Branded Marketing For B2B Businesses

Branded marketing in B2B – Epic Creativity, Provoking storylines and an impression that will last a lifetime

If you are a marketer working in the b2b industry I’m sure you’ve seen a lot of “Market your B2B like a B2C business” floating around – just look here. As a business, this opens up the door to creating more emotionally driven, entertaining content that will build awareness and eventually convert.

When we hear the word corporate or B2B unfortunately, it all too often conjures up images of facts and figures, forgetting that the decision makers on the other side tend to respond to much more emotional language.

More often than not (and we are all guilty of it) we see b2b businesses lacking in creativity and the emotional buy-in that you would expect from any well-respected brand. Finding words like ROI and SEO plastered all over our newsfeeds quickly become pretty repetitive. Chances are if you’re bored of seeing it then everyone else probably is as well.

So it begs the question  “how do I create a better-branded marketing experience for my potential leads?” Well, I’m glad you asked…

Preparation

Okay, so you’ve realised you need to add a bit of flair to your content strategy but you’re not quite sure where to begin. Regardless of whether you’re as flamboyant as Elton John dipped in glitter or as dull as a grey wall, we’ve created the following checklist of seven items to help you on your creative journey:

1. What is the purpose of creating this content?

2. What do I want the outcome to be?

3. Who is my target audience?

4. How do I want my audience to feel?

5. Which videos do I like the style of?

6. What resources do we have access to in order to create this content i.e Graphic designers, videographers, animators?

7. What is my budget?

Once you have answered all these questions, you will start to have a better understanding of what you would like to create and the purpose behind it all. This will make it easier when brainstorming ideas of the storyline, which leads us on to our next point.

Epic storyline

Your storyline is EVERYTHING. Advertising has changed a lot in the last few years, especially since the intro of smartphones and social media. Attention spans are down to 8 seconds when watching a video, so if your content isn’t gripping your audience within that time frame that’s another prospect that you could have potentially won over if you had the right storyline.

So, what makes for a compelling storyline?

1. Emotions

 Ask yourself how you want your audience to feel when watching and make it your top priority to execute it

2. Characters

 Create characters that your audience will resonate with (forget about how they look.. *Unless it’s Tom Hardy*

and focus on their mannerisms and behaviours). 

3. A crafted plot 

By this, we mean to create a storyline that isn’t expectant of your brand. For example, if you were selling baked beans you could either have a video of someone eating the product and saying how nice it tastes or you could do the unexpected and create a storyline like the one you can view here.

4. First impressions count!

So don’t blow it. People spend their lives scrolling so make your video thumbnail stand out, to make them stop and want to watch your video.

5. Clarity

 Make sure your message is relevant and easy to follow. Take this video from PlayStation, it makes no sense and it leaves you thinking “what did I just watch” 

Top Quality

Do not skimp on quality and by quality, we mean production values, ie the quality of your graphics, storyline, actors (if you have any), sound etc. So how do you guarantee quality and for the right price?

1. Hire a video production company

(i know we’re biased) but it’s true. The only way to guarantee a high-quality video that will deliver on results. You wouldn’t cut your own hair and expect the same results than if you had got it done professionally. Well, the same applies to video production.

2. Do your research

as I mentioned previously, knowing why you are creating your video and the goals you want it to achieve will help the process with creating a video that delivers on results.

3. Ask people for their opinions 

Be that your staff, friends or even customers. Include people throughout all the decision making moments and make sure that it will appeal to your target demographic.

Distribution

The big one! So you have completed your video and you’re super proud of it. But now what? Where will your video work best? You could have the world’s best video but if you’re not putting it on the right platforms and in front of your target audience then the whole thing becomes mute.

It sounds pretty straight forward when you think about it,

but time and time again we see great videos not getting the results they deserve. Here are a few things you should consider…

1. Pick your social platform

 Where is this video going? What are your audience’s interests? When are they most online?

2. Behaviours of your demographic

what type of humour do they have? What gets the most engagement?

3. Paying for boosted posts/ads

 Which route will you go down? Youtube ads? Google? Facebook? Again consider the behaviour of the consumers in that targeted area, how long the videos can be on the platform and research into what ads have been successful and for what purpose.

When you have a full understanding of what you will do with your video everything else will fall into place. Don’t just assume that because you have paid all this money for a video that posting it on social media will give you the results you are after. Yes, if you have a big enough following it may work, however, give yourself the best possible chance of success by tailor making your video distribution strategy that will command the attention of your audience.

Now is the best time for B2B companies to think outside the box and push the limits of their creativity. Make a conscious effort in becoming a company that is memorable by creating a powerful storyline that captivates your audience.

Videos have a proven track record of giving companies their desired results and it can for you as well, as long as you are ready to invest your time and resources, think about your audience and what will resonate with them and more importantly think about the distribution, where you want your videos to go and why. If you follow this method then you will be on your way to creating a video that converts.

At element26.tv, we can help you get your branded campaigns off the ground.  If you’re considering embarking on a journey with video… get in contact with me today.

About the Author

Nathan Haines

Nathan is the managing director of Element 26 and an expert in video production and video marketing. Nathan enjoys supporting companies to grow their businesses using video. Get in touch on Twitter @element26uk

Why Your Business Needs To Become A Content Company?

Whilst success tends to be subjective, I’ve long believed that the businesses which excel tend to be those with the most compelling story. In many cases, it is this same story which binds a business to its audience that sets them apart from their competition. It is this essence of ‘brand‘ which keeps customers returning and defines successful content.

Depending on how long you have been in business, the means by which you convey your story may have changed. Where once the Yellow Pages was the go-to destination for reaching your audience; social media and search have all but transformed how content is found.

Whilst TV remains a primary channel, the prescriptive schedules of the traditional broadcasters have been disrupted by both a technological and a social layer. The technology is always-on and constantly connected whilst the social layer attempts to infuse a sense of community into the connected experience.

Collectively, over-the-top platforms (OTT) such as the Chromecast, Amazon Firestick or the AppleTV run many of the channels we find on our mobile devices i.e, Facebook, YouTube, Netflix, Amazon Prime etc. This means that the sit-back experience of the living room has become an organic extension of our mobile lives and vice-versa.

This represents a tremendous opportunity for today’s businesses. The power has been democratised, we can reach our target audience wherever we choose but first we have to accept that to do so, we must meet the prospect on their terms,  be it on either social media or out there in the wilderness of the open web. For more on what social channels befit your business, check out our blog ‘Choosing The Best Social Channels for your B2B Video

The customer is empowered to opt-in to your brand – or not as the case may be. This is why we must be producing content with a deeper understanding of personalisation, relevance and intimacy. Maybe a good place to start is to ask ourselves, ‘how well do we know our customer?’

So, why is Social, the Open Web and OTT so important? Because the customer is ageing. It should come as no surprise that millennials have arrived in positions of influence within the enterprise and millennials inhabit the social layer like no other demographic in society. Successful content today will entice its audience to participate in its reach.

If you look at how millennials engage with social media, it can be incredibly intimidating. There are multiple channels, speaking to different audiences with those users often rifling through their feeds at a pace which could be best compared to a treadmill for thumbs. Each moment is transitory and absolutely nothing feels permanent.

Daniel Ek – Spotify CEO

Spotify owner Daniel Ek, recently proclaimed in a letter to investors that Spotify wasn’t in the music business, it is in the moments business. I get his logic but by that definition, we’re presumably all in the ‘moments’ business.

The question remains, how do we enrich that moment so that our audience cares enough to be truly engaged. Successful content has to be powerful because online interactions need to stick almost immediately or risk not sticking at all.

As it happens the channels have been giving us a clear indication of the direction of travel for some time and it’s fairly widely accepted now that video is the most effective medium for capturing and retaining attention in social. Even LinkedIn has finally caught on, adding video to both personal profiles as well as company pages.

As business owners, it is our job to shape these conversations. To do that we have to be the creators of content which adds value and capitalises on the zeitgeist. Successful content is relevant, not spam. Not only that but we also have to do it with a certain level of scale because at the top of the funnel, our audience is only tapping into us for moments at a time.

We need lots of moments with our prospect for them to begin to notice us, even more for them to get a sense of our offering. More still to turn them into fans. Is it any wonder that we’ve witnessed a content explosion over the last few years. Further down the funnel, the moments we share tend to be longer because the engaged prospect will want more from us. 

If you haven’t done so already, step back and ask yourself ‘What is the story of your business? Why should your prospect care?’ The successful businesses of tomorrow won’t just have a fantastic story but they will weave their audience into the narrative and make them feel part of it because after all, what is a brand without loyalty?

About the Author

Nathan Haines

Nathan is the managing director of Element 26 and an expert in video production and video marketing. Nathan enjoys supporting companies to grow their businesses using video. Get in touch on Twitter @element26uk