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B2B video trends for 2021: spotlight on short-form video

Short-form video is one of the key marketing trends to watch in 2021, according to the experts at HubSpot1. Driven by the popularity of platforms like TikTok and Reels on Instagram, short-form video is taking over the online landscape. What’s considered short-form? Anything less than two and a half minutes, with the length varying by platform: 15 seconds is the length of videos on Instagram Reels, up to 60 seconds on TikTok, and up to two minutes and 20 seconds on Twitter. (YouTube is still the platform of choice for longer video; two minutes is a recommended length here, but educational or instructional videos that are longer than that are ok too2

What does this explosion of short-form video mean for B2B?

Well, as always, you want to be active on the platforms where your customers and prospects are. On TikTok, 69% of users are between 13 and 24 years old3. Instagram skews older, with about 23% of users between 18 - 24, and 33% between 25- 344. So while you might not find your targets on TikTok (yet), they are probably active on Instagram. On these platforms, and others like Triller, Hippo Video or Magisto, the focus is on entertaining, with videos featuring music and dance moves.

Whether you opt to be active on TikTok or not (or dance video is not your thing), you can still apply the lessons of these formats and platforms to your B2B video content. For consumers and business professionals alike, short videos are popular for many reasons – they don’t require a big time commitment to watch, and they provide a quick hit of entertainment or news. (Plus, on the business side, they usually don’t cost a lot to create.)

Short-form video ideas

What type of content is suited to short-form video for B2B? Consider adding any of these five types of video content to your marketing mix:

  1. User-generated content (UGC). This can be anything from your users showing how they use your product or solution, to a product review. Invite your users to create this type of video, by encouraging them with contests or prizes. Share these UGC videos on your own social channels, and link to them on your website.
  2. Behind-the-brand videos. This is an opportunity to showcase your product managers, the product development team, or even the folks in manufacturing. Have some fun, and show the people, personalities and processes behind your products.
  3. How-to videos. If you sell software, for example, share how to perform a specific task. This can be as simple as narration over a series of screen shots. Or get one of your experts to talk about one aspect of a business challenge, and how your product solves it.
  4. Amplify your leaders on social with video. According to a report from Sprout Social, 70% of consumers felt a stronger connection to brands where the CEO and other employees were active on social media5. Use short-form video to help your CEO and other leaders create a bigger presence on social channels, showcasing their opinions, expertise and their personalities.
  5. Spotlight your employees. Short-form video is perfect for capturing the spirit and culture of your workplace. Do a series on your employees, with a twist to keep it lighthearted. Talk about their socks, pets, or their involvement in your organization’s charity. This can also be very helpful when it comes to recruitment.

At Living Stone, we’re experts in creating video content, in all formats and lengths, that supports the organizational goals of our clients. We can help you develop a video strategy, and create videos.

We invite you to contact us to talk about your challenges and goals, and how Living Stone can help. To find out more, contact Anne-Mie, or call at +32 (0)55 59 10 01.

 

References:

1 Martina Bretous, “3 Short-Form Video Trends Online Marketers Should Watch in 2021,” HubSpot, Jan. 5, 2021, retrieved from: https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/short-form-video-trends?utm_campaign=Marketing%20Blog%20Weekly%20Email%20Sends&utm_medium=email&utm_content=105450779&utm_source=hs_email
2 Clifford Chi, “How Long Should Your Videos Be? Ideal Lengths for Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube,” HubSpot, April 22, 2018, retrieved from: https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/how-long-should-videos-be-on-instagram-twitter-facebook-youtube

3 Martina Bretous, “3 Short-Form Video Trends Online Marketers Should Watch in 2021,” HubSpot, Jan. 5, 2021, retrieved from: https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/short-form-video-trends?utm_campaign=Marketing%20Blog%20Weekly%20Email%20Sends&utm_medium=email&utm_content=105450779&utm_source=hs_email

4 H. Tankovska, “Distribution of Instagram users in the United States as of November 2020, by age group,” statista, Jan. 27, 2021, retrieved from: https://www.statista.com/statistics/398166/us-instagram-user-age- distribution/#:~:text=Instagram%20user%20share%20in%20the%20United%20States%202020%2C%20by%20age%20group&text=As%20of%20November%202020%2C%2033.1,the%20United%20States%20were%20female.

5 “#BrandsGetReal: What consumers want from brands in a divided society,” Sprout Social, retrieved from: https://sproutsocial.com/insights/data/social-media-connection/?utm_campaign=Marketing%2520Blog%2520Weekly%2520Email%2520Sends&utm_medium=email&utm_content=105450779&utm_source=hs_email

Anne-Mie Vansteelant
Anne-Mie Vansteelant
COO | Managing Partner at Living Stone

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