According to SiriusDecisions, 80% of unqualified leads today—those understandably ignored by sales—will go on to buy from someone within the next 24 months. The solution is nurturing, buy how do you do that?
There are countless ways to put a brand in front of buyers, of course. But for B2B products and services, especially those with a long, complex buying process, the brand needs to be accompanied by information the buyer cares about.
Obviously, video is a good format for micro-learning, especially on mobile devices. But few companies produce videos that are ready to be inserted into automated nurturing campaigns. Why not? Because most marketers aren’t thinking about video opportunistically. Typically, they think about making traditional genres of video content—explainer, demo, webinar, etc. A more pointed way of putting it: they’re not thinking about making videos that match what prospects want to know. They’re thinking about video, not the customer experience.
Thinking opportunistically opens up a lot of new ways to generate targeted video content, not only for messaging but also for understanding buyers and their motivation.
Focusing on a buyer persona means you can make shorter videos, get to the point faster, take up less of the buyer’s time, and appeal to the special interests of each buying team member.
The table below is adapted from an excellent article, What’s a Successful ABM Strategy Without Killer Content?, by content marketing consultant Rebecca Smith of Heinz Marketing.
The table, by Terminus, is designed to help marketers develop a content strategy (not just video content) for account-based marketing. You could fill in the blanks here with all kinds of media—including killer video content.
According to Smith, content at the top of the funnel should be designed to help an audience who doesn’t know much about you and your solution—no hard sell. In the middle stage, you want to distinguish yourself from competitors—but still no hard sell. That doesn’t come until you’ve developed trust. At the bottom of the funnel, buyers want to be convinced. Illustrations of features, advantages, and benefits work here.
If this approach makes sense to you, it will also make sense to think a little differently about how you use video.
The FAQ Opportunity
In the course of interviewing subject matter experts for the videos we produce, we often hear about product features or use cases that seem to capture customers’ interest and generate questions. We always try to address these questions in the short videos we make, but when a topic is competing for 90-120 seconds of “air time” with other features and benefits, interesting angles and insights are bound to be missed.
Yet, if a question is truly “frequently asked,” it deserves to be answered in a concise, visually interesting video. Punchy FAQ videos can also work as promotional teasers in social media, as well as customer-friendly content in account-based marketing.
The Blog-To-Video Opportunity
Think about all the work that goes into most blog posts. Especially in technology companies, people who know a lot are writing about what they know. They’re writing for their peers, and they’re doing their best to make things clear. Here are five reasons to base short videos on blog posts:
- A video can extend the life of an existing post, kindle new interest, and extend the reach to a wider audience
- Video based on approved copy can be produced faster and with less hassle
- Video makes the information more accessible
- “Video” in the subject line can increase email opens (but always test this for your audience)
- Videos are shared 7X more than links on Facebook
The Interactive Web Video Opportunity
eLearning experts know that users like to be in control of the learning experience. What’s different about responsive (or “interactive”) videos is that the exploration and interaction all takes place within the video window. So it feels more like a user-friendly app, and less like a promotional website.
Interactive video used to be specialist technology. It didn’t really scale and it didn’t work on iPhones. But, now it’s HTML5 and works in a browser, which provides instant scalability. Additionally, with the release of Apple’s iOS X, it works on iDevices, which is huge—opening the door for broader reaching access and consumption.
There are plenty of easy-to-use tools for making a video respond to input—almost like a chatbot. This can be as simple as adding chapter headings to a webinar, interview, or whiteboard talk. Or a video where you can click on objects to dive deeper into the subject. Or a video that branches to new content based on user input.
Let’s say your product has three major differentiators, X, Y, and Z, and you usually pitch them in that order. Some viewers are really interested in Y. Others care more about Z. With interactive video you can let viewers skip ahead to the differentiator that matters most to them—they’ll like that. And when you think about it, why do you care if they skipped X unless everyone skips it? If for example, they skip to Y, you can insert a pop-up button that offers to take the viewer to more information about Y. Now, you’re guiding the buyer’s journey.
The Customer Experience Opportunity
These video formats have a couple of things in common: they are more informational than promotional, and they present the information in short bursts. That’s in line with the trend that “micro-learning” eLearning experts recommend. More important, by focusing video content marketing on customers’ desire to learn, it puts the customer experience first, which will make your customers more engaged and your marketing more successful.
Are you implementing any of opportunistic video strategies? I’d love to know how you’re thinking about video content in your organization—please share in the comments below.