January 18, 2021 • 5 min read
When you think of top automotive brands, what comes to mind? Probably car names like BMW, Ford, and Jeep. Maybe Toyota, Lexus, and Honda. What might not pop up is Falken Tire. After all, a tire brand couldn’t compete with luxury car manufacturers from around the globe, right?
Not exactly. Falken Tire happens to be one of the most socially engaging automotive brands posting on social media – ranking right up there with Mercedes-Benz and BMW.
In fact, we have the data to prove it.
According to the Sprinklr Business Index – a real-time inventory of how 35,000 global brands are performing on social media – these are three of the top auto brands marketing on social media by post volume and engagement.
So why are these companies pulling such high numbers with their audiences?
To answer that, let’s break down three of the top players.
With an average of 34 posts per day and 19.8k engagements per post, Mercedes-Benz recently generated over 424k engagements every 24 hours over the course of a week – more than any of its competitors.
That’s not bad for a day’s work on social, especially when other auto brands are only posting nine times a day.
And that’s not the only way Mercedes-Benz stands out from the crowd. Competitors’ most engaging posts are generally about customer experience, while Mercedes-Benz focuses on a hot-button, environmental issue: CO2 emissions.
According to a recent Gallup poll, concern about global warming is at a three-decade high in the US. Car manufacturers should be transparent about the part they play in this issue, and how they’re trying to lessen their carbon footprint.
For instance, many of Mercedes’ Facebook posts contain information about its cars’ fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.
With this content, the brand does more than just share a pretty picture; it’s also upfront about its effect on the environment. And with over 26k reactions and 742 shares, this is a prime example of the amount of engagements Mercedes drives per post.
But the company’s success doesn’t end there. On average, auto brands generate 13% of their social engagements from video. For Mercedes, however, that number was recently as high as 19%.
Take Mercedes’ web series, #QuickMick. The short comedy places professional racer Mick Schumacher in the passenger’s seat of a Mercedes-AMG with “driving instructor” Harry G, a German comedian. Chaos ensues!
Each episode is posted natively to Facebook where Mercedes’ 20+ million followers can see it and share it with their friends.
Among auto brands, BMW broke the record for the most posts a day: 37 on average, which is 28 more than the industry average.
Taking a closer look, BMW only posts once or twice a day on its main Twitter and Facebook accounts. But when you include its other handles, like @BMWUSA, @BMW_UK, and @BMWGroup, those numbers start to add up.
So, what do those posts include? Photos, photos, photos. For the average auto brand, 85% of its social engagements come from images. For BMW, that number is a whopping 100%.
Just check out the company’s main Twitter page – barely a text post in sight. Most Tweets have a glossy, high-quality picture attached to them. For example, this April Fools’ Day Tweet teases the limited-edition “Original BMW Unicorn Parts,” and it’s complete with a playful unicorn emoji.
While that post pulled in over 1k Likes, BMW’s numbers really start to climb on Instagram, which is made for sharing eye-catching visuals. The brand uses this platform to show its cars out in the wild: on the road, in the elements, and backed by gorgeous landscapes.
BMW also posts user-submitted photos, which fans are encouraged to tag with #BMWrepost. For instance, this one may look like a professional photo, but it was taken by a BMW owner and follower. And it racked up over 160,000 Likes.
By sharing user-generated content, BMW can increase its posting frequency without investing in new tools or resources. It can also build relationships with fans by supporting and showcasing their talent.
Falken Tire’s most engaging channel is Instagram. And it’s no surprise, given how it uses the platform. Each post is loaded with relevant hashtags and handles, so the message can spread beyond the company’s 429k followers.
For instance, Falken Tire can tag other notable car brands when it features their vehicles in certain posts. In fact, according to the Sprinklr Business Index, Falken Tire’s most engaging topics include Ford, Nissan, and Chevrolet. The brand also supplies tires for professional motorsports events, and it’s the official tire of Major League Baseball. This provides an opportunity to engage fans of these games with relevant content.
Falken Tire even encourages engagement by asking questions and hosting little quizzes, like this one:
Additionally, the brand poses challenges for followers to submit user-generated content, like here:
Falken Tire may not be a luxury car brand. But as far as social is concerned, it’s up there with the top performers – all because of a smart strategy. Not a lot of people can say they’re a big fan of tires. But many can say they’re a fan of cars, racing, and baseball. Falken Tire wraps all of those into one social experience so it can grow and engage its audience.
It’s not hard to promote a product when it’s associated with speed, luxury, thrill, and adventure. But it is hard to promote that product when your competitors are trying to do the same thing.
That’s why it’s important to understand the most engaging social topics, formats, and platforms in your industry. As these brands prove, you can unearth strategies that will help you edge into the fast lane and leave your competitors in the rear-view mirror.