In my discussions with marketers about their content plans and lead generation strategies, I find that many ask generalities about the video production process, yet don’t inquire about the actual role of video in the B2B sales and marketing food chain. This is why I want to share with you what I believe are the top three questions marketers should be asking of themselves, their teams and their video marketing specialist in order to develop content with impact:

Q1: What kind of video content will best engage, nurture and convert my targeted audience?

The answer to this is simple. Ask yourself, “what stage is my target audience at in the buying cycle?” and then create content accordingly. If you’re trying to get the attention of first-time web visitors who came there via a PPC campaign, or if it’s the first email in a marketing automation campaign that sent them to a custom landing page, you need to impress! The content should be as engaging as a movie trailer designed to drive fans into theaters. Your investment in such a video will be higher, so reserve it for a brand launch or a major product upgrade, then use it for the long-haul.

If your video is meant to nurture viewers who are farther along in the buying cycle, then you’ll have to converse with them for a longer period. In this case, your content’s purpose is to provide them with the resources and details they’re asking for at this stage, and you don’t have to be as concerned with the sizzle factor to capture their attention.

Q2: How can I create a video I know will have an impact on my sales and marketing goals?

Since video production is like making a short movie, it can inspire everyday business professionals to think like Hollywood directors. This is a great thing because the best ideas come from thinking outside the box. However, when it comes to making a video that will both fit into your budget and have an impact on your sales and marketing goals, the trick is to make it interesting while still keeping it in-line with the strategy of the other collateral in your campaign. You don’t have to shoot down original ideas that could perform well in a video, just ensure they’re in step with your brand’s style and campaign theme.

Q3: How can I show a solid ROI with the videos I produce?

Unless you have a celebrity lineup akin to The Fast and the Furious, or the cutest baby on the planet laughing in a viral segment, your video is not going to gain a huge audience on its own. We live in a world where most video content is still measured on the number of YouTube views. However, in the case of B2B video, numbers don’t matter as much as the relevant audience demographics—namely, the prospects who engage with your content and take the next steps of interacting with your brand. In other words, don’t measure the success of your video based solely on the number of views it receives. Instead, focus on creating a distribution plan for your video that is synchronized with your overall content strategy and delivers the right message to the right prospect at the right time in their buying cycle.

Look at these things to determine if your B2B video content is effectively moving the needle:

— How well it improves the experience and stickiness factor of your web visitors

— Whether it increases the engagement and conversion of already interested prospects, such as social media followers

— The growth in response rates to your sales team’s outbound calls when prospects receive video as follow-up content in a multi-touch lead generation campaign

— The level of engagement and performance of email marketing or marketing automation campaigns when video is featured

— The number of top-of-the-funnel leads that get pushed deeper into the pipeline

—A rise in conversion rates with paid media like PPC or boosted social media posts

These are just a sampling of metrics that can be employed to justify the use of video to a bottom-line focused upper management team. If you have an internal metrics or audit list to measure sales and marketing investments – you’ll receive the highest ROI from your video investments if you align its performance with the criteria already in place with your organization.

This post originally appeared on the Smart Video Marketing blog.