As read in the pages of Autotalk, the month of June was massive for new vehicle sales with 15,985 new vehicles sold according to the Motor Industry Association. As you would expect we saw this trend mirrored in the numbers of Leads, Test Drives and Sales captured to AutoPlay Sales Pipeline. The main reason for this is Fieldays – with over 14% more leads captured – generating almost 8% more Test Drives and Sales.
In June, the biggest influence on the number of leads captured was from our ‘Brand’ source. This is not unexpected as with each passing year brands/OEMs are taking more of an active hand in generating Fieldays activity for their dealership network. As the focus moved to Fieldays we saw ‘Web - Classified’ (Trade Me, Autotrader etc) drop to the second most prevalent source of leads but the actual volume remain static. ‘Web – Dealer’ (the dealerships website) was still in the top 3 lead sources but there were 27.9% less leads captured from this source than in May 2017.
‘Direct’ (up 0.2% from May 2017) and ‘Brand’ (up 17.6%) remain popular sources of Test Drives occupying the first and second spot respectively. Interestingly although the number of leads from ‘Web – Classified’ remained static, June saw a significant 30.3% increase in Test Drives from this source – potentially reflecting the large number of ‘Web – Classified’ leads that were captured previously in May.
The top 3 sources of Sales are typically ‘Direct’, ‘Brand’ and ‘Web – Classified’. June saw a change in this with Brand occupying the second spot – up 17.6% from May 2017. As with the number of leads, this is heavily influenced by the additional sales recorded by dealers during Fieldays. Sales from ‘Direct’ sources were up 7% and like Test Drives there was a jump of over 30% in Sales from the ‘Web – Classified’ source as the high volume of leads captured in previous months filtered through to sales.
Make sure to check back in next month’s issue of Autotalk to see how kiwi dealerships fared in August 2017. Will there be a slump after a really busy May and June, or will we continue to see strong performance across the board?
Matt Darby works for AutoPlay who specialise in pre-sale lead management tools. To find out more about AutoPlay services email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.autoplay.co.nz
Sending a Live Leads eDM is only part of the equation. If the recipients who engaged with the Live Leads eDM are not followed up with then you can never hope to get full value from your retargeting.
Picture this...It’s the end of the month and approx. 80% of your leads have not resulted in a sale. Being the smart, proactive dealership, you are you decide to send a Live Leads eDM to re-touch these customers. You extract a report with all your customers from this month and send them a Live Leads. It goes well with over 40% of your recipients watching a video. However, NO ONE ever follows up. Sound familiar?
There are a couple of big disadvantages with this approach. Firstly, by extracting a list of customers from your DMS, CRM or even from AutoPlay you run the risk of breaking the link back to the original lead. This means that in order to follow up Salespeople are forced to manually create follow up events.
The new Live Leads process was released last week in 17.2. You can read more about it here. If you have the new set up activated you are able to build your recipient list dynamically from the leads that you have previously captured. This means that you can be more accurate with who you are targeting - from the source of lead, make enquired on all the way to the current progress or outcome of the lead.
The other major advantage of building your recipient list from your leads is that it allows AutoPlay to easily create a calendar event to prompt sales people to follow up the recipients who engaged with the email. The dealerships that close additional leads from Live Leads eDM's are the ones that actively work those customers that watch videos in the Live Leads eDM. However we often see very little follow up going on as we were previously reliant on the individual salesperson manually loading a new lead or follow up.
The new process allows users to view all the recipients who opened the eDM and watched a video, and click a button to create follow up action.
This can also be done automatically! When sending a new Live Leads eDM you can choose to automatically create follow up when recipients engage with the email or videos therein. Each dealership can create a threshold of the number of video views required before automatically creating a calendar event for follow up - completely automating the process of scheduling follow up and greatly increasing the chances of sales people following up with their customers.
If you would like to get started on the new Live Leads product today please contact email@example.com and we'll get it set up. The new process costs nothing for customers already on the Sales Pipeline Package - so maximising your sales and minimising lost leads is easier than ever before.
At AutoPlay video is our business. We specialise in producing low cost, high volume videos that are stitched together from your property photos, and either music, professional voiceover or a personally recorded voiceover. Then there are other types of video such as Virtual Tours, Drone Footage and Customer Testimonials. But with so many different types of video available, what type of video is appropriate for you?
Choosing one type of video doesn't need to exclude the others. Buyers like to see a comprehensive online presence - whether it's your own online profile or the properties online presence. A good listing strategy will feature multiple videos - each serving a different purpose. These videos work to complement each other and give potential buyers a comprehensive picture of the property prior to any open homes.
Recently AutoPlay has been achieving great things by helping agents get their AutoPlay property videos on to Facebook, and boosting these posts to reach a wider audience. AutoPlay property videos are perfect for use on Facebook and are a great, cost effective way to put your property in front of a broad audience. Because of this, we've decided to introduce some new services for Facebook marketing - under the banner of Social Punch. Over the coming months you'll hear more about this exciting new brand and how Social Punch can be used to help market your vendors properties.
In 2017 it’s fairly likely we don’t need to sell you on the concept of video (if you do, check out this great post HERE). In short video helps you rank higher in search results, and increases the chances of converting to a call-to-action. But what you might not know is how using your video on Social media like facebook and Instagram can grow the exposure of your property videos exponentially. Not only will your video reach a greater audience, but in addition more people will engage with the video on social sites like facebook than by simply listing on your brand site or one of the main portal sites.
On the 16th of February we worked with Luke Crockford from Harcourts Ponsonby to post a link to one of our AutoPlay Property videos on YouTube on his facebook page – check it out here (https://www.facebook.com/LukeCrockfordRealEstate/). Within days the video had 50 more views than when just posted on a listing site just by linking to YouTube from facebook. Great when you consider it cost him nothing extra to post AND helped him further build his online profile.
However the real value came when he uploaded the video file AND boosted his post on facebook. For under $50 the video was viewed more than 3,016 times. The post reached 7,555 people who clocked in over 1,200 minutes watching the video. Additionally, 18 people clicked on the call-to-action link that was added to the post. Not bad for less than a round of beers at most bars these days!
It’s important to note that video doesn’t have to be expensive in order to be effective on Social Media – and in some cases it can actually have the opposite effect. Whilst in the early stages of concepting the Social Punch idea we set about measuring how effective AutoPlay videos were against professionally filmed and edited videos on social media.
Over the course of 4 weeks via our friends at Get Social Plus we posted a video on the agents facebook page that was watched over 2,300 times. Impressive in its own right but even better was that AutoPlay outperformed the much more expensive filmed video in all facets. In fact, 234% more people watched the AutoPlay video to its conclusion compared to the professionally filmed video.
In addition, the post itself reached 15% more people than the professionally filmed video, and 35% more people clicked on the post. Impressive figures and well worth the time spent.
With AutoPlay property videos taking less time to schedule, create and upload this means your video can be up on facebook quickly. Furthermore with the integration AutoPlay have with major property systems, our streamlined professional recording service and low cost make AutoPlay the perfect choice for social marketing.
The majority of home buyers start their search for their next property online. Whilst in the past this might have just meant searching brand sites or listing sites like Trade Me or RealEstate.com.au, increasingly savvy buyers are turning to social media like Facebook.
Good Real Estate Agents are now cottoning on to the power of social media and many are doing a fantastic job. However social media can be done, or it can be done well. Check out 10 mistakes that real estate agents make on social media.
1. Being a bit of a knob
With social media you have to take the good with the bad. The worst thing any business can do is try to sanitise their social media by deleting anything slightly negative. In these scenario's it's more important how you respond to any issues - you need to be transparent and honest in how you resolve any dispute. By all means move the convo offline as soon as possible - don't get involved in a flame war in full view of all your potential customers. It's also important that you are friendly and polite to everyone - even if you disagree with their opinion. In short don't be a dick!
2. Not touching their Social Media accounts
Many businesses feel a pressure to be on Social Media to build their profile, but many don’t really “get” it. These agents invariably stand out – they are the ones with 1 post 2 years ago. If you are going to have social media then use it. Build for yourself a process that involves certain pre-sale and post-sale activities that are non-negotiables – and then give yourself 30 minutes over a coffee to actually complete these tasks.
3. Not utilising paid ads or posts
You can get a lot out of social media without spending a single cent. However, it’s well proven that you can reach a much broader audience with your posts if you boost them or even advertise on Facebook or Instagram. You can read more about that here - http://www.theplaybook.co.nz/playbook/why-use-video-on-social-media
4. Wasting time with a scattergun approach
Failing to plan, is planning to fail. Cliché yes, but no less true for it. Not all of us are creative geniuses that can churn out engaging, relevant and effective posts at the drop of a hat. If you don’t book in a time each week to tend to social media it will invariably be skipped in favour of other “more important” tasks. Similarly, if you wait until you are ready to post to write your posts you will often end up with something of lesser quality than if you had planned ahead.
5. Not getting the right tone
Although social media is by definition “social” many people forget that it’s still separated by a screen, and tone can easily be lost. Too little personality and you might come across as uncharismatic – and no one wants that in a sales person. Too much personality and you can come off as a little crazy, or arrogant and boastful.
6. Inappropriate content
Agents are people too. However, you need to be careful to separate your personal account from your business account (or make sure you censor yourself on your personal account if you or your friends are prone to “colourful” comments. Dodgy content must be avoided. It goes without saying that anything racist, homophobic, sexist or any other “ist” crosses a line. However, you should also ask yourself if you are posting a lengthy diatribe on the merits of Crotty over Sonny Bill Williams whether this is the right thing for your professional social media.
7. Too many posts, at the wrong time
The principle of “spamming” doesn’t just apply to email marketing. Just like we will opt out from a company sending us sales emails every day, we will unfollow someone who spams us with posts. A couple of posts a week is probably perfect for an agent (depending on your market size). The timing of social media can be as important as the message. The stats say that 1pm to 4pm is a great window to post on Facebook but you should probably avoid posting 20 beers deep at 2am in the morning.
8. Copying other people’s posts
Social media users crave original content. Sure, we all love to share interesting articles, funny photos or cat photos. However, we also get a bit annoyed when we see the same content recycled through every business or page we follow. At the very list put your own spin on someone else's content, but even better is to create your own. As an Real Estate Agent you have an advantage over a lot of social media businesses as your content is almost self-generating every time you list and sell a property.
9. Boring text posts
Social media is a visual medium. Short, sharp content is more easily digestible than a 20 page white paper on sales trends when viewed on social media. Images and videos play a big part in drawing the eye to read social media posts. Use photos of your property, photos of happy buyers, video tours, drone footage, stitched videos, auction footage. All of this helps make your social media presence exciting and engaging.
10. Not automating your posts
If you post across a number of social media platforms some automation software like Hootsuite, Buffer etc can really help make this process easy. However even if you are just starting out you can schedule posts on facebook yourself. Knowing you can create all your posts in one small window, but stagger them out across the week is much easier than finding time a couple of times each week to post each time manually.
We are smack bang in the middle of winter and it’s bloody cold! The last time people want to think about buying a house, right? In particular June and July are quiet times for the industry. When the temperature cools so does the market – just pick up any newspaper recently and you’ll see a range of opinions on the impact of winter on property demand and the trusted advice of “sell in spring”.
However, there is also the thought that with less supply of houses in winter that house sellers that do opt to list in winter will face less competition. The advice will be “make sure the house has natural light”, “make sure it’s warm and dry”, “make sure the house, paths and deck are clean on the outside” and “make the entrance welcoming and cosy”. All good advice for open homes, but there are a tonne of articles about selling and open homes in winter, and this is not one of those.
How do you overcome the fact that houses invariably look worse in winter? That crisp green lawn can become a sodden, boggy mud pit. Winter is where video can really come into its own. Whilst you can control the presentation of your property you can’t control the weather – and chances are 50/50 that you’ll catch some rain during your open homes. What you can control is your sales material.
If you can’t rely on the weather then you have no guarantee that your potential buyers will ever see the property in the best light. That’s why it’s extra important that your photographs and videos showcase the property in ideal light and weather conditions. Whilst the numbers matter to a lot of buyers, there’s no arguing that buying a house still has a real emotional component that can help buyers fall in love with your property. The right light, smell and atmosphere and other less tangible things can really affect the buyer’s perceptions of a property.
When selling in winter it becomes even more important that you pick a day to photograph and film your property that is bright and dry. The same applies for drone footage – you pay good money to have drones film your property so make sure the roof and gutters are clean from leaves and debris, the property section is clean and tidy, and hard surfaces like concrete and decks have been washed down.
There’s no denying that video is playing an increasing part in the sales process. In the US it’s said that 73% of sellers would choose a real estate agent who markets with video and 70% of customers want a video tour of the property before even stepping foot in it (Virtulets,com). If customers are viewing your property videos before coming to open homes a bright, sunny video will showcase the property and showcase the property to its full potential. Even if the gods fail you and your open home day is then a torrential downpour, the potential buyers will at least have been able to view the property showcased in its best light.
AutoPlay build property videos quickly and easily from static photos and a personalised or professional voiceover. AutoPlay videos can be built quickly – generally within an hour of completing the audio. This helps agents get their property to market quickly – even when the weather isn’t co-operating.
AutoPlay Sales Pipeline is a pre-sales lead management tool designed for dealerships, dealer groups and automakers