In B2B marketing, it’s natural to put business professionals and consumers into two separate boxes, but at the end of the day, while you need to present a professional face - you are still appealing to a person, and people simply enjoy engaging and interesting content.
All to often, businesses marketing to other businesses fall victim to a fear of appearing unprofessional - so, they don’t take chances, they don’t branch out, and ultimately, they don’t evolve.
The fact is, the B2B marketing space has evolved greatly, and at the beating heart of that evolution, you’ll find video.
Video can make just about every step of your B2B marketing more captivating, easier and more accessible to your potential customers. It’s time to take that next step towards improving your B2B video marketing practices, and we’re here to help.
1. Taking the first steps to improve your B2B content marketing.
Each step of the way, think of where you can replace stale or text-heavy content with easy to digest video content. Your viewers will appreciate being able to more clearly and quickly absorb the information you’re sharing.
Notably smooth experiences like these provides your potential customers with more positive associations with your brand, therefore setting you up to build more lasting and fruitful relationships.
In a recent market survey by Demand Metric, 72% of B2B buyers and researchers are watching videos to help them make their buying decisions.
To that end, here are some actionable tips to help you work more video content into your B2B marketing plan.
2. What type of B2B videos can you make?
“We used to think about video as a way to get attention and draw people into the top of the funnel. Now, we use it across the entire buyer’s journey – attracting future customers, generating leads, nurturing prospects, and creating brand advocates.” - Act On Software
A report by Ascend2 called on successful B2B video marketers to rank the effectiveness of different kinds of videos, in order of most effective to least. Here’s what they came up with:
On-demand product demonstration videos
Explainer and tutorial videos
Thought leader interviews
Project reviews and case studies
Live and on-demand webinars
Here is an example for an event video created with showbox to wrap up the 3 day conference, Engage 16, in Prague.
3. Find the story and make it interesting.
Even if your video is only :30 seconds long, it still needs to tell a story - no matter what type of video you are making.
Say you’re working on creating a solid “About Us” video for your company. It may feel like your business doesn’t have a headline story - but every business has a story, you just need to find it. Try a change of perspective.
What inspired the beginnings of your company?
How did your services help customers thrive in various ways?
How do you do things differently?
Has your business undergone big changes in the past?
“The most important factor to creating a successful piece of content is to tell a good story,” a spokesperson for B-Reel said. “In the case of our Squarespace work, it’s the stories of burgeoning businesses.”
When examining other types of video (explainer videos, tutorials, webinars, etc), storytelling doesn’t mean you will always have a narrative of events and main characters - in these cases, think of storytelling as the act of strategically feeding viewers information in a progressively more revealing way.
However, if you can find ways to insert a story, it will make your information sharing much easier to digest for your viewers.
4. Use B2B video marketing to show, and not tell.
A classic storytelling technique - showing rather than telling - is a wonderful way to keep your viewers creatively engaged. Demonstration is much better than description, so if you can replace wordy documents or how-to’s with a shiny new video that actually shows your product or service in action, by all means - do!
5. B2B Helpful!
Just like in your B2C content marketing, you want your B2B content marketing to be HELPFUL. Can you provide information, guidance, or tips? Even though it might not be directly related to a purchase, being a source of helpfulness to your business community is an invaluable relationship builder.
6. Deciding where to promote your B2B video marketing content.
LinkedIn, Facebook and YouTube.
While you need to be doing your research to find out where your buyers are spending their time consuming content, when it comes to B2B marketing videos, LinkedIn is a natural jumping off point.
How can you work video into your company’s LinkedIn activities? In addition to sharing all your helpful and conversation starting B2B content, upgrade your stale company profile, and add a B2B marketing focused video to your About Us section.
Just like with YouTube (and Twitter and Facebook too!) get to know LinkedIn’s targeting capabilities in order for you to take the most advantage of your facetime with buyers.
7. Plan your content release strategy.
If a tree falls in a forest, does anyone hear it? If your B2B marketing video goes live, will anyone see it? Once you choose which platforms to focus on promoting, build your strategy around a scheduled release.
If LinkedIn is the place businesses and buyers go to learn about the marketplace, see what others are doing, and gain useful and applicable insights, then your content on LinkedIn should be focused on providing value. These videos should be focused as much as possible on your potential clients, and not be all about just promoting your business.
Your “About Us” video is great for your profile itself, but when we’re talking about gaining traction in a B2B focused timeline, the content you share on LinkedIn should be your most helpful content, and you can think about your Facebook in the same way.
Promote and fill your feeds with helpful content -- save the product-specific tutorials and about us videos for other places online (like your website, or specific YouTube playlists).
Then, once you’ve targeted the most shareable and helpful content, ask yourself:
Are there business partners you work with who could also distribute your content?
Are there holidays or themed events coming up, and can I schedule the release around those events?
Is this content worth sending out to your whole email list (hopefully the answer is yes!)?
Look to your peer network, and remember: they are more likely to share your content if you provide something they deem helpful.
8. Use your B2B marketing videos as a data source.
In developing your B2B marketing content plan, understand that your strategy will evolve. On YouTube, you can track, down to the second, where you lost viewers, and you can see how long people are watching your content. Use this information to figure out what your B2B audience is most interested in, and pivot accordingly.
9. Define your objectives.
You might think that your company business is so defined, that another meeting or conversation about your objectives feels trivial - but when thinking about video, you have to put on a slightly different hat.
Sit down and discuss the desired look and feel of your B2B video content. Talk about the overall voice your business will have.
What is the immediate goal with this video?
Am I trying to get the viewer to make an immediate purchase?
Is this video more about long-term relationships with this potential client or immediate feedback?
Should I be focused on helpfulness as opposed to closing the sale?
Is the way in which we are making this how-to video going to ensure the content feels evergreen?
If you start from a place of cohesion, then your path to B2B video marketing greatness will become much less cluttered with doubt.
The Bottom Line for B2B Video Marketing?
At the end of the day, focus your B2B marketing efforts on what makes your company unique and interesting, and you will get the most out of the videos you make. Don’t get caught up in your fears of a short schedule, or tight purse strings.
B2B video marketing production doesn’t need to be such a… production. Showbox.com empowers you to take your idea, and turn it into video in a matter of minutes. If the only thing holding you back are time, money and skillset, then you’re in luck. You don’t need any prior production experience, and you get access to tons of helpful tools that make the process of content creation quick and easy.
Want to become a video marketing powerhouse?