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The 2018 State Of
Video Marketing

Humanizing B2B Brands With Videos On Social Media, In Webinars

2017 may have been dubbed the “year of video marketing,” but video has yet to reach its full potential. In 2018 and beyond, B2B marketers are and will be taking greater steps to deliver authentic and just downright cool video content that engages buyers on a human level.

Cisco has found that more than 80% of Internet traffic will be video by 2020, while Demand Gen Report’s 2018 Content Preferences Study revealed 49% of buyers prefer video as a content format.

Video is no longer a “nice to have” for B2B businesses, it has become an integral part of their overall marketing strategy. According to Forbes, almost 90% of digital marketers are already using video as part of their online marketing strategy.
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This special report will dive into new trends in video and share how B2B companies are humanizing their brands by creating unique video experiences for customers, prospects and even general audiences, including:
  • How new social media capabilities, such as Instagram’s IGTV, and a rise in LinkedIn videos are proving to make an impact on video marketing efforts, and how companies such as MACK Trucks and even individual marketers are putting them to good use;
  • How blending videos into webinars can generate greater engagement from viewers; and
  • The four stages of creating trustworthy and authentic videos.
“The main thing for video is that it allows for the humanization of marketing. You can't hide behind agency-only created videos. It just allows any individual in a company with the face and a personality — which we all have — to get out there and actually start to target the accounts and the brands that we’re trying to reach. It’s the combination of that visualization and humanization that really drives the impact that the video can have.”

Michael Brenner, CEO, Marketing Insider Group

“Video is more flexible than ever before. I guess if there were one word I’d use to describe its role in B2B … it would be: PERVASIVE.”

Ann Handley, Chief Content Officer, MarketingProfs

“I think video continues to rise for a bunch of different reasons. Certainly, for a long time, there’s the capability for video after years of not having the bandwidth, not having a mobile plan or technical capability. I think we’re past that and video is a real and present thing in all devices with a screen.”

Rebecca Lieb, Analyst and Founding Partner, Kaleido Insights

“Shorter, shorter and shorter. Every year I think there is no way the average B2B video can get shorter ... and it gets shorter again. It’s staggering what an impact video length has on consumption. It is extraordinary. So, every time you think you should do a six-minute video, no, you should do a two-minute video.”

Jay Baer, President, Convince & Convert

Video Marketing
By The Numbers

0 %

of buyers prefer video as a content format.
Source: Demand Gen Report

0 %

of companies will use video for marketing purposes in 2018, compared to 63% in 2017.
Source: Wyzowl

0 %

of users said they would share a branded video with their friends if it were entertaining.
Source: Vidyard

0 %

of marketers say video has helped their company increase sales.
Source: Wyzowl

0 X

Those using advanced analytics were 2x as likely to report that returns on their video investment are improving.
Source: Vidyard

0 %

of individuals have purchased a product or service after watching a video.
Source: Wyzowl

POP QUIZ: Video Consumption Preferences

A New Wave Of Social Media Videos

Video on social media is not new, but experts agree that new capabilities on platforms like Instagram and LinkedIn are allowing marketers to engage with social media followers on a deeper level and in a more human way.

According to Ann Handley, Chief Content Officer at MarketingProfs, Facebook Live, Instagram’s IGTV, video social posts to promote written content and other tools are all ways to “use video to market your marketing and put a human, accessible face on a B2B brand.”

Social Spotlight: Instagram IGTV

What is it?

Launched in June 2018, IGTV is a new app “for watching long-form, vertical video from Instagram creators,” according to Instagram. It allows creators to host vertical videos on their “channels,” but unlike videos on stories (which max out at 15 seconds) and as actual posts (which max out at 60 seconds), IGTV episodes can go up to an hour in length.
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Case In Point

Mack trucks launched a series called RoadLifeTV that features videos and complementing content that share inspiring stories of men and women keeping the world moving with Mack trucks. For the eight-part series, Mack’s small team of storytellers visited 32 cities within a span of 136 days to showcase a behind-the-scenes look at life on the road. The videos are presented on Amazon Prime Video and on a content hub, but Mack posts them on its IGTV channel as they premiere. This provides viewers with easy access to the content right at their fingertips, on the go.

KEY TAKEAWAY

While your videos may live in a content hub or YouTube channel, repurposing them for social channels like IGTV present more opportunities to increase views.
Videos on LinkedIn are quickly becoming a staple for B2B marketers. In fact, research from Wyzowl shows that 38% of marketers share video content on LinkedIn, and three-quarters of them reported it to be a successful tactic. In addition, 55% said they would continue, or start, in 2018.

“I think there’s solid evidence that we’re starting to see a pretty good movement behind video, especially in B2B,” said Michael Brenner, CEO of Marketing Insider Group. “I really think that LinkedIn has actually helped to spur that on with their big push into live video on their own platform. I’m definitely seeing evidence of brands finally listening to the call and the opportunities that video has presented and I think LinkedIn has really led the way.”

However, LinkedIn video opportunities shouldn’t be a company-branded strategy. While businesses can post videos on their company pages, some B2B marketers are taking the task on themselves on their own profiles. For example, Randy Frisch, CMO of Uberflip, often publishes selfie videos of himself on LinkedIn to promote events, new content and overall company culture.
“LinkedIn video is extraordinary,” said Jay Baer, President of Convince & Convert. “Randy, CMO of Uberflip, does a consistent LinkedIn video program every day and it’s remarkably strong and super successful. I’m seeing LinkedIn video outperforming Facebook video substantially.”

Incorporate Videos Into Webinars
For Greater Engagement

Companies such as Content4Demand, a B2B content strategy and creative agency, have taken their webinars to new heights by turning them into video streams or panels rather than simply using audio and slides. This form of video content allows companies to put a face behind their brands during the webinar session and make it more engaging for viewers. “We’ve done this for a few of our webinars and it was extremely successful,” said Dana Harder, VP of Strategy at Content4Demand.

“Sometimes people lose sight of the fact that there are real people speaking behind the webinar screen, so actually showing our faces as we share our insights and experiences makes it more personable — like we’re having a live brainstorming or planning session with our attendees,” she continued. “It just makes it more interesting, especially when coupled with a few relevant slides touting images or data points you want to drive home.”

If live video streams are not in the cards for your company, adding videos to slides still adds another level of eye-catching content to basic audio. Harder explains that including a video or two to break up the presentation will help grab viewer attention.

“Adding video clips or segments to the traditional speaker and slide webinar experience helps shake things up a bit,” she said. “People tend to multitask with this format — listening to a webinar while they check email or do some quick tasks. So, adding a video clip or two will capture their attention and make the experience more interesting. Adding video is an effective way to showcase real-life examples or reaffirm the key points or best practices you’re trying to spotlight. They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but videos are worth a million.”

Ready to get started adding video elements to your webinars?

Harder shared some quick tips to help kick things off:

1

Do a quick gut check of your past webinar performance

What worked, what didn’t work and what topics/tactics resonated the most?

2

Determine whether video/live streaming is something your buyers want

Do you have the tech/tools to support this?

3

Find ways to leverage
past successes

Figure out what worked well in the past and augment it with video.

4

Experiment with different approaches

Instead of having one or two people talking to the screen, incorporate b-roll or segments of slides so it’s a more diverse and memorable experience.

5

Consider trying Q&A format webinars or live panels

Trying these different formats/models will give you a lot of metrics to look at, so you can see what approach really resonates with your audience. Although mixing it up once in a while definitely doesn’t hurt!

4 Stages Of A Confident Video Strategy

Videos are much like handshakes, according to Amy Landino, YouTuber, Podcaster, Author and Marketing Consultant of Vlog Boss Studios. During her presentation at Uberflip’s Conex event, Landino shared insights from a 2012 University of Illinois study, which found that a “handshake preceding a social interaction enhanced the positive impact of approach and diminished the negative impact of avoidance behavior on evaluation of that social interaction.”

“[A handshake] is the best thing you can do to make a positive first impression in real life with another human being,” said Landino. “You’re also simultaneously diminishing anything negative they will be thinking about you because of that openness. [The study] also found that you are more inclined to have that person further interact with you.”

That’s why Landino said “ignoring video in your content strategy is that missed handshake of 2018 and far beyond.”
“Not only are you not taking the opportunity to build that relationship with your potential community and your existing community, you’re sending them away to the brands that are doing this consistently and making a major impact, offering that experience and making that first impression,” she continued. “Let’s not miss that opportunity.”

But don’t let your video be a “sweaty” or “dead fish” handshake. It must be a “confident handshake.”

“What we do want is a strong, confident video,” said Landino. “One that feels warm, honest, trustworthy and confident. One that looks like it’s authentic; it’s advocating for the brand; it’s relevant both in content for the audience and in its calls to action.”

Here are Landino’s four stages of a confident video:

“Context is everything; it will make or break your content every single time,” said Landino. “You have to consider where it’s going and why in your strategy before you start. You have to choose your channel and you have to be able to sustain it.”
“The consistency is extremely important — you can’t just say, ‘Let’s give this a go and upload one episode,’” she said. “Consistency isn’t just in schedule, it’s in everything that we do, where are we, what we talk about, how we open every episode, what we do to be consistent with our brand in order for people to get excited and become those lifelong advocates and tune into every episode that comes out.”
Landino follows a formula that includes a subject-first mentality, loyalty treatment, an eight-second rule and content branding.

  • Subject First — “When you think about subject first, think about who this person is and how they are going to get us through this video. Don’t wait too long to present the subject.”
  • Eight-Second Rule — “You have eight seconds for a YouTube viewer alone to say, ‘Hmm, I think I’ll stay.’ That’s why you want the subject first and to really dig in as quickly as possible with them because if they’re going to make a decision at the eight-second mark, do you still want to be talking about yourselves? Probably not.”
  • Loyalty Treatment — “The idea of loyalty treatment is that you are focused on this individual [the viewer] like they’ve been watching you for years. By doing that, you’re probably less likely to introduce yourself, read your title, talk about the company, etc. So, you’re continuing to work on the eight-second rule to make the video as effective as possible, so they will stay for the duration.”
  • Content Branding — “Have the branding in context of the video — can you wear the logo on your shirt? Can you use lower thirds to display? Can you put your name in the lower third? Can you use the environment around you?”
“You have to know exactly who you’re talking to — you should know this from the very beginning. When you’re looking at the lens of a camera, it’s about who you’re talking to, not the fact that it’s a lens of a camera.”

CONCLUSION

Experts agree that video is here to stay, but in order to stand out from the crowd, your videos must have a human element that’s authentic and on brand. Whether you’re publishing video strictly for social, or launching live video webinars, it’s important to have a strategy in place and to stick to it as creating one-off videos won’t have the same effect. Finally, don’t be afraid to find inspiration from B2C brands.

“In B2B, sometimes marketers still think that it’s businesses that buy from us when it’s actually real people,” said Brenner. “One of the things that we can learn from consumer brands is just to be more human, a little bit more informal and more relaxed. I think B2B brands are learning from the consumer world and seeing a lot of success, especially in the video format because it’s so personal and it can be very emotionally engaging if it’s done well.”
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Demand Gen Report (DGR), a division of G3 Communications, is a targeted online publication that spotlights the strategies and solutions that help B2B companies better align sales, marketing and disparate teams to support growth and drive revenue. DGR content and news coverage focuses on the sales and marketing tools and technologies that enable companies to better measure and manage multichannel demand generation efforts. Demand Gen Report is the only information source directly focused on this rapidly emerging business discipline.
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Klaudia Tirico

Features Editor

Klaudia Tirico is a retail & B2B marketing journalist, Jersey dweller, animal lover, and fashion + beauty aficionado with interests in all things related to content, social media and influencer marketing.
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