Start by truly knowing your audience, then meet them where they’re watching.
Video is the fastest growing content type, and for good reasons which we’ll discuss. YouTube is the second-largest search engine. You know video must play a key role in your content strategy, but the format can be time- and cost-intensive. So, how do you make sure your journey mapping and overall strategy incorporate video in the right places and ways? Here are the three key steps:
- Know your audience, and how they consume content.
- Meet your customers where they’re watching.
- Create purposeful video for the specific journey stage the customer is in.
Know your audience
Careful! Be wary of those who say there is no difference between B2B and B2C, that your B2B audience is “just people.” B2Bers can actually behave very differently than B2C buyers. Take a mutual fund: one product, very different buyers. A financial professional, for example, buying millions of shares for an investment portfolio is very different than a first-time retail buyer of a mutual fund. You need to find out exactly who your target audience really is. Create some personas, or update existing ones, and keep those front-of-mind.
Meet your customers where they’re watching
When you create personas, make sure to include their video consumption habits and preferences. Channel analysis will be a key part of that work. What platforms do your customers gravitate to? What types of video (talking head, animated, voice over, etc.) resonates most with them? What durations will best capture their attention? Search optimization and paid promotions can then be developed so your video strategy is successful. For B2C you’ll need to be forward-looking and test emerging platforms. For B2B don’t overlook the obvious, like YouTube (check out our post “YouTube Advertising Myths (and Tips to Bust Them)” by Imprint’s Jenna Gardner).
Create video purposely for the journey stage
Let’s use the four-stage journey of attract, consider, decide, and recommend.
Stage 1: Attract
Video is a proven way to move customers through the discovery phase. Over 70% of viewers say YouTube makes them aware of new brands, and 85% of marketers say video is an effective way to get attention online. Beyond awareness, video also leaves a memorable impression. Viewers report retaining 95% of a message when delivered via video. What types of video should you use in Stage 1 depends on both the audience and platform. One agnostic principle to lean on is narrative — don’t just tell them about the product, show them the context and why the product matters. Storytelling can work in both short and long form, but keep in mind you can get more mileage out of short-form video as it has more use-cases.
Stage 2: Consider
Ninety-four percent of video marketers say video has helped increase user understanding of their product or service. And it’s not just marketers touting the power of video at this stage — 84% of people say they’ve been convinced to buy a product or service by watching a brand’s video. For video type, consider how-tos as well as webinars and tutorials. Global e-learning is predicted to grow at a rate of 110% by 2026, so we know audiences are increasingly looking to learn online. Take advantage of this growing curious and independent attitude.
Stage 3: Decide
You likely already know the power of video when it comes to motivating your customers to make a decision. An overwhelming majority of marketers say video has directly helped to increase sales, but the most effective video type at this stage may not be part of your arsenal just yet: interactive video. This powerful tactic can actually speed your customers along their journey by combining consideration and decision. A compelling video with an interactive “shopping” feature can be lucrative. Shoppable videos have higher engagement rates than display advertising, and we expect the trend to gain even more steam into 2022.
Stage 4: Recommend
Turning customers into advocates — both in the B2C and B2B arenas — can be a big generator of future sales. Don’t be shy about asking customers or clients to create videos for you. Not only does user-generated content, or UGC, require no lift on your end, it’s among the most influential forms of video out there — a win-win! Users arriving on an ecommerce site via user-generated video content are 184% more likely to purchase. In addition, they spend 45% more money that customers arriving other ways.
So take another look at your audiences and the personas you’re working from. See if you can identify gaps in your video content, and leverage the insights above. We’d love to hear what you discover! We’re also available to help you spot those opportunities and decide on the best channels and video types for your audiences at whatever stage they’re in. Please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know how we can help.
And if you missed parts I and II of our journey-mapping series, make sure you check them out below: