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September 29, 2022·10 min read

How to Use Video for Customer Support

From support tickets to knowledge bases to customer onboarding, customer service videos help make the resolution process faster, simpler, and more cost-efficient.

A few years ago, I had a full load of laundry to do, but my washing machine wouldn’t start. Faced with the prospect of an expensive professional repair (and wearing dirty clothes for the next few days), I took things into my own hands.

I found a helpful customer support video on YouTube diagnosing the problem. Following the video’s instructions, I was able to fix the machine’s faulty door sensor for the low cost of a single cable tie.

Stories like these are the new normal of customer support. Customers want quick and timely resolution to their issues—preferably in an easy-to-digest format. Most people have quit a brand because of poor customer service experiences. In order to keep your customers, you need to provide an amazing level of support.

Video for customer support is the perfect way to deliver quicker and more effective solutions to customer woes. It speeds up the resolution process. Customers are happier with their support experience. It even boosts customer retention by helping them get more out of your product or service.

In this guide, we’ll scope out the benefits of customer support videos, then dive into ways you can weave video into every part of your support framework.

  1. Contents
  2. 1. The Benefits of Customer Support Videos
  3. 1.1 What Video Customer Service Can Do for You
  4. 2. The Stats on How Teams Use Customer Service Videos
  5. 3. 6 Ways to Put Video to Work for Your Customer Support
  6. 3.1 #1: Build a Video Knowledge Base
  7. 3.1.1 Common Use Cases for Video in Your Knowledge Base
  8. 3.1.2 How a Video Knowledge Base Boosts Your Video SEO
  9. 3.2 #2: Resolve Support Tickets with Video
  10. 3.2.1 Asynchronous Video Support
  11. 3.2.2 Live Video Support
  12. 3.2.3 Getting Ahead with Video Customer Service
  13. 3.3 #3: Send Thank You Videos
  14. 3.4 #4: Create Customer Onboarding Videos
  15. 3.5 #5: Optimize Support with CRM Integration and Video Analytics
  16. 3.5.1 Support CRM Integration
  17. 3.5.2 Video Analytics
  18. 3.6 #6: Train Your Customer Service Team with Video
  19. 3.6.1 Customer Service Training Videos
  20. 3.6.2 Onboarding Remote Customer Support Hires with Video
  21. 3.7 How to Overcome the Five Barriers That Keep Customer Support Teams from Leveraging Video
  22. 3.7.1 #1: Producing Professional-Quality Video That Represents the Brand Well
  23. 3.7.2 #2: Allocating Staff Time and Resources for Video Production
  24. 3.7.3 #3: Producing Customer Service Videos That Engage
  25. 3.7.4 #4: Having Video Production Expertise
  26. 3.7.5 #5: Funding Customer Service Video Production

The Benefits of Customer Support Videos

Marketers and sales professionals have long known how great video is for explaining things. It’s time for customer support to embrace it, too.

Video explains huge quantities of information in very little time. Say you need to learn how to tie a bow tie. It could take hundreds of words to explain the process, and the written descriptions of each step might not be clear to the reader. Or you could watch a 10-second GIF, tie that tie like a pro, and arrive at your event on time.

GIF showing how to tie a bow tie

How-to” is one of the top four categories on YouTube. It’s often the first place people go to get answers to all kinds of questions, from tying bow ties to learning how to use a product.

People would rather watch a video to solve a problem with a product or service instead of getting in touch with the business’s support team. And when 42% of consumers are willing to pay as much as 16% more for a product with a friendly, welcoming experience, it’s in your best interest to make your support workflow shine.

And it works! Here at Vidyard, 80% of our customers watch our videos to learn how to use our platform or solve an issue they’re experiencing.

Improve Customer Satisfaction with Video From support tickets to knowledge bases to customer onboarding, video helps make the resolution process faster Sign Up Free

What Video Customer Service Can Do for You

  • Decrease time-to-resolution by answering questions faster
  • Deflect tickets by helping your customers help themselves
  • Save on support costs by closing tickets sooner
  • Increase customer satisfaction by transforming the support process into an experience
  • Drive retention by providing personalized connections and attentive care

Good customer service videos deliver knowledge in an easily consumed package. The best customer service videos build individual connections between customers and support agents, making users feel heard and cared for.

The Stats on How Teams Use Customer Service Videos

In our State of Video Report, we found that more companies are using video for sales and customer conversations than ever before—even eclipsing YouTube in terms of video channel popularity.

38% of businesses we surveyed are already using video for customer experience and support. (Translation: Chances are good that at least one of your competitors is already producing their own customer service videos.)

In our survey, customer support teams ranked their preferred video distribution channels by popularity:

  1. Customer conversations and support videos
  2. Training videos
  3. Internal communications videos

They also ranked the types of videos they’re investing the most resources into creating:

  1. Demo and product videos (watch an example)
  2. How-to videos (watch an example)
  3. Training videos (watch an example)
  4. Brand videos (watch an example)
  5. Customer testimonial videos (watch an example)

Ready to learn how to improve customer satisfaction by incorporating video into your support resources? Let’s explore six surprisingly easy ways to get it done.

6 Ways to Put Video to Work for Your Customer Support

#1: Build a Video Knowledge Base

Most customers prefer self-service support, making a knowledge-centered service (KCS) methodology a must-have. When a customer asks a question, add it to your publicly-facing knowledge base so other users can quickly and conveniently find the answer.

You may already have a knowledge base, but you can take it to the next level by loading it up with video. Videos are succinct ways to replace cumbersome written guides, PDFs, and manuals. Your customers will love how much quicker (and more engaging) it is to watch a video than it is to read a mountain of documentation.

Common Use Cases for Video in Your Knowledge Base

  • Troubleshooting: Solve customers’ problems with pre-packaged video instructions that are easy to follow and understand.
  • Account Setup: Walk customers through the process of getting their account up, running, and calibrated to their needs.
  • Video FAQs: Compile answers to customers’ most common questions into a video FAQ. Customers can refer to the FAQ for their basic queries instead of contacting support. (You can further expand these FAQs into full-blown webinars on key support topics.)

Using video for these knowledge base topics (and more) makes them easier to digest. Answering these low-hanging how-to questions upfront increases your deflection rate, saving you time for cases that are more deserving of support’s attention.

It also improves the overall B2C and B2B customer experience. Wouldn’t you be happier finding a convenient video answer in a knowledge base search instead of waiting for support to get back to you?

Learn From the Pros

Our own Knowledge Base is full of video guidance. This particular video, which covers how to embed videos into emails, lives on the relevant Knowledge Base page alongside text instructions, letting users choose whether they want to read or watch.

How a Video Knowledge Base Boosts Your Video SEO

Search engine algorithms prioritize pages with high-quality content. Video is a great way to increase your site’s level of quality.

But search engine crawlers need a little extra help figuring out what your videos are about. Adding descriptions and tags to your knowledge base videos closes the gap. SEO-optimized videos that live on your site’s URL are a low-effort, high-impact way to give your site an extra search engine boost.

#2: Resolve Support Tickets with Video

Sometimes, a simple how-to just won’t cut it. When your knowledge base can’t solve the problem, customers contact support.

Video shines here too. Where once you would send a text-based response, a video message lets you stand out. Create individually tailored walkthroughs and demonstrations to quickly resolve complex issues. Just record and send.

Asynchronous Video Support

Pre-recorded (or “asynchronous”) video can minimize or even eliminate:

  • Emails, Calls, and Chat Support: Compress your text novella, marathon call, or endless back-and-forth chat conversation into a video that the user can watch, rewatch, and respond to at their speed.
  • Annotated Screenshots and Remote Logins: Directly record your screen to show the user exactly what steps to take on their end. They can replay confusing segments to ensure they’re doing it right.

Video’s precision comes from showing instead of telling. It streamlines support, making it easier for both the agent and the customer. Tickets close earlier in the support process. Support personnel can be more productive. Plus, videos can be repurposed for future support requests or as knowledge base content. It’s a win/win/win.

Live Video Support

But sometimes, a pre-recorded video just doesn’t cut it, especially when a one-to-one connection is a key part of your customer experience.

In this use case, synchronous video becomes even more powerful. Video chat customer service lets you link with customers on the other side of the world to provide them with the same level of care they’d receive walking into a brick-and-mortar location.

Premium brands that pride themselves on a concierge experience have the most to gain from this kind of video chat support. Personalized video customer service facilitates purchases with big price tags. It’s also a better way to support tailored product implementations that require more advanced troubleshooting than basic how-tos.

Getting Ahead with Video Customer Service

Video is so much more personal than a text or a phone call. Remember how we said that customers want their support experience to be, well, an experience? Responding to a ticket or reaching out using video is the perfect opportunity.

Customers pay the most attention to the quality of your service when they’re trying to fix an issue with your product. Even if your support staff can’t provide a perfect solution, they can make a personal connection through video to salvage the customer relationship (and maybe salvage future sales, too).

Improve Customer Satisfaction with Video From support tickets to knowledge bases to customer onboarding, video helps make the resolution process faster Sign Up Free

#3: Send Thank You Videos

It’s a great move to reach out to users after a support conversation to thank them for their time—especially if they didn’t receive the resolution they wanted.

Replace those dry emails with a personalized video from the support agent. The best thank you videos use the customer’s name and refer to the specific details of their support request. An engaging thumbnail, like your agent waving at the camera or holding up a piece of paper with the customer’s name, catches the viewer’s attention and seals the deal.

When an agent sends a personalized thank-you, a happy customer will be even more pleased with their quality of service. For the customer who didn’t get their issue solved, they will likely appreciate the effort to make amends. Either way, the extra bit of attention propels that net promoter score (NPS) a little higher.

#4: Create Customer Onboarding Videos

Getting started with a new product or service can be confusing. You can smooth this process using video, too.

A library of customer onboarding videos that you can send to new users makes their first few days or weeks with your product a breeze. Use these videos to take customers through the startup process. Then, you can show them how to use some of the best features your product has to offer.

A high-quality onboarding experience makes it easier for customers to start using your product. It also cuts down on the number of onboarding-related tickets they send to support. Plus, it makes it more likely that users will get invested in using the product, use it to its full potential, and ultimately become promoters of your brand.

Learn From the Pros

Vidyard’s Close-Up video series details key features of our platform. We send these videos to new signups as part of the customer onboarding process. They help them better understand everything they can do with Vidyard.

#5: Optimize Support with CRM Integration and Video Analytics

Video integration is an amazing chance to increase the efficiency of your entire customer support org. Tools like video CRM integration and video analytics make your workflows cleaner and improve support outcomes.

Support CRM Integration

By integrating video right into your customer support software (CSS) or customer relationship management (CRM) system, you can connect users with the videos that can solve their problems in the easiest and most direct way.

Agents can create and share videos from support responses, automatically tie videos to customer case records, and trigger further actions. For example, if a customer only watches a part of a support video, agents can be notified to reach out to provide further help. Alternatively, if a customer watches a support video and indicates that it resolved their issue, they can provide feedback without leaving the video and automatically close the support ticket.

Video Analytics

Video analytics gives you a look into what is and isn’t working for your support strategy.

With emails, portals, and PDFs, you send the content to the user and hope for the best. But with the right video analytics solution, you can see how much of each video a user views, as well as where they’re pausing and rewatching.

Analytics also lets you continually optimize your entire team’s performance. As agents create, send, and save videos, your team can review what worked, and what didn’t, and see where they can improve.

Analytics is a great resource for insights to fuel training and coaching to make your customer experience the best it can be.

Here are a few examples:

  • If viewers often skip a long intro sequence, you know to trim it down
  • If one agent’s videos lead to drastically lower handling times, you can analyze what they’re doing differently and pass it on to the rest of your team
  • If your customers consistently access a support video on Feature A but rarely on Feature B, you know to prioritize more content and agent training around that feature

#6: Train Your Customer Service Team with Video

Customer Service Training Videos

Showing someone how to do something using a visual aid makes the process so much easier. (That’s basically what customer support is, right?)

The same goes for training reps. Customer service training videos help learners easily grasp complex topics or workflows by seeing them in action on screen.

Best of all, they’re a snap to put together. Just record a video once, then re-use it forever.

New hires can progress through your library of customer service training videos at their own pace, or review modules they’re struggling with. Training videos also make great quick references for your existing employees: They’re ideal for introducing new tools or approaches to your reps, and they get way more engagement than a multi-page Word document.

Onboarding Remote Customer Support Hires with Video

If you’re working with a hybrid or fully remote customer support team, you already know how difficult it can be to bring them up to speed.

This is where customer service training videos come in. Getting videos from your manager is way more personal than faceless emails or PDFs. They help remote employees feel more connected with their team and with the overall corporate culture.

For a little extra insight, check out the 13 things our own team learned from onboarding remote employees.

How to Overcome the Five Barriers That Keep Customer Support Teams from Leveraging Video

In our State of Video Report, the customer support teams we surveyed identified five primary blockers that kept them from putting video to work. Here’s advice on how to overcome each one.

#1: Producing Professional-Quality Video That Represents the Brand Well

Some sellers worry that the videos they produce won’t look or sound good enough for user consumption. If they only have a webcam and a basic headset to work with, they fear the quality of their videos will be too low.

Video quality isn’t the most important thing. Video authenticity is. That built-in webcam, when combined with a screen recorder, is all your reps really need.

Read our guide to building remote office recording setups. There’s tips for enhancing even the most basic of video setups without having to buy new equipment—as well as product recommendations if you do want to equip your team.

#2: Allocating Staff Time and Resources for Video Production

Building on the point above: You don’t need to spend a lot of budget to get your reps started with video. All they need is a webcam and a way to capture footage from their screen (like Vidyard’s free screen recorder tool).

Have your reps block off some time once per day or week. That time is designated video time. It’ll reduce distractions and help smooth the video creation process.

And all the videos that your reps are creating during this time will stack up into a library of reusable video support content. In the future, they’ll be able to dip into this library to quickly answer users’ FAQs.

#3: Producing Customer Service Videos That Engage

Not sure what kinds of videos your users will actually find useful? Get inspiration from the videos that other customer support teams are making. Explore our library of customer support templates for ideas.

#4: Having Video Production Expertise

No one becomes a video pro after their first recording. Comfort and expertise is something that builds up over time, and your reps will develop it as they make more and more video content. In short: The more they do it, the better they’ll get.

If your team is nervous about getting in front of the camera, show them our tips for feeling more comfortable on video.

#5: Funding Customer Service Video Production

It’s tough to go all-in on a new strategy right out of the gate. Here’s our advice: Keep your initial video rollout small. Get your team’s feet wet with video before committing further. It’ll help them build confidence and mastery over a longer-ramp up period.

Once your team gets rolling with video, track how those videos affect your KPIs. Are they speeding up resolution times or increasing your CSAT scores?

(Example: You can use Vidyard’s video analytics tools to see whether users are watching your reps’ videos, and chart how much engagement those videos are receiving.)

What would you rather say to your executive team? “Yeah, video is effective, I think” or “Video is effective, and here’s hard data showing why”? Prove video’s ROI from a controlled initial rollout, then use that proven success to keep building up support and adoption.

Improve Customer Satisfaction with Video From support tickets to knowledge bases to customer onboarding, video helps make the resolution process faster Sign Up Free

This post was originally published on October 21, 2020. It was updated on September 29, 2022.

Lori Connor

Lori Connor

Lori is a Content Marketing Manager at Vidyard. Over the past decade, she's written everything from news stories to tech whitepapers. She travels the continent to hike, camp, and swordfight.