Community

Share your automotive expertise

2 Write a Blog Post

Another Vehicle Video Option for Dealers

By Bruce Etzcorn on Nov 26, 2010

Video, video, everywhere vehicle video.

Yes, this is another rant about how your dealership needs video of every vehicle on your website but it may not take the traditional spin. Stay with me, I've got a new idea for vehicle video that you may not have thought about.

As a car dealership you have a handful of vendors knocking at your door delivering vehicle video products complete with human voice overs, flashy graphics and a few other bells and whistles. These videos of your vehicles are sent to your website vendor (hopefully Dealer HD) daily where they automatically add these videos to the correct vehicle in your inventory. All of this is great but what if you don't need all the bells and whistles? What if you're looking to cut costs at your dealership? Either way, you still need vehicle video.

You've got amazing (free) video options.

Whether you're looking for cost-effective video production, an alternative method to create vehicle videos or looking to supplement existing vehicle videos on your dealership's website I've got a little secret for you... Animoto. Animoto's tag line is "the end of slideshows" and once you see a sample, you'll agree with them. Animoto takes the photos of your vehicle and produces amazing high-quality movies. I'm convinced that it doesn't matter what content you throw at Animoto, the end result will be a high-end video that you'll be proud to showcase on your dealership website. Check out a few samples at the Animoto showcase.

The process is extremely simple.

  1. Create a FREE account.
  2. Upload your vehicle photos.
  3. Choose your music.
  4. Title your video and give it a description.
  5. Render your video.

Animoto will start rendering your vehicle video and send you an email when it's ready. The process takes about 10 minutes or so depending on the amount of photos you used to create your masterpiece. Once completed your vehicle video will be available on the Animoto website where you can view, invite friends, share (on facebook, twitter and upload to youTube) or download a web quality version. The download link makes it all worth the price... wait, let's talk about that for a minute.

You pay for what you get.

For Personal use, Aminoto allows you to create an unlimited number 30 second videos for free. If you're looking for videos a bit longer than 30 seconds you'll want to opt for the $30 per year, All-Access Pass.

What you're dealership really needs to do is purchase the Pro package for $249.00 (per year). This gives you a business license and allows you to create an unlimited number of videos of any length for your dealer website. These vehicle videos can also be white-labeled, which strips the Animoto logo off of each video and replaces it with your dealership's logo. All of the packages include use of royalty-free music and the Professional package allows even more music to choose from. All of the pricing details can be found at Animoto pricing.

Is Animoto too good to be true?

To illustrate what a vehicle video may look like with Animoto I created a quick video from our EVOX stills for a BMW 650i Convertible. I chose one of Animoto's royalty free songs for the background but your dealership could upload a jingle instead. For an even more personalized touch, your dealership could produce a voice over track of the vehicle options and upload it. The platform is very flexible.

There is one obvious drawback to all of this. Someone at your dealership has to create each of these vehicle videos so don't go and cancel your contract with your vehicle video provider just yet. If you pride yourself in your dealership's DIY nature then go ahead and give Animoto a try but at this point I'd recommend it as a supplement to your existing vehicle video setup. The creation process is not all that bad. I have a great time creating videos. I use this often to put together photos that I take of personal events and everyone (and I mean everyone) loves the final product.

Comments

Bruce,

Great article. Do you know if the Pro account will allow you to bulk upload or even better have your inventory proider send photos?

Nov 29, 2010

The Pro account does allow bulk upload. Animoto has their Quick Start API ( http://dhd.fm/ectrGZ ) which allows applications (or your inventory provider) to easily send images, music and video clips to Animoto so you can make videos quickly. We're currently using this in our system and it really does speed up the process.

Nov 29, 2010

Bruce,
I am a pro member. I love Animoto, but how can i get the video from there to my vdp page?

February 17th

Shannon,

I wrote this post quite some time ago while I was developing at Dealer HD. We integrated Animoto using their API. Which allowed us to send vehicle photos to Animoto and allow you to craft your video. Once complete, we'd pull in the published Animoto video. It wasn't too complicated.

Today (at Dealer Inspire) we have a unique system for pulling in video content from YouTube that can be shown on all vehicles, certain makes, certain models, or the individual stock number! Just get the video to your YouTube channel. We'll handle the rest.

February 18th

Comments 1 - 4 of 4

You must be logged in to comment

Login Create an account

Add your comments:

   

Bruce Etzcorn's Recent Posts

Related Posts

  • Holiday Travel Marketing Guide

    The holiday travel season is in full swing, with an expected 90% of travelers opting for a road trip over air travel. What does this mean for your dealership? Now is the time to prep your customer’s vehicles for their holiday journeys. Here are three easy ways you can keep your dealership top-of-mind, build brand recognition, and drive additional service business to your store. Remind Customers of Maintenance This idea is probably a no brainer, but I want to make sure to state it. Deliver a communication to customers about needed maintenance on their vehicle before holiday travel. Think about offering a Holiday Road Trip Service Package, wherein your team would perform and check all vehicle elements to ensure they arrive at their destination safely and without hassle. Offer Assistance The holidays bring about a lot of busy work and things to keep straight, which means, your customers may forget some key elements when hitting the road this holiday. Remind them of the manufacturer’...Read post

  • 7 Lessons From My First Year Building an Automotive Startup

    Most articles like these start off with phrases like, "looking back, it's hard to believe..." or "there have been ups and downs, but we never lost sight of..." - I'm not going to start this article that way. Instead, I'll say this: "It's been pretty easy, so easy in fact that I'm actually a little worried that I did something wrong without knowing it." One year ago last week, I officially launched our website and started looking for people who wanted to go on an adventure. The official documentation, bank accounts, tax forms, and other such things wouldn't happen for a month, but on this date in 2013, we had a website and were ready to take on clients. There's something incredibly cool about hitting the one-year mark. We can now say that we've been around for "a little over a year", which I'm hoping will reduce skeptical coughs when prospects talk to us. We have a full year's worth of data to plug into reports. We can get a bigger line of credit. Otherwise, very little has actually...Read post

  • In the spirit of Thanksgiving a tip about being grateful.

    Here is the daily hiring and getting hired tip: In the spirit of Thanksgiving a tip about being grateful. Interviews are not only a time to gain critical information about a prospective employee, they are an opportunity to reach out to your community and gain clients for like. The key is showing the candidate that you are grateful for the time together.Read post

  • Will Speed & Efficiency Give AutoNation A Competitive Edge?

    The largest complaint that consumers have when considering a vehicle purchase is the fact that the process takes too long. Even with all the new technology processes that dealerships have employed over the past few years, the purchase process is still as long and cumbersome as it was twenty years ago.   AutoNation recently started to roll out a vehicle purchase program, transferring much of the buying process online. It promises consumers a 30-minute in-store automobile purchase transaction. It would seem that AutoNation listened to the auto buying public and may well transform how cars are purchased in the future. They certainly don’t have a shortage of locations available to consumers.   I’m sure the entire industry is watching to see whether they can accomplish this and if car shoppers will embrace it. If their program is successful, and consumers start to realize that they can buy a vehicle almost as swiftly as buying something on Amazon, AutoNation could hold a serious...Read post

  • LotLinx...Does It Measure Up To The Hype

    LotLinx has exploded in 2014 right when the progressive dealers started to migrate away from form submissions to VDP's to establish ROI. LotLinx deeplinks your new and used inventory to 3rd party partners and routes the VDP click thru to your VDP thus bypassing 3rd party VDP's and form submissions. Uncovered are concerns about Lotlinx reporting issues and inconsistent daily referral resulting in a unusual spike monthly. Can LotLinx resolve this and turn this good tool into a great tool as toutedRead post

  • 4 Tip and Tricks to Drive Engagement On Your Dealership Website

    We recently completed a usability study with REAL in-market car shoppers to determine how they engage with inventory on dealer websites while researching their next purchase. Participants in the study were recruited from the local Seattle area and consisted of people currently in-market for a new vehicle. The goal was simple— to find out directly from the mouths and mouses of real shoppers what makes car shoppers click when browsing your vehicle details pages (VDPs) and vehicle search results pages (VSRs).Read post

    By Cobalt on November 25, 2014

  • How To Maximize Your Dealership Black Friday Sales

    It's the holiday season, that means one thing, you only have a few weeks left to hit your year end sales quotas. While this turns into a very stressful time for many dealerships, it doesn't have to be this way; so put away your Grinch costume and use that shiny little device (smartphones) all you customers have to turn your inventory into perfectly wrapped presents that constantly keep driving off your lot. Everyone's Online According to PunchTab 90% of consumers plan to shop online this holiday season,and with consumers spending more than 15 hours per week researching on their smartphones capturing capturing your customers pre-purchase is essential to ultimately gaining their business.   You want to capture all these customers as they look for vehicles don't you?   Step 1: Simplify Their Search Shoppers make store visits after searching, and if they find all the information they are looking for they are 75% more likely to visit the store.   Take control of how your custom...Read post

  • Join social media groups to find your next great job

    Here is the daily hiring and getting hired tip: Get social to find your next dream job. In today's connected world many of the best positions are filled before they ever get advertised. Social media is not just a place to catch up with friends, business owners and managers are connecting with potential candidates. The best place to find these hidden opportunities are in groups on Facebook and LinkedIn. Join five or six groups specific to your industry and contribute. Comment when there is a topic you have an opinion on, or pose a question to the group. These groups are one of the first places management goes to hunt for fresh talent. Sometimes they will even post right in the group that they need a new employee and ask who knows someone. Most importantly start engaging in groups now. It can take time to be noticed as a contributor, and you want to build those connections before you need to use them to find an employer.Read post