Beagle Short Tale Awards 2011

Updated: February 17, 2011

Grand Prize for Strategic Use of Video —

"How to Use Online Video for B2B Marketing"

Over several years has developed a catalogue of short videos that, as of this writing, contains over 1,500 titles on all subjects relevant to the company's sales, products, services, strategy and market outlook. In 2010 Salesforce released a short video that details its use of video technology and offers support for employees, partners and others who want to develop their own videos. The piece also offers some compelling data on the company's success with the medium. Perhaps the most intriguing data is this: As of this writing, Salesforce receives over 7,500 hits on its video library daily. The company estimates that with an average viewing time of two minutes, the video library is doing the work of 46 "hyper effective" inside sales people. This points out the value of video as a medium for communicating high value content and shows why video's persistence and stickiness will make it one of the go-to technologies of the future.

Best Use of an Animated Character — Sage North America

"Napkin Mike" Series

Sage North America developed a spokesperson character, Napkin Mike, literally a figure drawn on a napkin, to represent its Sage ACT! contact manager product. Mike appears in a series of sales and educational videos designed to show off the newest features of the product as well as to teach users how to use them. Sage has done highly creative work developing inexpensive but effective characters to represent its products and Mike may be their best.

Best Story Telling and

Best Video with an Educational Theme and

Best Animation — Eloqua

"The Future of Revenue"

This video gets a lot done in 3:41 tracing a revolution in business ideas from the agricultural age to the industrial age to the information age. The video compares earlier business improvement ideas such as total quality management, with the next big idea — revenue performance management (RPM) based analysis of marketing and sales investments. Two-thirds of the video is used to set up the a description of Eloqua's Revenue Performance Management in which companies use Eloqua's technologies and approaches to better manage sales and marketing and thus drive more predictable revenue. Meanwhile the animation is a continuous stream of clear and relevant visuals punctuated by consistently enlightening and interesting information.

Best Video Using People and

Best Series (multiple videos on same subject) — NetSuite

NetSuite vs. Microsoft Great Plains

NetSuite vs. SAP

Many other companies have borrowed the Mac vs. PC format with varied success. NetSuite's variation uses different actors in each video to better portray particular competitors. So, for example, they use an actor with a German accent when portraying SAP and a different actor with an upper mid-west dialect to portray Great Plains. The series works because it is well written and because none of the people over-act so that, despite the changes in personnel from scene to scene, the dry wit of the original Apple spots comes through enabling NetSuite to gently skewer its competition.

Best Customer Testimonial and

Best Video Under One Minute — Zuora

Various customer testimonials (Ning, Xactly, Marketo, InsideView, Codesion, Quova, AppBuddy).

Zuora shot a group of customers individually giving testimonials over the course of a single day. The shots run about thirty seconds each and they are well produced. The speakers know what they are going to say and there are no annoying pauses. The customers exude energy in a natural way that makes you want to believe their endorsements. The shots are consistent and well executed. This series shows that video need not be long or expensive to produce to achieve good results.

Best Marketing Video — SAS

"Proven: A SAS Overview"

Founder and CEO, James Goodnight acts as his own pitchman discussing what makes his company and products best for helping customers with BI needs. Goodnight's comments are supplemented by additional footage to elaborate a point. This is an effective video that combines the company's history of success with major companies and its customer orientation stressing the importance of customer satisfaction. This video shows why CEOs are often the most effective spokes people when it comes to conveying genuine customer focus.

Best Sales Video — RightNow

"Welcome to CX"

This may be the hardest category to judge since all videos ultimately help (or hurt) the sales process. Using an animated drawing approach, this video describes the single most important issue for RightNow and its customers, the customer experience (CX). It's a clean and short implementation of hurt and rescue — expose a difficult truth the customer is wrestling with (the hurt) and rescue them with your product. Nicely done.

Best Customer Service Video —

"Service Cloud Demo"

This video presents a clear description of how to use Salesforce's Service Cloud application in a simple customer service setting. Using animation to describe the business process of a customer calling in and receiving agent support, it provides a clear understanding of the steps needed to achieve a result. Salesforce built a series of these videos highlighting different aspects of its products. In this way, each lesson remains short (this was just over four minutes), easily consumable and memorable.

Best Video Made from Graphics — Microsoft

"Microsoft Dynamics CRM Partner Landscape"

This is a good example of animated stills with music but no narration. The text intensive and narrator-less presentation draws the viewer in to the video and by making the viewer do some of the work, promotes engagement. The pace is just right — neither too fast to prevent the viewer from reading when necessary nor slow enough to enable your mind to wander. This is another good example of why video no longer means lights, cameras etc.

Best Video Explaining a New Concept —

" Chatter Overview Demo"

Salesforce's Chatter social CRM application is the first of its kind integrated with CRM by a CRM vendor. The metaphor is decidedly Facebook, which should be easy enough to understand. But when Chatter was first introduced it was not immediately apparent how Facebook could be so deeply implanted into CRM so there was opportunity and need for the company to describe in detail what its social application does. Salesforce does a good job of defining the business processes that Chatter helps through animation and narration. As the title states this video does double duty as both overview and demo, blurring the traditional lines between pre- and post-sales environments. We expect video will take on this dual role with regularity in the future.

Best Production — Jess3

Jess3, a creative agency, developed several of the videos in this study including Eloqua's "Future of Revenue," it's own "State of the Internet," ( and's "State of Cloud Computing" ( Each of these videos is unique but the production values are consistently high throughout the work. Graphics and animation are crisp, information is well researched and arranged and presented in easily consumed bits. While this award focuses on the efforts of vendors in the front office space, we acknowledge that outside firms are integral to the success of video and we salute Jess3 for its high production standards.

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