Lehel Reeves shares why engaging online shoppers with video will lead to more sales.
by Tim James
I have long preached the fact that including video in your marketing is an effective way to get customers emotionally connected to a specific car on your lot. This visual connection to the senses serves to enhance the appeal of a vehicle to an online shopper. If there was some technology that allowed consumers to touch, feel and smell your car while shopping online, I’d be all in. Unfortunately, the online vehicle shopping touch-points that exist today don’t allow for 4-D shopping; they are currently limited to a flat screen.
So, how about taking your video marketing game to the next level and incorporating marketing messages that play to consumer emotions. This is far from a new marketing tool. In fact, you see it every time you watch television or the latest viral video. Super Bowl commercials are typically prime examples: many are creative, funny and even touching.
Messages that create a sense of urgency, build trust, offer an incentive or some value added benefit, or appeal to some perceived status, are not uncommon in manufacturer and dealership marketing. What’s not as common is seeing a dealership incorporate these emotional triggers into their inventory marketing – at least in a video. Consider how much more effective the use of the techniques would make your inventory videos. You only have a few seconds in which to capture an online car shopper’s attention in your video. If your video captures the customer’s attention quickly through creative messages that play to their emotions, chances are they’ll watch longer. This can build more excitement in your vehicle over other similar vehicles. There’s no doubt that the more emotionally connected a customer is when they submit that lead, the more likely it will result in a sale.
Have fun with your walkarounds. Don’t simply point your video camera or smartphone and walk around the vehicle while describing it in monotone. Excitement is infectious. We use this all of the time when the consumer is on the lot. Keep your videos interesting and transfer your passion and excitement for the vehicle into the video. This will undoubtedly have a stronger effect on the emotions of any customer viewing it.
You don’t even have to be terribly creative (if you aren’t the creative type). Your dealership most likely has already employed an ad and marketing agency to do that. Simply look at the messages already going out to customers via traditional media and incorporate those unique selling propositions into your walkaround. These type of messages can then help sell you and the dealership, not just the vehicle.
Let’s face it; there are probably over 100 shiny vehicles, similar to the one you have online, that an online shopper is viewing. Anything you can do to give your vehicle an edge over the competition will help your vehicle stand out in the customer’s mind. Play to their sense of fun. Build a sense of urgency. Build trust and offer value in your video walkarounds. Step outside-the-box with a little creativity and, I promise you, your vehicles will get more attention and you’ll see more people submitting leads that are farther down the funnel and more emotionally invested. And that can only bring you more sales.