After the widespread adoption of using virtual mediums for interaction, video has taken over our screens and absolutely revolutionised our day-to-day processes. HubSpot’s research shows that four of the top six channels consumers use to watch video are social channels and 60% of consumers preferred video posts before written content or articles when researching. While 86% of B2B businesses have realised its value and have already incorporated video content into their marketing strategy. If done incorrectly, video can be expensive and tedious without being highly profitable.
In the business sector, video is no longer used solely for internal sales and customer service training. It has become an integral part of communicating with your B2B prospects and converting them into leads. How? Video is now an ever more powerful B2B marketing tool for businesses looking to expand their reach, build customer interest as well as encourage customers to trust and reach the sale stage of the sales funnel. This is evident as 92% of consumers will share videos they can connect with, find helpful or entertaining with others.
There are two crucial stages of aligning your video with the right practice to target your customer base. Here’s how to make the most out of your B2B video marketing strategy.
1. Align your video content with the right format and funnel stage.
The golden rule to making your video marketing strategy most effective and purposeful is to know your buyers and at what stage of the marketing funnel they are at. As you create your video content plan, keep in mind the marketing funnel to strategically develop and deploy various forms of video content suitable for customers at each stage. This way your marketing team ensures the right message reaches buyers at the right stage (awareness, consideration, interest, evaluation, sale) to meet their needs. This can be effectively done by ensuring your marketing strategy contains a mix of high-funnel videos focused on brand and trust building and low-funnel videos designed to drive purchases.
Popular B2B video types and how they best target the different stage/s of the B2B marketing funnel
Content Marketing Videos
These videos are a strategic inbound marketing approach and are focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and educational content digitally to attract, retain, and qualify potential new leads. These are best performing top-of-funnel, awareness and consideration strategies since they reach a wider audience. Through contributing to SEO these videos can improve rankings and attract potential customers searching for your product, service or brand. As these videos aren’t a hard sell, they do well in introducing your company to customers in the initial stages of the marketing funnel. Videos on industry trends and thought leadership are a good chance for your business to leave an impressive first impression on your potential clients and exhibit your expertise in or knowledge of your industry, earning trust. This can often lead buyers at this stage further down the funnel to consideration and interest. The following is a great example of a video content marketing video that does this.
Brand videos are good at building awareness. At the top of the funnel stage (awareness), buyers go from being unaware of an issue to recognising the brand or product and understanding how they can fix a problem that they have. Brand videos are intriguing for customers as they are stories, ideas or thoughtful narratives about your firm, mission, and vision for the future. This is one of the most engaging formats of video, and enables you to convey a deep vision to hook the audience. Customers can connect with your vision and grow a deeper understanding through brand videos as they demonstrate your firm’s ambition and beliefs. Like most of these videos, brand videos can often help consumers throughout all stages of the funnel, but primarily target customers at the top of the funnel. According to research carried out by Wyzyol, 84% of people say that they’ve been convinced to buy a product or service by watching a brand’s video. The following is a great example of a brand video that does this.
Educational or Product/Service Videos
A more general educational video is especially apt at targeting customers in the consideration phase. Potential customers are now aware of your business, have a problem they want to solve, and are researching for solutions. At this stage, you want to help them with their decision process, without being overly pushy in the initial stages of the journey. By providing leads with general knowledge about your industry and how your product works, you empower them to make better decisions — and are likely to become a trustworthy source in the process. The following is a great example of a product video that does this.
Testimonials and Case Studies
A case study or testimonial will allow you to record a positive customer journey. It will underline how your product or service met a client’s needs. Before making purchases, nearly nine out of ten consumers read reviews and more than 93% of consumers say that online reviews heavily influenced their purchase decisions. So the great thing about customer video reviews, testimonials and case studies that your business produces is that it allows you to control the narrative. Testimonials are a great marketing tool because people influence other people, and videos allow customers to put a face to the product experience and see people passionately speak about your business, making it even more impactful. You can select your best clients, use the most favourable best sound bites, and strategically position your company to draw in your target audience. This format of video can prove to be extremely valuable when buyers are at the tipping point of the purchase decision, at the lower stages of the funnel (intent, evaluation, sale). This is because it can often build action triggers for purchase, pushing customers towards the sale phase. The following is a great example of a video content marketing video that does this.
2. Choose the right platform to target your audience.
You could have the best video with a compelling message and the right format, but it’s no use if it doesn’t reach the intended audience. Determining the most suitable platform for your video varies for each business and doesn’t follow strict rules, as multiple factors influence this decision. Factors to consider include the video format, duration, the stage of the target audience in the marketing funnel, and where your target audience is most active.
One effective approach is to follow the customer’s journey map and analyze the demographics of users on different platforms. For instance, you might discover higher engagement from customers on Twitter or LinkedIn. Alternatively, your Instagram audience might engage more with videos on explore pages, resulting in increased website clicks and conversions.
For brief (under a minute) content marketing videos, brand videos, and product videos, consider sharing them on social media channels with explore pages, aiming to quickly capture the attention of potential customers who may not be aware of your brand. On the other hand, customers beyond the awareness stage, in the consideration or interest phase, tend to visit your website and social channels. They are more inclined to watch relatively longer videos (over two minutes) to gather more information. Such videos include brand education, product/service videos, and endorsements that showcase the benefits and functions of your offerings, further piquing the customer’s interest.
Lastly, customers in the bottom end of the funnel in the decision-making phase (intent and evaluation) will be actively seeking out reviews and doing research before they make a decision and will therefore be prepared to watch the longest duration of videos such as case study and video testimonials/reviews. These lengthy videos are best hosted on your website, ensuring they don’t impact loading speed. Alternatively, you can post them on your company’s YouTube channel and embed them on your web pages.
By ensuring your business chooses the right video format coupled with the right channel or platform, you can develop a strong B2B video marketing strategy where your business is able to target all customers at different stages of the marketing funnel to ultimately drive them towards purchase.
Editors Note: This post was originally published in May 2022 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.