Buick is interested in appealing to a more youthful customer and they are making strides with the Enclave, LaCrosse, and now the new Regal. As part of their outreach, Buick has hired three social media "Ambassadors" (their word) where one can tweet the @DriveBuickChi trio and "the test drive comes to you", provided one lives in Chicago (that's what "Chi" stands for in case you were wondering...)
It's an interesting concept and surely takes some of the hassle out of car shopping for those who are serious potential buyers. I wonder though how many tweets will be people testing how this concept works with no intent of really buying.
They are tweeting pictures of test drivers like @BrianGainor (Brian Gainor) @LauraGainor (Laura Gainor) who tried out the LaCrosse last week. Laura is a social media strategist for a marketing+pr agency and blogged about her experience.
Buick is spreading the word by posting a photo gallery on its Facebook page. I'm not sure if other efforts are happening to get the idea some reach. They have also created a Facebook event from August 1 to October 31 for those who want to attend a drive. To further increase interest, test drivers can win VIP tickets to an event if they are lucky to find some tickets under the test drive car's seat.
I do like the idea of Tweet to test drive. It's an interesting idea and one that could work very well for a dealership. One wonders why this concept wasn't extended to a dealer instead of going with three social media experts. I get the obvious reason, but why not train a dealer and test-pilot how effective this can be and then broaden its reach to other markets.