If you haven’t heard about it yet, TED-Ed is TED’s youth and education initiative. The platform aims to build on the widespread success of TED Talks and facilitate the transfer of knowledge between a community of educators and students around the globe.
To date, TED-Ed has helped millions learn about new things and garnered awards along the way. And, lucky for us, it can also teach B2B marketers a thing or two about using video in our own marketing efforts!
In this article, we’re breaking down all the lessons that we can glean from TED-Ed. TED-Ed can teach marketers about choosing the right topics, making it easy to find content, and generating ideas for creative presentation techniques that delight and resonate with the right audience.
Creating successful videos all starts with the topics you choose. It’s important to pick topics that are relevant to your industry and your target market. There are a few things to remember as you brainstorm potential video topics.
TED-Ed breaks its lessons into specific categories so that learners know what they’re getting into. For example, take a peek at the “Technology” category on TED-Ed. The videos there are incredibly specific, from how ultrasounds work to the ways Google is affecting your memory.
What does this mean for B2B videos? Well, there is probably already a lot of noise in your industry, which means you too need a special angle in order to stand out. Find what it is that makes you better than your competitors. That’s what makes your brand a success, and that’s what should be the focus of your videos.
“Find what it is that makes you better than your competitors. That’s what makes your brand a success, and that’s what should be the focus of your videos.”
To follow our technology example, if you’re a tech company, try to find a unique way to talk about that with your audience. This applies whether you’re simplifying a topic or introducing a new idea that your competitors have never talked about before. You can probably even get some initial ideas from the videos you looked at above!
TED-Ed is a go-to resource for timely content. There are new videos uploaded all the time; the “Featured” filter shows you tons of relevant videos that have information on upcoming holidays, economic trends, and current events.
Timely content matters. It will help you stay relevant to your audience and create content that resonates with them right now. Use TED-Ed as an example and think about how you can educate your audience on current industry news, events, trends, and insights.
TED-Ed uses series to draw people in and keep them coming back. We strongly endorse this approach. Once you have someone engaged on a certain topic, you have to keep them wanting more!
To keep your audience coming back, think about topics that you could use across a series of videos. Try using a lesson-style approach, where you break down topics that are relevant to your industry.
We did this at Wistia with Show Business, a 20-episode video series that unpacks everything marketers and creatives need to know to plan, produce, and promote binge-worthy content. Each episode is around five minutes long and focuses on one specific topic. This makes each lesson easy to digest and allows folks to go at their own pace.
Along with tips for topics, there are also a few things that TED-Ed can teach us about producing videos. Most of the videos on TED-Ed have two qualities: They’re short, and they have a creative element to them. Keep these criteria in mind as you produce your own B2B videos.
Most TED-Ed videos last between 5–10 minutes, which is a good benchmark. Each of your videos should have a focused topic to keep your viewers engaged with your content; you don’t want to introduce too many ideas in one video.
To keep your content focused and brief and stay within this limit, write scripts of 750–1,500 words. For focus and brevity, aim to keep your videos under 10 minutes as a general rule. If you find yourself going over that limit, it may be worth considering whether it could work as a series (see above).
Creative elements can help make your video more memorable and keep your audience interested. Use creative elements to simplify a process or provide some entertainment while you educate your audience. Try drawing, illustrations, and other animation to keep your viewers engaged while they watch your videos.
As you start to get a collection of B2B videos under your belt, consider creating a video library that lives on your website. As you build out your content library, you should track relevant data on an ongoing basis; this will help you understand the topics that resonate most with your audience.
When you monitor the engagement and interaction on your videos, you can get a better understanding of what your audience wants to see. Once you have a clear picture of what makes your audience light up, you can create content specifically for them to build brand affinity and authority in your market.