The Future Tech Buying Committee: What Marketers Need to Know, Now
March 17, 2017
As Millennials embrace more influential and defined roles across the enterprise, excess hype has disfavorably characterized their work habits and content preferences — when, in fact, Millennial and Gen X decision-makers are more aligned than ever. Powered by our latest in-depth research on the topic, today we dig into key insights that impact technology marketers striving to win over the future tech buying committee through content marketing.
To get started, let’s face the facts. Not only does it take a village to decide on an IT solution, the modern tech marketing process revolves around customized messaging for stakeholders in a variety of roles. But, as our findings uncovered, modern Millennials — along with their Gen X counterparts — don’t exclusively rely upon digital formats. Rather, they’re individuals who value personalized, relevant information across a handful of important channels along the decision-making journey.
To help you take action, here are a few content marketing best practices to ensure your tech marketing strategy is optimized for future success.
To Drive Purchases, Lead With Educated Insights
While personalization remains vital, all ages of respondents are less than impressed with traditional marketing and sales dialogue. Our study uncovered that, when considering new products or services, technology buyers across young and older generations prefer to be contacted by people who understand their business needs and provide meaningful solutions through relevant content.
In fact, Millennials — specifically younger Millennials (ages 19-25) — value content from company peers and content that’s informative and educational with regard to their role. And globally, three in five tech buying committee members take part in new purchases or renewals, so it’s crucial to keep everyone involved satisfied with the most suited content pre and post-purchase. Therefore, doing your due diligence in researching and making a connection will help you build a stronger and engaging rapport with these up-and-comers in the tech purchasing field.
Multiple People = Multiple Stages = Multiple Formats
The technology buying committee may be diverse in both size and function, but when it comes to content our research found, regardless of age, that decision making and influential professionals crave a diverse mix of information.
To successfully win the business of both cohorts, your marketing should tailor to specific preferences that exist along each the stage of the technology purchase path. For example, both Millennials and Gen X influencers and decision-makers prefer concise, timely updates overall.
But when it comes to early budgeting discussions, opinions and product information are most valuable.
Then, as prospective tech solutions move through the funnel, thought leadership and expert opinions begin to weigh heavy.
And, after the sale has been closed and it’s time for renewal, both Millennials and Gen X practitioners turn to informative, educational updates.
Rethink Gated Content
To help prospective buyers in their times of need, we recommend unlocking the “gates,” as our research found that gated content is unpopular with both Millennial and Gen X audiences. In fact, 82% of Gen Xers, 80% of older Millennials, and 78% of younger Millennials today decide not to download content due to form-fills and are likely to enter false information when downloading.
Tech marketing takeaways
A strong technology marketing plan adapts its strategy to fit the evolving behaviors of buyers and meets them where they’re most engaged, and with content that’s timely and relevant. As a recap, here are the key points to consider when developing content marketing that will resonate with the future of the technology buying committee:
Millennials and Gen Xers need to know you care, so personalizing your content with relevant insights and by function and stage will set you up for success.
Globally, tech buyers of all ages prefer short articles from news-related outlets and industry experts when seeking information before the sale.
No more gated content! Overall, 81% of tech buyers that encountered gated content online in 2016 decided not to download due to gating.
For a full look at our latest research insights, read our latest eBook summarizing today’s tech-buying committee and how you as a marketer can best reach them across generations.