Business marketers are once again taking their cues from the B2C world as they increasingly embrace streaming media in pre-recorded, live visual, and audio formats. Each medium is evolving at its own pace, of course, but B2B marketers are using streaming video, podcasts, and webinars to gauge how different modes can work together to attract and engage their audiences and appeal to different individual preferences.

Jennifer Downes, executive director of marketing for Lenovo's Intelligent Devices Group, North America, explains that audio and video content must fit within a larger strategy. "What's important for us is to create strategies and programs that relate to each of our audiences in a relevant, distinctive way," she says. "It's really about understanding the audience, knowing where they go to get information, and what they are looking for."

Multimedia content tends to be used at the top of the conversion funnel. "We use streaming video and audio and podcasts for awareness tactics because they allow us to tell the story through multiple different exposures," Downes says. Lenovo is also leaning toward shorter-form video at each touchpoint. "We want to take advantage of quick snippets that are disruptive and grab the viewer's attention," she adds.