the consumer as well as the auto dealer is obvious and it has not gone unnoticed by the search engines.  Google, for example, has adjusted their search algorithms to provide weighted value to social media.  As a result, when an auto dealer and/or his inventory is referenced in Face Book it earns them a more prominent position in search results and it enhances the automotive advertising agency’s S.E.O. for their client.

The business to business component of Philip’s formula, B2B, is an extension of the same networking philosophy that powers all social media.  Auto dealers have begun to host their own Face Book, My Space and Twitter pages, however, they are still learning how to grow their communities.  The need to invite past, present and pending customers to become online friends is obvious. The opportunity to expand the auto dealer’s spheres of influence to include invitations to local businesses that have their own networking sites to establish cross promotions and to post comments on each other’s Face Book walls is less obvious but equally valuable.  Shared friends and networking sites provide conversations that are not limited to purchasing or servicing a vehicle.  The ability to maintain top of the mind awareness for the auto dealer before and after the shopping cycle of their potential customers reflects the true nature of social networking.

Auto dealers are also advised to participate on industry forums where auto dealers and automotive advertising vendors with similar agendas are likely to share their desire for additional online exposure.  Of course dealerships that are direct competitors would not likely become friends, however, non competing products and/or services within the auto industry that populate these networking portals will certainly appreciate the company.  Similarly leveraged exposure can be achieved by joining community sponsored social networking sites such as the local Chamber Of Commerce, area Churches and other sites that have shared interests and potential friends to expand the influence of the auto dealer within these online communities.

Obviously, auto dealers want to make as many friends as possible with the expectation that they will sell them a vehicle or service their present one.  After all, what are friends for!  Unfortunately, many automotive advertising agencies revert to old school practices by attempting to inject business to customer, B2C, messages into their online conversations.  The  formula proposed by AAOL suggests that a direct solicitation on a social networking site, even amongst friends, will have the opposite effect.  C2C and B2B conversations can and will carry the same message but it will be better received and promoted within the community; hence the wisdom of the formula — C2C + B2B = B2C SQUARED.

About Philip Zelinger

Philip Zelinger is the President of Ad Agency Online, L.L.C. and the founder of  AdAgencyOnline.Net.  He invested 25 years as a General Manager and Dealer Principal followed by his last ten years in the automotive advertising industry learning from the teams that he built so he can now presume to teach on forums like AdAgencyOnline.Net.  His role as a “Dealer Coach” is enhanced by his hosting a nationally recognized auto industry social networking portal and blog talk radio station – WAAOL, All Automotive Advertising News All The Time.  As the author of two books on the auto industry, including “How To Sell A Car – a Career Guide to The Automobile Industry,” he is a recognized authority on market trends and developing technologies with the responsibility of selecting key vendors and applications for his dealer clients as well as forming strategic partnerships for his vendor clients to leverage their shared resources to help them bring their products and services to market.

About AdAgencyOnline.Net and Ad Agency Online, L.L.C.

AdAgencyOnline.Net reviews automotive advertising vendors and new technologies on several blog talk radio shows in addition to the Lunch With Phil Discussing Automotive Advertising.  Other shows include “Lunch With Ralph Discussing Automotive Advertising” and “Automotive Advertising Experts.”  The shows attract automotive advertising agencies, auto dealers, auto industry vendors and O.E.M. representatives that listen to WAAOL to find vendors, applications and technologies to maximize the R.O.I. for their automotive advertising dollars.

AAOL is a national network of independent affiliated automotive advertising agencies linked by an online communication / distribution system developed by Philip Zelinger.  The proprietary operating system that powers AAOL was designed to reduce fixed and semi-variable expenses for full service automotive advertising agencies.  The developing technologies that enhanced the performance of the independent automotive advertising agencies linked by AAOL has served as the role model for the solutions suggested on AdAgencyOnline.Net and represented by AAOL to their affiliated automotive advertising agencies when serving their auto dealer clients.

Ad Agency Online L.L.C is focused on discovering and representing new automotive advertising vendors not yet recognized by the mainstream automotive advertising industry. Some of the automotive advertising vendors represented by AAOL include ronsmap, SiSTeR Technologies Video CarLot, TeleTextSolutions, DealerMouth, GetAutoAppraise.com, Argistics – AutoTransaXion, DealMaker.Com, CityTwist.Com, Bulldog Marketing Technologies, Kihon Media, CarFolks.Com, Ai Dealer and Laser Stream Video; with more being added weekly.

For more information on Philip Zelinger, Ad Agency Online, L.L.C., social media or any of the vendors on AdAgencyOnline.Net contact Philip at http://AdAgencyOnline.Net.  Automotive advertising vendors, automotive advertising agencies and auto dealers that would like to be considered as a “preferred automotive advertising vendor” on AdAgencyOnline.Net and/or to hire/join Ad Agency Online, L.L.C. to represent them can contact Philip Zelinger at pzads@bellsouth.net, or call him at 888-796-2228.  To quote Philip Zelinger, “Help is only a click away!  After all, what are friends for!”  ###

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