Video marketing is one of the most effective ways for brands to sell products and services online, but it only works when a well thought out content marketing strategy is used.
If you’re building a video marketing campaign, it’s important to remember that brands use videos at different stages of the customer journey in order to develop awareness, interest and desire. This is what’s known as a marketing funnel and it ultimately leads a number of viewers to purchase.
We are going to take a closer look at this funnel and see how marketers develop content for each stage.
The Marketing Funnel
The marketing funnel is a useful visualisation of the buyer’s journey – or the stages through which a potential customer passes before making a purchase.
A video marketing funnel consists of a series of videos that follows this structure – the content, message and purpose of the videos differ as a result.
Top of the Funnel: generating awareness
The first job of any marketer is simply to get people to notice a product or brand. Video content at this stage is intended to get the audience’s attention. Generally it needs to be entertaining, funny, or inspiring. Companies also often attempt to create viral videos at this stage in the marketing funnel to get the broadest exposure possible.
While awareness-stage videos aren’t too “salesy”, people will begin to recognise the brand. So whatever the content involves, the video should reflect brand values.
Types of awareness stage (or top of the funnel) video content
Brand films are developed to reflect a company’s mission and values. Microsoft’s video “Girl’s do Science” is an inspirational short film about empowering girls who are interested in science, and breaking down the gender barriers. The brand is shown as being inclusive, educational and forward-thinking.
In the YouTube description, the viewer is offered a call to action (CTA) that directs them to learn more about the Global Diversity and Inclusion programme.
Another interesting brand film comes from Elan, an online translation tool. It’s a self-aware campaign video that pits itself against Google Translate and then shows why it is better in a creative, convincing and hilarious way.
“Elan offers a great online translation tool. But you have probably never heard of Elan because you use Google Translate.”
Watch to see how it makes you want to try the software:
Chipotle’s video, set to Coldplay’s The Scientist sung by Willie Nelson, takes an emotional stance against factory farming and finishes with the message to “Cultivate a better world” – a strong statement of brand values.
In the awareness stage, you’ll also find documentaries, videos that provoke emotions, and how to videos.
Middle of the Funnel: generating interest
The next stage in the marketing funnel is interest – this is where the customer actively seeks out more information about the brand, product or service. Videos are therefore more product focused and are designed to “nurture” leads and they don’t necessarily hard sell.
Types of Interest stage (or middle of the funnel) video content
In this short middle of the funnel film by SwitchVideo, the company demonstrates the quality of its work and explains its three promises to the customer. It’s a convincing pitch that answers questions and doubts that a potential customer might have.
This multi-part video series from Coca Cola goes into the brand’s new focus on “content excellence”, user generated content, and a mission to double the size of the company’s business. These longform explainer videos speak to people who are genuinely interested in the brand’s new strategy – this could be employees, partners, or potential corporate partners.
Companies also often use testimonials, positive product reviews, and brand value videos at this stage of the customer journey help potential consumers come to trust them.
Bottom of the Funnel: generating conversions
At this stage in the customer journey, the viewer is evaluating his or her options so it’s important that videos explain the brand’s unique selling proposition (USP).
As a result, the bottom of the funnel is far more focused on product features, offers, discounts, extras, client doubts and questions, the direct value a service has to a client.
These videos tend to be more straightforward and informational.
Types of desire and action (bottom of the funnel) video content
Here is an example for an Employee Insurance application, it outlines the steps a newly unemployed person in Canada needs to take when applying for job seeking benefits:
In this bottom of the funnel video, Wishpond outlines how to use its software to generate leads for your business in a webinar:
When creating a video marketing campaign it is essential you are aware of your objectives, each video’s function and its position in the marketing funnel.
For more on Video Marketing check out our article Video mobile marketing evolution and the must have skill set for graduates.