As a video producer, I’m often asked a lot of questions: How long should my videos be? Where should I share my videos? How much does it cost to produce a video? Does the camera really add 10 pounds?
Those are all good questions that deserve good answers — well, most of them. But do you know the one question I rarely hear?
“What kind of video should I make?”
In my opinion, answering that question is so much more important than the others and serves as the foundation for conversations moving forward. You see, not all videos are the same and each type of video can serve a different purpose in a buyer’s journey.
Vidyard recently released its 2019 Video in Business Benchmark Report. It confirmed what we’ve been saying all along: the most important factor and the greatest opportunity for success is in producing the right kinds of video for your audience. Get that wrong, and your video marketing efforts will fall flat. What else does the report say?
B2B Buyers Want More Video When Doing Researching
It’s surprising in today’s digital landscape how many executives and sales teams discount the role of video in their efforts to land more deals and attract more customers. The Vidyard report cites research from Wyzowl showing that where both video and text are available on the same page, 72% of people would rather use video to learn about a product or service. And 79% say a brand video has convinced them to buy a piece of software or app.
To me, the reluctance of executives to invest in video for their companies is counterintuitive since 59% would choose video over text when given the choice. Sometimes it takes some candid conversations and convincing to get everyone on board, but it’s hard to deny all the compelling statistics that prove the value of video in today’s marketplace, no matter your industry.
B2B Buyers Look For How-to Videos
Buyers don’t just want to know why a product or service will meet their needs, but how. Perhaps that’s why B2B companies — such as manufacturers — are increasingly investing in demo, explainer and product videos.
The report notes that four in five consumers believe demo videos are helpful when making a purchase decision. In other words, your leads and prospects want to see your products and your company in action.
Use product videos to give a broad overview of what you have to offer and all the great and helpful benefits it can provide to leads in the middle of the sales funnel. Demo and explainer videos go deeper to demonstrate all the ins and outs of how your products or services work and how they’ll help solve the issues your leads are facing — more appropriate for bottom-of-the-funnel targets.
There are several other types of B2B videos that can add tremendous value to your marketing efforts and target specific business goals. If you’re just starting out, however, focus in on a demo, explainer or product video to easily demonstrate who you are, what you do and how it all works.
Sharing on Social Media Is a Must
“We’re trying to promote custom manufactured goods, not share cat videos.” Sound familiar? For executives who aren’t familiar with the current state of social media and only associate it with entertainment or staying connected with family and friends, the prospect of including social spend in their marketing budgets may come with some push back. But social channels such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and even Instagram in some cases are being leveraged by many complex industries.
Most types of video work cross-functionally from your website or blog to various social media platforms. For longer videos, you can also create teaser versions for social media that link to the full video to drive traffic back to your site.
Demos are especially effective on social media with the use of Facebook Live. As an example, Adobe Creative Cloud software hosts demos of product updates that allow users from all over the world to tap into the SME’s knowledge as well as the knowledge of peers. This builds a community around its products.
A social media strategy using video needs to be included as a vital part of your overall inbound marketing strategy. If others on your team need convincing, share this compelling statistic from Vidyard’s benchmark report:
93% of marketers say they’ve gained a new customer thanks to a video on social media (Animoto)
Personalized Video Is Underutilized, Yet Effective
Not all video is a fit for social media; take for example, personalized one-to-one videos. However, there’s a lot of potential to create these types of videos for targeted sales prospects to form a connection and increase conversion rates. It’s the least used video type, according to Demand Metric State of Video Marketing, and only 24% of companies are using video during sales conversations according to Vidyard’s report. This presents a major opportunity to become a leader using this medium in your industry.
Here’s basically how one-to-one videos work in the sales process using tools like Vidyard’s GoVideo or Wistia’s Soapbox. It can be as easy as using your computer’s camera to record a video that speaks directly to a sales prospect by name as a way of introducing yourself and your company. You can then email the video to your lead for viewing.
Another great thing about one-to-one videos is that it involves a relatively low initial investment — there are even free options — yet the payback can be incredible. It’s a great way to test the waters. Even better is that producing these videos is extremely easy (even for those who’ve never turned on their computer’s video feature). Check out this Soapbox tutorial to see what I mean.
Soapbox - A Free Webcam and Screen Recorder for Chrome
As you can imagine, these types of videos have great potential to engage and delight bottom-of-the-funnel leads (and existing customers, too). There are so many ways one-to-one videos can help you stand out among competing organizations.
The Vidyard report had a lot of other takeaways that I found interesting and compelling, especially for marketers of complex industries like manufacturing.
- Companies with 31-200 employees produced over 500 videos; on par with enterprise corporations, so if you think you can’t do video with scrappy resources, think again
- 48% of companies valued at $25 million or smaller produced videos internally. If that sounds like you, use these tips!
- 87% of business video is still viewed on desktop even though 75% of overall internet traffic is mobile
- 52% of viewers watch the entire video regardless of length. That number jumps to 68% if the video is under 60 seconds
- Manufacturing has the second lowest number of videos (150 per company) so there’s lots of room for companies in this industry to get ahead of the competition
- The average video length dropped by one-third — from just over 6 minutes in 2017 to about 4 minutes in 2018
- 49% of videos are under 60 seconds
- Mid-week is the most popular time for business video views, with Thursday seeing the most views overall. Most people view videos in the morning
- 52% of small and medium companies use a mix of internal and external resources to produce videos
While I’ve highlighted a few specific video types and tactics that have proven successful, it’s only the tip of the iceberg. Before you launch into your next video project, be sure you’ve strategically thought through what you want it to accomplish and how it works within your overall inbound marketing strategy.
To help, check out our exhaustive list of articles and resources on the topic — everything from production tips and tools to inspiration and ideas to take your video to the next level. Just click the link below. And if you’re like a lot of businesses that decide you’d like some outside help to bring it up a notch, it’s what we do. Just reach out.