Chapter One

How to use video throughout your sales cycle

The simple answer to the question of where should you use video is: Where would you like higher conversions, more responses, and faster deals? Video gets a lot of well-deserved attention for its early-stage, attention-grabbing power, but the video connection only grows more useful throughout the sales cycle.

In this chapter, we’ll explain how to improve your communication at every stage—especially the later ones.

Doing deals is about building relationships and trust, and video helps you coach prospects to find value in your offering. So why wouldn’t you use it at the stages where the stakes are highest?
Shikha Bindra
Manager of Business Development, Vidyard

Grab prospects’ attention

Break through inboxes

Video outreach is unusual and exciting, and excels at breaking through to earn the attention of busy would-be buyers. A subject line that contains the word “video” is 8x more likely to be opened and the ability to easily set a GIF thumbnail lets your reps highlight their personality and get creative about earning responses.

If reps don’t get a reply, they can always resend the same video with a different subject line. Whenever they’re considering leaving a voicemail, reps can leave a video voicemail instead—it’s more intriguing and more likely to be opened.

Video outreach isn’t limited to email. It’s just as effective via:

  • LinkedIn InMails
  • Twitter DMs
  • Direct mail using video cards

Play buttons are also irresistible. You clicked the one above, didn’t you?

Breathe life into your value proposition

Use a screen capture video to show how your product or service is a good fit on your very first touch. Instead of waiting for the prospects’ response, you put it all out there. And unlike a cold call, which disrupts their day, they can consume it on their own time. Use screen captures to walk through the prospect’s LinkedIn profile, their organization’s website, or your own sales deck.

Perfectly time your follow-ups

With a video tool designed for sales, reps are notified when a prospect watches their video. And whereas email tracking only notifies you that the prospect opened your email, video tracking shows how much of the content the viewer watched and what parts they skipped.

Reps that call prospects when they’re halfway through a video and already looking at the sales reps’ face have dramatically higher connect rates. And when reps know which parts of the video interested viewers, they know what value proposition to lead with.

Ways to reuse your best videos:

  • List them on LinkedIn
  • Add them to your email signature
  • Pin them to your Twitter account
  • Add them to your company website
  • Let the marketing team reuse them in email campaigns

Secure more event meetings

Conferences and events can be disorienting for prospects, who often receive a torrent of emails from all vendors, all at once. Stand out from the crowd with a video of you wearing what you’re going to wear at the conference and ending with a link to your calendar.

If you can’t seem to reach your prospect before the event begins, send a video while it’s happening. Nothing grabs their attention like a video taken from their company’s booth which includes a GIF thumbnail of their own team waving at them.

Crack more accounts in account-based selling

Create persona and account-based videos that sales reps can mix, match, and send. This can save sales teams significant time with their Tier II and Tier III accounts, who may share lots of similarities and use cases. For all of their top accounts, reps can send personalized one-to-one videos that highlight their deep knowledge of the account and give the outreach a high-touch flair.

Tips from the Pros
When should sales use video in their sales process?
There’s a big opportunity for using video as part of outbound digital sales strategies to stand out and create a more personal connection from day one. It’s also a powerful way to answer frequently asked questions in a more engaging and memorable way. But there’s also a big opportunity to use one-to-one video for incremental relationship-building by infusing your follow-ups, call recaps, product demos, and proposals with your voice and personality. Video can play an important role throughout the entire sales process.
Marcus Sheridan
Owner, IMPACT

Move deals forward to close

Cut your no-show rate in half

It’s not uncommon these days for sales development organizations to suffer a 35% meeting no-show rate. It’s a tremendous waste of the team’s time and eats away at productivity. But you can cut it in half by sending video reminders where you reiterate why the prospect was initially interested and what they stand to gain.

“Because you aren’t sending a faceless ‘Are we still on for today?’ email, recipients feel guilty and accountable,” says Dan Wardle, Head of Business Development at Vidyard. “They’re going to either show up or reschedule.”

Reinforce account handoffs

Every company experiences some leakage during the handoff from sales development rep (SDR) to account executive (AE) or from AE to AE. Some prospects lose interest or get confused about why they’re talking to someone new. Use a video to warm prospects up for the handoff and let them know they’re in good hands. For a highly personal approach, try shooting a joint video with the SDR and AE sitting side by side, explaining the change and what it means together.

Send unforgettable follow-ups

Rather than send an email with a bulleted lists of takeaways, send a personal sales video. Prospects will retain the information better because it’s laden with emotion, and it adds a personal touch. If the meeting was in-person, record a follow-up video from somewhere they’ll recognize, like their lobby on your way out.

Reduce back-and-forth

Answer your prospect’s one-off questions completely and on the first reply using video. It gives you an opportunity to explain things more clearly and reinforces the relationship. Think of every video reply as another opportunity to further familiarize prospects with your voice and face.

Keep deals moving with micro-demos

In many ways, video micro-demos have traditional video conference demos beat. They show respect for the prospect’s time by letting them watch (and replay) at their leisure while not demanding a big time investment.

Too often, salespeople push prospects through the gauntlet of scheduling another meeting when all they needed was an answer to a simple question. Sending a 10-minute video is almost always easier than trying to book 30 minutes on a busy prospect’s calendar. Where appropriate, unstick your deal with micro-demos that highlight specific features, show your face, and move the conversation forward.

With micro-demos, less really is more. Some of the best ones are simply a slideshow of product screenshots paired with audio commentary. If you keep it succinct, you can answer the prospect’s question while raising new, even more valuable ones, and perhaps convince them that maybe they need to see a full demo after all.

Increase win rates by explaining proposals

Here’s a story every salesperson knows: A prospect receives pricing and then goes dark. It’s a universal experience, but it doesn’t have to be.

If you can’t get your prospect on a call to discuss pricing, send a video. Walk them through what’s included in the proposal, explain any accompanying legal agreements, and reiterate why they’re getting great value. Done right, you eliminate the potential for sticker shock and increase the odds of a quick response.

Train the team

Is your team winning deals with video sales? Don’t keep those videos secret. Share them so sales reps can learn from one another and innovate. Teams can create video libraries (known as hubs) for different verticals, use cases, or sales stages. The whole team will learn from the best, and new reps can ramp-up faster.

A collection of videos tiled in two rows under the category 1 to 1 prospecting

Grow and retain customers

Improve retention rates with warm handoffs

Increase customers’ onboarding success rates by introducing them to their customer success manager via video. A video from their new point of contact, perhaps sitting with the sales rep, transfers goodwill from one team on to the next, and reassures new customers.

Resolve customer issues faster

Explain customer support issues in less time using video. Screen shares are particularly useful because they allow customer support managers to walk the viewer through the product. Teams can also build a library of videos that answer frequently asked questions so support managers can send them with a custom introduction to save time.

Increase customer satisfaction

Help customers feel a deep connection to their success manager by reinforcing the relationship with video. For all the same reasons video helps salespeople, it helps customer success managers: It communicates their voice and personality, makes the support more enjoyable, and earns them more leeway with customers who understand that they’re dealing with another person.

Find more up-sell opportunities

Create a customer video library where customers can go to learn how to use the product. Libraries work like a personal YouTube for your company, recommending other relevant videos, so customers can learn about new features, products, and use cases. Plus, it can generate more sales opportunities.

Re-engage customers who have gone dark

Increase the chance of renewing customers by supporting them with video. If customer success managers send friendly video responses, it increases the customer’s satisfaction, answers their questions faster, and makes them more likely to be successful and renew. If the customer goes dark, the CSM has a better chance of bringing them back with webcam videos that tug at their heartstrings and make them feel accountable.

In the next chapter, we’ll explain the four types of sales video every rep should know.