A week and a half ago at SES San Francisco 2012, I moderated a session entitled “Keys to Success with B2B Video.” The speakers were Leslie Drate, Manager of Social Media, Cisco, and Mark Robertson, Founder, ReelSEO.
Now, I could try to tell you what Leslie and Mark spent 40 minutes explaining during the session. Or, you can read Gretchen Egeberg’s comprehensive post in the aimClear Blog entitled, “B2B Video in Da House! Essential Techniques & Tips for Success from #SESSF.”
But, as Inigo Montoya said in The Princess Bride (1987), “No, there is too much. Let me sum up.”
Who: People who buy products for their company watch YouTube videos. For example, Mark said, “47 percent of IT professionals watch YouTube videos to research technology solutions.”
What: B2B marketers are turning increasingly to YouTube videos. For example, Leslie said, “We make about 1,000 videos a year at Cisco.” She illustrated this by showing “Coraid: Accelerating Storage Innovation with WebEx Cloud Services.”
When: People who buy products for their company watch YouTube videos beyond the work day. Leslie said, “Although 53 percent of B2B IT decision-makers watch tech-related videos during normal business hours, 27 percent watch before normal business hours and 61 percent watch after normal business hours. In addition, 50 percent watch on weekends.”
Where: Invest once in creating B2B videos and then post them in many places. Leslie said, “All our videos are posted to Cisco.com (preferably in more than one place) and YouTube.” She added, “Video is also a big asset for our blog posts, Facebook, and other social media.”
Why: YouTube videos can help even a small business go from no sales, online or offline, to full nationwide distribution. To illustrate this, Mark played “CASE STUDY: How Orabrush got into Walmart.”
How: The #1 tip for success with B2B video is to dedicate time. Mark said, “It takes time to create magnetic content worth watching, sharing and repeating.” He added, “It takes time to optimize your video’s title, tags and description. And it takes time to engage and converse with your customers to build persistent relationships.”
Now, Leslie and Mark weren’t the only speakers at SES San Francisco 2012 who understand the important role video can play in B2B marketing. For example, there were several speakers at the conference from a company founded in 1998 that has grown to serve hundreds of thousands of users and customers around the world. Their first product, initially called BackRub, is now named Google.
One of these speakers was Avinash Kaushik, the Digital Marketing Evangelist for Google. He is featured in more than 300 YouTube videos, including 25 on the Google Analytics channel. He gave the opening keynote, which was entitled “Business Optimization in a Digital Age.”
Different B2B campaigns can have different goals. Now, I’m just spitballing here, but could Avinash’s goal be agenda-setting?
At SES London in Febrary, I interviewed Avinash about his upcoming keynotes at SES New York in March, SES Shanghai in April, SES Toronto in June, SES San Francisco in August, SES Hong Kong in September, and SES Chicago in November, and SES Singapore in November. If you want to understand the agenda he’s setting, watch “Avinash Kaushik, Digital Marketing Evangelist for Google, previews SES New York 2012.”
Another one of these speakers was Matt Cutts, the Software Engineer Guru at Google Inc. He is featured in about 1,370 YouTube videos, including120 on the Google Webmasters channel.
During the Spotlight Keynote on the second day of the conference, Cutts answered some tough questions from the audience as well as a panel made up of Mike Grehan, Global VP Content, SES, Search Engine Watch, ClickZ; Danny Sullivan, editor-in-chief of Search Engine Land and producer of SMX; and Brett Tabke, CEO of WebmasterWorld Inc. and chairman of PubCon.
Why would he do that? Was Matt’s goal reputation management?
To decide for yourself, check out part of the Spotlight Keynote by watching “Matt Cutts Q&A: What is the Impact of Google+ on Search Rankings?”
A third one of the speakers was Shannon Snow, Google’s Head of Industry for Education based on the west coast. Since joining Google in 2006, Shannon has worked to grow Google’s advertising business in the Local, Travel and Entertainment sectors, as well as increase relationships with agencies. You can find a video featuring her on the About Talk EDU channel.
Could Shannon’s goal be audience engagement?
Shannon spoke at the session entitled, “Winning the Moments that Matter with Local, Social and Mobile AdWords Search Strategies.” After the session, she was interviewed by Anne Kennedy of Beyond Ink in a video entitled “Google’s Shannon Snow on social, local, and mobile marketing.”
Now, agenda setting, reputation management and audience engagement are all legitimate reasons to speak at an industry conference, one of the oldest forms of B2B marketing. And using YouTube videos, one of the newest forms of B2B marketing, to help your company achieve these goals makes perfect sense, too.
Is there a hidden cost? Of course there is. You need to dedicate time.
Or, as Miracle Max says in The Princess Bride (1987), “You rush a miracle man, you get rotten miracles.”