Tire Association Rolls Out Social Portal to Communicate With Consumers
The Automotive Social Portal allows tire industry associations and member companies to share product, safety, and dealer information with consumers through social media. It’s also a valuable new member benefit.
Everyone who drives a car needs tires. But not everyone who drives a car has the information they need to keep their tires rolling along safely and effectively.
The need for direct communication with consumers is what drove development of the Automotive Social Portal, a joint effort of the Tire Industry Association and the Automotive Marketing Foundation.
“We have been working on ways to provide timely and effective education on vehicle and tire safety and maintenance to our members’ customer base, the driving public,” said Roy Littlefield, executive vice president of TIA. “We see the Automotive Social Portal as the perfect mechanism to embrace social media and get these important messages to the targeted audience.”
Slated for launch in the first quarter of 2017, the social portal will allow TIA, state and regional associations, and TIA member companies to disseminate information through social media to consumers. It will include content such as safety videos, tire recall information, educational messages about legislation, and promotions. The people who receive the information are consumers who have liked or followed TIA members on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn.
TIA members—tire dealers and other industry players, including companies that manufacture and repair tires—have been looking for ways to enhance their social media presence and to build their following, said Wayne Croswell, president of WECnology, a technology provider for the tire industry, and a past president of TIA. “They are desperately looking for help in this area,” he said.
The companies using the portal have a dashboard that allows them to control which messages get distributed to their followers. For example, state and Canadian province associations might distribute content that is specific to location. The portal also helps manufacturers direct consumers to dealers. “It’s a very powerful social media management tool for dealers,” Croswell said.
And some of the messages that TIA members want to get across are essential. Educational materials might inform consumers about issues related to air pressure and tire rotation, and others might deliver the news that a consumer’s tires have been recalled. Many people do not find out that their tires are recalled, “because most haven’t registered their tires, unfortunately,” Croswell said.
The portal, which is free to members, also gives them analytics for the messages distributed. The portal “is a value-added benefit to our members and will give the association the opportunity to expand our member base,” Littlefield said.