Q) We operate a B2B financial services company and are looking to produce a promotional video for our website.
Because our type of financial services, debt recovery, are in high demand, we have enough competitors, though they mostly operate at a lower level to us.
We have higher success rates with our clients than anyone else in the UK.
We also have agents in a number of countries.
We have a fairly good client list
What sort of a video do I need?
Financial Services Company
North West UK
A) Differentiation is the key word here.
Several of your business services competitors use marketing video – but I don’t think they use it very well.
After reviewing them I thought they all:
> look very average in quality – read “uninspiring”
> are long-winded – read “lack clear focus”
> aren’t memorable – read “look at us – aren’t we just soooo good!”
You’ll see, as in most business sector marketing videos, that everyone is saying more or less the same thing.
ie, Me-Too marketing, without a lot of thought in it.
They probably think they’re playing to their strengths, when actually they’re behaving in a fairly similar way.
Which means any B2B buyer looking across the market sees much the same everywhere, and therefore will look to buy on price first.
ie, the buyer thinks “Asda’s potatoes look the same as Tesco’s potatoes – so let’s buy the cheapest!”
So the field is clear for a highly differentiated marketing video message.
Which is excellent news for you.
How to differentiate with a marketing video
Differentiation begins with the script & research.
It’s not enough to take your key selling points.
They have to be carefully weighed up against what your competitors are saying.
Against each sales point, an edge needs to be found.
The resulting “List of Edges” will be inherently more powerful in the buyer’s mind than a list of selling points.
Many companies make claims or assumptions – usually to get buyers to think “their way”.
But buyers don’t necessarily believe claims.
Video is powerful here too.
Claims have be proved as soon as they’re said, whether through stats or testimonials or some other proof.
My advice is to show proof of your claims to superior service & performance, and eliminate scepticism.
This makes a difference.
To differentiate visually is part of the job too.
Yet filming your offices, or showing your people at work, can look very much like any other office in the world – people at phones, people at desks, etc, set against in a bland office background.
So you need a video post production team who can lift the whole project and make it look more than it is.
To understand this better, I’d suggest looking at a potential video supplier’s portfolio then examine the parts where they show “regular office footage”.
Does it look uplifting? Dynamic? Impressive? Like a world leading corporation?
If not, why not?
You need power images from post production.
And to this post production mix you also need to think about graphics & animation.
Using Graphics & Animation
Using graphics and animation is more than adding a chart or some statistics – or adding captions.
Well-applied graphics literally bind a whole production together, creating a thematic integrity that portrays an overall message of quality & leadership.
To differentiate, pick something leading edge in graphics & animation
– and not something that looks like a powerpoint with a bit of animation thrown in.
The Differentiated Proposition
Last but not least, everything you put in your marketing video needs to add up to a Differentiated Proposition – and not merely be a “list of business differences”.
This takes real thought, as your Differentiated Proposition has to
> fit into the relatively short runtime of a video
> be memorable for your target audience.
This is your DNA.
Your Differentiated Proposition isn’t a video production feature (like much of the above in this Q&A), but it’s central to the making the audience realise how much your service is exactly what they’re looking for..
Your proposition might be service-based, price-based, added-value based, or whatever.
It just needs thinking about seriously before you start to produce your video.
And the difference will show.
In answer to your original questions, differentiation isn’t any one single feature.
It’s a series of features that all add up to making your marketing video look & feel different to your competition.
Here’s a quick reprise of the points we’ve covered:
> visual differentiation
> use of graphics & animation
> a differentiated proposition
You can see differentiated marketing video samples here for reference