A Car Dealer’s Guide to Using TikTok

November 2, 2023

Team ACV




A Car Dealer’s Guide to Using TikTok

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A Car Dealer’s Guide to Using TikTok

We all have social media channels, like Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok, at our fingertips. They’re fun to use and have become powerful tools for making connections and spreading messages. You may be familiar with using these platforms  in your personal life, but you might be curious about turning those skills into ones that can benefit your car dealership business. Below are our tips and recommendations for making TikTok part of your dealership’s digital marketing strategy.

Why Should Businesses Use TikTok?

During the pandemic, it became clear that TikTok held the potential to launch businesses to a new level of success. Today, it is common knowledge that building a presence on social media is an essential pillar of any digital marketing strategy. TikTok, in particular, has revolutionized the way brands relate to their customer base and has opened the door for large or small, locally owned businesses to reach hundreds of thousands of viewers and get their name out there. 

Additionally, even the largest brands are noticing that having a two-way relationship with their customers and being able to communicate directly online helps add a human element and also instill trust1. This has allowed companies of all sizes to grow a more loyal customer base. Various products from large retailers and small businesses alike have gone viral, and this phenomenon is linked to a common hashtag: #TikTokmademebuyit2.

How Can Car Dealerships Benefit From Using TikTok?

This business opportunity extends to car dealerships as well. The high level of customer distrust in the car buying process creates the opportunity to genuinely connect to your customer base and show the human side of your business. These efforts have the potential to help you develop stronger customer relationships. Additionally, TikTok is a relatively underused platform among car dealerships, so it’s an environment where you may stand out. 

For reference, the opportunity is immense: Over 60% of users on TikTok are between the ages of 18–34, making them of driving age2. Customers increasingly treat TikTok as a search engine, which means they are using it as the online platform to find products and answers. As a result, having a presence on TikTok will help you connect to younger customers you won't reach through traditional channels, like TV commercials.3 And the numbers are there to back it up: According to a TikTok report on 2021 activity 12% of users purchased or leased a vehicle after seeing auto ads and content on the platform 4.

Best Practices for Creating Engaging TikTok Videos for Your Car Dealership

Keep Your Audience in Mind

Create content with your audience’s point of view in mind. Identify who your customers are and what they'd be interested in by referencing the concept of buyer personas. It can be tempting to create content that matches your priorities, but just like in sales, it's important to make TikTok videos that connect with what your viewers are looking for5.

Post Consistently

The TikTok algorithm prioritizes accounts that post regularly, so make it a scheduled routine to create content every day or at least four times a week. 

Develop an Authentic Voice

The buttoned-up style of traditional advertising and marketing doesn't fly on TikTok. Present your brand authentically showing the personalities behind everyone involved. This will allow your viewers to actually relate to your content and build trust with your business, making it more likely they’ll become customers. 

Focus on More Than Selling

Every video should not be a sales pitch. TikTok users know when they're being sold to, so creating content is more about providing entertainment to build trust. This pays off down the line by converting customers.  

Engage With Followers

Be active in the comments and respond to what your followers are saying, the beauty of social media is that it provides a give-and-take relationship with your customer base.

Adopt Trends

The best way to get better at creating valuable TikTok content is by watching a lot of it. So much of the culture on TikTok is based around trends and trending sounds. If you can incorporate humor and these viral trends into your video content, your brand will get a lot of attention. Duet other videos and allow others to do the same with your videos—it will only expand your reach. 

What Types of TikTok Videos Can Dealerships Make?

 If you're looking for ideas to start creating videos, here are some points of inspiration. You can create inventory tours, test drives of your vehicles from the driver's point of view, educational content about vehicle features, explanations about running sales, Q&As with your staff and team, and even participate in dance trends if you have employees who are willing to do so1.

Paid Content

 One of the best things about TikTok is that it is free to use and free to create content; however, there is the option to engage and create paid or sponsored content where you can target your content towards specific audiences using ads. This can be a great way to reach the exact demographic you're looking for based on the criteria you enter6.

Fill Your Lot With Help From ACV Auctions

If you're reading this article, it probably means you're looking for ways to grow your dealership business. We are here to be your partners in that process. Our online used car auction offers excellent inventory with detailed inspection reports so you can feel confident about each bid you place. Register today to learn how we can help your business soar. 


  1. Why your car dealership should use TikTok. ActivEngage. Retrieved October 27, 2023. https://www.activengage.com/car-dealership-tiktok/ 
  2. McCoy, K. (2023).  As TikTok becomes a search engine, big-ticket retailers, including car dealerships, reap the benefits. Digiday. https://digiday.com/marketing/as-tiktok-becomes-a-search-engine-big-ticket-retailers-including-car-dealerships-reap-the-benefits/ 
  3. Delvillar, A. (2023). How car dealers are leveraging TikTok to drive sales [+8 tips for success]. CBTNews. Retrieved October 27, 2023. https://www.cbtnews.com/how-car-dealers-are-leveraging-tiktok-to-drive-sales-8-tips-for-success/ 
  4. Auto Marketing on TikTok 101: Driving in the fun lane. TikTok For Business. Retrieved October 27, 2023. https://www.tiktok.com/business/en-US/blog/automotive-marketing-101 
  5. Cheetham, G. L. (2023). The Ultimate Guide to TikTok for Car Dealerships in 2023.  GL Digital. Retrieved October 27, 2023. https://gl.digital/blog/car-dealer/tiktok/
  6. Ultimate guide to utilizing TikTok for car dealers in 2023. Evox Images. Retrieved October 27, 2023.  https://www.evoximages.com/resources/car-dealers-in-2023/