Did you know that Facebook thinks that most online interactions between businesses and their customers will soon be mediated by chatbots? Chatbots can deliver an immediate personalized response—which is what customers want. Microsoft has the same idea. Going forward, the underlying design of Microsoft Windows will be “Conversation as a Platform,” and chatbots will be in on most conversations. Chatbot enthusiasts think bots will replace websites and mobile apps altogether. As this conversational model of human-computer interface takes hold, we’ll need to rethink how we use video in marketing. We’ll need to produce chatbot-ready video content.
Video content marketing today
A person embarking on a buyer’s journey (at the “awareness” stage) is happy to view a short explainer video that brings them up to speed on the main features and benefits. Explainer videos can start a conversation. But follow-up video content—thought leadership videos, webinars, tech talks, testimonials, promotional teasers, etc., are all designed for passive viewing. Success is measured in “views” and, in some cases, call-to-action button responses (e.g., download a trial). Nothing wrong with this. It’s simple and direct. It’s just not especially engaging. For one thing, it’s hard for a viewer to know what’s in a video. Is it going to tell me what I want to know? How long will it take to get to the point?
Video and account-based marketing
If you’re in B2B marketing, you’re probably also into account-based marketing. Even if it’s not a formal ABM program, you’re trying to grow your business with key accounts, right?
This is the “flipped funnel” ABM model devised by Sangram Vajre, CMO of Terminus and founder of the #FlipMyFunnel community. While there are four discrete phases in each funnel, the stages of the “flipped” ABM funnel all depend on increasing engagement. Source: Vidyard
Looking at the “Flipped Funnel” model shown here, imagine you’re a technology vendor and the buyer you’re trying to extend your reach to has a job title like “network operations manager.” First of all, is this person on a “buyer’s journey?” Hard to say. Is he looking forward to watching your videos? Probably not. Especially not, if they are promotional.
But if you’ve identified the right person, he’ll be interested in your solution, will have some questions, and will want quick answers. It’s not hard to imagine what some of these questions are. To the extent that you can supply the answer quickly and make it easy to understand, you’re increasing engagement and providing a great customer experience. And video is a good medium for quick, clear, engaging explanations.
What are chatbot-ready videos like?
Short and to the point, like an SMS message, and persona-based. That doesn’t mean abandoning long-form videos. Existing videos can be repurposed to make them chatbot-ready and viewer-friendly with clickable chapters. Viewers looking for specific information can be directed to the appropriate chapter. Interactive video services like HapYak make this easy. They also make it easy for Go to the full article.