Automotive companies with a ton of Facebook pages are getting an assist from the digital giant, ClickZ News has learned. It is assigning consultants to brands like Aamco and Cottman Transmissions Systems, advising them on how to manage directory information and supplying other tactics to help generate leads for locations nationwide.
Facebook aims to "help our industry understand how Facebook can be utilized to increase sales," said Derik Beck, director of new media at American Driveline Systems, which is the parent company for Aamco (800 franchises) and Cottman (80 franchises). The free consultation, he said, was recently offered to his company.
While attending SES New York last week, Beck and other marketers quizzed speakers from platforms like Bing and MomentFeed about how to optimize their social media pages for mobile search.
During one Q&A session, the topic took over the room as industry professionals were looking to solve pain points that come with coordinating branded and decentralized franchisees.
"We are trying to help our mom and pop shops," explained Sara Resnick, an SEO specialist at 1-800-Flowers.com. "We are trying to do it one at a time in Google Places and eventually Bing and [other web sites]. We understand the importance of local."
Beck said franchisors are ramping up on staffing to make sure information on location pages on Facebook, Google, and other business listing websites is accurate. "And if they are not, they must," he said. "It is a necessity."
Update: Facebook says the work it recently began doing with Beck's company is representative of the social site's general aim to help businesses. It hasn't created a new team as part of the effort, the Menlo Park, CA-based company says.
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Christopher Heine was a senior writer for ClickZ through June 2012. He covered social media, sports/entertainment marketing, retail, and more. Heine's work has also appeared via Mashable, Brandweek, DM News, MarketingSherpa, and other tech- and ad-centric publications. USA Today, Bloomberg Radio, and The Los Angeles Times have cited him as an expert journalist.
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