Social media can be a rabbit hole, eroding employee efficiency and leaving dealerships desperate for revenue-generating results, despite not having a defined strategy.

While having a social media “point person” is a luxury for many dealers, there are alternatives to investing endless hours in populating online feeds with newsworthy items that call attention to your products and services.

One opportunity embraced by dealers is to leverage customer relationships to be social media stewards. Collaborating and coordinating with farmers to share, engage and post on Facebook, Twitter and even Instagram are sometimes simple ways to increase brand awareness.

So where should you start? One entry point for dealers is to invite customers to participate in a promotional program or pose a seasonal question to solicit engagement. One dealership runs a “Seeding Snaps” social media program that asks customers to submit planting photos, which are then judged and used in marketing materials throughout the year.

“We’ve gotten 90 submissions for the contest and there’s a sense of pride when customers see a photo of their field or equipment in a flyer or brochure we put together,” says one dealer from North Dakota. “It’s all about getting that interaction with our customers and getting them invested.”

Another dealer ran a Facebook promotion which encouraged customers to participate in an “ugly seat” contest. The concept centered on farmers posting photos on the dealership’s feed of worn out tractor cab seats and the one receiving the most likes and comments received a replacement seat from the dealership.

“We’ve done it twice and it’s been very effective because customers have some fun with it, but there’s also value for us because we’ll post that photo of the new seat and ideally, there’s going to be some other new products in that cab as well,” says the marketing manager in charge of the contest.