Saeli began by observing that the internet is so integrated in our daily lives that we can’t ignore it. Darville then pointed out that it has been made portable, so information can travel around with people everywhere they go.
“With businesses, it’s about utilizing that information and maximizing your space to cast the widest possible net so people can find you. There’s much more opportunity these days,” Darville said.
Social media and a strong online presence can help shops with car count, customer retention, public relations, becoming a DRP and finding employees. According to Darville, the two biggest reasons social media is ignored are a lack of knowledge and a lack of time. The most popular social media sites are Facebook, Yelp, Google+ and Twitter. The Management Success team explored each site’s benefits for webinar attendees.
Facebook boasts 214 million U.S. users, with the average adult spending more than 55 minutes per day on its website. Facebook allows shops to stay in contact with their customers, engaging them and “reminding them that you’re there for them. The more you work it, the more it works for you,” Darville said.
“Getting your page claimed, properly set up and maintained is the solution,” Darville recounted. “Post something every single day. It only takes two to three minutes and can be related to anything. You can see what people like based on their feedback.”
Some people love Yelp, while others hate it, but it has 84 million desktop visitors and 104 million mobile visitors, 80 percent of whom intend to make a purchase, and 98 percent of whom make purchases from Yelp businesses.
However, “most businesses aren’t getting their fair share of this traffic,” Darville noted.
While there are 27.9 million small businesses in the U.S., Yelp only has 12 million small business listings, and only 2.1 million small business listings have been claimed, meaning nearly 10 million listings may not have accurate information. According to Darville, iPhone maps and Siri pull Yelp reviews so “it’s important to claim your page and ensure the information is correct, because customers are agitated when the information provided is wrong. Yelp also allows businesses to verify the services they offer, which is more effective.”
Google+ has 300 million worldwide users and is ever-evolving, along with Google My Business.
“Google+ is in the shadow of Yelp, but Google Maps and Android users use Google listings,” Darville said, and he also pointed out, “People use Google to search for things constantly, so claim your page to ensure they find your business. Google also takes related ratings into account and shares ratings from other sites, so it’s important to review and confirm your listing.”
Social media is the modern version of word-of-mouth, so it is imperative that businesses check their reviews regularly and calm angry customers who want to be heard in order to control the outside view of the shop. Darville advised against soliciting reviews since that can lead to being banned from the site.
Saeli said, “The key thing is to deliver great customer service. Then, inform customers that you have social media and value their opinions, but don’t ask for a review if they had a bad experience until you fix it.”
Darville added, “Don’t stress about negative reviews. Don’t respond publicly as the first course of action. Calm down and then figure out the best response. Sometimes, it works to apologize and offer to help, so attempt to resolve the situation directly with the customer in private. Sometimes, you can resolve the issue, and the customer will change their negative review to a positive review.
“If that fails, respond publicly with an apology for the misunderstanding. Remember that the world is watching, so NEVER argue with the customer. Instead, ask if there’s anything you can do. Take the customer experience into consideration and remember that sometimes people just have a bad day. Once you respond publicly, the review is permanent.”
Management Success offers business analyses to help shops evaluate key points in their business, including their website, social media, finances, marketing, sales and production.
Saeli closed with, “You care about what you do, and you all deserve to do well.”
Management Success will hold its next webinar on “Setting Shop Resolutions,” scheduled for Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018 at 3 p.m. PST. Registration is available at https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/1646284853950135555.
For more information on Management Success, visit www.managementsuccess.com or call 818-500-9631.