Nearly every business and every marketer are looking for ways to create compelling content that's fresh, eye-catching and engaging. From customer acquisition to increasing customer retention, content is how businesses are looking to boost their bottom lines. Because of this, businesses are expanding their content libraries with blog posts, infographics and case studies. B2B marketers are increasingly becoming more visual to appeal to buyers. However, they aren't limiting themselves to images or white papers. Videos are becoming more popular among both B2B marketers and buyers.
The Rise of Video Marketing
Video marketing and digital video ad spend are on the rise. We're all aware that visuals tend to make a greater, lasting impact on consumers than text alone. Video provides businesses with an opportunity to really tell a story in ways that single pictures can't. With all the opportunities provided by video, it makes sense that this arena is growing. 55.8% of B2B marketers plan to increase their video budget in 2013 (Tweet this!), according to one recent study, "BtoB's 2013 Outlook: Marketing Priorities and Plans," and estimates from eMarketer indicate that US digital video ad spending will nearly double in only four years, climbing from $4.14 billion this year to $8.04 billion in 2016. With video marketing, businesses are able to reach targeted audiences and provide highly relevant content that showcases their business, brand, and often the people behind it.
Content marketing is a hot topic for B2B marketers. Research reports, videos, mobile content and virtual conferences are all on the rise. According to the CMI and Marketing Profs "2013 B2B Content Marketing Benchmarks-North America" report, B2B videos as a content marketing tactic increased from 52% in 2011 to 70% in 2012 (Tweet this!). Content is king and videos are on their way to throne room.
The Case of B2B Tech Buyers
IDG Research Services conducted a study to see how tech buyers are leveraging video to advance their decision making process when it comes to new purchases. The study and resulting infographic indicate that 95% of B2B tech buyers watch tech-related videos and that this correlates with purchase behaviors (Tweet this!). But, why are tech buyers actually watching these videos? They want to:
- Learn how to use particular products (61%)
- Find information on products they're interested in buying (58%)
- Find how-to content (57%)
- Get product reviews (54%)
- Stay on the leading edge of technology (52%)
Tech buyers want to be able to stay on top of the current products in their industry, while discovering how to make the most of what they currently have at their disposal. If you want to reach tech buyers, consider how you can position your business as an expert to provide your viewers with the information they're after. Expert instruction, how-to tips and product reviews are a great place to start. As marketers, we want to know what action is taken after watching a video. As it turns out, 66% then researched a product and 46% visited a vendor website or contacted a vendor for more info. Perhaps the biggest surprise to many is that after watching a video, 42% of buyers then purchased a product (Tweet this!).
Creating a Bold B2B Marketing Video
Creating a B2B marketing video doesn't require as much budget or time as you may initially think. Easy ways to get started are turning slideshows, presentations and in-person demos into videos. If your business doesn't have the budget of bigger brands such as GE and UPS, turn to your employees to see what their ideas are in the types of video content that will most appeal to your customers. User generated content, such as video contest submissions, are another route you can take. No matter your budget or resources, you'll want to ask yourself the following questions.
- Why are we creating this video? Why are we investing time, budget and additional resources into video marketing?
- Who are we trying to reach? Who is your target audience with each video?
- What types of videos will interest this audience? Is it how-to's and tutorials, new product announcements, or an explanation of data?
- Where is our audience going to come across these videos? Where can we promote each new video -- a newsletter, through display advertising, on social media, and/or on-site?
B2B video marketing is on the rise as businesses look for ways to create and repurpose content that engages their audience on multiple platforms and networks. Many have plans to increase their budget in video content creation and digital video ad spend in an effort to continue providing their customers with fresh, compelling content that leads to conversions.
How is your business incorporating video into its content marketing strategy?