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Video Marketing: Creating Connection During Social Distancing

Matthew Belk

Matthew Belk

21 Apr, 2020
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Social Distancing has created new challenges for us in the automotive industry. Not only do we have to reinvent how we sell to customers, but we also have to reinvent how we communicate with them. Video is a tool that is underutilized and greatly needed. People buy from people they know and like, and the challenge has been forging those relationships without face-to-face contact.

Enter video

The tool many have ignored, but now find incredibly attractive. 

This tech is more relevant than ever, and should be in your “customer engagement”  toolbox.

There is a 19% increase in email opens when the word video is added to the subject line, and a 96% higher click-through rate in email that contains video.

Why haven’t we used video?

Fear. It is scary to get in front of the camera and hear your voice. The first video I sent to a customer, I must have readjusted the angle 10 times and re-recorded it over and over and over. 

I didn’t like my voice.

I stumbled over my thoughts.

My dog barked.

The guy next to me thought it would be hilarious to jump into the shot on the ONLY good take I had.

All of these situations happened to me, but I sent the videos anyway. And people I had previously sent emails to were now opening my message, clicking on the video, and reviewing the documents I sent!

It was magical.

We need video now more than ever

Quarantine Selling has changed the way we interact and present options to our customers. Covid-19 has been the catalyst for many changes that were already slow-rolling into our automotive process. Brian Benstock of Paragon Honda, stated that “You have to move at the speed of the customer. If we don’t disrupt ourselves, the customer will do it for us.” (thinkwithgoogle) Video is a disruption--an old one, but still one we have not fully adopted. The customer needs this personal form of communication right now, and will demand it post pandemic.


75% of auto shoppers say that online video has influenced shopping habits and purchases. (Think with Google)

If 75% are seeking walk around videos and product explanations, how much more effective is it when the message is targeted to in-market shoppers in their email inbox and text? The ability to provide real time video as well as introduce your personal brand is more valuable right now than ever before.

In addition, 90% of consumers say that product videos are helpful in the decision making process.(ATN) Videos allow the dealership to introduce sight, sound, and motion on a more one-to-one level. It brings the customer in, and allows them to see and hear the vehicle they are interested in. It allows for the possibility of a personal connection with that specific vehicle, which will lead to a higher likelihood of purchase.

Personal Connections with Customers

The old saying of “People buy from people they like” was true yesterday and will be true tomorrow. Continuing to cultivate relationships with prior customers. That one is easy. They know you, they have seen you, and they have worked with you. It will be easier to grab your iPhone and send them a quick video.

New customers need to see you, need to hear your voice, and need to have their questions answered quickly. Video allows you to create that personal relationship with the customer. When you see and hear someone, you feel like you know them a little better. Add in the fact that the person took the time to create a video, and they will believe you have gone the extra mile to win their business. 

You will not grow if you are comfortable. You grow in times of discomfort.

Now is the time to be a little uncomfortable. Try something new to grow your book of business. These are challenging times and it takes a little hustle to get through them. Reach out to your customers with video. Create those relationships. And when all of this is over, you will have those customers coming into the showroom.

Here's some help!

We have our in-house video expert, Christina Love, sharing her video tips here. Christina has a wealth of industry knowledge ( 20 years dealership experience including Sales, BDC Manager, Sales Manager, and GSM), and understands what it needed to get the customer's attention. She takes us through how to use our Spotlight technology to get the most engagement from our customers.

Also, we have checklists that walk you through what you need to add in each video to garner the attention of the customer and get engagement. Check these resources out here.

Let’s Talk

Are you currently using video? If so, what platforms do you like the most?
What makes you hesitant to send video emails?
Would you be interested in a guide for video best practices?