Video has become an important part of our DNA at Terminus. As an account-based marketing company, from the beginning we’ve been focused on personalization and obsessed with finding creative and authentic ways to reach contacts at our target accounts. Video is a channel that allows our sales team to personalize their outreach in powerful ways, and to put a face to what otherwise could feel like a cold outreach or sales process.
Recently a sales leader asked about the ROI of video and I was surprised by the question. Don’t get me wrong — as a sales leader myself I want to see an ROI for every tool that we use, but the impact of video seemed obvious. For an inside sales team, how could creating personalized videos during SDR outreach or during a long sales process not have an ROI?
Terminus has been at the forefront of building a new category around ABM, which has caused some interesting challenges. While we don’t have many direct competitors, our buyers typically do not have an initiative or budget set aside for our product. We face challenges around market confusion as there are many ABM players in the space, lack of knowledge around how to launch an ABM strategy, and including the entire buying committee in our sales process as marketers across several teams may need to collaborate to use our platform.
To surmount our unique set of challenges, we absolutely need to personalize our messaging and find creative ways of sharing it in order to break through the noise. We also need to reach multiple contacts in the organization throughout the entire sales process. Video has become a crucial tool in allowing us to do this quickly and efficiently.
I brought video via Vidyard Go Video (Formerly ViewedIt) into our sales prospecting at Terminus earlier this year. The results have been pretty mind-blowing. Right away we started getting real-world feedback from people like:
“You caught my attention. Kudos to you guys for a killer prospecting email. I forwarded your email to our BDR team for some inspiration…hope you don’t mind.”
“Thank you so much for actually taking the time to actually talk about me instead of just telling me what you do.”
In fact, one of the recipients of our videos wrote a whole blog post about how impressed she was intrigued and impressed by the approach from one of our SDRs, Morgan Gillespie. Here’s one example of Morgan’s creative outreach.
But the results aren’t just anecdotal either. We closely monitor and track our work and within just a few months of incorporating video, we found that we were seeing in our outreach emails (using video as a first touchpoint vs. a traditional approach):
- 40% higher open rate
- 37% higher click rate
- 216% higher response rate (more than TRIPLE the reply rate!!)
Finally, another benefit we are seeing from using video for sales is that the information we send out is getting circulated to more members of the buying committee. It’s actually reaching the decision makers because it is suited for busy people who simply don’t have the time to read lengthy emails and documents.
For those of you ready to bring the power of video to your sales process, here are some things we have learned along the way:
Video has been a central part of my company since the beginning. In the early days, our Co-Founder & CMO, Sangram Vajre, made a series of thought leadership videos about topics related to account-based marketing (which you can also read more about in this post).
We discovered something surprising: the videos that were getting the most views were the impromptu ones where he didn’t sound scripted and there was no fancy cinematography. These videos resonated because they felt genuine and he was speaking from the heart. So we just took the same concept and took that to the sales team. Here’s another example from our SDR, Ryan Vitello.
We coach the team to film one, maybe two takes of each video from their desk or a quiet spot around the office. This makes the video feel natural and captures someone’s attention. It’s also a quick, easy way to send a personalized message. It’s easier to get out a complex topic or to provide an explanation on why you’re reaching out verbally than in an email.
Lay a proper foundation.
Right now video has an enormous advantage in business (read: the novelty factor) because it’s such a fresh and dynamic new medium. But like any channel, if not used properly it can just become one more thing to blast people and annoy them. It’s really important to provide value, and it’s the job of the sales leader to properly train and prepare their team to use every channel, video included.
At Terminus we have each of our SDRs and AEs practice doing a set number of test videos before we just give them the ability send them out to prospects. The process is simple: We have each member find five prospective companies that would be a good fit and then select one contact in each account to record a personalized video for. Once complete, they are to email these examples to their manager to provide tips and feedback. Once they have proven that they can create a valuable and effective video, we certify them to use our video platform for sales outreach.
I highly recommend that you create a training and testing process for your team before launching any type of video strategy to ensure it leaves your recipients with a positive impression of your company and brand.
Avoid the ‘me-centric’ approach. Make it about them.
Another key to not annoying people with video, we’ve found, is to remember that customers don’t care about your product until you prove that you can provide value to them. The great news is that video is the perfect channel to do this effectively. Video allows you to quickly share what you’ve learned about the company and/or contact that caused you to reach out and how you believe that your product or service can benefit them. It’s easier to share this in a video than to pack it all into a short email.
So as with any good prospecting, first research the company to ensure it’s a good fit for your offering. Then, research the buying committee and create a plan for outreach. Use that information to carefully construct a tailored approach including multiple channels- email, phone, social and video. Your message across all channels should be the same, but can be delivered in different ways. The key is to speak to how you can help that person and organization, NOT to simply tell them what you do. Automated emails can accomplish that for less expense.
In today’s busy world of automated mass messaging it’s really hard for a sales person to break through the noise. It’s tempting to double down on automation and volume to improve your chances of success, but those efforts are not valuable and provide diminishing returns. According to the Aberdeen Group, 75 percent of customers prefer personalized offers. Creative, value-driven, and personalized outreach will help your team stand out, and I can almost guarantee will improve your conversion rates. Video is one of the best, most effective ways to do exactly this in your sales and marketing efforts.
Let me know how it goes, and send me YOUR stories of success!