Ever since the integration of video into social media, communication and other apps, its popularity has grown exponentially. Consumers these days resort to videos for more than just entertainment. It is the go-to medium for product demos, reviews, tutorials and much more.
According to data by statista, online videos in 2022 had a 93% audience reach among people on the internet world wide.
Not only do consumers prefer to learn about brands via video content, but they use it as a necessary tool in the information-gathering phase of their buyer’s journey. The trend isn’t limited to B2C markets- B2B sales have also followed suit as shown by a survey indicating 9/10 B2B buyers watched videos to learn about a product or service in the last 3 months.
Videos play a role across different decision-making stages when making a purchase decision. Forrester estimates that video content is 1,800 times more valuable than written content, and it makes sense as 60-80% of the people in the world are visual learners.
So how is video gaining prominence above all other forms of content when it comes to B2B sales? Let’s take a look.
Understanding Audience Preferences and Expectation for Video Consumption
While video continues to be the dominant form of content consumed by people, not all videos are created equally. When it comes to B2B sales, videos do well when they are crisp, personalized and prompt the audience to take action. Here are 4 things you need to understand about videos that work in B2B sales:
1. Long format is losing sheen
As evidenced by the rise in popularity of Instagram reels and TikTok videos that are no more than 30 seconds long, people have shorter attention spans than they did two decades ago. Consider the following graph that shows the average viewer abandonment rate by viewing time for videos:
If you don’t get the bulk of your message across in 30 seconds, you’ve already lost close to 35% of the audience. Drag the video to 90 seconds, and a little more than half of your viewers have dropped out. Considering the information overload on the internet these days, the decision maker you’re targeting won’t have the interest to sit and watch long explanatory videos.
2. Linear videos just won’t cut it anymore
Regardless of how informative or well-put together your video is, it won’t make the desired impact unless it can get the person to engage with it. Interactive videos are an excellent opportunity to get your prospects to take action and increase the degree of engagement. Interactive elements in your short videos can include:
- Polls and quizzes: to engage them with content using questions in the video.
- Branched stories: Gives your viewer the choice to pick their own path and decide what they want to watch next.
- Hotspots: Clickable areas in the videos that link to something else they might want to explore.
3. Personalization is the new way to connect with prospects
In a market that increasingly caters to the needs of the individual, people expect personalized interactions even at a business level to make important decisions. Personalized videos make people feel that the content is created for them and aims at providing the all-important human touch. Personalization is known to increase:
- Customer engagement
- Retention and conversion rates
- Customer loyalty and trust
- ROI with the target market
4. Videos no longer need to be production heavy
Professionally made marketing videos, especially the ones with big budgets, and actors that follow a script work well in the B2C segment. However when your aim is to personalize content for your B2B prospect, it helps to keep it as real as possible with the element of simplicity.
A message as basic as a 20 second clip from you saying, “Hey, I was driving by your office and wondered if you had a little time to connect? Let me know!” is way more compelling than a high-budget production.
How B2B Businesses can Adapt Strategies to Meet Consumer Expectations
Crafting a B2B video can be highly versatile and there’s plenty of room for creativity. Here are some of the strategies you can adapt to win at this game:
1. Create short videos at every stage of the sales process
Now that long videos are out of the picture and highly condensed snippets are the best plan of action you have, it’s important to use the videos at the right stage to deliver just enough information. That means you’ll create short videos at every stage of the sales process from the top of the funnel all the way to the middle and bottom. Here’s how it’s done:
- Content at the top of the funnel should be tailored around awareness and discovery which tell your prospects the “why” of using your products. Here the videos can bring attention to the pain points, offer solutions and establish the brand as a trustworthy resource.
- Video content at the middle of the funnel can focus on the solution as your prospects have defined their precise challenge and are actively looking for solutions. Here the videos can feature actionable checklists, guides and free trials.
- If your prospects have made it this far then these leads are ready for conversion. This is where your videos can help them make informed decisions.
2. Create customer testimonials videos and FAQs Videos
Video testimonials from loyal and happy customers are the new word of mouth in B2B sales. Testimonials act as social proof about your product and builds confidence in your prospects. While they might have their reservations about trusting the inside sales person, a testimonial from an existing user influences their purchasing decision profoundly.
FAQ videos answering the most common questions can be tailored around the specific use case of the leads. It is bound to be useful in the pre-discovery stage and speeds up their movement through the funnel.
3. Link to product demonstration videos
Product demonstration videos which are mostly screen share videos are needed at the consideration stage as your leads have already shown interest in purchase and are moving in that direction. The demo showcases how they can accomplish their desired solution while maintaining focus on the product. These videos can be a tad bit longer but keep it to the point and walk your leads through the action.
The key to successful product demos lies in understanding the requirements of the leads and offering your product as the solution to meet their needs. The demos have to tell a story they need to hear which reiterates what brought them to you in the first place.
4. Contextually personalize the videos
Contextual personalization increases the level of personalization down to specific actions they take on your inputs. It acts as a catalyst by providing nudges or prompts which are based on their behavior or interest in real time. For example, your prospect has just watched your video and you are notified about a linked case study that they opened as a result. Soon after you can send them a follow up video asking if the results in the case study are similar to what they need or if they’d like to discuss a similar requirement – this is the power of a contextually personalized video.
5. Leverage LinkedIn videos
LinkedIn’s reputation as a strictly professional B2B social media makes it the most reliable platform for B2B sales to reach decision makers in an organization. Replace the common text-heavy LinkedIn InMails and send across a video so you can build REAL relationships.
B2B sellers would be leaving money on the table by not exploring alternate channels such as Instagram and TikTok. Although relatively new to the social media scene, TikTok took the world by storm by making it easy to create and share short videos and snippets. After LinkedIn, 28% of marketers agree that TikTok is the second most popular platform for video content as it appeals to the younger crowds. B2B TikTok videos can include introduction videos, workspace tours, success stories and meet the team snippets.
7. Incorporate videos into less penetrated industries
Video selling can work like a charm even in some of the oldest industries such as real estate, finance and insurance. The tried and tested methods of sales in these domains can use a little of the trendy touch to add an element of novelty. Sales agents in all the three industries can improve their game by connecting with their prospects using highly personalized videos that build trust. It is especially useful as prospects are awfully coy when it comes to trusting new sales people. Videos can be included in industries such as:
Insurance: Recent 5-star customer reviews, latest company news and even an introduction video of the sales agent.
Real estate: Crisp videos of the property and surroundings, testimonials of customers delighted with their purchase.
Finance: Videos for customer onboarding and customer testimonials.
Video elements that help you stay ahead of the curve in 2023
Your video is only as good as the tool that was used to create it. With a video hosting platform like Hippo Video, you have the versatility to create sales-worthy snippets in a matter of minutes. Here are some of the features that are sure to set your videos apart:
1. Humanize AI
If you are prospecting dozens of people at a time then you can benefit from a feature that generates multiple personalized videos from a single clip. Record one video and the AI takes over to generate multiple videos at scale based on the attributes of different prospects. So instead of spending hours creating personalized videos for all, you can have hundreds of humanized videos ready to launch in minutes.
2. Video Analytics
Video analytics is a reliable way to understand the performance of your video with the audience. The tool gives you an insight into viewer engagement in terms of numbers such as views, shares, watch rate, length of views, reactions and other essential metrics. With the detailed reports in real time you can prioritize the most qualified leads and close deals faster.
3. Pre-built templates
Creating engaging videos can take time, especially for new salespeople who are just learning the ropes. Hippo’s pre-built templates can save a lot of time and effort by helping them record, edit and share personalized videos on the go.
4. Video Workflows
With video workflows you can create and stitch personalized intros with pre-recorded segments to generate new videos. The flow remains natural and the pitch is consistent while greatly reducing production time. You can choose from existing templates for different stages of the sales process instead of recording individual videos every time.
Examples of videos that are successful in the 2023 environment
1. Interactive videos
SAP released a video on the importance of customer engagement in the new experience economy. Although the video retains characteristics of the typical explainer video, it contains interaction hotspots subtly placed throughout for people who wish to learn more.
2. Personalized videos
This video by Nike from 2015 shows how powerful personalization can be in motivating people and creating a strong impression of how much the brand cares about every customer. The video is a recap of Chelsea’s year as a runner made by collecting her data sporting her milestones. The emotional video is meant to motivate her to go further and faster.
Videos have been the mainstay of content on the internet and will continue to dominate for the foreseeable future. Now that you understand the reasoning for using different types of videos, you are ready to apply them for different stages of your sales process. With Hippo Video, you can greatly simplify and scale the process of video production and close more deals. With a little creativity thrown into the mix, there’s no limit to how far you can flex the capabilities of this medium!