• Does Your Content Have The Right Stuff?

    B2B lead generation is all about presenting the right information to the right professional at the right time.  Easy, right? Not so much.  In working with thousands of marketers, one of the biggest mistakes I see is marketers often do not have the right content assets, information that adds value to their professional role and/or helps them with an initiative they are working on.

    Just Say No

    Sure, you have great products and you’ve put time and money into creating beautiful-looking data sheets to market them. That’s all well and good, but data sheets rarely work as effective assets to generate leads. Do you know who is most likely to click?  Your competitors.  Few professionals are going to be interested in the specs of your product for initial engagement, so they’re not beneficial in generating new leads. Hold back the data sheets until further down the sales pipeline, when they’re ready to move into evaluating solutions.

    The Pros And Cons Of Case Studies

    Every company has case studies/success stories, but are they really a good way to generate new leads?  Not very often.  Much like data sheets – they don’t work for initial engagement. However, they do indeed have a purpose further down the pipeline for when potential buyers are looking to see how other companies have benefited by or used your product or service. The one caveat is if the case study/success story is about a well-known social media company like Google, Facebook or LinkedIn.

    Technology On Film

    We all know that videos are gaining in popularity with the rising usage of YouTube and Tumblr, but how can you use them in marketing?  The challenge is that videos are wonderful for spreading awareness and getting your concept/idea out there, but they aren’t really good for lead generation because linking to a YouTube video doesn’t give you a registration vehicle. However, they can have a high value to the user, especially if the video is focused on tips or a hands-on demonstration of your product and how it works.  For videos, the best usage in lead generation is primarily in a follow-up/lead nurturing message or utilizing them to spread awareness with embedded links to a research report or eGuide to download for further information.

    What Works?

    When it comes to the best assets for lead generation, you can’t go wrong with research reports, eGuides/eBooks and white papers (actual white papers, not data sheets or product listings that are often dubbed “white papers”!). The research reports do particularly well because the 3rd party perspective gives validity to the results.

    The Magic Quadrant of Cow Tipping

    Okay, so that asset doesn’t exist – at least I don’t think it does. But if it did, people would click. There’s something about the Gartner Magic Quadrants and other third-party comparison reports that sparks interest.  I liken it to the use of “Consumer Reports” – when you’re finding out more about a potential purchase, you want to see what everyone else is buying and how they’ve rated a product.  Third-party comparison reports/tools are a great tool because they put all of the information about vendors in a market there in one easy location.  And if you make a third-party comparison tool part of a lead gen campaign (as long as you have the permission to do so from the third party in question), you’re giving your reader a very valuable commodity for the price of their information.  That’s a pretty fair trade for such a hot asset.

    The Bottom Line

    Make sure the content assets that you choose for lead generation are interesting, focused on the potential professionals and organizations you’re targeting, and also offer a value to your readers.  This is the right stuff!

    Mary Hart is Senior Marketing Content Analyst at UBM TechWeb, the global leader in technology media and business information. UBM TechWeb Marketing Services deliver integrated marketing campaigns and programs including media solutions, lead and demand generation, events, online communities, content development and custom solutions.

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    Does Your Content Have The Right Stuff?, 4.5 out of 5 based on 2 ratings
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