Better than viral: Making B2B video content that sells


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Video content, done well, is imminently shareable – even potentially viral, ready to take over the internet.

“Video gets freakish results,” says Todd Hartley, CEO of digital marketing agency Wirebuzz. He means that in a good way.

“I want to be able to present products and services in a way that get the best results,” he explains. “So that means I’ve got to be good at video in order to help my clients get the results that they’re looking for at faster and faster rates.”

In the B2B world, the word ‘viral’ is thrown around way too easily — but you aren’t actually looking to create the next billion-download internet sensation (though obviously you wouldn’t be mad if that happened). You need to focus.

“You have to recognize that in B2B, you’re not trying to go viral to everybody and my mother,” Hartley explains. “Instead you’re trying to go viral to a very specific target buyer, and that takes pre-planning and precision.”

Too many video marketers wing it, he says, and when they launch their finished product, it’s a dud. It takes a tremendous amount of smart planning and savvy strategy to create a video that really resonates.

“For me and my team, that means we don’t start with the video first,” he says. “We have to start with digital strategy. The strategy fleshes out the goals, and every video needs to have a strategy laid out beforehand: What are you trying to accomplish with this piece of content?”

There are five steps in video marketing planning at Wirebuzz, all designed with an overarching goal in mind: making the video compelling enough, with the right message and visuals, to make your target jump on that call-to-action you’ve carefully designed.

1. Strategy session

Strategy sessions take about an hour, Hartley says, but they’re going through a tremendous amount of information in that short time. Their objective is to uncover the end goal of the video. It’s a discovery session that covers everything from A to ROI.

The first step: So what exactly is that end goal? A purchase, a a share, a like? Capturing contact information? Identifying this allows you to pull out the key messaging that will guide video content and marketing all the way through the remaining steps of video creation.

Tactics should be determined right out of the gate as well. Is this going to be inbound? Is this going to be account-based marketing? Are we launching a business, are we going to be using a product launch formula, are we using this video for search optimization or email marketing to speed up sales? Is it going to be used in marketing automation?

2. Web development

Next step, Hartley says, is asking yourself  if your website supports that strategy you’ve created — and if not, what elements need to be built in order for that video to be successful.

It takes about six weeks for the video to be created, he explains, which means you need to have the website, or at least a landing page, built at the same time.

It’s also why you need to be clear from the start what the call-to-action will be, as well as where that CTA will link.

3. Content creation

The call-to-action, where that links to, and what you’re supposed to find at the end of the rainbow is essential for the third stage, content creation. In the script and in the storyboard, that CTA needs to be thoroughly fleshed out and then baked into each and every frame.

4. Going live

Your video is done, it’s gloriously on-message, with every frame urging the viewer closer and closer to taking that final, committed step and becoming yours. Now the video goes live. At Wirebuzz, they have a Go-Live team, which posts and engages a target customer on a website or on social, or both. And every one of those marketing engagement interactions needs to be a reflection of the road map you started out with.

5. Ensuring ROI

The last stage, Hartley says, is handing over the action to the ROI team, which focuses on taking that live content and the road map that strategy designed, way back in the distant past, to create ads and generate leads that help drive traffic to your content, helping spark and then stimulate the conversation you’re trying to inspire.

Throughout the entire process, from concept to launch to conversion, personalization is also key, Hartley says. Video personalization is becoming more and more sophisticated as video content grows in marketing importance.

“Before the sale, personalization is an attention hack, and grabs awareness, because it’s rare that someone will see a video with their first name on it that is personalized to them, and it increases open rates and grabs higher attention,” he explains. “And also, it’s more likely to be shared.”

But personalization can also happen on the back end, Hartley says.

“We call this a talk trigger,” Hartley explains. “This is how we get clients not only to rave about our work but about our customer service.”

They create a personalized video for clients shortly before project deadlines to let them know that they’re going to see the final project very soon, it’s going beautifully, and everything is on track to get it to them by deadline or even sooner. It’s a don’t worry, be happy kind of video for clients designed to give them the warm fuzzies, and it gets results.

“When I send that personalized video, I get an immediate response, all caps, ‘THANK YOU, YOU GUYS ROCK,’” Hartley says. “And the reason is I’m breaking that fourth barrier in the relationship. I’m using video to reach out and deepen the relationship and alleviate stress. So pre sale, post sale, beautiful usage of personalized video goes a whole long way toward developing a relationship.”

To learn more about creating calls-to-action that sell, how to get your message out and to whom, and personalization strategies that convert in droves, don’t miss this VB Live event!

Register now for free!

By watching this webinar, you’ll:

  • Optimize your audience takeaways for video content
  • Get tips from the savviest sales and marketing people on their video content strategy
  • Focus your energy on the right distribution channels for your adverts
  • Personalize video content to lock in the close


  • Michael Ballard, Sr Manager Digital Marketing, Lenovo
  • Todd Hartley, CEO, Wirebuzz
  • Stewart Rogers, Director of Marketing Technology, VentureBeat

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