YouTube TrueView advertising is one of the most utilized research tools by automotive shoppers. How can dealerships take advantage of video to drive sales?
YouTube just got a promotion. Last year, the streaming website became the second largest search engine after Google, with 91 percent of 25-54 year olds on the internet viewing its video content regularly. The automotive industry has not missed out on the site’s growth: Automotive video watch time has seen 220 percent year-over-year increases, and according to Google’s 2017 study, 57 percent of automotive shoppers watched YouTube videos on their path to purchasing a car.
It’s clear YouTube video and car shopping are closely connected: According to the same Google study, 97 percent of those who watched videos within six months before their vehicle purchase followed up with another shopping action. Forty percent browsed a dealership’s inventory and 46 percent actually visited a dealership. What’s more, automotive video ads on YouTube are the No. 1 format driving consumers to consider a new make or model. In addition, consumers reported that YouTube video increases favorability, consideration and purchase intent.
It has never been easier for dealerships to take advantage of the video trend in automotive shopping. YouTube video ads are low-risk. They run for five seconds before users have the option to skip, and advertisers only pay if a user watches 30 seconds or more, or clicks on the ad. Therefore, impressions are limited to high-value, interested consumers and advertisers get unlimited five-second impressions.
Based on our research, there are specific types of content auto shoppers are interested in during their research process. Not only are consumers viewing this content, but they are watching more and for longer amounts of time. According to Google’s study, 42 percent of interested automotive shoppers spent more than 30 minutes watching video, and, contrary to popular belief, 84 percent of shoppers watched a video that was longer than three minutes. With this in mind, dealers can be most successful using these types of video:
- Test drives
- Features and options
Once you make the decision to use video, the question remains, how can you take your video advertising to the next level? We recommend two targeting approaches:
- Customer Match Targeting: From a specific list of your customers, you can create ads that:
- Remind a shopper of the benefits of starting a new lease (for owners with expiring leases)
- Make viewers aware of other services (for new owners)
- Send a message about promotions or sales (for customers who recently test drove)
- Similar audience targeting: You can show your ads to users who have similar online behavior as those on your specific customer list. In Google’s world, this is called “lookalike” targeting.
Until recently, the problem facing many dealers was actually creating their video content. Fortunately, it is also now easier to make these videos with little investment in time or cost. You can create your own video using just a mobile phone and simple editing software. Google’s mobile app, YouTube Director for Business, provides a simple, step-by-step walkthrough for creating high quality video—no editing experience required. However, if you are short on time, L2TMedia offers video production services.
The best part? Once created, video can be used in more than one place. Not only can videos be used as original content on your YouTube channel or as a YouTube advertisement, they can be used in emails to leads, on social media or even your website—where video is proven to increase SEO.
The verdict is clear: Video is in its golden age, and dealerships stand to win the most by providing content that will both interest viewers and nudge them further down the path to purchase.