If you want a surefire way to engage your business’ audience, you go with video content. That’s the way things go nowadays, and it’s pretty much accepted — and leveraged — by most marketers across all industries.
However, successful video marketing takes much more than just producing pretty-looking pieces, although that’s also a big part of it. Ask any skilled video company out there, and they’ll all tell you the same thing: for your video content to succeed, there needs to be intent behind it.
And that’s doubly so in a B2B environment, where purchase decisions revolve much less around emotion and more around careful appraisal.
In this piece, we are going to talk a bit about video content-powered conversion funnels, and the types of videos you can use to nurture leads at each stage.
Let’s get to it, shall we?
The Awareness Stage — Subtle but Purposeful
The awareness stage of your conversion funnel is all about putting your service on your potential buyers’ radars.
You are looking to get your foot in the door and make first-contact without pushing too hard, and it so happens that there are a couple of video types that are perfect for that.
Educational content should always be your first step to introduce other businesses to your service and, hopefully, get them into your funnel. However, do keep in mind that they can be a double-edged sword if handled poorly.
These videos are very versatile, and you can approach them in a variety of ways, from lengthy one-shots to recurrent series. But it is because of that versatility that some companies end up struggling with this type of content.
Which topics should you cover? What attitude should you tackle them with? How much content should you produce?
These are good questions, but the answers will vary from company to company and service to service. A good rule of thumb, though, is to focus on quality over quantity. Produce in-depth videos around topics your prospective clients will be interested in, and you’ll be on the right track every time.
Lastly, remember that your ultimate goal at this stage is to generate awareness around your brand and service! You aren’t trying to sell yet, but establish your company as a reliable and knowledgeable figure in your niche.
Think of how-tos as a subset of educational videos, but operating on a somewhat diametrically opposed way that grants them an entry of their own.
How-tos have their own particular structure and language, usually covering a single defined process and how to carry it out following a step-by-step format. While regular educational videos are all about establishing you as an authority on a subject, how-tos are more about providing immediate practical value to the viewers.
The key for these is to make punchy tutorials with a clear premise and a simple execution, covering processes relevant to your target audience while avoiding the trappings of focusing solely on your platform or service.
Yes, having a few how-tos on how your service works is a great idea. But if we are talking about the awareness stage, you also want to tackle topics adjacent to your direct service, broadening your chances of attracting new leads to your funnel and brand.
The Consideration Stage — Efficient and Well Defined
Things get interesting in the consideration stage, which is arguably the most difficult to get just right when it comes to lead nurturing.
You want your prospect to know your service can address their pressure point and solve it better than anybody else out there, but you can’t appear desperate or push too hard for a sell.
Here are two types of videos that were literally designed to accomplish exactly that:
Explainer videos are one of the best tools at your disposal during the consideration stage to nurture leads into later stages of your funnel.
They are short, engaging and most importantly, entertaining pieces that describe your service’s inner workings and benefits it brings along, without coming off as too "salesy” — something you want to avoid at this stage.
The secret to awesome explainers is narrative. The combination of meaningful visuals with entertaining stories does wonders to give permanence to your brand, foster confidence in your platform and do so in a memorable enough way to stay with prospects as they move to the decision-making stage.
Do keep in mind that, as important as going over your service's details is, you also need to ensure the finished piece is highly targeted to its intended audience and, subtly but effectively, branded to your company so they know who to look up when it’s time.
A bit more on the traditional side, a well-made product video continues to be a fantastic way to capture prospects in the consideration stage of their journey.
It is at this stage that most decision-makers will be looking for details on how your service works and what it can actually bring to the table, so product videos are a natural fit.
The important thing to notice is that even though these videos remain a staple of this stage, their format and distribution have changed radically.
Depending on the given service and its target audience, product videos will look dramatically different. While a social communications app service should lean into showcasing the interaction enjoyment aspect of it, an industry-specific solution’s platform would probably need a much more technical and functional approach.
Lastly, while the style of your piece should adapt to your audience, its distribution will look pretty much the same across the board.
For a B2B company, this usually means using a version of your product video for social media ads, powering your email campaigns with it and featuring it prominently on your service's site.
The Decision Stage — Bringing it Home
If you have been doing your job right, most of the heavy lifting has been taken care of by the time your prospects arrive at this stage.
Your target business knows who you are, knows about your service and its benefits and are already thinking about you as a viable or even ideal alternative. So, your content here should be all about dealing with those last-minute resistances that are keeping them from committing to a deal.
To cap it all off, let’s talk a bit about testimonial videos.
To be honest, you are spoiled for choice at this stage of the conversion funnel — company story videos, live streams, FAQs — but testimonials take the cake if I have to choose just one, and for good reason.
Even though you are in the B2B business, at the end of the day, purchase choices come from other humans. Customer testimonials allow you to bypass somewhat that innate perceived bias that your prospects naturally have about the quality you claim your service has.
Prominently displaying satisfied customers singing praises about your service, will do much more to assuage doubts and motivate purchase action from your prospects than you ever could. That said, you have to do it right.
Don’t use actors! No matter what, always use real customers. Also, develop your interview questionnaire ahead of time and send it to the interviewees before shooting. This lets them know the areas you’ll be speaking about and will result in a much more organic and natural attitude from them.
Lastly, don’t bury your testimonials deep within your site. To get the most out of them, you need to make them readily available to anyone who might be interested in your service.
As we mentioned at the beginning, when it comes to video marketing, intent is paramount.
Don’t get me wrong; quality is also terribly important. After all, these pieces will serve as a reflection of the quality of your service in the eyes of potential customers! But to get the most out of your strategy and have the most effect in nurturing leads, you need to use the right tool for each objective.
Hopefully, after reading this far, you now understand the basics of how to do exactly that, to build a powerful lead nurturing funnel powered by the right videos at each stage!
So, what are you waiting for? Time to start producing that video your company has been waiting for!
Victor Blasco’s an audiovisual designer, video marketing expert and founder/CEO of the explainer video company Yum Yum Videos. Besides running the business, he’s a lifelong student of Chinese philosophy and a passionate geek for all things sci-fi.