While social media started out as a way to connect with friends, colleagues and neighbors, it has transformed over the past few years into a marketing and sales goldmine for brands. With all of the information that users share on social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and personal blogs, it is increasingly easy for companies to target consumers who may actually show an interest in their product.
But what about the average Joe trying to sell a used item? These days, most people still rely heavily on Craigslist or word of mouth to get the job done. Kelley Blue Book, however, doesn't think it has to be that way. The automotive vehicle valuation company launched the Seller's Toolkit, a collaborative online platform that can help private parties sell used cars.
What is the Seller's ToolKit?
The Seller's Toolkit is an innovative online tool that helps individuals share their available vehicles across multiple websites, including social media and blogs, all in one tool. Rather than have users post and submit to multiple websites manually (and sometimes at a cost), the Seller's Toolkit makes it easy for individuals who are selling used cars to get the word out, in the hopes of getting the best bang for their buck. The Seller's Toolkit provides the support that private parties need to successfully sell their vehicles in the age where social media is everything.
With the Seller's Toolkit, users can add a special "Car for Sale" tab to their Facebook profile and share the item in their newsfeed. The tool also allows users to post directly to Twitter and Instant Messenger, with a direct link to KBB's pre-configured Pricing Report. Sellers can create customized digital stickers with photos and descriptions of the car to post on Craigslist and other websites, as well as customize and print For Sale signs to post in the window of their vehicle.
And the tool doesn't just benefit the seller, KBB's patent pending LiveValue system can give potential buyers access to real-time, up-to-the-minute Blue Book Values as listed on Kbb.com. This helps establish trust between buyer and seller, as buyers are more confident that they are getting a fair deal on the vehicle.
Why It's Groundbreaking
KBB's Seller's Toolkit is ground breaking for the automotive industry and comes at a time when consumers are nearly begging for such technology, but until recently has yet to be delivered by the automotive industry.
According to a report by the Chief Marketing Officer Council, clicks on Facebook auto ads climbed from 16 percent to 39 percent between October 2012 and April 2013, and the number continues to grow. In addition, 94 percent of millennial car buyers gather information online, and 38 percent of them say they will consult social media during their next car purchase.
According to a recent study, 1.9 million private-party offers were made on vehicles via social networking sites in 2013, resulting in nearly 1.3 million sales.
The Seller's Toolkit is one of the first tools to fill the social media void in the automotive industry, and it is likely that other companies will soon follow suit. It serves car buyers the information they want from a trusted source, and gives sellers the tools they need to move their items quickly and profitably.
Beyond The Auto Industry
In addition to helping to foster the growth of automotive sales, the Seller's Toolkit is a pioneering piece of technology for other industries as well. As the online marketplace continues to grow, integrated tools such as this one can help create positive relationships between buyers and sellers, and make it even easier for private parties to move products, thereby fostering economic growth.