Meanwhile, nearly every business is represented on Facebook, including the automotive industry which has also parked their cars on Facebook. But once convinced, many people build loyalty with a car brand, sometimes for a lifetime. Cars are emotion and social media is also emotion-driven. Car manufacturers are only too well aware of the emotional appeal and cleverly pitch their marketing at the niche markets they know will be interested in their products. Social media offers many possibilities for interactive communications with fans, loyalists and potential customers. Cars on Facebook seem to be a perfect fit and we try to investigate this.
Cars On Facebook - The Brands In Our Comparison Group
As usual, we need to limit the amount of pages we take into a comparison. We use the number of Facebook fans to form a comparison group in this case. We know that this way of selecting the pages does not satisfy all needs, but we think it is a good starting point for a discussion.
Ford and Chevrolet are even represented by the, of course historically and emotionally models Camaro and Mustang.You can see a mix of big brands such as Audi, Mercedes-Benz and BMW, next to dream car manufacturers such as Ferrari and Lamborghini, in addition to target group-specific popular brands such as Jeep and MINI.
But of course fan count is just the beginning and not the right metric to make statements about the success. For more insights we need to check the engagement of the fan base.
People Talking About Cars On Facebook
The People Talking About This - Rate displays the absolute number of people talking about this divided by the number of fans. In the following chart we chose a data range from 1/1/12 till today to create a better and more meaningful overview and exclude some kind of dilutions through special weekly campaign peaks.
Apparently Lamborghini was talking point number one for cars on Facebook for the first quarter of this year. The highest peak for the supercar manufacturer was on the 9th of February with a PTAT - Rate of 17.09%. During the year change the iconic American car, the Ford Mustang, was on everyone's lips. Lately, it seems to be Audi USA, that fans are talking about.
In this post introduction, we wrote about the interactive communication between brands and fans, it's now time to measure these interactions.
Interaction Rate Of The Top Car Manufacturers
The following chart shows the average number of interactions (likes, comments and shares) per own post normalized per fan for a specific time interval. Since a daily summary of the intercation rate is somewhat cluttered, we measured the rate in a monthly interval since the beginning of the year 2012. But for the daily time interval, we can at least constitute the highest interaction - rate peak for Audi USA on the 30th of June. So, in order to protect your eyes, here is the monthly evaluation:
Not surprising, we can see in this chart similar results as in the PTAT-Rate chart before. Lamborghini, Ford Mustang and Audi USA are again on the podium. So these three brands have a relative high amount of active fans, one of the most important factors for effective Facebook marketing.
But what type of content is catching the fans interest?
The Interaction Rate By Post Type
Cars on Facebook - an image driven business. Like already mentioned, photos and videos are attracting the most likes, shares and comments. Once again Lamborghini plays the dream car card and leads in case of most photo interactions. Ford Mustang beats Mercedes-Benz for video content. A rarity is certainly the music content of Mercedes-Benz and Ferrari.
Naturally you need to check the interaction rate by post type chart in connection with the post type distribution of the car brands on Facebook.
Post Type Distribution Of The Car Brands
In this chart you can clearly see the content type preferences of the brands. While photos are the leading source for Audi USA - Porsche and Mercedes-Benz have the highest amount of video content, Ferrari prefers the posting of links and Chevy Camaro likes to use status updates to talk with the fans.
Please note: You can click on every chart and then hover over the data to check any of the numbers.
Facebook Key Metrics For The Automotive Industry
Now to the hard facts for cars on Facebook - the key metrics from 1/1/2012 up to today:
In this table you can easily see the leader in every relevant Facebook metric. Therefore BMW gains the largest fan growth and also the highest number of absolute people talking about since the beginning of this year. Ferrari published so far 594 own posts, a really impressive number and therefore got the most likes and comments. But the most shares were grabbed by Mercedes-Benz. The maximum number of user posts was generated on the Facebook page of Jeep. At least, the highest average interaction rate was created by Lamborghini. And this brand with the famous raging bull logo, which belongs to Audi since 1998, also seems to pull the the emotions of the most Facebook users.
Hopefully, our analysis gave you a deeper look into the world of cars on Facebook and what marketing strategies the automotive industry uses to attract the attention of potential customers.
Are you missing a relevant metric or do you have a question? Just drop us a line in the comments.