One thing that 2020 has taught us is that those who are able to pivot quickly and are not scared to try new technologies are the ones who will continue to stay relevant during ever-changing times like these. One area of relevance that has proved a continued importance is video. It seems like we have been talking about the relevance of video for years, and some dealerships have embraced it and utilized it in both sales and service to create relationships, bring in new customers, and add transparency and trust to service transactions.
But many dealerships have not.
Whether it is a time issue, comfort, or perceived lack of talent, the majority of dealerships I work with have not made the jump into video as a daily process.
Now that we are facing a more socially distant world, where customers are requesting/expecting more virtual and online options, video is the perfect bridge between dealership and consumer. Sight, sound, and motion sell, as well as going one step ahead of your competition and surprising and delighting your customers. Video provides all of these elements, and is much easier than you think.
And don’t let equipment be a factor in pushing forward with video. Some of the best interactions I have seen between sales, BDC, and service and the consumer have been with iPhones or iPads.
Here are three reasons why you need video now more than ever, and some simple suggestions on how to get things moving forward.
Provide context when the customer cannot/does not want to be in dealership
Video Provides context when the customer cannot/does not want to come into the dealership. According to Automotive News, many retailers ended Q2 with either a static or an increase in projected sales. People are buying , and want to take advantage of any deals that are still in play because of COVID-19. The dealerships who really succeeded, though, were the ones who offered more online, offsite options. The more the customer can do at home, the further down the funnel they can travel, the less time they will have to spend in the dealership, and the happier they will be.
When a customer sends in a lead on a vehicle, what digital options do you have to respond to the customer in a warm and engaging way? Here are some ways video makes that happen:
- Have a sales team member or BDC agent send an original video response to the customer inquiry. If the car is on the lot, have the agent run out and showcase the vehicle. This not only shows the face and personality of the agent (it is much harder to miss an appointment if you “know” the agent), but it goes a step above and beyond. The consumer will know you are working harder than the competing dealership who sent two auto-responses and tried to call while the customer was at work. If using an offsite BDC, they can still utilize a personalized video response, but then send additional information concerning the vehicle of interest.
- Have managers create reusable videos welcoming the customer to ABC Motors, highlighting the value propositions of the dealership, and providing a way to personally contact her/him with any questions. This provides trust and transparency and, again, goes above and beyond for the consumer.
- If you are interested in doing this, but are unsure of where to start or specific technology to use, let us know! Our specialists are well versed in all areas of video and are more than happy to get you moving in the right direction
Create Relationships in Service
Customers are more wary of waiting in the service lounge than ever before. They look for and expect services like Pick up and Delivery, Shuttles, and Loaners so that they will not be waiting for long periods of time in public places. Those amazing amenities that you brought into your lounge will be relevant again soon, but for the time being, we need to provide as many off-site options as possible.
Video use has been on the rise in service lanes, and there are some strong correlations between increased R/O, upselling (I hate that word in service), and repeat and referral business. There are many technologies that assist with video in service, and they are all beneficial in their own ways. I want to focus on the type of messaging you can send out to customers so that you can start using video and see the results.
- Send a welcome from the Service Advisor. There are some customers who will never step one foot into Service--they want to do everything remotely. This is a great opportunity for the advisor to send a quick intro thanking the customer for choosing ABC Motors for all their service needs. This is also a great place to recap services being done.
- Have the tech or advisor send a mid-way update with video of what you have done so far, and some areas you have uncovered that may need to be addressed. Include videos of the tire tread, any filters that may need to be changed, and also address things that do not need to be done right now, but will be in the future.
- Send a thank you video when everything is complete and remind the customer of when they should be in again.
- While this may seem time consuming, like anything, with a little practice, it gets easier and faster. It should not take more than 90 seconds to create and send the videos. Remember--they do not need to be perfect. You may stumble over a word. That is okay--it is normal and human. The important piece is that you are sending this to the customer, they see that you are taking an additional step to make them feel comfortable, and they are happy (think CSI).
Allows customers to “test drive” and experience the vehicle remotely
This is a newer idea that I think has a ton of value right now. Video has always had the capabilities to showcase the vehicle of interest for the customer. Team members can do walk arounds, highlight technology, show the leather seats and the ample cupholders, but some dealerships have taken this to the next level.
In an Automotive News article this week, they highlighted a dealership who saw the need for virtual test drives and came up with a solution. Utilizing safe technology, a sales person will take the customer on a virtual test drive of the vehicle, driving around town discussing the options and features of the vehicle. The consumer hears the vehicle just like they would on a test drive, sees the vehicle in motion, and can get a better understanding of how the vehicle handles.
While that part is incredibly important, another element is that the customer knows the sales person took 10 minutes to get in the vehicle, drive, and showcase features. Again, all of this creates relationships and provides transparency they did not previously receive.
Video is a key element to not only keeping up with, but providing expected value to today’s customer. If you are utilizing video in sales and service, tell us how and what has been successful for you.
If you are looking for more information on ways to incorporate video into your daily process, or are looking for tools to help facilitate this, reach out!