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How to make video the centrepiece of your B2B marketing campaign

Have you climbed on board the video marketing train yet? B2B companies are under increasing pressure to produce online video, from video testimonials and tutorial videos to brand culture videos and product reviews.

Why, well there’s a lot of compelling evidence suggesting that online video marketing should be a major focus of your marketing strategy.

Here’s what the experts say:

Cisco predicts it would take an individual over 5 million years to watch the amount of video that will cross global IP (computer) networks each month in 2017. Every second, nearly a million minutes of video content will cross the network that year.

1.8 Million Words: that’s the value of one minute of video, according to Dr. James McQuivey of Forrester Research.

And the market for online video? 45.4% of the world's population view at least one video online every month, according to comScore, which measures online engagement.

A growth of 42% in the amount of time spent spent watching online videos in the UK coupled with increased PR awareness about the potential of video marketing has led to real innovation and development in corporate video production. Gone are the days when stodgy or cheesy were the corporate video norms. These days companies make highly entertaining and very focused B2B videos. As a result, video has now been proven to establish a closer relationship between customer and brand and that’s why it is increasingly becoming the centrepiece of a marketing campaign.

So if you aren’t already on this train, how do you get on? When creating a B2B online video marketing campaign, there are a few things to consider.

Video is another communication channel and one that complements most others. Therefore you should approach any video campaign in the same way you would approach any other B2B marketing communications campaign.

Just as with any campaign, it is vital to start by deciding who your video campaign is aimed at. Then you can decide the tone of your whole campaign and therefore of your video.

If the video is the centrepiece of your campaign, then it should be the first thing you work on. It is critical that you plan your video content to include short key take-aways that will benefit the viewer. These take-aways can then be linked to and used in other parts of the campaign. For example, if your call-to-action is to visit your website, then include links to the same landing page in your e-shot of social media promotion of the video.

Visuals in a B2B video need to be fantastic and if you want it to go viral then you need a creative, unusual idea – one that isn’t too corporate nor too cheesy. The visuals can then be reflected across the whole campaign.

When it comes to on-demand video content, shorter is better. Most experts will tell you that studies show viewer retention tends to drop off around the 60 second to two-minute mark. But does that necessarily mean that all of your marketing videos need to stick to a 120-second cut-off?   Probably, but not necessarily.  For example, according to ReelSEO, the average length of the top 10 most shared global video ads is 4 minutes 11 seconds, which helps prove that if your content is compelling, people will spend more time watching it.

As video-viewing habits change, it is vital that your video is suitable for both small and traditional sized screens. Nearly 25% of internet usage is via mobile and tablet devices and a good proportion of that is taken up by video watching. To maximise results from your campaign, make sure that your audience can watch your video, regardless of their location or device.

Recently, video content has also become easier and less costly to produce. It is now quite affordable to work with a specialist broadcast company to create your marketing video and then promote it through a multi-channel campaign. Working with a specialist company, particularly if this is your first video campaign, can provide you with invaluable guidance on how to get your message across sufficiently, and include an appropriate call to action. They can also help you to track and monitor viewer retention for all your video content. For example, if most people are leaving before viewing at least 80% of your videos, you need to tighten things up and re-work your messaging.

Slowly, B2B marketers are taking advantage of the huge potential of online video content - in 2013 76% of communications professionals prioritised developing video content over Facebook, Twitter and blog integration. If you aren’t already, it’s time to get on this train.