YouTube recently invested over $100 million dollars in some of their top-performing channels. They only invested in a few of their top 100 channels, and some channels got left out in the cold. However, it is possible to make money and reach a new customer base on YouTube without Google’s financial backing. Thanks to AdSense and the YouTube partner program, anyone with a little bit of talent and a lot of drive to succeed can make money just by uploading quality content to their own YouTube channel. But that’s not the only benefit of broadcasting on YouTube. For auto dealers, the marketing possibilities are endless, and many dealers have found that this is a cheaper, more effective way of reaching potential customers than the traditional advertising methods of print and television. You can reach a huge customer base via YouTube that is virtually untapped. And all it takes is a camera, some editing software and a few minutes of your time on a regular basis.
YouTube started out as a quick and easy way to upload simple, homespun videos to share with family and friends. Then beauty vloggers, comedians, musicians and movie producers later took YouTube to the next level and turned YouTube broadcasting into big business. With Google’s buy-out of YouTube and the funding they’ve poured into the Internet video giant, YouTube is poised to eclipse major cable outlets and take over the broadcasting world. Movies, television shows, music videos and other streaming media are all available at your fingertips whenever you want it. With the ever-increasing popularity of streaming media comes more advertising opportunities. While television and print advertising campaigns are expensive and it’s difficult to reach your target audience, YouTube has solved that problem. Advertising is free and your reach is greater.
Many prospective buyers avoid dealerships because they are intimidated by salespeople. Many of these buyers lead active lives and don’t have time for conventional television viewing and get their news online as opposed to printed newspapers. They use a DVR or other recording device to watch their favorite shows, which allows them to skip through commercials and advertising. As a result, they miss advertisements from local businesses, including your dealership. This means that your advertising dollars are being wasted. This younger generation has learned to use the Internet to access the information they want whenever they want it. YouTube videos allow them to see a product from all angles while they learn about the benefits and why they should buy it. An interesting video will get them to come visit you, but stale content will drive them away. YouTube videos also come up in the Google search indexes, so if you keyword your descriptions properly, your videos will be on the first page of Google search results and reach your target audience faster.
So, how do you tap into this market? If you don’t have a quality video camera, now’s the time to invest in one. You don’t need to spend thousands on a state-of-the-art filming studio with lights and multiple cameras. Just a decent hand-held camera will get you going. And don’t forget the editing software – many YouTube success stories use Sony Vegas. It’s easy to use and is great for beginners. You’ll obviously need a computer, but if you are reading this, you probably already have one. Pretty simple, right?
After you get your equipment, you need to set up a YouTube presence. This is also really simple. Just open a YouTube account and follow the prompts – the site will walk you through the process. Then you are ready to upload videos. You won’t earn money from YouTube on your videos at first – your first goal is to attract traffic and get prospective buyers in your doors through the use of your channel. Once your channel proves that it can attract traffic, YouTube will invite you to partner with them and you’ll be able to earn AdSense revenue. Right now we are just focusing on advertising and moving cars off your lot.
Now that you’ve got the necessary equipment, you may be at a loss as to what to film and upload. The first video that any YouTube channel should have is a welcome video to serve as an orientation for prospective buyers. Get some good video clips of your lot and some of the vehicles you have available. Shots of the inside of your dealership are great to show the buyers what to expect when they visit. Some interviews with the staff and members of the sales team can put buyers at ease and get them in the doors. You might also include clips of satisfied buyers of all ages and income levels.
Now that you’ve got your orientation video up, you need to keep adding fresh content on a regular basis. If prospective buyers visit your channel and see that you haven’t uploaded a video in months and the last content on your channel features cars from last model year, they’ll move on. It is recommended that you upload a new video to your channel at least once a week. Showcase new models or new inventory that you’ve acquired. Feature current pricing specials, interest rate cuts or rebates. Special events and dealership news are big hits, especially around the holidays. Keep your content fresh and interesting.
Your descriptions for your videos are as important as the videos themselves. Make sure you include keywords that might be used by individuals that are searching Google. This allows you to pop up first in search results. Include your dealership name and location, car makes and models, and any other pertinent information that will bring in traffic. There are many tutorials on keywording and SEO (Search Engine Optimization) on the Internet to help you if you are unfamiliar with this.
YouTube allows you to tap into an unreached market. Just keep it simple and don’t be intimidated. Remember that everyone can use YouTube – even preteens and the most computer-unsavvy individuals are filming and uploading videos every day. It’s simple and everyone can use it. It also costs you nothing to establish a YouTube presence, and you’ll reach potential customers that may never have found you.