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Want to use videos to boost your sales? Here’s how

Over the last decade or so, digital marketing has shifted to a more personalized style of reaching audiences. The rise of machine learning algorithms, subscription-based marketing, and user segmentation has allowed brands to customize content to fit each of their target audiences and engage with them in the most effective way possible.

As a result, video has become one of the most versatile types of content of the marketing toolbox. You see it everywhere online, from whiteboard videos and live-action tutorials to unboxing videos and customer testimonials.

But the effectiveness of such pieces hinges on how well you match them with your target’s stage in their buying cycle — different types of videos become far more (or way less) appealing to different kinds of customers.

So, in this piece, I'm going to guide you through the stages of the buyer's journey and the type of marketing videos that work best for each one. As you'll soon find out, the only difference between an intrigued user and a happy customer is often the right video at the right time.

So, let’s begin!

Awareness Stage

Let’s put ourselves in the shoes of our prospective customers.

The awareness stage is where it all starts: you’ve identified a specific pain point in your everyday life, job, or hobby. And what are you going to do next? What everybody else does: go online to look for answers.

It shouldn’t come as a surprise then that educational videos are one of the most attractive types of content for this stage. How-to’s and tutorials offer valuable help to users when they need it the most, addressing their issues and offering a simple solution to them.

Commercials have also proven to work at this stage, especially those that use the power of storytelling to empathize with the audience’s problems and show how a product or service can solve them.

The common factor of both these types of content is that they are value-driven. These videos are not focused on outright selling but on offering honest and timely help to your audience. The right educational video or narrative commercial will help you attract new potential customers and improve your lead generation.

Consideration Stage

Once your target is aware of your brand and the products or services you sell, they move forward into the next phase of the buyer’s journey.

The consideration stage is where your buyer starts looking for information that will help them make the final decision. They will look at all the alternatives available and gather the pros and cons of each seller.

To make it to your buyer's shortlist of options, you need to inform them about your product or service's benefits in the clearest and most honest way possible. Explainer videos are among the most engaging types of marketing content out there because they do just that.

These short videos use creative styles of animation (such as whiteboard style or that integrate colorful characters like the example below) to explain to audiences how your brand can help to solve their pain points. They maintain an educational tone, but they tend to be a bit more straight about the advantages of using your product or service.

Product videos are also very popular at this stage, especially when it comes to eCommerce. These videos showcase your product in context, usually with close-ups of its features or cool slow-motion takes of it being used. Your audience should finish your product video with a pretty good idea of what it looks like, how they can use it, and what its main benefits are.

Decision Stage

Finally, we’re almost there!

The decision stage is the home stretch of the buyer's journey. You've made your target's shortlist, and now they are almost ready to acquire your product or service. But competition can be fierce, and your marketing efforts must be placed on proving you are a reputable company they can trust.

As a brand, this is your opportunity to use customer feedback to your advantage and create customer testimonials and FAQ videos.

Customer testimonials are case studies about the happy clients you’ve helped with your product or service. These are great at building credibility since there’s nothing people trust better than other people. Therefore, the testimonials that work best are the ones that use truthful customer interviews (this means no actors!).

Other buyers just need to get a few doubts out of the way before making their decision. This is where FAQ videos come useful, by answering the most frequently asked questions of other buyers. To make sure your video helps nurture your leads, you should only pick useful topics since obvious or rare questions can have a negative effect.

Conclusion

As I’ve shown you in this piece, to offer audiences valuable content, you need to learn how to use the right type of videos for the right stage of their buyer's journey.

And while this can’t possibly be a definitive list of all the types of marketing videos out there, it’s fair to say we’ve covered enough ground to get you started.

So, start creating videos that speak directly to your audience’s interests and you’ll give them enough reasons to buy your product or service.

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About the Author

Victor Blasco is an audiovisual designer, video marketing expert, and founder/CEO of the explainer video production company Yum Yum Videos. Besides running the business, he’s a lifelong student of Chinese philosophy and a passionate geek for all things sci-fi.