While many people believe that information is free on the Internet, savvy marketers know that this isn't really the case. Many consumers will gladly exchange their contact information in order to download information about topics that interest them. This contact data is prized by organizations for its value in lead nurturing efforts. In the marketing world, this approach is known as content marketing.
Below are some important strategies that can help you transform your content into valuable lead generation data.
Creating content that drives prospects to your website
There are a few key elements to creating compelling content. The first is how timely the information is—meaning that your source and topics must be current and up-to-date. The second aspect is relevance. You should understand your prospects’ interests, occupation, lifestyle or hobbies. Content for download should also be thorough. In fact, most content in this category is typically in the format of a research report or white paper. To develop this effective long-form content, you may want to tap into third-party vendors with expertise in research and marketing.
Promoting content through multiple channels
There are quite a few online vehicles today that can be effectively used for content marketing. The most common being email blasts and social media. These mediums allow you to send out timely updates and direct links to a landing page for access to content. Other vehicles include newsletters, direct mail and authored articles on media websites.
Developing landing pages for gated content
Landing pages are web pages developed with the intent to capture leads and allow visitors to download your content. The idea that this content is “gated” refers to the requirement that users have to submit some required data into form fields in order to view your content. That’s why it’s important that your content is compelling enough to encourage prospects to share this information, which brings us to the next important element—the form fields on your landing page.
Optimizing form fields to capture important lead data
Obviously you want to require the prospect to fill out contact information such as name and email address but there may also be other important data you should capture on your landing page. There is a delicate balance between forcing the visitor to fill out too much information and collecting the data you need to qualify leads. To address this issue, you can use optional fields to solicit the prospect’s specific interests, employer, location, etc. You’ll also want to keep the form fields above the “fold” of the web page whenever possible.
It’s clear that in today’s world—where print and online advertising generate minimal leads—content truly is king. If you aren't ready to begin a full-fledged content marketing strategy, you can also pursue content curation. While you won’t be able to capture leads through these efforts, you can still drive traffic to your website or blog. And of course, once you've converted these leads, you’ll want to undergo nurture marketing efforts to retain members. For more information about these member engagement strategies, download our white paper.