TBV Insights

Videos for the buyer’s journey

The “Buyer’s Journey” is not sliding down a funnel. It’s more like an odyssey, with chance encounters in multiple channels, meandering from awareness to consideration to action.

A couple years ago, Forrester analyst Lori Wizdo depicted the marketing sales funnel in this clever sideways view, with the funnel “bottom” becoming a confused network of criss-crossing channels in which buyers and influencers share the information they collect for themselves. “Marketers who continue to ‘go to customer’ with product-centric campaigns and offers,” she wrote in this blog post, “risk becoming irrelevant.” This article will discuss producing marketing videos for the buyer’s journey

Getting beyond the product-centric video

The risk of irrelevance remains. Increasingly, getting customers to engage on their buyer’s journey calls for a well-conceived and continuously updated mix of information and learning options. Numerous marketing automation and sales enablement solutions have been devised to make buyers aware of this content and/or time its delivery just-so.

Obviously, video, with its ability to convey information quickly, is an important asset with immense potential. It can create awareness by summarizing market trends, promote consideration of key differentiators, prompt action. It’s ideal for mobile devices. It’s easily shared.

Yet, except for talking heads propounding “thought leadership,” almost all marketing video is still product-centric. Rather than being deliberately designed to support the entire buyer’s journey, it’s a hodgepodge of product pitches, product demos, product testimonials, product webinars (a lethal cocktail of PowerPoint + product demo), and product tutorials.

Videos for team awareness

Even short videos need to get the point fast (see this research). So, if you want to address different job roles or personas on a buying team, make several short videos that start out in different directions to reach different conclusions. For example, you might produce “Three Reasons SysAdmins Adore Us” and “Four Sources of ROI You’re Not Tapping” rather than set out to squeeze operational benefits for users and productivity benefits for the business into the same product-oriented video. (You can edit them into a product-oriented overview later, if you need one.)

Video to support other marketing content

Imagine yourself as a buyer who responded to a lead-generating email. You’re somewhere beyond the awareness phase of your journey, and you come upon these options

  • a webinar recording
  • a company-sponsored white paper
  • an analyst report

All are likely to  go into your “read-later” queue, where they will probably remain.

Suppose, however, you saw a clickable thumbnail link to a 30-second animated use-case video modeled on one that the white paper describes in detail. That might be interesting, and a link that says it will deliver information in 30-60 seconds is a promise that no time will be wasted getting to the point. (Something seldom said of webinars, white papers, or analyst reports.) If you’re on a mobile device? Well — that’s where most short videos are watched these days. So, if the video lives up to its promise, the chances that you’ll check out the related content are vastly improved.

A different way of thinking

So, if you think about the buying cycle,  it’s not hard to think of videos that are not so product-centric. They needn’t be elaborate or expensive to produce as long as they contain information people on the buying team are looking for. Several of our clients have begun producing video “bundles” to meet different requirements of the buying cycle. Click here for more information on video bundles.




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