Many dealers go to a lot of effort to create and deliver video content. But having videos is not the same thing as having a video marketing strategy. Without one, you’re leaving a lot of money on the table and creating more work for yourself.

The most successful video marketing strategies include these four elements:

1. Content

Many dealers approach every video like a car commercial. When you create videos for your website, YouTube, and other online touchpoints, the primary purpose is to engage customers, not advertise to them. You want to give customers what they are looking for. According to Google, that includes videos of test drives, walkarounds, and highlights of vehicle features and benefits.

Now that you have their attention, the next step is to start a conversation about why they should buy from your store. You need videos with human faces that represent your brand in order to build consumer trust.

Ideally, every inventory video will be featured on its own landing page. Those pages also should feature your dealership’s value proposition videos, customer testimonial videos, service department videos, and more.

2. Exposure

Your strategy must get the right video in front of the right shopper at the right time in the buying cycle. In addition to your website, you should distribute your videos on YouTube and third-party retail sites. Use them in email marketing and in the lead follow-up process.

3. Data Collection

Since most digital touchpoints do not actually host the video, the host plays a very important role in the success of a video marketing strategy. By hosting all your videos on a single platform, you control the viewing experience while capturing and storing data for every viewer.

Many dealers use YouTube as their primary hosting platform and utilize different hosts for other videos such as inventory, test drive, and follow-up emails. This separation of content makes it extremely difficult to capture all your viewing data, which makes controlling the customer experience and utilizing the data next to impossible.

4. Data Utilization

Technology exists right now that allows your sales team to get real-time alerts every time someone watches one of your videos and match them to a profile in your CRM. Imagine getting an alert when a former customer or unsold lead watches one of your videos. There is no more relevant time to call these prospects.

That’s what the power of data capture and data utilization can do for your dealership. Viewer data is used to create relevancy. Relevant content attracts and engages customers, increases the time they spend on your website, and boosts search engine rankings. With videos, “relevancy” is defined as choosing which videos to display to individuals, along with sales and marketing messages that can be updated in real-time based upon the viewer, touchpoint, geolocation, day, time — you name it.

A first-time car buyer considering your dealership might be attracted to a video on car-buying tips or walkarounds of economical, pre-owned vehicles for sale. A seasoned truck owner might be compelled to watch a video detailing your trade-in program and a walkaround of the latest model.

Think about the sales process at your store and design your video marketing strategy to mirror it. How do you greet customers? What do you want them to know about your store? Create video content that brings in-market car shoppers down the funnel.

Start with inventory videos. Your inventory is your most important asset, and you spend a lot of money to drive traffic to your VDPs. Once you have a process to create inventory videos, add exposure, data capture and data utilization to create a strategy. Shoppers will respond, your website metrics will improve, and you will get more leads. 

Tim James is COO of Flick Fusion Video Marketing. Contact him at [email protected].