Auto Makers: Are You Ready To Be More “Social” in 2011?

Posted: February 12, 2011 in All About Cars, BMW Mini, Chevrolet, Digital Marketing, Jeep, New Media Road Trip, Nissan, Toyota, Volkswagen
Tags: , , , ,

Integration will be a key focus for social media strategists in 2011. This is from the research result of Altimeter Group’s recently published “2011 Social Media Business Forecast”. According to Jeremiah Owyang’s keynotes for this research, 46.7% of 140 corporate social strategists said they would focus on the integration of social media onto corporate website.

owyang_socialmediaforecast

Is this a big step? YES. It means that more corporations are beyond their phase of “dipping toes” into social media, and start to bring their social performance onto the real stage.

I instantly recalled my Socialiteracy Course Project a year ago, when I assessed seven automotive brands’ social performance. The first question on my coding sheet is: “Are there social media links/icons available on this brand’s official website homepage?” Unfortunately, only one company, Ford, had a small corner with six social media links. All of the seven brands had done much work on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and other social media platforms, but somehow they missed their most visible stages. I couldn’t figure out a clear answer. My original guess was that they might separate the functions and target audiences for official sites and social media accounts. Now I just added another reason: they probably had their concerns and decided to be cautious.

So what now? Are auto makers ready to be more “social” in 2011? I think they have to be. According to Social Car News, “One In Four Shoppers Uses Facebook, Twitter To Choose Next Ride”. The research showed that nearly 2/3 of subjects discussed vihicles online and 1/4 of them were “likely to make an automotive purchase…as a result of a recommendation someone posted on a social networking site“. The social media wave is pushing auto industry. On the other side, I think auto brands are more prepared and mature in integrating social media into their communication strategy. Cars are complex and durable products. It is good for auto makers to leverage various social media platforms to better showcase their new models and communicate with their customers.

Furthermore, the integration Mr. Owyang mentioned in the forecast will definitely be complex than putting a few links onto the homepage. We may see a whole different web design from auto makers to fully blend their “social” charisma into their business.

So what happened to those 7 brands? I checked them tonight. Only one brand doesn’t have social media links on its website. Five out of the rest six brands have put at least one link/icon on the homepage of its official websites. Here you go! We are working on it. Hopefully the new flavor of social media will bring automotive brands a sweet result.

* Note: The seven brands I was researching are Ford, Chevrolet, Jeep, Toyota, Nissan, BMW Mini, and Volkswagen. All of the brands’ official sites refer to their sites in United States.


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Comments
  1. Amazing blog. I was checking continuously this blog and I am quite impressed! Extremely useful info specifically the first part. I care for such information much. I was looking for this certain info for a very long time. Thank you and best of luck.

    • Hi, Naomi!

      Thank you for your encouragement. I really appreciate it. When you mentioned information, do you mean social media resources or automotive industry news? I was wondering which intrigued you more. :)

      Best,
      Lexie/Zi

  2. Cannie says:

    It’s so fantastic blog .As a AE, who is a prer in domestic company ,deeply impressed your artical and opinion.Thx for sharing .I will keep to know more from your blog.Come on together.

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