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How to Perfect Your Upcoming Dealership Video Shoot

Updated: Mar 21

Good preparation leads to good results. That’s especially true when it comes to coordinating production shoots at your dealership.

Being informed and ready for shoot day is the most important element of any on-location dealership production. Your marketing agency should be informing you of the content that will be needed early in the development of their advertising plan. This includes being provided, in advance, with a detailed shot list and schedule of the day’s shoot. Potential production dates should be available to you and allow you to choose your ideal times. Communication with your agency / production team will help during the pre-shoot preparations, help ensure a smooth shoot day, and ultimately result in the best possible video spot.

If your agency / production team is physically able to scout the location ahead of time, make sure they do so. Be sure they take note of potential background issues, signage, and lot / showroom arrangement. Given some lead time, this is when your agency / production team would work with a dealership to have automobiles shuffled to highlight desired models and / or colors, whether it’s inside or outside. Signage can be removed or updated to reflect the desired presentation. Perhaps customer parking can be arranged around the corner for a few hours while exteriors are filmed. It’s all in the details! If your agency / production team is unable to scout the location, consider having someone at your dealership take pictures of the lot, building, showroom, etc., and report back in detail.

Little things like having vehicles wiped down and workspaces clean and organized can turn a shot from a one-use quickie into a solid shot used multiple times for months; even years to come. With the proliferation of online and mobile content there is an increased need for solid footage.  Every shot should be looked at as a chance to grow your footage archive.

Tips to Ensure Your Dealership’s Video Shoot Day Goes Smoothly

  1. Be prepared with an agreed-upon roll time, giving yourself plenty of time to coordinate any preparation needed at the dealership beforehand with your agency / production team.

  2. Ensure that your agency / production team has a clear decision-maker on the creative project; working with a dealership decision-maker.  This will help minimize the always-problematic “too many cooks in the kitchen” issue, and will make for a more-successful shoot.

  3. Your agency / production team should be including you in the process, if that is something you’re interested in. Ask in advance if they can bring a high-quality, decent-sized field monitor so key people can be involved and observe.

  4. Make sure your agency / production team has a prioritized shot list, indicating which shots are must-haves and which are nice-to-haves. Your dealership’s shoot schedule should allow for all of the must-haves to be shot first.

  5. Check in with your agency / production team to find out who oversees keeping track of time. This person can keep an eye on the clock and make sure steady progress is being made.

  6. All parties involved should be informed that there will be segments of down-time between shots.  It’s common for people who don’t work in the production industry to expect constant action once the cameras start rolling. Good communication will help everyone understand that taking the time to stage and block shots will be to your dealership’s benefit in post-production. This is particularly true for interviews or people-on-camera segments. Plus, if the on-camera subject is going over lines and / or being prepped while the set-up is happening, this can help put them at ease as they become comfortable with the crew, the camera, lights, etc, thus making for a better end-product.

  7. Expect your agency / production team to take multiple “safety shots”. In general, the more takes you have, the better the end-product becomes. Your agency / production team can always go back to the first take if it was gold, but you can’t pull a great take out of thin air in post-production.

These tips will help you improve your dealership’s video shoots, but it’s important to note that this is not an exhaustive list. If you’d like to discuss how CBC Automotive Marketing arranges production shoots in more detail, or if you’re looking to get better video content for your dealership or group, reach out to us below and let’s have a conversation.

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