Is Your SF Department Taking Advantage of This?

During March 2008, ComScore data said there were 11.5 billion online videos viewed in the U.S. This number is incredible and it continues to go up every month. With over 70 percent of Internet users in the U.S. on broadband high-speed connections, video will only become more prevalent. Over the last year, a majority of major media sites that don’t traditionally use video have now embedded videos on their homepages. That includes such sites as the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USAToday. Use of video on dealer sites has been slow to ramp up, but we are starting to see more of it everyday.

Let’s step back and look at the science of communication:

• 55 percent of communication is visual perception
• 38 percent of communication is inflection and tone
• 7 percent of communication is the actual words we use.

Let’s face it: videos are more captivating than reading an e-mail or viewing a static Web site. The ComScore data shows that people prefer to watch videos versus viewing a one–dimensional, static Web site.

It is amazing to watch how fast video communication has dominated the Internet in such a short amount of time. In one year, the visibility of online videos has increased 64 percent. Here are some more interesting facts:

• 73.7 percent of the total U.S. Internet audience watch online videos
• 84.8 million viewers watched 4.3 billion videos on YouTube (50.4 videos per user).
• 47.7 million viewers watched 400 million videos on MySpace (8.4 videos per viewer).
• The average online video duration was 2.8 minutes
• The average online viewer watched 235 minutes of video

Internet Marketing is more powerful than the traditional and intrusive format of conventional television, cable, radio or print mediums. The power of the Internet is like combining the most effective broadcast television commercial during primetime with your exact targeted demographic. Online Video Marketing is almost like video-on-demand in the form of broadcast television commercials.

In regards to special finance or special finance Internet departments, I highly suggest that you create several types of special finance video campaigns:

• Special finance video testimonials – for bad credit, no credit, divorce, late pays, overdue medical bills, military, repossessions, bankruptcy, etc.
• How to repair your credit
• Credit advice
• What exactly is bad credit/no credit
• FAQ about bad credit/no credit
• Message from the special finance manager
• Explanation of your special finance program
• Explanation of customers rights, rules and laws as they relate to special finance
• Special finance commercials or infomercials

Many stores are doing half-hour infomercials on local TV stations. You can produce your own infomercial and put it on your Web site or other local sites where it can be viewed by a broad audience. Be sure to include a strong call to action, so your customers and prospects pick up the phone and call. Consider offering a “value package” which might be free oil changes for one year, a $50 gift card at a local restaurant or some other similar offer.

You want to use this powerful medium—not just to sell, but also to inform and to build your dealership’s reputation.

Special Finance Insider Vol. 2, Issue 3