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Why Management Buy-In is Essential for Video

Why Management Buy-In is Essential for Video

I talk to dealers daily about how they use video to market and merchandise their dealership’s vehicles. Over the years, I have developed a good idea of what is required to make a video strategy successful. When all other things are equal, the dealership that has management buy-in gets better results from their video marketing and merchandising efforts.

This is not really surprising. How many times have you heard the same thing about any new technology or software in use at a dealership? Yet, video marketing often gets overlooked; perhaps because it’s considered to under the purview of marketing.

The reality is, video is an essential merchandising and sales tool. Yes, it is great to use in marketing campaigns, but the real power of video lies in its ability to create an emotional connection between car shoppers and your dealership.

While your marketing staff or partners may use video effectively, they have little say about whether your staff are creating live walkaround videos and 360-degree interactive videos for merchandising purposes. They also have no say over whether your salespeople create lead-response videos, send emails in videos, or live-stream vehicle walkarounds with remote car shoppers.

The only way to encourage employee buy-in for a technology is to have management buy-in first; then, mandate its usage. Here are some tips for how to create a video culture in your store.

Establish a Process

First, create a process to make walkaround inventory videos. Use checklists for new and used vehicles, so the process is consistent. Decide who will make these, and spiff if necessary. Inventory videos should be uploaded to VDPs and other marketing touchpoints at the same time the vehicle is listed.

Next, establish processes for sales staff to make lead-response videos and live-stream phone calls with prospects. Create templates for video emails. Identify and remove as many obstacles to creating these videos as possible. Set up a camera-ready, distraction-free, private area where salespeople can make lead-response videos, if they don’t want to do so at their desks.

Train Staff

There’s a common perception that today’s younger generations—specifically, Millennials and Generation Z—are automatically tech savvy and should know how to use recording equipment to make videos. However, most people are camera shy and don’t know how to create videos.

To generate employee buy-in for communicating with customers via video, make it fun. Order pizza, train them on how to make videos and have everyone make several videos to get them comfortable with the process. Also, reinforce the benefits from their efforts, such as setting more appointments and selling more cars.

Hold Staff Accountable

Salespeople are used to being held accountable for certain activities, such as phone calls and emails. Why not add videos into this mix? For example, “Today you are responsible for sending 50 emails, making 50 phone calls, creating 10 lead-response videos and 10 walkaround inventory videos.”

Add “making videos” as a requirement in every new job description. You might get pushback at first, but salespeople will adapt, just like they have to other new technologies. And once they see the benefits, such as selling more cars and making more money, they will learn to embrace video communications.

The term video marketing reflects only a portion of how video should be used in today’s dealership. To be successful at video merchandising and video communications requires management buy-in first, so that employees will also buy-in.

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