You’ve done it, you savvy good-looking marketer.

You got the necessary approvals, budget, and executive buy-in to start with video marketing for your brand. You’re joining the big leagues! Video is going to be the game-changing tactic you use to capture the attention of your target audience, become more visible in search, and convert prospects throughout the funnel.

Your sales team will share your marketing videos to close more deals faster (alignment for the win, baby!), and you’ve committed to tracking your performance with video engagement data. You’re all set. You’re on the video bus. It’s ALL happening!

We're using video!?

(Record scratch)

Ah, if only it were that simple.

You'll need a video plan

What about your video marketing strategy?

Whether you’ve just stepped into the scene, or you’ve been using videos for ages, you need a road map outlining what it’s all for, where you’re going, and how you’ll measure success.

Your plan doesn’t need to be incredibly detailed (as the performance of your first few videos will often reveal some necessary modifications), but you should have a good idea of how you’ll align video content with the goals of your company.

A solid plan can be the difference between knowing your content is delivering ROI, versus throwing metaphorical spaghetti at the wall and seeing what sticks.
Here’s how to map out your purposeful video marketing strategy.

1. Determine what your video content will accomplish (and for whom)

Just as Joe Pulizzi suggests you should start your content marketing strategy in general, you’ll want a video marketing mission statement. A simple, one-liner that sums up:

  • what type of content you’ll make: Educational videos? Entertaining? Practical? A mix? Your brand’s tone and audience’s needs should determine your approach here.
  • Exactly who you’re making this content for: outline your target demographic with as much detail as you can.
  • What your audience should takeaway from your videos: What’s the value add of your content in particular? What does it help your audience do?

In order to justify videos that may be unrelated to your B2B product (often the mark of true content marketing), your business needs to understand why you’re creating video stories. What are you trying to accomplish and with whom?

Write out your statement like this: “At (Company name), we make (adjective) video content for (specify target audience), so that they (exactly what you want them to do).”

All set, now for the videos…

2. Outline the video topics and types you’ll create

When looking to implement video across an enterprise, it’s important to outline your scope. First look to which functions of the business will be using video and whether the assets will be used internally, externally, or both.

For example, if you run an enterprise B2B software company, you might want to break video content down as it supports different business functions, such as “Product”, “HR”, “Corporate Events”, “Internal Communications”, “Sales”, “Support”, etc. From there, you should decide which types of stories you’ll need to tell under each of these functions.

In the “Product” vertical, for example, you might have stories to tell about a certain product lines, the theme of analytics, and the theme of optimization. These are your official “content pillars” that become what you’ll build video concepts and campaigns around. These are usually broad and, in most cases, shouldn’t be too product heavy at the top of the funnel.

After determining your content pillars (essentially the stories you must tell within each function across your organization), you’ll be able to brainstorm the types of videos that work to tell those stories. Some options include:

  • Recorded webinars
  • Helpful how-to videos
  • Thought leadership interviews
  • Product explainers and detailed demos
  • Support-topic walkthroughs
  • Company culture videos
  • Customer testimonials
  • Documentary-like case studies, and more

A good way to approach video at the outset is to discover the questions your target audience is asking, and answer these with detailed how-to content. Not only will you benefit from the enhanced SEO by creating videos about these how-to topics, but you can become the go-to expert on the topic and remembered by your audience as such. You’ll also want to build out compelling, high-level brand stories to initially attract your target customer at the top of the funnel.

Learn how to map your video content to all parts of the funnel and drive viewer’s through the buying cycle with this handy post, or see some awesome B2B video examples for some inspiration.

3. Establish who’s responsible for creating content

Depending on the production quality you’re aiming for and your budget, you might be able to invest in an in-house videographer, or even a team of marketers dedicated to video. However, you might also be outsourcing high-budget content with an agency. Overall, assess the resources you’ve got and figure out if you’re developing content in-house or outsourcing production, and how you draw the distinction on various projects.

No matter how you’re operating, outline who is responsible for the creative concepts, who will write the scripts, how final approvals are gained, who organizes the logistics of a video shoot, and who’s responsible for distributing the videos once they are complete. You may also want an “editorial board” of major stakeholders who are consulted for video feedback. You definitely want feedback at critical points in the video process/projects, but be mindful of an excess of cooks in the kitchen.

Where do you get started?

Your marketing team could aim to kick off video efforts with a small, three-part video series for internal communication, for example. This is similar to how Canadian mega-brand Telus got started, and based on the success of their in-house video production team, they now create a whopping 500 video stories a year to amplify their brand message. In a B2B example, Taulia creates content with a mix of in-house and outsourced footage. They collaborate with an agency to ensure scripts and concepts are targeted to their buying personas.

4. Where will your content live?

Whether you’re reusing webinar content, creating how-to videos, or behind the scenes interviews with your management team, you need to know where your videos will live on your website.

You’ll notice I didn’t say “on YouTube”.

While YouTube is an amazing (and incredibly important) distribution channel, it’s not a strategy. At the end of the day YouTube has an interest in keeping people on their site, whereas you can really only prompt conversion on your own site. That’s why you not only need links back to your website within your SEO-optimized YouTube descriptions, but you’ll also want to create a destination on your site where prospects can go through a content journey and become increasingly immersed in your brand and message with lots of videos, mimicking the addictive YouTube experience.

You’ll notice that major brands behaving like media companies tend to have entire pages of their websites devoted to video. Take a look at The Lego Group for instance (they’ve got an entire “videos” section on their site, organized by story and character). Or, for a B2B example, see SAP and their resource hubs which contain their professional and humanizing brand videos.
SAP uses video prominently on a dedicated section of their website with SAP TV

To get started with video on your own site, try incorporating relevant videos into blog posts and creating a video hub where all of your content is organized into categories. Also see our distribution checklist to determine where else your videos should be syndicated.

5. Determine how you’ll measure performance

In the same way you track KPIs for written content, you need to produce, release, then review your videos and their associated analytics in order to justify your investment in the medium. Metrics might still be a scary word, but video is actually easier to measure than you might think. Because video is distributed in a “player” or “container”, you can get data for wherever your video is syndicated through a video marketing platform. What’s more is that your video data can contribute to more accurate lead scoring as you’ll be able to see which prospects are watching which videos, and for how long.

Some metrics you should track for each video campaign you release, include:

Attention span and drop-off rates: Do >60% of your audience make it to the end of your videos on average?
Click through rates: Split test the results for email content with and without video content.
The total amount of your video content leads consume: How many videos do individual leads watch in a day? A month? A week?

The Modern Marketer's Guide to VideoTo get the full list of exactly which metrics you should be tracking, download the Modern Marketer’s Guide to Video. With incredible B2B video marketing examples, the numbers you need to pay attention to, and a six step plan for creating purposeful video campaigns, this is a guide you don’t want to miss.

Overall, a video strategy keeps you from creating aimless content. Your videos should have a purpose aligned with your business goals.

Do you have a documented video strategy? Who’s responsible for video at your organization?

Updated May 2017: Going Beyond Strategy

Jennifer’s post does a great job of outlining the strategy your team needs to implement for creating marketing content, but what comes next? Video production isn’t as simple as pressing record – there’s mapping out your ideas, getting the right equipment, and about a hundred more steps between idea and success. So where do you start?

That’s where the Video Marketing Institute comes in. We created the VMI to cover every part of the video production process, from deciding when to use video, through to producing an effective video, distributing it, and of course, measuring the results!

You’ll learn:

  • How to budget for your next video project
  • What you need to build an effective in-house studio
  • Where to host your video for maximum effectiveness
  • Technologies that can enhance your video ROI
  • And more!

Register for lesson one, and start learning!

Jennifer Pepper