By Paul Moran
Video content is quickly becoming the preferred medium of social media platforms. Facebook rewards video content producers with extended reach; live streaming video is currently being rolled out to all Facebook users; and Tweets that contain video receive greater interactions. Video opens up many great marketing opportunities to impact your audience. However, I see far too many dealers publishing video content which is just their latest television ad. While these ads may see great response on television; that is the medium for which they are designed. Unless they are Super Bowl worthy ads, this type of video content will probably not be quite so well received on social media.
Creating content for social media doesn’t have to be difficult. There’s no reason to beat your head against your desk trying to create the next viral Facebook post or video. There are many simple, yet effective, ways to integrate more video content into your social media marketing. It just requires a little time and a smartphone. Here are some easy ways that your dealership can create video content to help increase its digital footprint.
- “Meet the Staff” Videos – The single biggest differentiator of any business is the people who interact with and provide service to customers. Despite this, many dealerships fail to publish employee photos or videos on their websites. Fewer yet add any personal details so customers can get to know these employees better. Consider going that extra step and including short introductory videos of each member of your staff — From the dealer principal to the porter — don’t forget anyone. These are all members of your team. This will give your website visitors – especially any researching your dealership to see if they want to buy there – a great way to get a feel for who you are. The bonus effect is that they will feel more comfortable and relaxed when they do visit your dealership. Which should make for a smoother and more pleasant transaction.
- New Model Walkarounds – Walkarounds that explain and highlight new features of the latest model vehicles, are easy to create and among the most viewed videos. They play well on your website and are also effective for SEO efforts. This type of information can be very highly searched, especially when there are significant changes. This can then drive additional traffic to your dealership through increased interest. These videos are an opportunity to soft-sell a new model year vehicle in a way that is welcomed by the consumers, as they came to you for the information. Take advantage of this opportunity.
- FAQ Videos – These are very easy to create. Why? Because they answer questions that customers ask you every day. To start, simply visit each department in your dealership – sales, service, parts, F&I – and collect a list of the questions these departments get asked most often. Then make a short explanatory video. You’d be surprised by how well these videos received and how popular they are. Some examples include: ‘Why does it take so long in the finance office?” “How long will it take to get my license plates?” You get the idea. Your staff should be able to provide many video topics along these lines.
- Customer Testimonials – This might seem like a no-brainer, but surprisingly few dealerships leverage their happy customers to acquire and attract new ones. Many dealers survey their customers and encourage them to post reviews on Google, Yelp and other sites. Why not also ask that happy customer, who has had a great experience, for a short video recommendation. Most customers will be happy to, especially if they have developed a great rapport with their salesperson. Just make sure that you have a consent form they can sign, right there and then, so you can use it right away. Even better make it an electronic version to simplify the process. Worst case scenario is that they decline, right? Isn’t that the same advice you give to your salespeople? If you don’t ask for the original sale price, you won’t get it. Follow the same advice when it comes to customer testimonials. These can be even more powerful than a written review — for one simple reason – strangers can see at a glance that these are real people giving their opinions.
- Technology Videos – With the amount of sophisticated technology in today’s latest models, many consumers get frustrated for the simple reason that they don’t understand how to use it. In fact, a recent J D Power study found that this is starting to impact CSI scores. Too little time can be spent at delivery to explain all these features to the customer. Or, the customer simply fails to retain all the data. There’s nothing more frustrating than having a vehicle equipped with Bluetooth that you can’t pair with your phone. Short, simple videos that explain how to pair phones; how to utilize the navigation system; and any of the other key technology features; are a valuable service to your customers. You may even find that frustrated customers from your competitors end up on your website while searching for how-to videos.
- Company Culture – Don’t be a building with cars. That’s all you are without your people. Rare is a person who hasn’t heard the phrase “People buy from people they like.” Now let’s add to that. By showcasing the culture at your dealership, you give potential customers a peek into who you are as a company. In addition, it shows your staff that you value them and that they are an important part of the team. It’s OK to have a little fun. Take videos of birthday or holiday celebrations. Memorialize recognition ceremonies, employment anniversaries, or other accomplishments. This type of content can both increase morale and showcase your culture. Not only that, it can also be the most engaged with content published. Don’t believe me? Try it and you’ll see.
Don’t forget that all of these videos can also be uploaded to your dealership’s YouTube channel.
There’s never been a better time to leverage this powerful form of media. The best part is that you already have all of the things you need to start. Rally the troops and start bringing the power of video into your marketing efforts.