The best way to tell someone something is to show them. Actions speak louder than words. The proof of the pudding is in the eating...
What we’re getting at is — if you want people to understand your manufacturing company and the quality of the products you provide, you need to show, not tell.
If someone can see something happening right in front of their eyes, it’s a lot easier to comprehend.
Manufacturers are lucky, you’ve got a discernible product that has to go through a design and production process — a process that everyone can see if you allow them to.
Feel bad for all those financial advisers who’re trying to show people tax returns are interesting.
And this is what we don’t get. Why is the manufacturing industry perceived as boring? Whatever you create, there has to be an exciting way of showing it.
How Do We Show It?
By creating videos! Videos give buyers an insight into what happens at your company, build trust and provide a warm human touch and a dash of creativity to an industry that can be a little veiled and rigid.
If you want to set yourself apart from everyone else, you need a tactic that’s a little bit different. That’s where video marketing comes in.
The Buyer's Journey & Manufacturing Videos
If you want your videos to be a success, you need to create them for various stages of the buyer’s journey.
Only 36% of manufacturers craft content based on specific points/stages of the buyer’s journey — CMI Manufacturing Content Marketing Report
Awareness (top of the funnel) — generating new leads by giving visitors surface information about a specific topic (explainer video)
Consideration (middle of the funnel) — nurturing leads by giving them more in-depth information about a particular interest or topic (product review)
Decision (bottom of the funnel) — persuading leads to turn into customers by offering your knowledge on their chosen area of interest (testimonial)
Delight (beyond the funnel) — retaining customers by offering them value after they’ve made a purchase (webinar)
Here are 8 examples that will inspire your video marketing campaigns, related to each part of the buyer’s journey:
At this part of the buyer’s journey, videos need to be catchy, clickable and intrigue people to watch. You don’t want anything difficult to digest or technical.
Because you know a lot about your industry or product, it can be natural to talk about it in a way people that don’t understand. Remember, simple = easier to understand.
1. Explainer Videos
Explainer videos do what they say, explain things. If you have a specific process or machine that helps you in that process, an explainer video can be a great way to show people how it happens.
Something is intriguing about watching things being made, food in particular. We love this Textor Slicer video, which shows meat and cheese being sliced at an alarming rate, due to their TS500 circular blade slicer. It’s almost therapeutic.
Do you have any cutting edge machines? And can you show your audience how they operate?
Also, we got lost in a product video hole with this one, here’s how Bare Bones cut perfectly formed ice and sell it.
2. Brand/Culture Videos
Brand videos exist to spark interest in a company, what they do and what their value system is. For example, Unilever pride itself on being an innovative consumer goods company that provide quality products at an affordable price, that places emphasis on employee happiness.
The company came up with the idea of cutting up soap and branding and packaging it rather than selling it in bulk, which made hygiene and cleanliness accessible to the lower classes.
They also realised that by paying people a fair wage and reducing the time employees were required to work each day would boost productivity.
The company knew ideas like this would help them scale the business and become the large manufacturing company they are today.
Those values still exist today, and you can see it on their YouTube channel, where they give the spotlight to companies making a change in the world and champion what people do, not what their job title is.
Further reading: see how you can use YouTube in the manufacturing industry
At the consideration stage, videos should be more informative and educational. You need to give your buyer more in-depth information about the product you want to sell them. Dig below the surface and show them more value.
You can start to be a little more technical at this point, as prospects will know more about the problem they’re trying to solve or the goal they’re trying to achieve.
3. Product Review Videos
If the ‘in-factory explainer video' shows how the product is made, the product review video shows how it’s used — and whether it’s any good at its job!
It’s a bit cheeky to do your own product review, so you’ll employ someone else to do this. Usually, an influencer that’s got a strong consumer following. For example, if you manufacture technology goods, you could send a product to this guy.
This is both a blessing and a curse, you save production costs which is great if you have to outsource video production. However, influencers and popular YouTubers will have hundreds or thousands of products to review, which means you have to make yours stand out.
It all depends on the product as well, a Google phone is a more straightforward review than an 8-ton combine harvester or a linear actuator (thanks Google).
It's possible though, this YouTuber has over 140,000 views on his tractor review.
4. Embedded Email Videos
Once you’ve attracted someone at the awareness stage and got their email address, you can start nurturing them through your funnel. Emails can be used to do this, providing they offer value and stimulate more interest. You can keep track of metrics like open rate and click-through-rate (CTR) if you use an email marketing software.
The downside of email videos is that you can’t play the video in the email. For example, if you scroll through Facebook, videos will play automatically with the sound muted.
This isn’t an option when you’re sending an email, so you need to ensure the image placeholder that links away to the video entices the viewer.
Here’s an example of one of our video emails:
When you click the link, a new tab opens, and you can play the video. It offers a more human feel to emails and shows that somebody is taking the time to create a message, rather than sending out automated emails that are all the same.
5. Event Videos
Manufacturers usually attend a fair few trade shows, so it makes sense to make a big hoopla out of it!
Don’t deviate from the main reason you’re doing the show though, which shouldn’t be ‘we want to make a great video’. That’s not a reason to spend thousands of pounds on expo material.
You go to a trade expo to generate leads, so make it about that. Then give your video the same objective, but let it happen after you’ve done the show.
It’s up to you how you choose to film the videos: you can use Facebook, Instagram live, and Snapchat, or take some proper equipment and go behind the scenes.
40% of manufacturers used social media stories in the last 12 months
If someone visits an expo, they probably have some knowledge of some of the products there, so try to make it fun and generate interest with your videos.
Here’s a video of trade show workers explaining why they think a video is essential for an expo.
Further Reading: Check out our complete guide to manufacturing marketing!
At the decision stage, prospects have the information they need concerning what goal they want to achieve, why they want to achieve it and how to achieve it. What you need to do now is show them the tool they need to achieve their goal, and why it’s the best tool to do the job.
At this stage, prospects will be considering whether they buy from you or not, so you can be more salesy, show them product benefits and show them why your product is so great! Remember, the main aim is to convert leads into customers.
6. Case Studies
Case studies show the journey of a process and how the actions that were taken have benefitted the company. They’re created and filmed by the company who delivered the project, who will consult with the receiver to determine what went well.
You can take various approaches to create case studies, some companies like to use animations and illustrations whereas other companies want to maintain a more human feel to their videos. It all depends on the type of company you work for.
The objective is to prove that you do what you do well, and back it up with data if you can. Watch this video from Bosch India, who reduced Texmo’s downtime by 20% and upped productivity by 25% with industry 4.0.
Case studies are a lengthy process and need clear documentation of the process as it happens. It’s good to have a proactive mindset and create a case study as you deliver the project.
Testimonials are slightly different to case studies because they put the microphone in front of the customer. It’s up to them to tell your prospects why they think you’re a fantastic company to work with.
When you tell everyone you’re a great company to work with, people are less likely to believe you because you’re biased. When someone who isn’t connected to your company says it, people are more likely to believe it because they weren’t biased until they started working with you.
The catch? You need people who are comfortable on camera that have positive things to say about you.
Some companies think once the sale is complete the buyer’s journey ends. Technically, it does. But once the buyer’s journey is complete a whole new cycle of impressing your customers starts.
Video at this stage of the funnel needs to offer your customer value, and show them different ways to improve their company. It’s also a great way to offer other services that might help them.
Webinars are great for people who want to learn more about a specific topic, and expand their knowledge by listening to people who know more about it than them!
You can use webinars at the consideration stage as well, but it’s worth thinking about what information you want to deliver and who it’s for.
Manufacturers increased video production (webinars, live streaming, videos) by 66% last year
For example, if you’ve got a large customer base, a gated, exclusive webinar gives them the impression that you care about providing them with the best information because they’re in your circle.
Even if you have a small customer base, intimate webinars build trust and credibility. Make people feel special, and they’re more likely to stay with you.
This video from PMC shows how to schedule and plan in advance for manufacturing companies in slideshow format.
Can You Create Videos?
If you’re feeling inspired by the videos we’ve shared, do you have the capacity to create them? And do you have the knowledge of the marketing funnel to create them properly?
If you’d like to find out how video forms part of an inbound marketing plan, you can read our article about inbound video!