In today’s increasingly competitive marketplace, video has emerged as a popular and powerful marketing tool to help digital marketers drive site traffic, increase organic SERP rankings and boost their overall marketing ROI. This is because video resonates with people, and search engines, more effectively than traditional marketing mediums like physical print and digital banner ads.
A video, when well-produced, can help B2B marketers break through the communication challenges that accompany acquiring new customers by creating stronger engagements with them. Producing highly polished and professional quality content also helps brand owners build legitimacy and appear as industry leaders in their respective space.
However, despite the power of video, not all corporate videos are created equally. To be effective and cut through the noise, marketers need to weigh a variety of factors when producing a video to ensure it will engage viewers, align with an overall marketing plan, fit a brand’s identity and deliver an action.
In the following sections, we’ll explore some of the most effective current video production best practices and discuss how marketers can use them to their advantage. These practices should be applied to all types of corporate marketing videos including testimonials, company or product introductions, animated explainers, etc.
Know Your Target Viewers and Audience
Many corporate marketing teams are often so eager to jump from video concept to production that they miss the first, all-important step -- defining key elements of their target viewers and audiences. By establishing the identity of a target audience up front, marketers can develop more effective video content to reach specific types of viewers. Collecting and analyzing a wide range of information about your target viewer, like where they stand in your customer acquisition funnel, also aids in developing content that will help them progress to the next stage by encouraging them to take action.
Photo by Campaign Creators
These actions could include signing up for a newsletter, completing a customer contact form, requesting additional information, or even a product demonstration. Whatever the action is, tailoring your content will help increase the likelihood of that action being taken by a viewer.
Below are some of the more critical factors to consider when building a clear and concise picture of your video’s target viewer:
- Geographic location, especially for multi-national organizations
- Current level of knowledge about the topic or product
- General viewer demographics such as age, gender and interests
- General persona demographics such as company position and technical aptitude
- Where they stand in the sales process and/or acquisition funnel
Beginning with this vital first step helps marketers tailor content and messaging to best reach their target viewers and audiences. For many B2B marketers, this is the most challenging component because often times product owners feel that their products can touch multiple audiences, which they most likely do.
The key in most cases, for promotional video content, is to focus on the types of customers that will generate the most revenue for the brand or product line you are trying to promote, and tailor your content to them, not everyone. While it’s true that your products most likely touch a wide range of customer persona types, it’s critical that you focus on a specific viewer type and what’s most important to that customer segment.
Develop A Script or Storyline with Clear Messaging That's On-Brand
In addition to incorporating information about your target viewers into your video content development, it’s also vital to maintain clear messaging in your video that’s aligned with how your brand or product is positioned. Some of the best practices to use when developing a video script for use in corporate marketing videos include:
- Using a messaging platform to guide the scripting
- Developing a concise script that delivers value to the viewer
- Having the script vetted prior to production or narration recording
- Testing the script on employees not associated with the project
When developing a good video script or storyline, it’s also important to keep in mind people’s attention spans. In most cases, shorter, more impactful videos that provide a clear message have a higher chance of engaging with an audience.
Photo by Brad Neathery
However, in some cases, longer video content is absolutely fine; it really just depends on who the target viewer is and what the purpose of the video is for the viewer. For example, if it’s a tech support video that’s providing step-by-step instructions on how to resolve a common issue, then the duration of the video shouldn’t be an issue as long as it resolves the viewer’s issue.
Invest in Professional Video Production
Most companies don’t have the luxury of having an in-house video production team, especially one that’s capable of doing both video and animation. When it comes to developing any marketing tool the quality of the production will play a big factor in how your brand is perceived by the people that engage it. This holds especially true with video because you’re engaging with people at a much deeper level and now have to account for what they might be seeing, hearing and possibly reading on-screen.
Partnering with a professional video production company will help ensure that you deliver high-quality content from a production standpoint, but it might not necessarily guarantee your video will be a success. Your videos success will be heavily dependent on the script or storyline you develop and the distribution plan you put in place to promote your video. A professional full-service video marketing agency should be able to help you with both the production side of things as well as the pre-production strategy and post-production distribution.
Choose the Right Video Hosting Platforms
When it comes to video hosting platforms there’s quite a few options out there. Often times, marketers will put their videos up on YouTube or Vimeo and call it good. While we do encourage everyone to put their videos on both of these hosting platforms, especially for organic growth, we also encourage marketers to explore other video hosting platform options such as Wistia.
Hosting your videos on multiple platforms will allow you to better monitor the effectiveness of your video. For example, by embedding a video hosted on Wistia on your website, you’ll be able to easily separate the viewers who watched your video on your website versus your YouTube channel.
If you embed your YouTube video everywhere, you’ll have a much harder time understanding where specific views originated. You’ll also have the ability to make the videos on your website look a lot cleaner because they won’t have the YouTube branding.
Some other important things to keep in mind when choosing the right video hosting platform are what type of viewer metrics are available, different pricing options, bandwidth limitations and the level of the video player customization. For example, can I add a call-to-action at the end of the video in the player itself, or can I brand the player with my logo and colors?
Build a Comprehensive Video Distribution Plan
In most cases, posting your video on your corporate website or a popular video hosting platform such as YouTube will naturally generate views. However, to maximize the full potential of your video’s effectiveness you’ll want to integrate it into your overall content marketing strategy and create a specific distribution plan for it.
The practice of integrating your video content into your overall go-to-market plan, especially paid search and the Google TrueView platform, will absolutely help drive your overall views and should have a positive effect on your other marketing efforts. When crafting a video distribution plan, be sure to incorporate best practices including:
- Harnessing the potential reach of social media channels
- Incorporating your video into an email campaign
- Developing a landing page specifically for the video
- Engaging third party media sites for contributed content
- Integrating the video into your paid search efforts
- Leveraging your partners and sales teams to promote the video
Leveraging all of the communication channels and marketing programs at your disposal will help contribute to driving more traffic to your video, generating more views and strengthening your overall marketing communication efforts. Like any marketing collateral investment, having a solid distribution plan behind it will help ensure it meets the expectations that were set for it.
When it comes to producing good corporate video content the key is to understand who your target audiences and viewers are and develop a script or storyline that caters to them. It’s also important to remember to make sure the content you develop is on-brand and aligned with your overall marketing messaging.
And unless you have in-house video production capabilities, its best to leave the production to the professionals to ensure your content is perceived well visually and audibly. Lastly, you always want to make sure you have a good distribution plan in place to help drive traffic to your video and increase its overall ROI.