Boosting brand awareness and engagement ranks as the top application of video in B2B online marketing programs, according to the latest annual B2B video content marketing study [download page] from the Web Video Marketing Council (WVMC), Flimp Media and ReelSEO. While limited budgets are the leading production challenge, 41% of respondents said their video marketing budgets have increased from last year, including almost 3 in 10 whose budgets have grown by more than 10%.
There appears to be general enthusiasm concerning the effectiveness of online video, with 73% indicating that it is having a positive impact on their marketing results and 56% feeling that it has positively impacted their sales results. This optimism is supported by recent survey results in which just 15% of respondents (primarily B2B) reported that video wasn’t effectiveness in reaching their goals. That report also found almost 9 in 10 respondents indicating that video’s effectiveness is rising.
There has been a great deal of optimism surrounding B2B video this year. MarketingCharts’ 2015 B2B Digital Marketing Insights Report reveals, for example, that B2B marketers believe videos are their most effective content type, ahead of webinars and case studies. Separate data in the report indicates that online videos are considered the most indispensable content type for B2B marketers this year, again ahead of case studies and webinars.
Yet despite the generally-held view that video is effective, measuring ROI is a key challenge, per the WVMC report. Indeed, measuring the ROI of video marketing investments (44%) ranked as the biggest challenge related to online video marketing among respondents, followed by limited in-house video marketing expertise (37%). The most popular creative styles used are live-action or on-location videos (70%) and testimonials or executive interviews (53%), with animated explainers (27%) less commonly used.
When it comes to deploying videos, B2B respondents are most commonly embedding them on webpages or blogs (83%), though a majority are sharing them via YouTube (69%) and social networks (64%). Of note, while LinkedIn is the most popular social platform for B2B marketers, videos are more likely to be deployed on Facebook and Twitter, per the WVMC survey results.
Facebook is also the top destination for video advertising among the 38% of respondents who use paid online video advertising. YouTube follows as the next-most frequently used paid platform. YouTube is also frequently used for video search optimization purposes, with about two-thirds of respondents overall using it for this purpose. Other search optimization practices used by B2B respondents include optimizing metadata (54%) and enabling embedded sharing (43%), though fewer are providing transcripts (24%) or creating video sitemaps (19%), among others.
Meanwhile, about half of respondents use video in email marketing and newsletters, with this also generally returning positive results. Indeed, among those using video for email marketing or marketing automation campaigns, 65% report positive results versus 9% reporting no impact. (The rest are unsure, potentially due to ROI measurement challenges.)
Finally, total video starts (84%) tops the list of tracked video campaign metrics, followed by average viewing time (59%) and watch to completion (58%). These are also the metrics that respondents are most often tracking by individual, with slightly fewer than half identifying viewers by email address.
About the Data: The B2B Video Content Marketing Survey was conducted by the Web Video Marketing Council, ReelSEO and Flimp Media during Q3 of 2015 among more than 350 business and marketing professionals. Roughly two-thirds of respondents come from organizations with 1-100 employees, while close to one-fifth come from organizations with more than 1,000 employees. Most (70%) work for B2B companies, with others hailing from B2B marketing agencies (20%) and product manufacturers (9%), among other company types.