Waiting for the coronavirus to end won’t stop it. Eventually in time it will pass, but we can’t predict when. When that day comes, will your business be positioned better than before? What about your competitors? Will they be standing still during this time or will they be figuring out a way to take advantage of it? You can view this time as a road block, or it can be seen as a tremendous opportunity to make headway on items that need some attention. Doing so will put your dealership in a great position come the middle of 2020.

Remember: it definitely is better to lead, rather than fall behind. Taking advantage of this time is critical. The clock is ticking.

Luckily, we’re here to help. This blog post has very specific actions you can take now to be better positioned after the coronavirus threat subsides.

Post Coronavirus Dealership Recovery – Content is Still King

There are things you can do during this time to set your dealership up for success when the cloud of the coronavirus passes. The centerpiece of our recommendation is content development. Relevant and helpful content serves many great purposes. But, the big challenge for dealerships is two-fold: (1) What content and (2) Who will assemble the content? We’ll tackle the former and believe the items we identify are achievable by those of you leading your dealership today.

Content Is King Crown Paper ConceptIt takes a little mental adjustment to think about what content is valuable for those visiting your dealership website, but it’s completely doable. What do shoppers want to know, other than price and product information? That’s where we need to concentrate. When it comes to content development, If you can focus less on product specifications and details and more upon shopper curiosity you’ll be much better off.

There’s been a popular expression in digital marketing for years that “content is king” and this isn’t going to change anytime soon. The reason why can mostly be traced back to Google and the value they place on content in the search results they deliver, but it also applies to website visitors. Visitors stay longer if they find relevant and as there’s a preference for relevant and engaging content.

Evergreen Content

There’s a term utilized in marketing called “evergreen content.” It means that a piece of content can last for a long time and still remain relevant. Now is a good time to build a pool of evergreen content that can be slowly scheduled and released over time. Think about topical items rather than transitory ones (for example: this blog you’re reading about the coronavirus will eventually become dated). You can discuss how to shop for an RV or what to look for rather than about a specific unit. The car industry has talked about safety and feature improvements in web content for years, yet you don’t see many posts like this in the RV industry. Your business can set the trend! Building evergreen content requires thinking about the broader needs of shoppers.

Ready, Get Set… Wait a second

marketingBefore we get started, it’s a good idea to know the difference between various types of content and when to use each. I put together an article on what marketing content goes where on your website if you need some direction on this topic.

Ok – Now We Can Begin

Here’s a list of high-value category items we’ve identified along with some guidance.

  • Jump into video using a smartphone
    • It is incredibly easy to get intimidated by video. These days though, most people have a high-quality video camera in their pocket by way of their smart phone. While some smart phone videos are better than others, the good news is that it’s really easy to learn a few things to make your videos thousands of times better. Three quick pieces of advice:
      1. Slow and steady – don’t move the camera rapidly all over the place. You can use an inexpensive gimble (small device to keep your phone steady) for a smartphone.
      2. Shoot horizontally, not vertically (unless you are creating content for Instagram stories or TikTok).
      3. “Point of Focus” is really important. In short, just get a good image. If you are too close back away. This is a typical problem when making a selfie video (our arms aren’t long enough). Try having someone else film you, or invest in an affordable ring light with a phone holder you can purchase online. If you are recording video of something or someone else, just make sure you stand back and get a nice picture where the object of focus isn’t consuming the entire frame.
    • There’s no better time to start with video than now. If you can make a decent video, you put your dealership head and shoulders above your competitors. With a little planning about what you are going to say and show, your results will be better and require less editing. With each video you create, you will get better.
    • If you need a great little video editor use Filmora (available for both Mac and PC).
  • Website content
    • The best thing you can do for your website is to differentiate your content from your competitors’ content. It’s extremely likely you have a couple of interesting stories about the history of your dealership, growth, focus, philosophy, etc. These topics go far beyond just selling your products! There has to be at least one story there. Think about being interviewed or having to give a talk about your dealership. The focus should be on telling interesting stories, not products.
    • Make it easy for your potential customers to find. If your content is embedded into your website with no promotion, links, buttons, navigation, etc. then it’s unlikely anyone will find or know about the great stuff you created. Instead of being disappointed that no one notices it – promote it. Promotion must be a part of the game plan.
  • Blog content
    • Make a list of blog content ideas then start creating an outline for your top topics. If you’re wondering if it really matters whether or not blogging should be important to your dealership, check out our blog on 7 reasons why your dealership should blog.
    • Centralize on content that answers your potential customer’s questions and enhances their experience.
  • Social media posts
    • Build a list of ideas focusing on helpful shopping information and interesting stories rather than products and features (unless there’s an interesting innovation developed).
    • If you do not have a blog, you can use your social as a type of blog. If you do have a blog, then use social to reference and promote your blog posts as well as any new website content you add.
  • Take pictures of your inventory
    • Having a variety of quality pictures is especially needed for used units but it doesn’t stop there. More pictures allow shoppers to truly shop online. This makes them even more confident about making a purchase when they do finally head to your dealership.
  • Product descriptions
    • Adding unique product descriptions to inventory is a lot of work. However, the benefits come in the form of improved SEO (search engine optimization). If you want your inventory to be found by search engines, you cannot skip this step. Now is a good time to build these out. Make the descriptions personal about what you like about that particular make and model.
      • Want a big tip/bonus? Utilize local search words in your description. For example: “Here in , <city>, <state> this <year> <make> <model> you’ll find …” (replace the brackets with what applies to your business). Using a description constructed like this will increase your local SEO ranking for that make/model associated with your dealership.
  • Improve processes
    • This means thinking through what you currently do, can do, and are willing to do. It’s a great time for building checklists and refining.
    • A good example is what we do for blogging. We build a list with ideas that are always being prioritized, added to and worked on. We have a schedule, so items are selected, an outline constructed, and writing is done. Editing takes place followed by posting. This is our process. We know who does each part and the timetables for distribution.
  • Build a digital shopping program
    • Think about all the ways you can reduce physical engagement or make things as convenient as possible for your prospects. This helps them to know you care about them and their needs and makes them more likely to trust you.

For content inspiration, read the blog at RVUSA.com. You’ll find content on an array of topics that are of interest to RV shoppers so you can start getting some ideas on what content you can create for your dealership.

By doing a little each day you will make tremendous headway. Another perk: there is diversity in the action items above, so they won’t get boring. As always, if you need help or guidance reach out to us! We can help you customize your blog and social media content. Drop a line to [email protected] to get started. The time is now – let’s take advantage of it.

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