Jon Goodman told Car Dealer he believes social media is only going to get more and more important to dealers in the years to come.
And he says by engaging now, dealers can steal a march on their rivals.
In an exclusive interview with Car Dealer he said: ‘Social media is very important. The way we interact with our customers is changing and that means it has to change for our dealers too.
‘Dealers have to be aware of social media and about what their customers are writing about them locally online and how they interact with that.
‘This is one of the biggest challenges for the industry – how to deal with social media like Twitter and Facebook and use it to our advantage.’
He explained that the web has grown in importance drastically for Peugeot UK and that marketing spend will rapidly move away from traditional routes like newspapers.
‘The internet makes the job of the customer easier and that’s something that we have to do,’ said Goodman.
‘We’ve seen with used cars that leads are mostly generated online. More are coming from the web than the old three-page advert with loads of cars listed in the local paper. The web is light years ahead of the old press advert and that will only continue to expand.
‘When I look at the level of enquiries via our website and the way we can talk to customers through social media then I can only see it growing steadily in importance.’
Goodman added he’ll be working closely with his dealer network to improve their websites and added he wanted them to ‘promote themselves more’ online.
‘Some our our dealer websites are excellent,’ he explained. ‘But we need to focus on helping get across the services they offer and sell theselves a little bit more online, because the fact is more people are seeing them online than are walking through their doors.
‘Do they spend the same amount of time looking at their website as they do their showroom? Probably not. That needs to change.’
By JAMES BAGGOTT