One of the latest tools used in auto dealership marketing as part of social media promotions is the concept of gamification. Used by Ford in marketing the Fusion through social media, gamification is a way to engage customers on a completely new level.
What is Gamification?
Gamification engages customers by using game-like structures to make an activity more interactive. Previously, marketers used sweepstakes or prizes to encourage customers to review a product or visit a dealership. With gamification, as the consumer plays the game, they reach higher “levels” and accrue points or rewards. Used by other industries for some time, gamification is a relatively new concept for auto dealership marketing.
Individual Dealership Uses to Increase Service and Sales
Gamification works well in the auto retail environment. With statistics indicating that 25% of all Facebook users play games on their Facebook pages, using gamification in auto dealership marketing makes sense, and be used as a way to encourage users to learn more about your company and inventory. Gamification gives users an additional opportunity and reason to engage with the dealership and spend time on their social sites.
Game techniques could teach consumers about specific customer service benefits offered by a dealership, such as convenient online service scheduling or free loaner cars during the service appointment. Games could encourage customers to make payments online while earning loyalty points that are redeemable for discounts on service or other incentives. They could also serve to educate the customer about new inventory. Users that play the dealership’s game have a first look at “what’s next” for the dealership, including upcoming events and sales.
Grapevine Ford and Lincoln, based in Grapevine, Texas, uses gamification on Facebook with their “Bouncing Balls” application. Players engage with the game in an attempt to win a free iPad 2. The application includes a daily “Leaderboard” which displays the top players and their scores. Grapevine Ford launched this application in order to increase their Facebook fans to over 3,000 members. By promoting the “Bouncing Balls” game, Grapevine Ford will not only engage their audience, but they will increase their overall Facebook community.
An engaged online community of more than 3,000 members means that this dealership possesses a unique opportunity to reach new customers. Users will remember Grapevine Ford and Lincoln as the dealership that innovates online and offers great prizes for loyal customers. And when it comes time for a user to purchase a new vehicle, Grapevine Ford and Lincoln will be at the top of the list!
With online gaming increasing daily, incorporating gamification into an auto dealership marketing campaign enables the customer to have fun while learning about the dealership and while earning incentives or creating a loyalty account. For more information on how you can use digital media to enhance your car dealership’s online presence, please visit our website or contact us.