Any seasoned marketer will tell you that a successful content strategy goes far beyond catching prospects’ eyes. Making a splash in today’s digital marketplace requires content that fits into every channel, draws audiences in and keeps them engaged, and guides potential customers to find their perfect solution.

No other type of content drives successful multi-channel engagement like video. It’s captivating, easily digestible, and, more importantly, it gets its point across more quickly and clearly than any other medium. But don’t just take our word for it. Over the past decade, the demand for video marketing for enterprises, both big and small, has increased dramatically.

However, it’s essential to keep in mind that the need for video marketing isn’t something new. What’s changed is how businesses use it and its role in keeping both companies and consumers alike connected in an increasingly digital world.

If you want to start reaching audiences no matter where, when, or who they are, you need a guide that has all the tricks and tips for building an effective video marketing strategy. So we’ve put one together for you. We’ll cover everything from what videos work best for your brand to how you can drive quality leads and revenue for your business.

For starters, let’s answer your most obvious question: What exactly is video marketing?

Quite simply, video marketing is visual storytelling. It’s how brands and businesses market products, promote events, and champion services to grab audiences’ attention – and keep it. From what we’ve seen in today’s digital marketplace, video is vital to connecting with customers in a way they want. It’s a powerful marketing and sales tool throughout the entire buyer journey.

What makes video stand above the rest?

The world is becoming more digital by the day. As businesses worldwide transform how they work and connect with the rest of the world, video becomes a crucial communication channel. It cuts through the noise of today’s crowded media market, engages audiences in a way they prefer, and brings brands to life through a creative, compelling, moving experience.

Today’s audiences expect video. In the first half of 2020, video views for enterprise sales and marketing were up 125%; that kind of growth signifies this is video’s evolutionary moment. Video is no longer just another piece of engaging content; it’s evolved far beyond that. Today, video is one of the most desired forms of communication. Over 70% of B2B buyers say they’re more willing to spend time engaged with interactive, visual, and audio content than reading written text. From the latest industry trends, product updates, or even general announcements, outreach and engagement are received best in a video.

Video is dominating the online dialogue. Seventy-six percent of consumers report they’ve purchased a product or service after viewing a video, with the highest numbers coming from the millennial demographic at 85%. As audiences spend more time online, it’s a natural evolution for them to use the internet to research a product or solution to purchase. Marketers need to be aware of that.

Why should it matter to you?

Like any good marketing strategy, video marketing’s importance is not just to seize attention; it’s to establish a lasting connection. Video can give viewers the information they need to solve problems, make the right decisions, and better understand and connect with a product or service in a way no other medium can deliver.

When building your video marketing strategy, it’s important to remember that video isn’t just another marketing tactic. It’s a measurable, engaging approach to business communication that entertains as much as it informs and gets your audience talking. It can also work to cultivate the clear and consistent digital relationship you need between you and your customers.

What looks good on video?

There are several ways leading brands use video to build a connection with customers. We’ve put together a few of the top ones to help start filling your content calendar and keep your audiences engaged. Take a look.

Brand Story Videos: Video authentically shows your brand’s personality and is unmatched when it comes to sharing who you are. Nothing creates an emotional bond between consumers and your brand the way video does.

Thought Leadership Interviews: Bringing thought leadership video into your communication gives audiences a chance to hear from your company’s brightest minds. It establishes a high level of trust between your brand and the audience, and it positions your brand as a resource that they can go back to time and time again.

Product Demos: Video can demonstrate how your product solves industry challenges, how certain features and functions within the product work, and best practices on getting set up or using a new feature. Product walkthroughs are perfect for the one-on-one type of experience that digital consumers crave. They also deliver clear, professional-grade guidance on how a product or service works, so business leaders can be confident it will solve their organizational needs.

Customer Testimonials: Organizations and individuals don’t want to invest in a solution if they can’t see how it performs first. Working with some of your most reputable customers to produce customer success videos is a great way to show why your product stands above the rest.

Live Video: Today’s market moves fast, and you have a finite amount of time to catch potential buyers’ attention. Live video brings a sense of urgency to viewers, so they can hear about a new product or get breaking news as it becomes available. Going live also is a great way to generate leads and build a tighter connection with your audience. Businesses should consider live streaming when launching new products, hosting educational events, giving product tutorials, interviewing subject matter experts, etc.

Let’s take the first step.

Before you start to create content that turns heads, you need to build a marketing strategy with critical areas of focus. It is essential to define the who, what, where, when, how, and why of your video strategy to understand how to connect with audiences.

Once you can answer these six questions, you are ready to create purposeful content to help achieve your business goals.

Who are you trying to reach?

Your audience – who are they? Are they a chief risk officer looking to solve an organizational security problem? Perhaps they’re a new business owner looking for an easier way to recruit new talent. Whoever they are, understanding what drives them, their pain points, interests, and more importantly, personalities will help you tailor content to your audience’s individual needs. Focusing on who you’re trying to reach will help your business generate better and higher quality leads.

However, it’s not all about new customers; you need to engage the customers you already have. For a business to build brand loyalty, retain customers, and grow their install base, it’s essential to create content that supports ongoing relationships with your current customer base. Working with your sales team will help you understand what your customers need and the kind of support they’ll require.

Additionally, consider where your customers spend the majority of their time. Where are they most likely to be when you’re trying to reach them? The way you reach audiences on social media will be different from how you reach them on your website or when hosting a live event. Tailoring different types of videos to fit your viewers’ location will give your content the strong delivery you’re looking for and create a more significant impact on your brand.

What does your audience need to see?

Marketers often spend a lot of time figuring out what to tell their audiences – however, video marketers should also consider what their viewers want or even need to see. Someone faced with a business problem will most likely search for a clear and efficient answer that solves their situation the best. Ask yourself what it is that your viewer is searching for – what do they need to see that’ll convince them that your product or service can help them? It could be a detailed product walkthrough, industry trends, customer testimonials, or company goals/mission statements – any information that can visually support the communication between you and your audience.

Where is the video going to live?

Video presents many benefits for marketers, and one of the most important is its adaptability to multiple channels. Multi-channel marketing is critical to businesses who want to connect with their audiences on any platform, anytime. Video can reach audiences in various ways across the buyer journey, from streaming video on social media platforms to using video in emails, web pages, or hosting them on your streaming platform. Using analytics, you can see where your audiences are watching and provide the content needed in that particular instance.

How long is too long? Time your videos for maximum engagement.

The right length for your content will depend on its purpose. If you’re looking to implement more video into your advertising strategy, short 15- or 30-second videos work. Surveys suggest that 66% of today’s marketers limit their video ads to no longer than 30 seconds – 32% are even shorter, drawing the line at 15 seconds. Audiences live in a scrollable, clickable environment, and if you’re not making your video ads quick and to-the-point, what’s to prevent them from simply scrolling to the next video?

For other types of video content, you may want to consider taking your time. The ideal length for each kind of video:

Product demos: 30, 60, and 90 seconds

Paid or organic video ads: 15 to 30 seconds

Customer testimonials: 60 to 120 seconds

  • Check out this Brightcove customer story on RugbyPass

Creative/brand videos: 15, 30, and 60 seconds

  • Check out this Adobe video.

What’s your format of choice?

Due to its creative nature, not all videos will look the same. Is your video going to have people in it? Or is it moving text and sound? Animations? The possibilities are endless with video. However, what your video looks like should directly align with your audience. Some prefer a speaker or coach guiding them through a use case. For others, it’s two speakers discussing a particular topic with one another. Some audiences might even prefer all types of videos.

No matter what you want your video to look like, ensure it makes sense for your audience and aligns with your overall marketing or brand strategy. If your audience is broad, make sure you diversify your video content, so it doesn’t look the same. Are you trying to reach more of a target audience? Find out what they like and stick with it.

Why does it matter?

If you’re not convinced, chances are your viewers aren’t either. Video can be a creative outlet for your online marketing strategy, and you need to be sure it’ll grab your audience’s attention. Still, if you don’t give them a reason to want more, your video just becomes another piece of content floating around on the web.

Purposeful content is how businesses enhance their video ROI. Ask yourself, why does this content matter? What is it doing for my audience? Are they learning something about my brand or business? Being focused and straightforward about why your video matters will ensure you’re not wasting your time creating it and that your viewers aren’t wasting their time watching it.

Additionally, a successful video marketer should always determine a goal for each video. Think about how your video will drive either soft or strong leads down your marketing funnel. If your video’s goal is to gain product or brand awareness, the more viewers, the better. If you’re looking to capture stronger leads for your business, make sure you’re keeping track of who’s watching.

Make the most out of your content.

If you’re wondering how video brings a return on investment for your business, don’t worry –we’ve got you covered. From closing the deal with top-tier business executives to getting eager industry practitioners to invest in your company’s next event, video can drive revenue for your business in more ways than one.

Stay Relevant and Connected: According to a recent Brightcove study, nearly 74% of B2B organizations use video to engage with their customers. Using video to communicate enables organizations to keep customers updated with company news, products, and services.

Constant Customer Communication: Organizations can generate more qualified leads by arming their marketing and sales teams with engaging and informative video content relevant to their prospects’ needs. From engaging prospects through advertisements to highlighting critical use cases or sharing customer stories and testimonials, the opportunities to make a connection with potential customers at every stage of their buyer journey are endless.

Drive Attendance for Your Events: Not only does video have the power to convince prospects that your solutions are right for them, but it also has the potential to convince industry practitioners that your brand is the thought leader to follow. Suppose you host an event for your customers. In that case, whether it be in-person or virtual, you should consider using video to get audiences excited about your topics and drive attendance numbers through the roof.

Engage all of your channels

Let’s walk through where your video should ultimately end up and why. Video has many strengths, including its ability to deliver engagement through any digital channel. Unlike written text, video can catch the eye of viewers no matter where they are. Here are just a few places your video should live to get the most engagement:

Social Media: It’s where nearly half of the world’s population shares and receives information, and it’s where your consumers will always be. Engaging with your audience on a channel they organically go to, like social media, is critical to gaining brand awareness and building trust, and there’s no better way to connect with your social followers than through video.

Email Marketing: People receive emails all day, every day – adding video to your emails helps to break through the noise and spark their interest. Thirteen percent of marketers say that using the word “video” in email subject lines increases overall click-through rates. Adding video into your emails will allow your recipients to experience an engaging visual journey that might have them itching for more.

Web Pages: Do you need a fun way to enhance your careers page, or maybe you’re looking to spice up your company’s home page? Look no further – video will improve any page. Video adds a sense of creativity to your website and is an effective way to deliver critical information about your products or services engagingly.

Where video and SEO meet

One of the most important and influential ways to bring new audiences to your brand, and the next key topic in our video-marketing run-down, is search engine optimization (SEO). This strategy increases traffic flow to and from your website by leveraging relevant and popular keywords, link building, and, best of all, video.

As useful as video is to grab the attention of potential customers, it’s also an effective way to lead them right to your site. Here are three ways to incorporate video to boost traffic to your business’s web pages and enhance your overall SEO.

Add Inbound Links: Direct your audience. Video is a great way to inspire your audience to want to learn more about the information you’re showing them. Giving them a place to go after pressing play will help you take advantage of an underutilized SEO tactic.

Add links that direct viewers to web pages or other content pieces directly in your website video ads or social media video ads to increase traffic to your site and overall visibility.

Include Native Videos: If your video content lives directly on your site, there is a higher likelihood of viewers staying engaged and exploring further. Use an online video platform to incorporate video into your site. Native video enables you to gather analytics to see what is keeping viewers engaged and adjust when needed.

Make it Shareable: Increase the number of eyes on your content by making it relatable and, more importantly, shareable. Ensure your videos are relevant and eye-catching and the information provided resonates with your audience. Focusing on how your video connects with your viewers will boost your content’s shareability and bring higher counts of traffic to your business.

How successful is your video?

The next step on our list is finding out how successful your video is and how that information can help your business drive a more efficient content marketing strategy.

Like any good marketer, you want to have crystal clear visibility into your content’s performance to understand if it’s working for your audience and if you need to shift gears based on high or low engagement rates. When it comes to written content such as blogs, eBooks, or whitepapers, you may be able to track how often a person downloads the piece of content, but there’s no way of telling whether or not they read it.

Video provides unique data that you can’t get from the text on a page, including how often viewers watch content and how long, and when and where they watch it. These insights are invaluable, especially when it comes to determining how well, or not so well, your video is performing, and will provide insight into the kinds of videos that work best for your audience.

Having a video platform that provides critical insights into content performance is essential to creating an effective video marketing strategy.

Marketing automation

As we mentioned earlier, video has a place in just about every area in the marketing and sales process, especially when it comes to automated content and email marketing.

Often referred to as lead nurturing, marketing automation is a digital process used by marketers to nurture leads across channels quickly and effectively. It’s also a powerful method in scaling marketing efforts without the extra leg work and is a great way to engage your customers or prospects, especially when paired with video.

According to an Adobe Marketo study, nurture streams such as emails or landing pages receive a 2-3x higher click-through rate when including video. Adding video to your marketing technology stack increases the likelihood that audiences receive the information desired in the most engaging and informative way.

Not all hats fit the same. Video is no different.

There is a golden rule when integrating video into your marketing automation strategy: Timing and delivery matter. Companies need to deliver the right content to the right audience at the right time. Not all of your nurture streams go to the same audiences, so you need videos to fit each audience.

It doesn’t make sense to give a prospect an all-encompassing product demo if they’re merely interested in learning about what your business does. So make sure you have a video for every stage of the funnel.

Enhancing your event experiences

How can you use video to enhance your audiences’ event experiences? Use video to showcase product launches, speaking panels, and thought leadership while incorporating video into networking events and trade shows. These are perfect examples of ways businesses share their knowledge and expertise in a more personal, engaging way. If you want your next event’s attendees’ experience to be one they’ll remember, incorporate video into these three key areas.

Pre-Event Communications: Let’s say you’re hosting a stand-out, industry-centered event, but you’re having trouble reaching your registration count goals. Video can help by giving your audiences an engaging and thoughtful intro into what they should expect at your event. Giving them a taste of your event experience before it even happens will spark excitement and drive audiences to want to register or attend.

Speaker Sessions: Keynotes, panel discussions, educational workshops. These are the usual agenda items attendees look for when attending corporate events. Event marketers know that a slide deck and a charismatic speaker don’t always add up to what one would consider a compelling learning experience.

Adding video into your speaker sessions or presentations will give your audiences a more engaging learning experience that’s easy to understand, and it breaks up lengthy sessions with something exciting and creative. In a way, it wakes listeners up in between slides, which can make or break your presentation’s success.

Entertainment: For trade shows, video can pump your audiences up about your brand or new product. It’s loud, bold, and sure to grab attendees’ attention within a crowded environment or show floor. Think about adding looping video ads or product demos on screens around your business’s booth that will catch the eye of spectators and entertain those who choose to stop and take a look.

Also, think about bringing fun and inspiring video content into your product launch events. It will help maintain the launch’s excitement and pique your audience’s interest to want to learn more about the product and its features.

On-Demand Engagement: Live content, both in-person and online, is always a great way to capture viewers’ attention in the moment, but offering the content on-demand after the live sessions are over is invaluable. Building an on-demand video library of your event’s presentations allows viewers to catch content they may have missed because of another session or revisit a talk after the fact. Providing viewers with on-demand video content will enable them to go back and explore, learn, and immerse themselves even long after your event is over.

Video leads in every stage of the funnel

Let’s step out of what video can do to engage viewers on the surface and dive a little deeper into how it can be a holistic approach to reach buyers at every marketing funnel stage.

Here are a few ways that you can use video to generate higher volume and higher quality leads to close more business:

Awareness and Interest: The buyer journey’s awareness stage should be a time to introduce your business to the audience. Make consumers aware that your business, products, and services exist. Tell a story through engaging videos; explain who you are as a business and the challenges you help solve. These videos should reach audiences through targeted ads or paid and organic social media. Now is an important time to pay attention to how many views your content generates and what drives those visits. Understanding how, where, and when your audiences are watching videos will help your overall content delivery strategy and make the most of your video’s performance.

Consideration Evaluation: Most customers know the problem they’re trying to solve when in the consideration stage, and by this time, they’re evaluating solutions to alleviate specific pain points or challenges. Now’s your chance to prove that your products or services can help meet their needs and help drive business success. The most effective video content to help engage prospects in this stage of the funnel are product demos and how-to videos. They allow audiences to learn while elevating your brand and positioning it as an expert. You must understand who your viewers are in great detail at this point in the funnel. Audiences at this stage of the buyer journey will most likely be a genuine lead, and it’s essential to make sure you’re continuing the conversation beyond your content to find out more about their needs and how your business can help.

Purchase: After moving through the marketing funnel’s multiple stages, potential customers are well equipped with the information they need to understand how your products or services work. Before signing on the dotted line, many prospects want to know whether their investment in time and money is worth it. Now is the perfect opportunity to share customer success stories. Customer testimonial and use-case videos are the best way to show potential buyers that not only can you help them solve their problems, but that you also have a history of helping others just like them. Customer stories like these can be the difference between closing the deal and losing the sale.

Retain Customers: Marketers’ jobs don’t stop when the sale is complete. Ensuring customers get an in-depth understanding of how the product works, new features, and how to quickly resolve issues if they arise helps ensure that the customer remains a customer – and is easy to do with video.

Reach more audiences

When it comes to building an effective video marketing strategy, the first step is figuring out where video fits into your business; the second is finding the most effective, secure, and flawless way to deliver it.