Basic text email absolutely stinks for many of the applications we typically use it for in the automotive industry. There, I said it! Do I have your attention now?
There’s a reason I’m saying this and I think you’ll agree after hearing me out. The fact of the matter is, text communication causes fights. When is the last time you sent your wife, girlfriend, husband, or boyfriend a text message that was completely taken out of context? For me it’s daily, sometimes, even twice.
Typical text email does the same thing. When you study the way that we as humans communicate, there are three basic areas of communication: Text, which is written word and coincidentally what most e-mails are comprised of; tone and voice inflection, which is what you get when you kick it up to a phone call; and finally there are visual cues, which are our facial expressions and body language. Of all the ways we communicate, text is the most inefficient.
When we communicate via text we’re communicating with 7% efficiency in the way we as humans absorb information. Tone and voice inflection represent 38% communication efficiency, and visual cues and body language represent 55%. So while we think we’ve evolved, we’ve actually regressed dramatically in how we communicate.
Before every house had a computer and every third-grader had an iPhone, people would have to come in to dealerships to gather information. I don’t know about you, but I would much rather deal with somebody face-to-face than over the telephone or Internet. At that point we were actually communicating with people at 93% communication efficiency level (55% + 38%). Then at some point many years ago, telephone technology took over and evolved in such a way that customers started thinking, “We don’t need to go into the dealership, we’ll just call them.”
At this point in time our communication efficiency dropped from 93% to 38%. Then, one day we got really advanced and decided that 38% was too efficient and we started communicating through email. Which left many of you where you’re at today, a whopping 7% communication efficiency level.
Yeah, we’ve definitely come a long way in how we communicate, ALL in the wrong direction! So what’s the answer? How do we reverse the trend? You start using video email!
Don’t think about it, don’t wait to see what happens in five years, do it now! With technology today, it’s so easy to send video utilizing a technology like CoVideo, various cell phone or tablet applications, and whatever other hot device is being churned out today.
When a customer today sends an Internet inquiry to a dealership, here’s what they typically get:
“Dear sir or ma’am, thank you very much for your interest in the new Audi S-4. Your inquiry has been received. We are Northeastern West Virginia’s Audi leader and we look forward to earning your business. A representative will be contacting you between one and forty-eight hours from now. Sincerely, E-commerce Manager.”
I don’t know about you, but that does not speak to me on a personal level. Now, instead of what you just read, imagine that same customer getting a video from you personally, as well as the dealership you are representing. I’m just going to write out what I would say since this is an article, but you’ll get the point:
“Hello Dan! My name is Alan Ram and I’m the Internet Director here at ABC Nissan. First, I wanted to say thank you very much for your interest in the new Altima and for allowing me to assist you. There are a couple of variations in the Altima I would like to discuss with you and I have found that one quick phone call can replace seven or eight emails back and forth. I’ll be giving you a call within the next hour or you can contact me directly at 480-555-0100. I’ll look forward to talking to you shortly and thanks again!”
How much more impactful is that? You think you don’t have the time? Then you don’t have the time to sell cars! It takes about three minutes to film and send out a video e-mail. The difference in conversion rates between text email and video email is vast. Get five years ahead of the real world and at least ten years ahead of the automotive industry by embracing video email. Instead of the boring text e-mail responses that your dealership is currently sending out to customers, why not meet customers on a level that makes them feel more comfortable to do business with you.
Video email capabilities don’t just stop there; you can use it for appointment confirmation, getting service work approved, and hundreds of other applications. The possibilities are endless! So instead of letting your boring basic text emails cause fights, revolutionize your communication efficiency level by embracing the power of video e-mail!
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