Porsche PanameraEnlarge Photo
Follow Porsche on Facebook and Twitter @porschenewswire
Maybe the whole world of social media is second nature to you--MySpace, Tumblr, Twitter and Facebook, you're everywhere, dude. But to the automotive world, social media's a brave experiment and sometimes, a dangerous new frontier. Remember what happened to Honda with those first Accord Crosstour pics on Facebook? It's a lesson learned in what not to wear, and more brightly, in how to respond quickly to avoid a box-office slaughter.
While a handful of brands like Honda and Ford have tackled these new awareness channels full on, the German automakers have been a little tardy to the party, particularly when it comes to Twitter. According to one Volkswagen official, it's mostly because SMS (text messaging) has been universal over there for years, and while it's similar in its short-attention-span quality, Twitter is a much more open display that's just not as common on the Continent. But while Americans are just amping up with text messaging, they're also adopting Twitter and Facebook by the hundreds of millions--which means the likes of Benz, BMW, Audi have to move in to protect their identities all over the Web and to deliver news and information to online followers. Or get hijacked by name squatters from domains that end in k, z, or x.
Porsche's one of those German automakers pulling itself into the world of social media. Last month's drive of the 2010 Porsche Panamera was a hit on High Gear Media's Twitter and CoverItLive spaces--and if you tuned in, you probably intercepted some tweets from the new Porsche Twitter feed, too. Their presence on the haiku-ish service is relatively new, but with @porschenewswire, the company can spread its official news more easily, says new Twitter enthusiast and Porsche sportscar PR manager Dave Engelman.
It's been a more long-standing presence for Porsche on Facebook, where the company's staked out an official Porsche fan page. In about a year's time, Porsche has amassed almost 550,000 followers--more than BMW, Audi and Mercedes.
The social-media effort doesn't stop there, of course. To take up even more of your work day--for better and for worse--Porsche has a dedicated Panamera Web site, which hosts an open forum for Porschephiles to write and share their own memories of the brand and its cars. With more than 900 responses so far, the Panamera Web site also offers downloads and a knowledge test and video clips to ensure that spreadsheet will never, ever get done.
Hey there, social media mavens: Once a week here at High Gear Media, we'll bring you the latest on SM news and personalities from around the automotive world--so you know which tech and which tools are worth a look, and which ones are best left to the raging 13-year-old fanboys. Got an idea for us to cover? Let us know via Twitter @highgearmedia or by charmingly old-fashioned email: feedback [at] highgearmedia [dot] com.
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