Instagram Live Video Feature, Snapchat Groups, & More!
News for the Week of December 19
Instagram Releases Live Video for All U.S. Users
Instagram just announced they will be releasing a new Live Video feature to all U.S. users within the next few days. This new feature will allow users to go live instantly through the Stories section on their Instagram profiles. By swiping right while in the Stories camera mode, users can tap the Live button to instantly stream video onto their Stories. Once the video is done being recorded, it will disappear. Also, at the top of the Explore tab, there will be a Top Live section directing users to the top recommended and best ongoing footage on Instagram. Dealerships, keep in mind the power of live video. Show your followers what’s going on at your dealership and add some creativity along the way. If you have customers who are willing to give testimonials or chat about their dealership experiences, be sure to capture their enthusiasm with live video.
Snapchat Adds Group Feature and Two New Creative Tools
Snapchat recently added Snapchat Groups, a new way to communicate with up to 16 friends at once. When sending a Snap, users can create a Group by selecting friends from their contact list. It’s easy to switch between Group Chats and one-on-one Chats. Everyone in a Group Chat is listed at the bottom of the Chat, so to switch to one-on-one Chat, users can simply tap a name to start a conversation; a simple swipe returns users to the Group. Messages disappear by default after 24 hours and can be replayed only once by each member of the Group. In addition to the Groups feature, Snapchat has added a couple of creative tools: Scissors and Paintbrush. Scissors allows users to create stickers by cutting out part of their Snaps while viewing them on the Preview Screen. Paintbrush can be used on Snaps in Memories, allowing users to paint them like a canvas. Dealerships, get fun group conversations going with your followers and deliver personalized messages via Snapchat Groups. You’ll make your customers feel appreciated when you take time out to interact with them—and don’t be afraid to take advantage of Snapchat’s fun, new features to add a little pizzazz to your Snaps! While many of your social posts are full of serious content, when you take time out to have a little fun, you’ll humanize your brand and make yourself approachable.
Twitter Offers Live Video for iOS and Android Apps
Starting this week, Twitter users will be able to create and Tweet live video within the Twitter app. This new capability, powered by Periscope, will be available when users are creating a Tweet with a quick tap of the new LIVE icon. To broadcast, users begin by composing a Tweet, then tapping LIVE, which will take them to a pre-broadcast screen. At that point, they can frame their shot and press Go Live when ready. Viewers can send hearts to show support for broadcasts simply by tapping the screen of a video that’s playing. Twitter live video is rolling out for both iOS and Android users in the next few days. Dealerships, 82% of Twitter users say they watch live video on this platform! That means this is a huge opportunity for you to reach an audience that gravitates toward live content and in-the-moment updates. Find your niche and discover what resonates with your followers—and then start sharing. You’ll gain traction for your content and boost brand recognition by posting in a format online users enjoy.
Facebook Adding Live 360
Facebook recently announced the addition of a new live video feature, Live 360. Aligning with the original intent of live video—to immerse viewers in the action that’s happening in the moment—Live 360 goes several steps further. It fully immerses the viewer in the environment of the video creator with a complete 360-degree view of their world as it is happening. The launch of Live 360 happened from the Mars Desert Research Station in Utah with a report from National Geographic. It will be available on a broader scale for all Pages and profiles in 2017. Dealerships, it’s time to get comfortable on camera. Facebook generates an average of 8 BILLION video views per day—and you don’t want to miss out on that. By now, you should be sensing a trend: Live video is where it’s at! Online audiences are consuming live video at unbelievable rates, and if you want your dealership to get noticed, it’s time to share what’s going on via video.
Instagram Claims 600 Million Monthly Users
Instagram just hit a whopping 600 million monthly users, with the last 100 million users joining just within the past 6 months. While plenty has changed with the app over the past year, Instagram has worked to keep the overall experience, community, and expression consistent from the beginning. With its recent safety updates that allow for more control over comments, as well as user-experience updates, Instagram continues to look for ways to make the app ideal for users who are looking for connectivity and self-expression. Dealerships, over 60% of Instagram users log in daily, so once you get an established audience, you can bet most of them will see what you share. Today’s consumers are highly visual, and they want brands to reach out to them. They want to feel valued, and when you make a point of sharing with them and interacting in meaningful ways, you’ll earn their loyalty and their business.
Tip of the Week – Earn Trust by Anticipating Shopper Needs
It’s important to have the right tools and information to make big purchasing decisions. Your customers want to feel secure in their decisions, and you can help them by ensuring they have everything they need, without ever having to ask, wait for information, or wonder where to find what they need. One of the best things your sales team can do to earn trust is anticipate shopper needs and provide for them—seamlessly—leaving shoppers feeling informed, educated, and empowered. Here are a few easy things you can do:
- Make your social sites easy to find. A majority of your customers will do research on social media before they visit your dealership. In addition to ensuring your dealership is easy to find on social, be sure there are clear, easy-to-find links back to your dealership page—and be sure shoppers can easily locate your business hours, inventory, and contact information.
- Share your knowledge. Whether it’s original content or great information you’ve found from another source, be generous and share with others. Be sure to cite and give credit to original sources, but then go ahead and dole out the great tidbits and helpful updates you find on your favorite sites. When you share your own insights—as well as those of other industry leaders—consumers will see you as knowledgeable and confident.
- Be responsive. When you are available to answer questions and respond to concerns in a timely manner, it’s noticeable. Whether it’s online or in the dealership, no one wants to be left waiting and wondering when someone will respond. Make a plan to ensure you offer exceptional online customer service and be sure your in-house team is trained to be attentive to every customer who walks through the door.
- Personalize the experience. Your customers want to know they are important to you. When you take the time to leverage the data that you already have at your fingertips, you can let shoppers know you’re in tune with what they need, what they’ve previously purchased from you, and what they may be currently shopping for. By taking the time to discover individual customer wants and needs, you’ll earn more trust and make more sales.
- Go the distance. Be sure you team is ready to go the extra mile for customers by educating them about the various makes and models, as well as add-ons and features that can be major selling points. To do this, ensure your staff works to continuously update their own knowledge as vehicles are updated.
Sell today; earn customers for life. By implementing a few simple steps throughout the sales process, your team can educate and empower customers—leading to more trust in your dealership and, in turn, increased sales. You can turn today’s shoppers into life-long customers simply by taking the time to ensure they feel valued and informed enough to make the best decisions throughout the car-buying process. A responsive team that goes above and beyond for every customer can make all the difference!
Author: Joey Little
Joey Little serves as Director of Digital and Social Engagement for AutoAlert. An expert in customer experience management, he educates automotive professionals at speaking engagements across the country. With results-driven advice and proven industry knowledge, he assists dealerships in reaching their audiences and increasing business via their social platforms.