When’s the last time you went directly to YouTube and searched for “How to…”, to either fix or repair as a do-it-yourself project or to figure out your new cell phone? For me it’s daily, or at least weekly that I use YouTube to learn something. It should be no surprise that your clients and prospective customers are all doing the exact same thing. Searching for another person’s reviews, rants, or product demos to determine if the product is what it’s marketed to be and if it will meet their own needs. So why shouldn’t they discover your business, your reviews, and your own service offerings in support of your products? 

Traditionally most all searches originated on a search engine such as Google. Nowadays, a strong percentage of users also start their search right on YouTube. The good news here is even if one uses Google search over YouTube, Google will do you a solid and present to you (with priority) relevant info on YouTube. And since Google owns YouTube there’s a digital marketing synergy we as digital marketers get to enjoy when we properly optimize our content for search-ability. 

Product marketing videos have been around since the early days of the television. With video we can more readily articulate even demonstrate a product’s features and intended benefits with as much or as little detail as time permits. You’ve seen them, a quick overview hitting the highlights with a call to action to learn more lasting as little as 45 to 60 seconds. And you’ve seen others with a steady pace lasting 3 to 4 minutes with added detail about something newly released or enhanced. The longer the video the more difficult to retrain the viewer’s attention; however, some videos are lengthy due to the size of the product, e.g., a 65′ Yacht, or because the video is intended to educate and necessitates such detail to stimulate viewers to self-identify. 

In the marine industry and for boat dealers, brokers, and manufacturers, video has become a near necessity. Yet still today only a percentage invest the appropriate amount of time and resources to make it effective. Having been entrusted with this responsibility I know firsthand the two most common reasons in-house digital marketing falls to the wayside. The task/responsibility is (1) typically assigned as an additional duty per se’. When it’s not someone’s primary responsibility it never becomes a priority. At least until there’s a lull. Which leads to reason number (2) the seasonality of the boat buying cycle. When the season hits and the phones are ringing, and there’s people on the lot, and deliveries are stacked up it’s all hands-on deck to maximize each customer’s experience. What’s forgotten is the marketing that helped get you busy for the season must continue so you can stay busy (and relevant) during the offseason. 

Granted not all companies can afford a dedicated marketing position. Yet to scale your organization, how do you move forward? By working smarter, not harder. There’s only so much time in each day. So, the reality is longer workdays (or nights) are not feasible. Your best alternative is to outsource your marketing department or at least the part(s) of it that are either your weak suit or that require the most time. As it relates to producing search optimized product marketing videos, hire a professional to come shoot, produce, and upload videos to YouTube. And if you or someone on your sales team is managing and posting to your Facebook and Instagram accounts, keep that in house. Reason being, getting videos online takes the most time and effort for these three channels. And not ironic, the most important channel to be active on is YouTube. How so you ask? Search Results. As noted in the beginning of this article, when someone is searching on Google, Google will serve video content from YouTube well before anything you’ve posted on Facebook and Instagram. 

A FREEBIE for The Do-It-Yourselfer. Optimization is critical to getting views. There are some very nicely produced videos out there and they aren’t getting the activity they demand. The reason is rooted in the optimization. From the title to the description, you must use relevant key-word rich content that supports what your video is about and who it’s for. Anything short of that will get you meager results. A poorly produced video with perfect optimization will get more views all day long. 

If you’re looking to generate leads interlace videos into a sales funnel and you’ll have a virtual salesperson presenting your boats 24/7 also collecting valuable contact information from the viewer. And if they only provide an email, at least you have a warm lead that becomes part of your digital marketing strategy that can be nurtured into a sell with the right offer and a tactful email campaign. While sales funnels are more technical to setup, they’re great for generating higher quality leads and are the perfect tool for high ticket boats and high-volume dealerships. 

From my firsthand experiences, posting video boat walk-arounds online drives traffic, creates brand awareness, and generates leads and sells. To get the early consideration of today’s tech-heavy, need-it-now consumers who research and shop online before coming to your lot to (basically) confirm their buying decision, you must be persistent at producing consumable and discoverable content. A local dealer’s biggest competitor used to be the guy down the street; now it’s the guy who’s embraced digital marketing. 

If you’re new to online marketing or just getting started with product marketing video and don’t know where to start, feel free to contact me. Whether your needs are training and consulting or full-blown, complete, done-for-you video productions where you simply show us the boat and we’ll do the rest, our goal is to make it easier and make you more successful with digital marketing.

The following mix of services and strategies are the highest converting digital tools being leveraged by leading dealers, brokers, and manufacturers.

To learn more about leveraging one or more of these tools at your company, click here to Schedule a 15-minute Discovery Call. It all starts with a no-obligation conversation.

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