I was a skeptic about using vlogging for B2B marketing.
The reason is vlogging is notoriously known for YouTube influencers who have almost no association with the B2B space. Yet, everyone is screaming to use video content in your B2B marketing.
Rather than hold back, I jumped right in and created my first vlog.
It wasn't the best vlog, but I'd taken that first critical step in shooting the first episode.
And that mattered more than anything.
Because now I had momentum even if only a little.
When vlogging for the B2B space, I learned fast what I needed to improve on. There was an entire list, to say the least. To help you skip over all my mistakes, here are the nine steps you need to start B2B vlogging like a pro:
You don't need fancy equipment.
For the first video I made, I used my iPhone and it turned out great. At first glance, I couldn't tell the difference between my video and the quality the pros use. I figured if I couldn't tell the difference, then most of my audience wouldn't mind. It turns out I was right.
Wait until you've shot many vlogs before you buy equipment such as lights and a stabilizer. Because if you can't be consistent, then even the best equipment won't solve that issue.
You're telling a story.
If you jump from setting to setting without a clear picture of why then the audience will get lost.
For example, in the first scene you're at your office and say, "Hey, I'm off to visit Jessica to drop off her birthday present." Then the next scene shows you at her doorstep with the present. Without that sentence referencing what you're about to do, the audience won't understand why you're at someone's doorstep with a present.
Storytelling is about capturing the smaller moments. If you're vlogging a scene where you're doing work, then zoom in on the laptop so the viewers can see what project you're working on. You can even do this if you're vlogging a scene of you reading a book. Zoom in on the couple of sentences that really struck you.
If you're attending an event, then capture the road when you're driving over to the event. Here's an example below.
Here's another example from an airport.
In both scenes, you get an idea that there's a transition happening. This is where B-roll can have a very positive effect in tying the bits and pieces of your story together.
If you're in selfie mode the entire vlog, then your audience will get bored fast. They want different perspectives. In one of the Casey Neistat's vlogs, he has many different perspectives.
Places the camera down and looks directly into it:
Shoots a couple while on the go:
Introduces an object and a person while standing in front of a stabilized camera:
Shows the handlebars of a moving bike:
Each perspective has a seamless transition into the next. By using the different viewpoints, he captures more of the viewer's attention because almost every scene is different, yet crucial to the story.
Easier said than done. You may be using several different soundtracks for your videos and that's okay. The idea here is to sync the sound with emotion you're aiming to portray. This requires you to have a strong music database in the back of your mind or stored and categorized on your laptop.
It doesn't have to be anything special. Here's a clip from this Casey Neistat video where the background music is subtle and helps make the revealing more intimate while providing suspense.
The light sound in the background leads up to the moment the package is opened, then it drops.
To keep the story feeling like it's moving forward, ensure to have scenes where you walk with the camera. Gary Vaynerchuk does this more than anyone I know. He opens up this video with a scene of him walking which grabs the viewer's attention.
Walking with the video provides momentum, but like any good storyline, you need balance. It's important that's there's walking, then a drop in momentum. By pulling the viewers' emotions in different directions, they become more entrenched in the story.
I always mess this up.
When you're filming yourself, there's a strong tendency to look at the video rather than the camera. If you don't look at the camera, then the vlog loses a sense of intimacy with the viewer. It's a similar effect to a conversation in which you're looking into people's eyes.
For some vloggers like Casey Neistat, they always wear sunglasses which makes it easier. This way people can't tell if you're looking at the screen or the camera. Still, it's better to not wear sunglasses and show people your eyes to provide that sense of intimacy.
When you're in the B2B space, take advantage of all the things that make you unique. This means recording pieces of company meetings, moments where you celebrate wins, and diving into the backgrounds of the people you work with. Gary Vaynerchuk is the leading example of B2B execution in the vlogging world. Take a look here at how he documents a company meeting in the intro to this video.
In fact, this entire video is about company meetings and has over 500,000 views. If you thought your business life was boring, well Gary proves there's a large audience hungry for this material.
If you're not at the office, then as an entrepreneur, you're probably traveling to events, jumping on planes, and speaking at conferences. Here's a piece from my first vlog where I interview a couple of entrepreneurs from a conference I spoke at.
It's a short clip, but gets the point across that I'm meeting high-level entrepreneurs.
The first vlog I shot, I pieced together from four minutes of video. There were only four minutes of video because of how afraid I was to shoot in public. As a result, the final video was only around two minutes.
Even though I felt self-conscious, I did it anyway. Today, I'm much less afraid to shoot because the hardest step is the first. It's seeing that even with a little bit of effort you can get results. In the B2B space, there are few taking vlogging seriously making it one of the easiest channels to build your brand on.
It's time you hit record.