Content is the gateway drug to your brand. In 2016, every brand needs to behave like a media company. You need to build a video marketing strategy that speaks to your audience at different stages throughout the funnel. While most marketers recognise online video can play an important role in the marketing mix, we still see a lot of B2B brands creating top-of-the-funnel explainer videos and then calling it a day. If you’re trying to realise ROI this is a huge mistake as a worthwhile video strategy doesn’t end at the top of the funnel.
Research from Aberdeen found over 60% of best-in-class companies are using video from raising awareness right through to post-sale stage. This approach has everything to do with how prospects consume information.
Top of the Funnel
Branded videos on YouTube present a great opportunity for consumers to learn about your brand as they look for entertaining content or as they search for information about a particular issue or question they need answering. Videos on high-level topics with mass appeal will help to draw people into your sales funnel.
Imagine a viewer (who is previously unaware of your brand) comes across one of your video ads, on YouTube, Facebook or Twitter, or a piece of content being shared, liked or tweeted about online. Depending on how you want to be perceived and the creative route you decide to take, you have complete control over the impression you leave your viewer with.
• If you want to be positioned as though leaders, or the go to specialists in your field, capture one-on-one though leadership interviews with your company’s management team and other Key People of Influence within your industry. Content by VIP’s is widely shared and you can leverage leaders’ social networks. All of this will help improve the chances of your site being found on the search engines and popping up in your friends/ colleagues news feeds. Showcase your expertise and draw people from social media to a ‘video-hub’ hosted on your website.
• To ensure you’re top of mind for engaging, authoritative content within your industry, consider recording a series of webinars and breaking them down into chapters. This will help viewers find topics they need quickly, and share via the social networks if they wish too.
• Show off your quirky staff, company culture, commitment to excellent customer service, camaraderie within your team – ultimately fun content showing why you do what you do, and why viewers should care.
It’s important to provide calls to action within your videos at this stage – for example, a pop-out CTA can prompt a viewer to watch another video, request a consultation, download your white paper or – if you their watching the video on YouTube – guide them to your website for conversion.
After using top-of-funnel content to guide your viewers to your website, you’re now looking to help leads evaluate and justify your solution with more, in-depth or long-form content (the stuff you’ll need the most of!). The objective here is to turn the prospect to a lead – offer them the opportunity to set up a meeting or a call by sending out a personalised video in an email- a surefire way to impress a prospect.
You can start introducing email gates for collecting viewer contact info at this point. You can start to send more targeted content as leads at this stage have already put up their hand and based on what you know they’ve been watching already (viewing history is available with data from a video marketing platform – such as the one all clients at CTM have access too).
At this stage prospects are determining if you’re right for them, so you’ll want to consider producing:
- Client testimonials/ in-depth case studies
- Detailed product demos
- Tutorial video
- Extended interviews with key members of staff
- Videos showcasing how your solution integrates with other key products and services in your customers’ ecosystems
Mid-funnel content, crafted to speak to the needs of those closer to buying your product, is aimed at people already in your CRM system. With the help of marketing automation technology, you can deliver the right content to the right people at the right time. To be effective, it must:
1) Be persuasive, educational and targeted. You want to nurture leads, draw them to an eventual purchase. (Hello, ROI!)
2) Educate current and potential customers on the factors that differentiate your brand.
3) Continually inspire an emotional connection with unique audience segments to establish brand loyalty and create brand advocates.
Content at the End of the Funnel
When it comes to closing, video can help you overcome final objections and empower opportunities to make an educated decision. Your prospects want to feel assured they’ve made the right choice.
Content in this stage can include:
Nurture campaign videos: Create videos tied to specific campaigns and release them at exactly the right time using a Customer Relationship Management system such as Salesforce or Hubspot.
Free trails: Consider producing a video that explains your offering, what they can expect, what they need to do next, and back this up with stats showing what % of people who took the free trail went on to become satisfied customers.
FAQ videos: If you have a great FAQ video on your site, you can reuse it here to prompt a lead to close, (i.e. “Thanks for your time today. If you have any further questions feel free to call, or check out this fun FAQ video we filmed to give you a quick rundown of any last-minute questions”)
Customer check-ins: follow up on your customers use of your product; how have their first week been?
Instructional videos: Post-sale can often lead to more questions about your services, so create a content to cover any issues you note customers may have. Here’s another opportunity to introduce/ showcase your friendly support staff.
Here’s just a few suggestions of the types of content that can be used to increase conversions at each stage. Companies need to test performance and make adjustments as data is analysed to keep the content strategy fresh and targeted effectively.
Video Marketing/ Inbound Marketing Stats
- Customers today go through more than half of the buying process independently
- Inbound marketing gets 54% more leads into the sales funnel than traditional marketing
- 78% of CMOs see custom content as the future of marketing
- This year, 25% of organisations allocated over half of their marketing budget to content
- Only 6% of B2B marketers rate their content marketing strategy as “highly effective,” according to the Content Marketing Institute’s 2016 B2B content marketing report
To learn more about what content marketing is, how it can benefit your organisation and how to get started using “content marketing” to promote your company, check out the “A Guide to Marketing Genius: Content Marketing” infographic below. Although based on research from US based companies, many of the principles apply to UK based businesses.