Communicating without selling

auth-brettOne effective method of marketing communications that is getting a lot of attention is “content marketing.” But what exactly is content marketing? An article from the Content Marketing Institute says, “Content marketing’s purpose is to attract and retain customers by consistently creating and curating relevant and valuable content with the intention of changing or enhancing consumer behavior.” The key word here is valuable. Consumers no longer want to be interrupted or sold to.  They are more likely to be engaged by the outgoing content of an organization if it is applicable, informative and useful.

How does this translate to video? It’s simple, really: a basic rule of effective communication has always been that the audience needs to be able to “see” themselves in the message. And no other form of communication engages a viewer like a quality, well-produced video with a carefully crafted, relevant story.

The evolution of communication present in this form is that you are no longer – in fact, can’t really – pitching or selling to an audience. So providing them with information they want, are actively searching for and can even pass along to others is crucial.

Due to its focus on customer driven messaging, content development and content marketing will continue to develop. I recently read an article on Salesforce that gives some worthwhile tips, tips that we use at Midland to produce your message with our vision.

1. Answer questions about functionality.

We work a lot with B2B clients that make purchases for future customers. Good video content will answer questions that not only your audience has, but potential questions from its future customers. A product tutorial answering prospective customer questions shows the company is making an effort to understand its customers, not to mention acts as an always-on sales rep.

2. Tell a broad success story.

Nothing is more customer-focused than a client testimonial video. In B2B work, a great testimonial will give support to everything a sales rep tells potential customers. However, make sure that the testimonial is broad enough that it can be applied to a variety of customer situations.

3. Find a niche. Create interest.

Last, but certainly not least, the video needs to grab the attention of the viewer, urging them to watch in the first place. Of course, this becomes easier the longer customer-focused video is a priority. With your audience and their interests top of mind, find an appealing angle and work it.

In short, video content marketing is becoming less about the product itself and more about the way the product will integrate itself into the lives of the customers. The more video content proactively answers customer questions and concerns, the more effective it will be.