B2B video marketing adviceAs more B2B marketers embrace videos, they often compare their video campaigns to competitors and peers. The 2018 Video in Business Benchmark Report from Vidyard sheds light on video marketing trends and effective practices.

Findings are based on data collected from the Vidyard video platform from more than 600 businesses and over 250,000 videos. These are some of the key takeaways.

No shift to mobile. Video viewing on smart phones is clearly increasing, but for business-related videos not so much. Almost 90 percent of views of business-related videos happen on desktops. Mobile views of B2B content actually decreased 3 percent from last year. Advice: Cater to all types of devices but take advantage of desktop features like larger screens and more advanced browsers to build more compelling experiences like interactive video.

Best times to post business videos. The middle of the week is the most popular time for watching B2B videos, notably Tuesday between 7 and 11 a.m. Pacific time (10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Eastern). Viewers tend to get off to a slower start on Mondays and Fridays and watch more videos a couple hours later those days.

More ways to distribute videos. Marketers distribute most videos through company websites and social media, but distribute them through more channels. The number using video in email jumped from 36% to 46%. Video use in sales conversations increased from 25% to 37% as more salespeople adopt the tactic to gain added attention and better connect with customers and prospects.

Shorter becomes more popular. Three-quarters of videos published in the last year were less than two minutes long, up from 55 percent last year. Marketers understand that customers feel pressed for time and that attention spans are shrinking. Advice: Ruthlessly cut long videos and consider breaking them into a series of short segments. The average length of a B2B video is nine minutes. An increase in long-form video content, such as webinars and product demos, likely increased the average.

Analyze to improve results. As video marketing becomes more prevalent, more brands embrace video analytics. Those using advanced analytics were twice as likely to say they improved ROI. Vidyard defines basic measurement as using simple metrics such as views or shares. Intermediate measurement entails engagement metrics such as average viewing duration in addition to basic metrics. Advanced measurement tracks views by embed location, viewer drop-off rates, viewing heat maps or attribution to sales pipeline as well as less advanced metrics. Advice: Use advanced metrics to gain better insight into usage, acceptance, engagement and sales results.

B2B Videos unlike Consumer Videos

B2C videos are humorous, irreverent and sometimes juvenile. That’s because B2C marketing is driven by emotion. That approach won’t work for business customers.

“No one ever bought a license for a new software platform because they got swept up in the emotional resonance of its marketing campaign,” says Jeff Keleher, a writer and editor at Brafton. “They view potential acquisitions in cold, hard numbers and the sharp light of rationalization.”

The goal is to show how your product or service will increase their revenue, decrease expenses, or generally make their lives easier. That can be accomplished with different types of formats that address different stages of the buyer’s journey:

Animated explainers provide overviews of your brand’s strengths and capabilities. Advice: Give people a brisk, general idea of your value proposition without getting bogged down in details.

Product videos show the features, tools and capabilities of products, and explain their business value. Advice: Be clear but avoid technical information and product specs.

Case studies showcase the work you’ve done with specific clients, highlighting product features and the value they provide. Advice: Use before-and-after formats to show the customer’s struggles and eventual success.

Testimonials focus more on the customer experience and showcase client quotes and interviews. Case studies show the value you provide your customers. Advice: Focus testimonials on the customer experience and the relationship.

Instructional videos guide customers through your products and educate them on how to use products for best results. Advice: Take the “XXX for Dummies” approach to instructional videos – and don’t just tell, show.

Bottom Line: B2B companies recognize the benefits of video marketing. However, business videos differ substantially from B2C videos. New research and advice from experts can help B2B marketers usher business customers through all stages of the buyer’s journey.