Digital marketers have been trying to define engagement for over a decade. 

Urban myth or impossible feat? Neither.

It’s possible for your B2B company to achieve engagement if it’s equipped with a thorough content marketing strategy that includes high-quality video content

We provide content not only to engage and educate our prospects but also to understand what is most interesting to each segment. 

By varying our content across channels, in different formats, and tackling a variety of subject matter, we can start to learn about our viewers. Data and analytics can tell us what is most interesting, helpful, and useful to our potential buyers. 

In the following post, we’ll explore how you should think of videos for optimum engagement, outline some killer examples, and review key metrics for measuring video marketing success. 

content marketing engagement

Why Consumers Respond to Video in the Engagement Stage of the Customer Journey

Before any purchase, buyers want a confirmation that your product or service is the right choice. No one wants buyer’s remorse right? Video is a powerful way to educate and inform potential prospects during online research. 

According to Forbes, the average user spends 88% more time on a website with video. Try implementing videos on the longer side that are backed with research, such as an explainer video. This educational type of video content helps viewers gain trust in your brand – which leads to them buying your products or services. 

A few other video types include: 

  • How-to/Tutorial
  • Culture/Meet the Team
  • Event Sponsorship Wrap-Up
  • Tip Series

As for the content itself, create with the concept in mind: “Let’s get to know each other better.” 

video marketing discussion

Strategy Roundtable: B2B Video Marketing Best Practices

Focus on these three key items when it comes to producing video content: educating, informing, and delighting your prospective customers. 

Be clear on what makes your business unique and the qualities that set you apart from your competitors. 

And don’t forget to lead with WHY this is important to your target audience since they are definitely going to be asking, “What’s in it for me?” If you want to keep viewers engaged, it has to be very clear you’re speaking to them.

Be specific. Sometimes marketers prefer vague campaigns, thinking it’s a better use of resources to create a group of content assets that can apply to multiple buying personas. But really what they’ve done is speak to no one. 

Below are some tips to keep you centered on your lead’s needs.

how to VIDEO MARKETING BEST PRACTICES

Key Considerations for Creating Engaging Video Content

1. What do your viewers care about?

While creating your content marketing strategy, you should consider creating video content that your viewers find relatable, educational, and interesting. Think about the topics they care about and what they are struggling with.

Play upon their emotions to hook them by their heartstrings – then show them you have the answers to their problems. That’s how you get viewers to pay attention.

By discussing topics they find important, you earn their trust and make them want to learn more about your brand. 

2. How can you create a two-way conversation with your video content?

For years, video has been more of a broadcast medium, putting out information in a one-way exchange.

Now, we don’t just have the ability to comment on videos, but we can react during live streams, monitor the consumption of video playlists, and layer CTAs with video clips to create a “choose your own adventure” style videos for audiences. By providing our viewer’s options, the “digital body language” is more nuanced than ever showing that if you want to know what your audience needs, ASK.

3. What is the specific goal for each video in the engagement stage of your content marketing strategy? 

Mapping your content marketing strategy against the customer’s journey and essential buyers’ questions will indicate which kind of subject matter may be of interest to target audiences or personas. Next, you’ll want to decide what medium and channels are most appropriate to convey that message. Lastly, you’ll want to set a goal for each video. (For more metrics around consumption and engagement, scroll to the bottom of this article.) 

4. How can your videos tell you more information about your leads? 

Not all content should be gated. In-video lead forms can certainly tell you about your viewer but sometimes act as a hindrance to video consumption.

Progressive profiling may allow you to procure this information over time, ascribing names, titles, companies, and emails to watch behavior over several videos or pieces of content consumed. 

Ultimately, what is your goal? If it’s purely to build a list of leads you can email, perhaps simple inbound strategies are best. However, if you want a rich profile of consumption data, consider interactive video. Additional options like chapters, dynamic CTAs, and “choose your own adventure” paths provide breadcrumbs you can follow and get to know your prospect. Putting the user in control gives much more information than a single video view, similar to the analytics we see on websites.

Going beyond just standard video analytics like the number of watches or engagement rate, you’ll be able to analyze how these choices should impact your video creation process in the future. 

B2B Video Marketing Examples for Viewer Engagement

After defining your content marketing strategy, you can begin the process of creating videos. But  before you dive in yourself – let’s take a look at B2B companies who crafted compelling video content that attracted well-deserved viewer engagement

Company: Zaius

What they do: B2C CRM

Type of video: Unboxing/How-to

Why it works: We all know the fun and excitement of opening up a new package – Zaius taps into this feeling. While offering an online suite of tools for B2C marketers, Zaius uses this video series to connect the dots between the offline and online of digital purchases, reviewing the full experience for buyers of popular B2C products

Leaning into a trend (unboxing videos) while putting a B2B spin on it, Zaius’ series conveys both the pluses and minuses of the brands they feature in a way that is helpful and not overly critical. They clearly know their audience (digital and brand marketers FTW) and remind them of best practices. Analyzing each brand in this detailed way shows their high level of expertise in customer data and creating marketing paths that convert. Thought leadership, elevated. 5/5 praise hands. 

Company: Skyword

What they do: Content development & marketing

Type of video: Explainer

Why it works: “Dossier” isn’t a word that belongs in a wedding speech, right? No Way. Here Skyword, a content marketing platform devoted to branded storytelling, shows why their approach is different. They clarify this using theater and a situation grounded in reality – the typical Father-of-the-Bride speech. 

“Life is remembered as a story, not data.” For brands interested in using Skyword to generate memorable content, they’ve demonstrated knowledge of their buyer, particularly when Dad calls Michelle, the bride, a “key influencer.” Clearly, the creators of this video have sat in on a few too many corporate marketing meetings. The numbers are what B2B brands count on when they can’t seem to draw an emotional reaction or a clear line to sales. Meanwhile, Skyword doesn’t have this problem with comments like, “Nearly fell out of my chair laughing LMAO… poor bride though =/” 

Company: Intel

What they do: computer tech

Type of video: Teaser / Product Demo

Why it works: “What if I was blind?” Often B2B marketers are told to make the customer the “hero” of the story, but this is often easier said than done. Here, Intel shows the empowered user, a young man curious about how blind people read. The boy has a vision – cost-effective braille readers. The technology is the tool that makes the vision into a reality. 

“Today is the day!” is a concept often used in creative storytelling. No time to waste, what would we do if there were no limits? Intel takes us on a journey where we see the start-to-finish of product – from Macro to Micro of the story. Our hero has been transported to a world he does not have first-hand knowledge of (being a blind person) but he’s keen to make a difference, changing both worlds. Intel is an ally in our hero’s quest, but it’s in the background as it should be.

+Bonus Video Analysis (because we love a good When Harry Met Sally reference).

Company: ZenDesk

What they do: Customer Service Software

Type of video: Brand Promo

Why it works: This video goes back to the basics of comedy in a humorous “call back” to When Harry Met Sally. Choosing a genre to juxtapose against the typical business/customer relationships surprises their audience while setting the ground rules for the joke. 

In this case, it’s a Romantic Comedy but it could easily be a Western or Action movie. Playing off genres draws in an audience because they’re familiar with the structure ‒ which creates a heightened awareness for humor that makes hitting your punchline much easier. 

Try watching this video with captions on. You’ll see that the actors really sell this story because, with the exception of the punchline, the dialogue is pretty standard of any business/customer relationship. Transporting that conversation to a new place and time is what makes it funny. The simple message; “better communication between real people” is illustrated perfectly here.

Pay Attention! Engagement Metrics for B2B Video Content

How do you measure what comes between the buzz of awareness and the cha-ching of conversion? Track these items to determine your video content’s engagement metrics: 

  1. Views: Difference in time-on-site or total pages consumed, new vs unique viewers + growth, and rate of video completion and engagement score (number of video views/number who reached a duration threshold – say 75% completion)
  2. Email: Number of new email subscribers.
  3. Traffic: % of site visitors who move from video/blog content to product pages or product videos 
  4. Social: Number of comments and shares 

Remember, video engagement goes beyond video views and drop-off rate. The most significant measurement is the engagement score. This can be discovered by separating a video into 100 equal segments (100%) and tracking how many viewers watched each of those segments – a quality OVP (online video platform) will offer this.

shoot high quality video

When B2B brands engage with a prospective customer, they want to go beyond the handshake and have a conversation centered around solving a problem. 

Selling solely online, digital marketing methods attempt to recreate the interactions that used to happen on sales floors. Historically, we’ve been learning a lot through trial and error. But now with video and interactive content, the data is better than ever. Engaging, yet creative videos compel continued interaction which generates goodwill towards the brand and moves our target audiences to the conversion stage.