Over the past three months, hundreds of happy car buyers have shared their #newcarface photos with Cars.com for a chance to win up to $25,000 toward their car loan payment. Many have even taken the opportunity to give a shout out to their favorite local dealer. And to thank these dealerships for helping us remove the drama from car shopping and sharing our campaign, we’ll be featuring one dealership per month on the Cars.com Facebook page.

This month’s featured dealership, Sam Swope Honda World in Louisville, KY, uses social media to reinforce its strong reputation and consumer-centric brand online as part of a comprehensive digital marketing strategy. In addition to a stellar social presence, the store has nearly 200 dealer reviews on Cars.com and a 4.8/5 rating.

“On social media, we’re able to promote positive customer experiences and show that we’re more than a business that sells cars,” says Andrew Llewellyn, Social Media Manager at Sam Swope Auto Group. “It lets us show that we’re involved in the community and that we care about the same things our customers care about.”

Let your customers do the talking

Though the group actively promotes community events and local interests on its social pages, when it comes time to promote new car purchases, Llewellyn suggests that it’s best to let customers take the wheel.

“It has to do with authenticity,” says Llewellyn. “The dealership posting photos of happy customers on its own doesn’t mean as much as a customer sharing directly with friends and family. We think that holds a lot more weight and it exposes us to an audience we would otherwise not be reaching.”

Llewellyn adds that the group has set up processes to help customers promote great sales experiences by empowering its own sales team.

Sam Swope sales associates wearing red to raise awareness for women’s heart disease (via Facebook)

“We ask our salespeople to offer to take a photo of each customer upon delivery and tag the dealership on Facebook. If they aren’t active on social media, then we ask permission to post the photo directly from the dealership page,” says Llewellyn

According to Llewellyn, Sam Swope dealerships that are actively promoting Cars.com’s #newcarface campaign have received great feedback from customers.

“The reaction is typically, ‘Heck yeah, I’d be happy to post a photo [and tag the dealership] if there’s a chance I’ll have my car loan paid off.’”

How your dealership can get involved

Want to help your customers enter the Cars.com #newcarface contest? Follow these three easy steps:

  1. Offer to take a photo of your customers – using their smartphone – as they show off their newly purchased vehicle.
  1. Have your customer post the photo to the com Facebook wall from their account using the #newcarface hashtag (required for entry). And, ask your customer to tag your dealership so everyone knows where they bought their new ride (optional). Car buyers can also participate by posting a photo of themselves with their new vehicle using the #newcarface hashtag and mentioning @carsdotcom on Twitter and Instagram.
  1. When a #newcarface photo is posted on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram that tags your dealership by name, find the post and share it for all of your fans to see.

Visit newcarface.com for official rules.