By Tim James
Some dealers miss opportunities to gain acceptance of service recommendations or upsells simply because consumers do not know why they are needed or important. Many advisors share the “canned” description. However, if the customer is not right in front of you it can be hard for them to understand what you are going on about and so they decline the recommendations.
Well, there is an easy solution to better communicate with your customers so they can see why the recommendations are necessary. That solution is video.
Since COVID-19 arrived on the scene video communications have dramatically increased as a way to engage with customers. Think about how norms have changed. A majority of employees are still working at home using video platforms to communicate with colleagues, such as Zoom. And, in those states where the only way to sell a car is remotely, video is a great tool to help build that relationship and sell the car. Video has become a necessary item in any dealership’s arsenal for both sales and service.
When it comes to service recommendations, using either recorded or live video, you can easily show the customer the issue and clearly describe it to them. The customer can then see what the problem is and better understand why it needs to be repaired. Also, they will feel more confident about accepting those repairs and approve the recommendations. Recommended service acceptance rates can increase by as much as three times from an average of 20% to 40% and sometimes even as high as 60%. Recorded or live video recommendations can also help prevent your customers from shopping the competition and ending up at an independent shop.
Use video technology to communicate with customers – whether that be now during the pandemic or afterward once it passes. You will see an uptick in service recommendations as well as increased customer loyalty and improved CSI scores.
Nobody knows how long we, as a nation, will be home-bound. Some people say it will be months, some are saying years.
No matter how long it is, the results of video are timeless and well-proven. Communicating with your customers via video can help you weather this storm and help boost profitability.
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.