Video content is one of the best ways to engage tech pros. “Why’s that,” you ask? Well, actually, I know you aren’t asking that question because I’m just stating the obvious: tech pros are visual people.
So where to get started with B2B video content creation? It’s a loaded question that feels like you’re standing in front of an insurmountable wall.
I faced that wall recently, as I worked to create a video series around unboxing different AV products. The goal was to engage our existing audience while establishing authority with those new to our brand.
The challenge was to not only find the time to complete the project but also to define the scope and stay focused.
Thankfully, these are the same challenges that tech pros face when marketing their services to office managers, IT directors, and tech buyers. These techniques can be applied to anyone looking to create video content that resonates with their target buyers.
By the way, I’m still climbing that wall with my own video series. Video takes work. But it’s worth it! Video is more engaging than static content and opens you up to new audiences – like on YouTube, which has become the world’s #2 search engine behind Google!
Here are some B2B video content creation steps you need to follow:
#1: Start with the three Ws
Just like you want to map out stakeholders, use cases, functionality and timeline before you start executing, a video campaign requires structure too.
Answer these questions to shape your approach:
- Why: Why are you investing in video? You need to start with a clear understanding of why you’re creating the video. Outline your specific outcomes so that you stay focused and say no to scope creep. This is easier said than done! But having clear goals will keep you on track.
- What: What makes you different? It’s important to find your voice. For me, I’ve always been outgoing and spirited. Keep that voice in mind so you stay true – we tech pros are skeptical and don’t fall for phony. Filter everything through this lens, so that the video differentiates you from the competition.
- Who: Who do you want to reach? Are you looking for a certain size business or a tech pro in a geographic area? Or perhaps it’s a particular segment of tech professionals. Define this clearly, as it influences everything else.
Now that you’ve answered these, we can move on to the other two W’s: when and where.
#2: Research the ideal publishing platform
The “where” matters when planning because you need to know where you plan to publish your content. The channel will determine format, tone, and content.
You want to create content that resonates with tech pros, so you need to craft a message that not just resonates but also makes sense for your chosen channel.
Your ideal distribution channel is one frequented by your audience. So if your tech pros are primarily involved in church AV work, then you may look in a different place than tech pros serving festivals and events. Or, if your target audience is more creative, then TikTok makes more sense, while Linkedin live video would be best for those with a more professional focus.
Of course, you can (and should!) atomize your B2B video content. Just because you create it for a specific channel doesn’t mean you can’t use it elsewhere! More on a content distribution plan later. The takeaway: you should keep a single channel in mind to stay focused. After all, a Tik Tok video is different from a livestream on Facebook! Each has its own expectations, requirements, and nuances.
#3: Storyboard your shoot – and edit accordingly
Video doesn’t have to be some major project that siphons hours from your schedule. To avoid that scope creep we mentioned earlier, create a storyboard that plots each shot linearly. That way you can be sure to get everything you need to tell the story you want — and achieve your objectives.
Don’t go crazy here! This doesn’t have to be a piece of art. Think of it more like a to-do list: when you start shooting, you know exactly what needs to be done and can knock it out methodically.
Also: use your storyboard after the shoot. It makes editing a breeze. You’ll be able to get editing done more quickly (and affordably, if you’re outsourcing) thanks to having a detailed storyboard.
#4: Leave time for marketing
The final stage is often rushed or overlooked. Many marketers make the mistake of just creating the content, publishing it, and then moving on. With tech pros, who are busy and sophisticated when it comes to tech, you have to work doubly hard to get your content in front of the right people.
As you execute your content distribution plan, consider how you might atomize your content for specific audiences and channels. Each audience and channel has its habits, expectations, and best practices.
You wouldn’t want to post a two-hour video to Twitter if the goal is to encourage bite-size engagement. Instead, you might publish a short clip promoting your video webinar replay that highlights how valuable the content is to tech pros. Then, even if they don’t click through (as most people won’t) this gets them engaged with your content in this additional channel.
Your distribution plan should likely include some paid amplification. The cold reality of social platforms is that organic reach is on life support. Paid reach is the only guarantee! If you can amplify your reach with a small budget, go for it. Deploy small tests, see where you get the most bang for your buck, and then double down on the highest-performing channels.
#5: When in doubt, go live!
If this all seems like a lot, there’s a shortcut: go live! While you don’t want to skip over the foundational work of understanding your audience, a live video can be more spontaneous and often require less structure.
You most certainly can get away with less polished lighting — which makes for a more authentic edge that appeals to many. Don’t be lazy though; you’re talking to tech professionals and they are one skeptical bunch! You can’t fake it until you make it with this crowd!
One last thing: We may be tech professionals – but that doesn’t mean your video content has to be staid and technical. Have fun with it!
Travis Baumann is the founder and CEO of InGenius Solutions, an AV integrator that builds bespoke solutions for small and medium-sized businesses. He lives in Grass Valley, CA.