Eight minutes in his YouTube Reviews of a used 2011 Lexus 1S 250 facelift, Bobby Ang did not leave the parking space. Instead, he talks to viewers about the finer details of the car’s interior, from soft-touch dashboards to “proper woodwork” and “high-quality sun visors.” There are also six seconds of stroking the carpets of the feet. “You don’t even get carpets that luxurious in [a] BMW,” he says. Once it’s finally on the road, the crackle doesn’t stop. There are exclamations to the suspension as the car glides noiselessly over the speed bumps and the “butter-smooth” steering.
The detail is painstaking, but it’s not casual viewers that Ang is aiming for. It appeals to Malaysians who are serious about buying a used car – people like Lim Hui Ting, a Kuala Lumpur-based entrepreneur, who watched the 37-minute review as well as several other YouTube videos, while was looking for a vehicle. to be used for work trips across the country.
Ting said Rest of the world he didn’t want to delve into technical articles, but he didn’t trust a used-car dealership to answer his questions, so he turned to YouTube. “It seems more reliable,” he said. “I want to be able to see what the car looks like and what it looks like on the road. It’s more interactive.
Ang has 120,000 subscribers to his channel. He also collaborates on commercial content campaigns with a network of 15 other YouTubers – each with the same in-depth automotive content and tens of thousands of subscribers – through his company, Aurizn. The scale of its business speaks to the growing power of social content in transforming used car sales in Malaysia – a segment that has grown significantly in recent years. Carsome, an online used car marketplace, became Malaysia’s first tech “unicorn” — a private company valued at over $1 billion — last July. The Federation of Automobile and Credit Associations of Malaysia (FMCCAM) predicted that 480,000 used cars will be sold in Malaysia in 2022, compared to around 428,000 last year.
According to Datuk Tony Khor, president of FMCCAM, the growth is partly due to a post-pandemic urge of consumers to leave public transport for private vehicles, but “online platforms have also contributed to a better understanding of the vehicles of second-hand, and it has boosted customer confidence in used cars,” he said. Rest of the world.
The platforms have been boosted by an ecosystem of social media influencers, review sites and other content creators who are giving consumers more information – and more confidence – than they ever could have. have before.
“Twenty years ago, people were just looking around town for used car dealerships. They would walk in and unknowingly ask for a few cars and probably overpay,” said KianYeh Gan, managing director of Carlist.my, a new and used car listing site. Rest of the world. “Now consumers have all the prices at their fingertips and they know everything about the vehicle before they go to the dealership.”
Ang, the influencer, said keeping consumer trust is key to her success. “As a buyer, we want to see the car, hear it, feel it. … And you can’t lie to your video audience,” he said Rest of the world. “If a used car dealer comes up to me and says, ‘Bobby, can I pay you X amount of money to tell people how good this used car is to help me sell it “, that’s one thing I don’t do.” His company works with automakers and dealerships to help them create their own social content campaigns.
Content and sales activities are symbiotic and increasingly tightly integrated. In May, Carsome acquired WapCar, a Malaysian content platform that bills itself as a one-stop shop for new and used car research, for an undisclosed fee. Launched in 2019, WapCar posts about 1,400 articles and 100 videos on YouTube and TikTok each month, according to its new parent company, and had more than 6 million average monthly active users in the last quarter of 2021.
With the click of a button, users jump from the owner’s review of a 2018 Kia Sportage diesel to a list of similar models for sale from parent company Carsome or private sellers. There are high-resolution images of the car from every angle, detailed seller’s notes on previous owners, and mileage and spec information. A user can view dealer reviews, click to request a finance deal, and WhatsApp the seller directly to schedule an appointment to view the car or exchange documents.
Ting, who watched Ang’s videos, followed a similar route to buy his own vehicle using Caricarz, another of the platforms vying for market share. He watched several of YouTube’s upbeat Caricarz reviews, before perusing his catalog. Ang’s video nearly sold him on the Lexus, but in the end he settled on a used Toyota Mark X. “Bobby’s review made it harder to choose, as the two cars had almost identical prices,” he said. “But the Toyota is more spacious.”