This blog is part of our Back to Basics refresher on automotive marketing best practices in 6 key dealership digital marketing areas: search marketing, social media advertising, email marketing, targeted display advertising, video advertising and branded content advertising.  


Depending on your age, you already know video killed the radio star, but what’s it doing to TV?  

TV ad spend started trending flat in 2017 – and the forecast is for much of the same through 2021, with the exception of the presidential election and Summer Olympics. Compare that to the spend on digital video ads, with a predicted upward trajectory of:  

  • 13.9% in 2019  

  • 12.8% in 2020  

  • 12% in 2021 

But spending more doesn’t automatically translate into selling more. You need digital video advertising that drives action – from desktops, laptops, tablets and smartphones – through to your showroom. A proven way to get there, is by following these “killer” video ads best practices:  

  • Know your stuff  

  • Know what works 

  • Know how to make the most of your video 


Know Your Stuff: Tips, Types and To-Do’s 

Video ads, technology and viewing habits are constantly changing, which means you have incredible audience targeting opportunities that were never available before. But your dealership won’t benefit if you don’t know how to take advantage of these opportunities:  

  • Screens: create video ads for each target audience and screen (laptops, tablets, smartphones, etc.).  

  • High-def: design engaging high-def video specifically for digital ads. If necessary, you can repurpose TV ad content.  

  • CVR: track completed view rate (CVR) instead of just click through rate (CTR) so you know who viewed ads and didn’t click, but went to your website later. 

  • Seamless: make sure there’s no disconnect between your video ads and landing pages and/or website.  

  • In-Stream or Discovery: decide which Google TrueView video ad type works best for your dealership marketing. In-stream plays before or during another YouTube video. Discovery appears beside other YouTube videos, search pages or websites with your target audience.  


Know What Works: Screen Size and Ad Length 

When it comes to video advertising, one screen size doesn’t fit all. And neither does one ad length. The age of your target audience – and the content of your communication – matter.   

Screen size 

  • Video ads on smartphones can maximize reach with young consumers. 
  • Smartphones and tablets can equally impact millennials. 

  • Tablets can maximize impact across lower funnel metrics with consumers 35-54. 

Video ad length  

  • 10-second ads can maximize impact with millennials.  

  • 30-second ads can maximize impact with consumers 35-54 across lower funnel metrics. 

  • 30-second ads can be effective with all audiences when communicating new and/or complicated information.  


Know How to Make the Most of Your Video  

When you’re spending the time and money to create video ads, look for additional footage opportunities to use in developing content strategy and other dealership marketing projects. Video can improve search optimization on websites and increase engagement on social media – especially if you “boost” posts or set up Facebook ads.  

This type of holistic video strategy has the power to take customers from “I wonder if I should get a new vehicle” to “I want that one – where do I sign?” It grabs the attention of consumers, takes them from inspiration to consideration, and drives them to action.   

Need ideas for posts? Think videos that provide information customers need – what to consider when buying a new or used car, what services are most important and why, how your dealership takes care of customers, etc.  


Bringing It All Together  

Video advertising effectively informs, inspires and motivates viewers from one end of the sales funnel to the other. As for video ads best practices, they stretch across different screens, audiences, ad lengths, definitions, technologies and more. We’ve highlighted a few here, but it’s really just a jump-start.        


Contact us to learn more about video advertising options for your dealership.  

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