B2B companies still have an advantage when it comes to online video. Most B2B companies are slow to adopt video. Those that do use video tend to use it wrong. Creating one or two videos to promote your company is a waste of money. Successful B2B companies that create a video sales funnel are able to shorten the sales cycle and strengthen their pipeline. A video sales funnel should be combined with your content marketing strategy. Most companies create videos only for awareness. When they don’t get any sales, they quit because they think this process doesn’t work. What they don’t realize is, when done properly, not only does a videos sales funnel lead to more sales, but it provides a way to upsell and sell more products and services after the first sale. This process will also work for B2C companies.
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What is a video sales funnel?
A video funnel is a series of videos that leads viewers through the sales process from learning about your brand through the purchase process. Most B2B products and services are not impulse buys. It takes time to slowly build a relationship and trust with a prospect. First, is learning about your product. We’ll call this step ‘awareness.’ Next, they consider your product. Step 3 is they make a decision and, finally, you retain them as a client. There are different theories on how many parts there are to this funnel. I think you need a funnel with at least 4 parts. I think the most effective funnels have 7 or 8 steps. For the sake of this article, we are going to stick with 4 to keep things simple to help you increase B2B sales with video.
Video supercharges you funnel
You can create a sales funnel without video but video creates higher engagement and builds relationships with prospects faster. I can’t tell you how many times I have walked into a sales meeting and the people in the room had watched our videos and make some kind of comment about how they felt they knew me because they had watched my videos.
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Sales Funnel Vs Buyer’s Journey
There is also some discussion about sales funnel vs buyer’s journey. The discussion is around the idea that a sales funnel is company focused and the buyer’s journey is customer focused. I think focusing on the buyer is important and should be the preferred way to think about this system for video creation. I recommend calling the funnel you create a buyer’s journey. It is a good mind shift that sets you up as a helper because people are looking for helpers. Those companies that grow the fastest in this process approach their content with a servant attitude, which is also important for putting the customer first.
Know your buyer
Knowing who you are talking to is very important. This means the more research you do about your buyer, the better. Even if you have a wide target audience, the more you can focus the buyer’s journey on a unique group of people and the problem they have as it relates to your product, the more effective your videos will be.
Create the right type of content
Each stage of the journey requires the right video to move the buyer to the next stage. Let’s break down each of the 4 steps a little more.
- Awareness in this stage, you create content that makes people aware of your solution and, in some cases, more aware of their problem. This can be done with many different types of video content. The most popular is ‘how to’ also called educational content. But you can also use content that contains the entertains or inspires it just depends on your buyer and what they will respond best to. A great way to stay top of mind is through weekly thought leader video content some might call this a vlog.
- Consideration the buyer starting to get clear of their problem and now getting closer to solving it. You can talk more about your company at this stage of the process. But the information still needs to put them in the center. They are looking at all of their options. Some of the types of videos you can use at this stage is Explainer videos, Promotional videos, brand videos, live video, or a webinar. A quick note about animated explainer videos many companies try to use these videos in the awareness stage of the buyer’s journey, and they are not as effective in this stage the other problem with these videos they are not good for humanizing your company I only recommend using them if you have a solution that is hard to explain.
- Decision – this is a seller’s favorite part of the process. At this stage, they know what you have to offer them. So this is where you need to build trust this is a great spot for a testimonial video, demonstration videos, product video, process video and about us video.
- Retention – Now you want to keep them as satisfied customers and introduce them to your other solutions. Some of the types of video that work at this stage are Quickstart tutorial videos, thank you video, thought leadership, How-to and do
Web Videos created in this stage need to be what is called thumbstopable. It needs to be of enough interest to stop scrolling in their social media feed to watch the video. With the internet, the first few seconds of your videos matter the most. You need to start strong. I see lots of companies waisted time with logos or long introductions at the beginning of their videos.
The more you can get all the social media platforms to work together, the better. So, you might start by engaging them on LinkedIn. Move them to a landing page where you can now retarget them on another platform. I know this is an article about video and social media but also consider combining all of this with TV advertising or OTT service to help reach a new audience at the beginning of the journey and get them into your sales funnel on social media.
Retargeting is the ability to send more videos to those who have already watched one of your videos. This is the most powerful tool you have in your buyers’ journey on sites like Facebook. Yes, I just said Facebook. Many B2B companies pass up Facebook because they don’t think of it as a place for B2B sales. They think LinkedIn will be better for them and that may be true but 99% of the B2B companies benefit from a Facebook campaign especially a retargeting campaign.
Let’s say I am looking to hire a new CPA for my business, and I watch one of your videos you can set up a tracking pixel so that if they are signed into Facebook you can retarget them on Facebook. Google and LinkedIn also have retargeting capabilities that you should consider. You can also retarget after the sale to stay top of mind of those who have already made a purchase from you. Video is powerful for retargeting because you can retarget based on how much of your video they watched. Try that with a white paper.
Make sure you have a way to track people use an email marketing platform, CMS, social media tools, analytics combined with a video player that allows you to track who is watching your video. All of these systems working together will give you the information you need to make sure your campaigns are working properly and alert your salespeople when it is time for them to get involved in the process.
Professional video vs Do it yourself
Not all of this video needs to be professional but the more professional the better. You need to tow that line between authentic and cinematic. A personalized video from a salesperson can be recorded from a webcam or smartphone. A company introduction video needs to look professional. A webinar would be another example of a video that could be recorded with a webcam.
A video funnel is the most complicated of all the funnels. Not only do you need the right funnel strategy you need the right videos and then you need the right scripts. Finally, you need the right images. This takes a video marketing strategist who has experience not just with social media but knows how to make a video. A lot of companies try to figure out which videos would be best on their own or they hire a video editor. But a video editor isn’t a marketer or a creative director.
Successful business short cut the process by consulting with an expert to guide them through the process. The internet is overflowing with videos that no one watches. Spend the money on the right strategy and the right videos to get the right results. Video always costs more than you realize but those that take leap are growing faster than everyone else.
For more information on video and the B2B sales funnel, check out this infographic from Brainshark.