B2B Marketing Video Storytelling for Lead Generation
Posted by Bob Leonard, Guest Blogger on Mar 20 2012
Visual Storytelling is Essential for B2B Video Marketing
There’s plentiful evidence that online marketing is migrating quickly and firmly from primarily text to primarily video. This presents problems for marketers who have been trained to promote and persuade using the written word. Visual storytelling is significantly different – requiring a different approach that is foreign to most of us.
We’ve all grown up watching movies and television. A complete media experience is written, produced, edited and presented for our viewing enjoyment. We normally don’t think too much about the production process.
Different Mindset and Different Skill Set
If you’re going to write video scripts, and most of us in marketing will be doing just that, you have to think about how to present a story visually. You’re writing in one medium (text) for another (video), so you have to change the way you write.
You’re no longer writing something to be read directly by your audience. You’re writing a script that will be interpreted and transformed by a production team into a video and/or multimedia presentation. It’s no longer the reader’s mind who will supply the pictures to go along with your words. The director, actors, motion graphics artists, post production specialists, etc. have to supply those visuals, so you need to describe them in detail.
Visual writing means making images stand for words. In a novel, you might write, “It was nearing midnight…” In a script you might request a visual of “a clock face in a brick tower, the hands at 11:50, a night time sky visible behind the tower.”
Show, Don’t Tell
As much as possible, you want to show not tell. That keeps viewers interested, and compresses the time needed to communicate. The linking and condensing of actions is visual writing. It communicates a narrative via a sequence of images. We’re all familiar with the silent movie villain, tying the heroine to the railroad tracks, intercut with images of a fast approaching train. That’s a story unfolding in front of us without a word of dialogue.
Sights and Sounds Working Together
Today, we want to include dialogue and/or voice over narrative, maybe even sound effects and music. All of these audio elements can help to tell the story while simultaneously compressing the time necessary to communicate it. Unlike a PowerPoint presentation where the presenter reads the bulleted text that appears on the slides, we want to deliver different, but inter-related information to the eyes and ears simultaneously.
Marketers Must Continually Upgrade Their Communications Skills
B2B products and services are complex. It’s nearly impossible to communicate effective B2B marketing messages in a brief enough timeframe for today’s prospects’ short attention span. Well-produced video is a way to get peoples’ attention and hold it. A well-produced video requires visual storytelling. Few B2B marketers have visual storytelling / scriptwriting skills. Online video as a B2B marketing vehicle isn’t a fad. It’s a sea change. It’s time to do your homework – learn these new skills.
Bob Leonard spent over 20 years working in Corporate Marketing at Fortune 1000 IT firms. Since then, Bob has transformed himself into a digital marketer specializing in content marketing, SEO copywriting, inbound marketing, and social media marketing. Today he is reinventing himself once again as an online video marketer. You can learn more about Bob and B2B marketing at his acSellerant website.