What is a barrier for a customer considering coming into a car dealership? How can we remove that barrier with social media? These are the types of questions I ask daily in my role as a Social Media Specialist for Holman Automotive.
In order to give a more personable feel to a dealership, I photograph the employees at their work stations. Before I snap that shutter though, there are preparations in order to get a good photo. I come in to dealerships as a stranger. They know I work for the corporate office of their company, and I want to take their photo to put on social media. This can be unnerving. So I begin by taking time, and not trying to rush.
I begin by introducing myself, and my employment story. I started in a dealership like you; I have worked here five years. I talk about my experience. I comment on their dealership. (Land Rover San Diego is incredibly warm and welcoming. They have a gorgeous shop too!) Then I ask, how long have you worked here? How long in the auto industry in general? I ask about their experiences. It doesn’t take long to bond.
I tell them my problem. How can I show customers we are not a big scary dealership? How can I show them we are a friendly helpful group, who knows what we are doing? How can I convey, you also could totally hang out with us for awhile, while you wait for your oil change, or for financing to come through?
I ask for their permission to photograph them, and 100% respect their answer. I do not demand or beg. Once I have a thumbs up, I will either get the photo right then, or sometimes, I just let them know I will be around soon. This way they are comfortable with me, and I can get them at work in a more candid moment. The results are a new acquaintanceship, and a great photograph!