• What Clicks with IT Buyers?

    A number of IT marketers use the click through rate as a traditional measurement of success. With the industry averaging 0.1% CTR we need to look beyond this old school thinking and look at the bigger picture. When creating, buying and planning banner programs for IT buyers please consider the following.

    1. Find the right place your buyers hang out and put down some roots. Do research on ad networks, social networks that really reach your targets. When you find them take an “Always on” approach. Use banners or display ads to introduce your company and say hello first. Then offer a community page, web page or blog that gives them access to your company and most important your people.
    2. Find out what the number one problem of your target audience is and use that as the “attention grabber” and then lead to information on how that problem can be solved.  A good example might be “Short on time and too much to do?” – “Product X does Y and here are actual examples of benefit derived from the product. Then link them to a relevant piece of content.
    3. Don’t force IT Technology buyers to register for this content.  Instead, have a conversation, 1 on 1 discussion, invite them to a webinar on a relevant subject.
    4. Set expectations: IT buyers don’t impulse buy thousands of dollars worth of hardware, software and cloud products on just a click.

    Banner Ads Get Your attention – It’s the first date , not the wedding

    To see what people really think about ads – I polled some IT buyers from around the world, and here’s what they had to say:

    • “A significant part of the job of most IT workers in the SMB space is knowing what solutions are out there and being able to apply them. The ads that make the most impact on me are the ones that teach me something about a company and their product so that when I am told the company has a need, it rings a bell about something I saw.”
    • “Most IT purchases are going to be out of band [not purchased] from the banner ad, but the banner ad is important. I know that I will never buy a product from a company that I never even knew existed.”
    • ‘I didn’t buy when I clicked on their ad, it was about 6 months later when I got approval to make the purchase that I bought their software.”
    • “Seeing a banner ad, clicking through, and immediately buying is typically an impulse buy decision. I impulse buy tic-tacs, Reese’s peanut butter cups, and $5 DVDs. I don’t impulse buy servers, cloud based services, or enterprise software.”
    • “Be clear about what your product does (specific examples are great). Minimize marketing buzzwords (not helpful).  Reviews from third parties are handy (but not necessary).  Some kind of price shown is great, even if it is an approximate price or range (I hate having to call sales just to get a rough price range).  If you sell through resellers, please link directly to your products (or if phone, list their phone number not their contact us page).”

    Kenny Madden works in market development at Austin based Spiceworks, the fastest growing IT social business network. He currently resides in Austin TX. He can be reached at Kenny@spiceworks.com

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