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Can I Grow My Auto Restoration Shop Using Social Media Alone?

Feature   |   Posted: 10/16/2021
Posted by: Motorhead Digital

When choosing how to represent your business online, you’re going to be faced with a lot of choices. One of the first questions you’ll need to answer is: ‘do I need a website or will I just use social media to promote myself?’

The internet is full of opportunities for ambitious shop owners – and full of places customers can solve all of their auto restoration needs.

People can get everything they could ever want online. You can buy products, book in for services, check out videos of product reviews, and you can even get virtual tours of events. With all of this easily available on the internet, and consumers now expecting it, it’s become a necessity that all businesses are online.

When choosing how to represent your business online, you’re going to be faced with a lot of choices. One of the first questions you’ll need to answer is: ‘do I need a website or will I just use social media to promote myself?’

Both options have their advantages and disadvantages, but ultimately, a combination of both will get you better results.

Many small business owners believe they can grow their business by using social media alone. 20% of small business owners use social media instead of owning a website.

Today, we’re going to look at the pros and cons of websites and social media to help you decide what’s best for your business.

Can you rely on social media alone to help grow your shop?

Whether your auto restoration or performance shop has been around for a while, or you’re just starting off, having a social media account is a necessary step in growing your business.

But can you use social media exclusively to grow your shop’s business?

Let’s take a look at all the advantages and disadvantages of social media to find out whether it’s a reliable method of attracting and converting prospects into paying clients.

The advantages of having social media profiles

1. Improved brand awareness

By interacting with your audience over social media you’ll be able to increase your brand awareness in the industry. This means that your potential clients will trust you more and be more likely to work with you over your competitors.

89% of consumers have said that they buy from brands they follow on social media – so be sure to post relevant content and engage with them regularly.

2. There’s no contracts

When you create a social media account there’s no long-term commitment. If you don’t like the way a social media platform works then you can easily delete your account and move to another one.

3. It’s free & easy to set up

One of the great things about social media is it doesn’t cost you a dime unless you pay for advertising. It’s also incredibly easy to set up and use so you can have a working social media profile for your shop in a matter of minutes!

4. Improved customer engagement

By creating and optimizing social media profiles, you could get the attention of quite a lot of people in your target audience. Social media platforms are used by nearly half the population, 3.81 billion people worldwide to be exact.

By being active on social media you’ll be able to chat with your potential clients and build up a relationship.

This real-time customer interaction will help them learn more about your business. It’ll also get you top of their list when they need an auto performance and restoration job done.

The disadvantages of having social media profiles

1. You can’t really customize your profile

You can change your profile picture, upload a new banner, and edit your information but apart from this, there is very little customization available on social media platforms.

What this means for you is your profile looks pretty much the same as everybody else’s.

There’s little space to show off your true individuality – which puts you at risk of being seen as a commodity. If your audience views your services in the same light as your competitors, you’re just going to be battling over price to win their custom.

2. You don’t have control

Unfortunately, you don’t technically own your social media account. It’s owned by a third-party and if something was to go wrong with your account, you could potentially lose your whole business in an instant.

Social media also controls what types of ads and promotions appear on your profile page – which means there’s always the possibility your competitors could end up advertising on your profile.

It’s also important to remember that the social media platform you’re using today might not be around forever. Bebo and Myspace were once considered irreplaceable social media platforms until Facebook took over. It’s quite possible that another social media tycoon could take over again and Facebook and Instagram will be a distant memory.

UPDATE: On October 4th, 2021 all of the platforms owned by Facebook, including Instagram and WhatsApp, were gone in minutes and out for hours. On this day, they were down across the globe for over 7 hours. This was a stark reminder that we have zero control over these platforms and should not count on them as our sole means of promoting our brand, products, and services. This also affected Facebook messenger, so if you use Messenger to communicate with your clients and prospects, it may have been a tough day.

Along with what happened on the 4th, we’ve heard of Facebook just taking down or banning a business page without so much as an explanation other than to say that the page did not conform with community standards. Has this happened to you?

Yes, websites go down as well, but in most cases, if you have contracted with a quality agency that uses a solid platform, outages aren’t usually very long, as they have a back up plan. And if they’ve done their job, they also have a backup of your site for the worst-case scenario where you need to move your site to another hosting provider. In the case of social media platforms like Facebook, that option does not exist because, unlike your site, you don’t have control of what you’ve posted on those platforms.

October 4th, 2021 was an eye-opener for those that depended 100% on Facebook as the lifeblood of their business. Don’t get caught with your pants down. If you don’t have a quality website for your business, it’s time to think about this differently and make sure you own and have control of your content and how you communicate with your clients and prospects…

Please head on over to the Motorhead Digital Blog for the rest of this article.

Barry is the founder of Motorhead Digital, providing signature Marketing Maximizer™ programs specifically developed for auto restoration, performance and restyling shops. These programs are geared towards customer acquisition and conversion to keep those project bookings coming. With over 23 years of experience in digital marketing and web development, Barry’s goal is to help clients market and grow their shops through strategic marketing practices. You can reach him at (585) 766-9785balt@motorheaddigital.com or online at MotorheadDigital.com

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