Sales Enablement Strategy: How Long Should My Marketing Videos Be?

video sales enablement tool ipad

There’s no question that using marketing videos during a sales call can be a perfect addition to close the deal.  The visual appeal of sharing videos on the iPad with a prospect, especially for complex machines or industrial applications, is undeniable.

As many enterprise mobility marketers are scrambling to produce videos for social media and websites to attract and inform prospects, their eyes turn to mobile sales enablement tools used by their sales teams.

The question is−What is the right length of a marketing video for a sales app?

In other words, do you need chop videos into short digestible segments or is a full 10 minute demo video acceptable?

Although the ultimate answer depends on your sales process, we’ve seen some trends with our B2B sales app customers that are important for you to consider.

Here are three factors you must consider:

YouTube is not acceptable for sales apps

Have you ever tried to share a video on YouTube with a friend at the bar and it just won’t load? Or have you watched how frustrated a kid gets when a video won’t play on his device?

Annoying, right?

Most of the time your sales team will not have sufficient Wi-Fi connection to stream a marketing video from YouTube or any number of sharing sites on their iPad.

Additionally, sales reps have little time to even find the right marketing videos on their iPad, much less search for a marketing video and wait for it to stream to their device.

The best scenario for playing marketing videos is to sync them to your iPad or sales app to play without an Internet connection; meaning your sales teams’ iPads are offline.

If your iPad sales app streams video, then you must make the marketing videos :30 – :45 seconds maximum. There’s no guarantee the Wi-Fi connection used to show a video is strong enough to play straight through without pausing to buffer.

Our advice is don’t count it.

Snippets of videos work great for details in sales call

Sales reps are often asked to demonstrate very specific parts or functions of your products. For example, how a robot arm moves, or how a medical device is fitted.

It is incredibly painful to force prospects to sit through a three-minute intro video on how awesome your company is to get to the detail or motion they need to see to make a decision.

It’s even more painful to watch a rep try to scrub back and forth in long marketing videos to find the :30 seconds they need.

Many of our B2B customers are cutting their marketing videos into :30 second to 1:00 minute snippets that can quickly demonstrate the motion or footprint of a given product. This gives the rep the ability to quickly share the exact feature.

Additionally, several customers are including larger marketing videos along with the snippets in case the sales person finds a willing audience. In at least one occasion, the longer video did save the day!

The added value of video snippets is they are much smaller and therefore easier to install into your app to shown offline.

Longer videos are great for technical service or maintenance calls

With the launch of our first technical service apps for the iPad last spring, we saw lots of customers creating and arming tech teams with videos. One of them actually has an app with over 90 videos that all run offline where their teams work.

Although, some kept the videos short to address specific technical issues or maintenance issues. Other found that technical videos needed to be longer and more detailed.

Given the typical size of the iPad (minimum 16GB), you will need to carefully weigh the size of your video files. For example, five videos at 500 MB will eat up a ton of space on a 16GB iPad, but not that much on 60GB iPad.

Additionally, the time needed to install longer videos is not taken into consideration by marketers before launching them into their iPad app.  Take a 500MB video being downloaded over Wi-FI at a speed of 100 KB/sec.  That is 1 MB every 10 seconds or 8.3 minutes to download a single video.

Many users will give up a lot faster than that.

Conclusions

Based on what we have seen, B2B companies will be using more and more marketing videos in the future to aid sales teams and load them into mobile sales tools.

The question of how long the marketing videos should be will largely depend on the process or job of the end user. Snippet seem to work great for details, and longer marketing videos for technical details.

Finally, don’t turn your sales reps into frustrated kids trying to stream YouTube videos!

Photo Credit: Marcel Oosterwijk

About J. Rusty Bishop, PhD

I've spent the last 5 years helping great brands create amazing experiences for their sales teams during one on one sales interactions. Helping sales people do their job is my passion. When I'm not working, I am on the ocean fishing in San Diego, Ca.