The pandemic took B2B marketers in some unexpected directions in 2020 as we pivoted overnight to deal with a transformed environment. The mass migration to video and interactive content was already under way, but the process sped up considerably as we watched live events disappear from our calendars in 2020.
Demand Gen Report (DGR) explores what got us here and where we’re heading in its just-published Special Report, 2020 State of Video & Interactive Content: Marketers Leverage Simplified, Personalized Video & Interactive Content to Effectively Engage Target Audiences, sponsored by HippoVideo and PlayPlay.
The report delivers insights and tactics B2B marketers are using to succeed with video and interactive content marketing, including how offering choices boosts video and interactive content engagement, the importance of personalizing content for demand gen and ABM, the impact of simplified video and interactive content, and an exploration of trending video and interactive content formats.
“We have to be more creative, more thoughtful and more pointed in the execution of our content experiences,” says Alicia Esposito, Senior Content Strategist at Content4Demand. “Luckily, video and interactive content both lend themselves very well to creative storytelling—even some risk taking.”
Increase Engagement with Choices
Research shows that 30% of Millennial buyers prefer interactive content. Most smart marketers prefer it too, because it pulls readers in and invites them to engage with your story. That means they stay longer and learn more.
Extending that interactivity to webinars can boost that engagement while simultaneously feeding your content machine. Follow Esposito’s advice to break down and reuse your presentation to create infographics, social media images and videos, checklists and fact sheets, and even bottom-of-the-funnel content that describes how your company can help prospects address the trends and challenges you discussed in the webinar.
Multichannel Video Creation
In a Q&A, PlayPlay CEO Thibaut Machet details how B2B brands are leveraging video to launch branded experiences to built audience trust—and they’re doing it at every stage of the funnel.
Video used to be less attainable for marketers outside the occasional agency-produced TV commercial. Easy, affordable software and platforms have put them in every marketer’s reach to create clips to post on LinkedIn, ads on Instagram stories and all kinds of creative uses on our websites—from demos and testimonials to video FAQs. From there, you can leverage those videos in a variety of uses and formats.
“A 10-minute tutorial works well on YouTube in landscape format,” Machet says. “But you should also create a 30-second extract, in a square format for LinkedIn, or a 10-second story on Instagram.”
Build Relationships with Personalization
Well-planned videos and content hubs can help personalize the buyer’s journey and drive buyer engagement.
“If you take that personalized approach, focusing on buyer, industry or individual company, you can curate relevant resources and customize elements to make your buyers feel seen and understood,” says Esposito. “Now more than ever, that is crucial to winning their trust and keeping their attention.”
Personalized videos can be a great way to develop that trust with target buyers, particularly when it comes to lead gen and ABM strategies.
Simplify Content for Authenticity
Developing interactive content and videos with high production values can be—well, a production. But it doesn’t have to be so complicated. Ignore your perfectionist tendencies, and you may open up a new avenue to building authentic, relatable content.
“Some of the best videos in the market today are casual—and approachable,” says Matt Heinz, Founder and President of Heinz Marketing. Prioritize the message, not the medium. The “CMO Coffee Talk” series he hosts with 6sense is an example. Multiple buyers and providers are able to engage with the CMOs in a casual videoconference setting. Nobody’s focused on details like perfect video editing or complex animations; they’re too busy learning and sharing ideas.
The digital-only marketing environment we’re all adapting to is inspiring marketers to innovate with new ways to deepen conversations with target audiences. Whatever the next version of “normal” is, video and interactive content are bound to take a more prominent role in our marketing.
“Use it where it makes sense, and consider which stories are best told using mostly visual content,” says Tonya Vinas, VP of Content Strategy & Services at Content4Demand. “For videos, that usually means shorter stories told at a high level. For interactive, it’s a story with multiple layers where visual elements and movement can bring the layers together into a single thread. In the interactive world, it’s less about fitting a format into a buyer stage, because any format can be interactive.”
To see how Content4Demand collaborated with Flexential to build a successful campaign on interactive content and digital events, watch the case study we presented at the B2B Sales & Marketing Exchange on Monday, October 26, at 2 p.m. ET.
Holly Celeste Fisk is an accomplished marketing pro with 20+ years of experience in B2B and B2C. She’s responsible for Content4Demand’s internal marketing efforts, managing everything from content creation and email marketing to events and sponsorships, blog publishing, website management and social media presence. When she’s not working, you’ll find her sliding into third at softball, buried in a book or practicing her Italian.