Yes, it’s true! The often-misunderstood tofu is a great source of protein and contains all nine essential amino acids. It’s an excellent source of iron and calcium, and is the place where most of your potential customers will start their buying journeys and get their first taste of your brand. Still with me, marketing chefs?

All you savvy marketers know that TOFU is much more than a simple bean curd, it’s the acronym for the initial stage of the buying journey known as “Top Of Funnel”. It’s the stage where prospects gain awareness of your brand, and the stage where video content has made a real name for itself. Most modern marketers have embraced video as a key part of their TOFU marketing strategy, enticing net new online audiences with savory nuggets of video designed to engage, educate, inspire, or just plain make them laugh. As we often say, the play button is the most compelling call to action on the web, and we know that audiences are hungry for it.

But TOFU is really just the appetizer in your 4-course marketing meal. While getting someone’s attention is super important, how you treat them from that point forward will dictate whether or not they decide to stick around for the main course and become a future customer advocate. And there’s no better way than targeted video content to move your prospects through the MOFU (“Middle Of Funnel”) and BOFU (“Bottom Of Funnel”) stages, on their way to becoming another satisfied patron.

The Second Course: Video for Mid-Funnel Conversion

Once a prospect has moved from simple awareness to demonstrating an interest in your brand, they have officially entered the MOFU stage. This is your opportunity to showcase how you can help your potential buyer achieve their business or personal goals, and what your products or services have to offer. Traditionally, most marketers have relied on high-calorie product pages, brochures, eBooks, and whitepapers to drive home their messages at this stage, but bite-sized video snacks can be a healthier way to educate your buyers and to instill your brand as something memorable and interesting.

Using Video in Buyer's JourneyThe video content menu for the MOFU stage often includes explainer videos, product/service orientation videos (check out our “Vidyard Product Tour” videos for some inspiration), whiteboard videos for specific use-cases or feature sets, short educational webinars and customer testimonials. At this stage of the buying journey you’ll want to use compelling visuals to showcase your offerings, and don’t be shy to get your own employees on camera showcasing their passion for what you do. This is your opportunity to establish a digital relationship that goes beyond facts and figures, and to whet their appetite for more.

The Main Course: Videos to Help You Convert

Now it’s time to for the main course: the Bottom of Funnel (BOFU) content that will help you close the deal. Even with a great sales team, marketing plays a critical role at this stage of the funnel with compelling content that will help buyers justify their purchase decision and maybe even upsell themselves. It’s time to feed your prospects a steady stream of educational and inspiring content that will help them justify their purchase decision and validate they’re making a healthy choice.

A killer video marketing recipe at the BOFU stage includes just the right mix of product deep dive videos, on-demand webinars, targeted customer testimonials (by industry, product, etc.), thought leadership videos from industry experts, and even videos of your customer events and other community programs that showcase how you treat your clients post-sale. And don’t forget about the secret ingredients that only your hottest prospects get to enjoy (you know, the kinds of videos that you may want to keep private): pricing videos, competitive comparisons, super deep product demos, and even highly personalized videos that can be created on-the-fly to warm up targeted accounts and show them exactly what you can do for their unique set of requirements.

Now we’re cookin’ with gas! The prospect has enjoyed their 3-course video marketing meal so much that they decide to pay for the bill and become a loyal customer. Ready to call it a night? Not quite yet. You know what time it is…

Dessert Time: Post-Sale Nurturing with Video Content

In many organizations, marketing still plays a key role in post-sale customer communications and success programs. This stage isn’t just about customer support, it’s about keeping clients so engaged and excited about your brand that they WANT to learn more, and maybe even buy more. Video content can be a great way to expose existing customers to new features they may not be using yet, to share best practices from other happy customers, or to simply keep them engaged in your company news and culture. If you give careful thought to how to use video at this stage of the funnel, you can create the kinds of sweet treats that customers just can’t say no to. So go ahead, give them something decadent to indulge in to show them you still care and value the relationship, even though they’ve already picked up the tab.

Putting this Into Practice as a Master Chef (uhhhhh…. Marketer)

While this is all great in theory, the real challenge lies in how you put these ideas into practice. For some real-world inspiration and examples of what really works, join the upcoming webinar  with the Demand Gen team from Act-On who’s walking the talk when it comes to this topic. They’ll be offering practical insights on how they’ve built a video content strategy that aligns with the different stages of the buying journey, and how this approach has helped them not only generate more leads, but improve qualification and conversion throughout the funnel.

Buyers' Journey Webinar

What do you think about using video content throughout the buying journey? We’d love to hear any other tips or considerations from real-world practitioners out there.

Tyler Lessard