The effectiveness of traditional advertising has been on the decline for years and a strong social media presence, utilizing services such as Facebook and Twitter, is quickly becoming the new standard in successful marketing. A new study examining the social media presence of luxury automakers has found that the German brands dominate while Japanese and American brands are largely absent.

The study was run by MH Group Communications and Forum Strategies & Communications, based out of New York, and has found that luxury automakers are not maximizing the full potential of social media in their communications efforts.

It concluded that the industry has yet to tap the full potential of social media by utilizing an integrated and holistic approach, and are focusing their efforts on YouTube and Facebook rather than the full spectrum of social media platforms where benefits could be gained.

It also revealed that social media conversations around luxury automakers focused on four key topics: Admiration of the brand, sales and deals, questions about features, service and availability, and news and vehicle announcements.

Using unique measurement methodologies to determine the size and activity level of communities around specific auto brands across Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Flickr, the study was able to rank the brands in terms of their engagement in social networks.

In the overall rating, the nine luxury automakers considered ranked as follows:

1. BMW
2. Porsche
3. Audi
4. Mercedes
5. Cadillac
6. Lexus
7. Acura
8. Infiniti
9. Lincoln