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Authentic Vehicle Walk-Around Video Versus Contrived B Roll TV Spots or Pan and Zoom Fakes

What types of video work better? Authentic Vehicle Walk-Around Presentations or Videos assembled from OEM supplied "B Roll" intended for TV Spots... Or, the ever popular mass produced Pan and Zoom "fake" videos made from the still images photographed for inventory listings?


Last week I had the honor and privilege of both attending and speaking at the Digital Marketing Strategies Conference produced by Carrie Hemphill, Brian Pasch, Glen Pasch and the team at First Class Educators.  On the last day of this 3 day event, Brian Pasch presented a $2,000 cash prize and an award for the best vehicle presentation video.  I was among several people who were, and are, very disappointed with the video clip that was selected as the winner.  In my opinion, the Infiniti of Lisle video clip that was selected as the winner may be very well produced, but it is far from the best video presentation video we have seen, nor was it the best of those submitted.  Why do I disagree with Brian Pasch's selection? Because as polished as it is, it reeks of "fake" and does little to convey a sense of genuine excitement or passion on the part of the person presenting the Infiniti G37 showcased.  The clip also makes extensive use of OEM supplied "B Roll" footage and is highly "produced" with slick transitions, special effects and titling.  All of the slick production effects are nice, and add polish, but do little to convey a sense of genuine excitement about the vehicle or any type of exclusivity to the dealership providing the clip.


The video shown below is one I shot while in the audience in Las Vegas during Brian Ppasch's presentation of the "Best Video" award for a vehicle presentation... It contains a viewing of the winning clip:

In all fairness to Infiniti of Lisle, I am embedding their award winning video as seen on YouTube below:

2012 Infiniti G37 -- Available now at Infiniti of Lisle


Now, after watching the Infiniti of Lisle video presentation, it's time to take a look at several other vehicle presentation videos and then express your opinion about which of these clips would inspire YOU to either pick up a phone and call the dealership, visit the dealership in person, or even submit an online inquiry about the vehicle being presented:

NJ VW | 2012 Volkswagen CC Sport Review | Douglas VW in Summit NJ Union County NJ`s Select VW

A Luxury mid-size Sports Sedan at a Volkswagen price here`s the all-New 2012 VW CC Sport! Known for it`s signature striking looks, the 2012 VW CC offers outstanding style, performance, fuel economy and affordability! Get a feel for what this awesome V-Dub is all about as Ken Beam from Douglas Volkswagen in Summit New Jersey, demonstrates the 2012 CC Features, compares other cars in it`s class such as the Acura TSX, Nissan Maxima, and Lexus IS-250 and shows you the benefits that put this Volkswagen truly in a class of it`s own.

*Please visit our New website at and stop by 491 Morris Ave. in Summit and take the All-New 2012 CC for a spin!

**See our current New Car Specials;

*Remember.... All Volkswagen VW CCs are created equal, however all VW Dealers in New Jersey are different.... and after being in business in Summit since 1965, we cordially invite you to stop by Douglas VW to experience the Douglas Difference!

*Thank you very much for watching.


Shown below is a Video presentation of a Buick Ranier SUV by Tim Jennings that was prepared by Tim on a solo basis while he worked for Tom Sparks Buick in Dekalb, Illinois: Please call for availability 815-739-6054. My name is Tim Jennings, I have 18 years of automotive experience, 15 at Tom Sparks Buick. I have successfully earned the business of 1500 people in the DeKalb area, 3500 people from 243 Illinois communities, plus over 100 people from 2 states.. I strive to do this in a friendly fashion. It is my job to search the Internet and price our vehicles as competitively as possible. I provide cars and trucks of exceptional quality and reasonable cost to our customers. All of our used cars go through a 110-point inspection process. I insure our customers satisfaction through honest sales practices, responsive service and friendly communication at all levels. At Tom Sparks we approach each customer on the Internet and in person with the belief that we are developing a life-long relationship, beneficial to both parties. You can be confident I will be here after each sale to help fill your continuing automotive needs. When you call or visit our dealership in person please ask for me. I have been the Internet manager at Tom Sparks Inc since its inception in 1999. At TomSparks.Com you will start with me. Tom Sparks Auto is the premier Used Car Dealership in Dekalb-Sycamore IL. We are located in Dekalb, Illinois but we serve all of Northern IL and Chicago. We even offer FREE transportation to and from Chicago Airports. The cities we serve include Hinckley, Rochelle, Rockford, St Charles, Elgin, Waterman, Shabbona, Malta, and anyone looking for Worry-Free Car Buying in the states of Illinois, Iowa, Wisconsin! At Tom Sparks Automotive we have many Used Cars to choose from including Buick, Pontiac, GMC, Nissan, Toyota, Honda, Ford, Chevrolet, Dodge, Hyundai and Kia. For more information about Tom Sparks, please visit


For comparison purposes, let's take a look at a vehicle review video from regarding the 2009 Honda Accord... It is interesting to note that this fairly professional video clip does not make use of "Pan and Zoom" nor does it include OEM supplied "B Roll" footage... It is all real and all genuine.  Could we perhaps learn something from these automotive reporting professionals?

From My Homies in Phoenix

The following video presentation of the 2012 Chevrolet Volt is a long 10 minute clip from Bryan Long at Courtesy Chevrolet in Phoenix, but it is fresh and new in its approach and content.  This is both innovative and informative without being overly produced.  In fact, the shaky camera work in the beginning seems to add an air of authenticity to the whole clip.  If you take the time to watch Bryan's complete presentation he shows what it is like to commute to work using the Chevy Volt at over 100 MPG... He even shows a Toyota Prius cutting him off in traffic, but makes up for it with some head banging Guns 'N Roses blasting from the Volt's sound system.  I really enjoyed this clip and thousands of car buyers in Phoenix did as well!

BLong Rocks the House of Courtesy in Phoenix!!!

Sorry about that outburst... My enthusiasm for the crew at Courtesy Chevrolet continues unabated... Bryan Long's video is the clip I would have chosen for the $2,000 award.  The originality and innovative presentation of a Chevy Volt is both unique and compelling... But most of all, very real and authentic!

There is no doubt that the Rob Fontano inspired 2012 Infiniti G37 video presentation from Infiniti of Lisle is an excellent piece of work, and for that matter, almost all videos produced by dealerships are better than none at all... But, what will resonate with automotive consumers as being genuine, authentic and relevant to their real world needs? The highly produced, or the more personalized and authentic?

Views: 1693

Tags: Authentic, B, Contrived, Fakes, Pan, Roll, Spots, TV, Vehicle, Versus, More…Video, Walk-Around, Zoom, and, or


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Comment by Joe Angrisano on February 16, 2012 at 8:20pm

Hey ... that's my sister and she's very sensitive about the seat belt issue.

We're working on a custom Cross Your Heart seat belt so she can survive a crash.

Her passenger side air bag has been generating an unusual trouble code... "intimidated"

Comment by Ken Beam on February 16, 2012 at 7:59pm

LOL!!!!!!!!!  That definitely "TOPS" anything I ever did!!!!!!!!!!!! lol!!!!!! Hey.......who wears their seatbelt like that?????? LOL!!!!!!!

Comment by Ken Beam on February 16, 2012 at 1:00pm

Thanks Joe! Here`s my latest episode of "VW Nights Under the Lights" at Douglas. Share it with all of your Friends!


Thanks again,



Comment by Joe Angrisano on February 15, 2012 at 9:23am

Ken... More inspiration for all! Thanks!

Seems like we are preaching to the choir though. 

I'd like to see some participation from the video challenged. There's gotta be some folks who are monitoring this string that have some questions. 

Ask away... KEN IS READY!

Comment by Ken Beam on February 15, 2012 at 7:14am

I`d like to share this little tid-bit about the Videos...... when I first started making these clips 6 years ago, I would have a Sales Rep go outside with me and help me shoot the clip. I taught them how to use the camera, where to stand distance-wise and when/how to shoot accordingly.


So how I rewarded them for helping me was simply this; I would create a Craigs List Ad of that vehicle, embed the Video and tell them to contact that Sales Rep directly on his or her cell in the Ad. So when I said to one of these Reps, "Hey help me shoot a Clip?"..........they would jump at it because for about 30 minutes of their time, they had a Used Car ad floating out on the `Net for the world to see and it said to contact only them!


Other times, my girlfriend would(and still does) assist me in shooting the videos on her day off and we have spent more than one Sunday at Douglas(even though the dealership is closed), shooting clips and creating new content for the upcoming week. Heck I even have used Sharon in a few of the clips. See below;


*So now we`re ramping up our Social-Media-Marketing Strategies and are fortunate enough to have hired Pat to tackle these marketing parameters and also to assist me. 

I`ve been in car sales for 24 years now and let me tell you all something....... If I had all of this cool technology when I started selling way back when, I would be utilizing as much of it as I possibly could! Take a gander at what Adam Thrasher showed us in this thread....... simple yet very effective way of cutting a quick clip. Great job guys!

My point is simply this........ for all of you younger guys and gals just starting out in this business, and with all of this cutting-edge technology out there, you should team up with your colleagues, help each other out, go outside and take turns cutting some clips for each other! You do not need any 3rd party vendors to help you make a simple god-dam You Tube Clip!

You can be like every other dealership out there............or you can be just a little different....and unique.

Sooooooooooooooo grab your camera, get one of your colleagues and get outside and start shooting some videos TODAY!

Screw it! Just DO IT!~


Comment by on February 15, 2012 at 5:21am

Patrick Nash brings up a great point, "The most excited I ever see people at our dealerships is when they spot Kenny and yell, "hey, you're the guy in the videos!" There's no price tag on authenticity."   We see it at every dealership where we do walk around videos.  It excites the customers the most and they ask for the person in the video.   

Comment by Ken Beam on February 14, 2012 at 6:43pm

And we also make sure our Customers have "Fun" too!~

Comment by Ken Beam on February 14, 2012 at 6:40pm

Yeah we like to have "Fun" at Douglas VW!~ lol.........

Comment by Tom Gorham on February 14, 2012 at 6:30pm

Patrict Nash - I'm with you man.  "Anyone at a dealership who is vertical, ventilating and has opposable thumbs can do a walk-around video. There's no excuse not to do it."  A personalized video created especially for a phone or email customer that mentions the customers name is WOW factor.  Three to five minutes... no biggie.  This is a chance to sell not only the car but the salesperson and the dealership.  Slick?  Forget it.  They want REAL.

Just for fun, this video was never actually sent to a customer but illustrates how sales staff can have fun with the idea.  (Fun - that helps)


Comment by on February 14, 2012 at 2:53pm

Ralph you are 100% correct.  However, who ever said management is responsible?  They are only as responsible as the Owner makes them.  Working for a vendor and as a consultant, I am always amazed how dealership management plays musical chairs, one month at one dealership, another month at another.  You can only lead the horse to water, if they would rather have their sales dry up, you can show all the statistics and demonstrate many times the most effective digital marketing tools and techniques, unfortunately the way it works is the GM needs to be fully responsible for ADM, not have their scape goats in vendors, consultants or ISMs.  

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