Engaging Customers with Content Marketing
The recently released 2016 Content Marketing research from Content Marketing Institute (CMI) & MarketingProfs shows that tech marketers continue to increase their use of content marketing – 95% of tech marketers use content marketing. In fact, tech marketers are the most likely to use content marketing out of all of the verticals measured. However, it can be challenging to produce the right content, for the right audience and deliver it to them at the right time. In that same CMI & MarketingProfs study, 73% are presently working on initiatives to improve their ability to create more engaging content. Looking at content consumption patterns by tech decision-makers can help guide those efforts.
In the 2016 IDG Enterprise Customer Engagement study, IT decision-makers (ITDMs) share what content they seek out during the purchase process. The encouraging news is that 96% of ITDMs rely on content when evaluating products and services. While specific roles or levels of seniority value different content types, overall, 79% have registered to receive tech-related content in the past six months.
This table shows the overall content preferences by title, but preferences also shift by stage of the purchase process. When looking at your content marketing strategy, if you can identify who you want to influence by stage in the purchase process, it allows you to tailor your content creation to match the type and context for the best engagement with the intended recipient.
- READ MORE ON HOW TECH DECISION-MAKERS INTERACT WITH CONTENT IN THE “CONTENT CUSTOMIZATION COMES TO THE FORE” WHITE PAPER
While the research clearly shows there are different types of content decision-makers need/want, they also want it presented through the lens they are evaluating solutions through – business need, technical compatibility, TCO, etc. Ninety-two percent of respondents would be interested in content tailored for them (up from 83% in 2014). Most preferred information tailored by industry (56%) followed by the platform the company is using (48%) and responsibilities (42%).
Valuable content spurs action
While ITDMs report that they do find it challenging to find valuable information, when they do, they will engage further with the content, company, solutions, etc. In fact, an overwhelming majority – 95% – say that if they find information of value, they will take further action. The two top actions they will take are conducting further research and visiting the vendor’s website or some type of contact for more information. They will also become part of your distribution since almost half (49% overall) say they would forward information they found valuable to a friend or colleague. They are also willing to dive in further by participating in a product demo (48%) and registering for related content (46%).
Knowing who to create the content for, in the formats and with the customization they find valuable, will allow you to create the type of content that will spur further action and engagement.
To learn more about the role content plays with IT decision-makers as they research new technologies along with insights on their preferences with regard to tech vendor contact, download the “Content Customization Comes to the Fore” white paper highlighting the 2016 Customer Engagement research.