Why Automotive Dealers Need To be On TikTok in 2023 | PCG Digital

With a new year comes a new strategy, and now is a great time to branch out into new social channels and advertise on new platforms for your dealership. TikTok is a social media platform that offers a dynamic engagement experience for your growing audience with the ability to level up your social media marketing. Check out our top 3 reasons to get started on TikTok.

Capture the Gen-Z Car Buyer

TikTok is currently the fastest-growing social network, especially among Generation Z, who make up the largest percentage of the app’s user base and will soon become the largest group of consumers. Many of the new generation are first-time car buyers, and now is the time to get your brand name in front of these users to have your dealership at the top of their minds when they begin the shopping process.

For the Gen-Z social media user, video is king. According to Smartly.IO, TikTok and Reels are their preferred ad formats compared to static image posts, photo carousels, or even horizontal video. Even Meta is taking a cue from TikTok and the popularity of vertical video, with Reels becoming more of a focal point on Facebook and Instagram feeds. To capture the Gen Z car buyer, you need to meet them where they are and deliver content they are most likely to engage.

Vertical Video Revolution

The way social media users engage with content is changing across all platforms. Facebook invented the “social network” as we know it by connecting friends and family through groups, pages, and events. Instagram was originally a photo-sharing app where brands and influencers thrived. Twitter was a channel for short-form text popular for news outlets and public figures to share their #thoughts. What do all of these platforms have in common? Not a single one designed the platform with video in mind. However, all three evolved to allow video sharing once user behavior shifted in that direction.

From its launch in 2016, TikTok has had a starting advantage solely focused on creating and sharing short-form video content in a mobile format, which allowed the app to differentiate itself from other social platforms. This video-centric design is highly effective at capturing audiences’ attention for a prolonged period. Unlike other social platforms, which users may frequently check, users engage with TikTok the same way they sit down to watch television.

TikTok as a Search Engine

TikTok is a unique hybrid of a social app and video entertainment platform. But interestingly, TikTok is evolving to become a search engine as well. According to Google’s data, nearly half of Gen Z users are more likely to search on TikTok or Instagram than Google.

What does this mean for automotive marketers? Well, one-third of TikTok car shoppers say they’ve used TikTok in the discovery stage of their purchase journey. And nearly two-thirds reported using TikTok to learn more about new products or brands. For auto dealers, TikTok can be an incredible tool to reach consumers in their research phase of the car buying process.

Picture a first-time car buyer who is narrowing down their choice of vehicle. They may be more inclined to search “Ford Explorer review” in TikTok before visiting a showroom to see the vehicle in person. A TikTok user may look up a video tutorial on how to change a tire before consulting a service center. By establishing a presence on TikTok, your dealership can become a trustworthy source of information for users like these. If you can earn the trust of users today, you are more likely to earn their business tomorrow.

Is mastering TikTok on your dealership’s list of resolutions in 2023? Let us help you reach your goal! PCG Digital is a leader in automotive TikTok advertising. We’ve written playbooks, developed case studies and hosted webinars and are ready to help dealerships succeed with top notch TikTok advertising strategies.

Set up a 15 minute call with our team to get started with TikTok advertising.

Chloe McGinley
Chloe McGinley
Chloe is a Social Media Specialist at PCG Digital. She is a digital storyteller with a passion for helping businesses cultivate their unique brand identity and connect with their community using the power of social media. In her free time, she enjoys volunteering at her local animal shelter and being outdoors.
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