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Wednesday, 24 November 2010 16:53

Social Media 101: Why Social Media Matters in Collision Repair

Kristen Felder, founder and CEO of Collision Hub, and Jordan Hendler, with Admin Concepts, taught the Social Media 101 session on Thursday, November 4 at the SEMA show as part of SCRS’ Repairer Driven Education. Both social media gurus expressed that social media has become a necessity for body shops.

Felder began the session by talking about the pervasiveness of social media in business these days.

“Your customers and competition are both using social media,” said Felder. Facebook, youtube and Twitter are the three sites that she sees as being really necessary for body shops at this point.

“We want you to be there when they come looking for you,” said Hendler, suggesting that body shops’ online presence and the social presence in their physical waiting rooms should be connected. Their online presence should reflect their store presence and vice versa.

Both speakers told attendees during the session that they should focus on customer loyalty, repeat business and referrals when it comes to offers and posts they put on their social media pages.

“People do not care about collision until they have one,” said Hendler.

One tip Hendler offered was for body shops to have a presence and share news that’s relevant.

“Make it interesting, just start with having a presence,” said Hendler,     “If they get it [information] from you, they will feel like you care.”

Felder explained that social media is really a portal; a two-way interaction between body shop and the customer, unlike a regular website where the information is dispersed one way, from body shop to the customer. This gives customers a way to interact with a business outside of the physical location.

“If you’re going to do your own [social media pages], it’s about a 20 minute per day commitment from you or someone in your office,” said Felder.

When it comes to content, Felder and Hendler both told shops to focus on local issues, causes and events.

“Don’t let irrelevant stuff get on your page,” said Hendler.

Felder told shops to try to focus on creating a local network by posting on other local pages and posting about things your specific community cares about.

“Social Media isn’t just about your presence, it’s about your community involvement,” said Felder.

At the end of the session the pair laid out some do’s and don’t’s for body shops using social media.

DON’T: Use closed statements, put up strictly ads or engage in political or religious debates.

DO: Listen to posts on your page (accept the negative comments and don’t just delete them), engage in conversations, not just campaigns and measure your success through followers and comments.

“Everyone is a potential customer ... but on social media you don’t need to treat them like one,” said Felder.

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