Rising to the Tech Marketing Challenge, Part 2
How Do You Solve a Problem Like Content Effectiveness?
July 29, 2015
Technology has become ubiquitous. Tech purchases are happening in every business today, regardless of size, industry or location. As a result, a tech marketer’s job is much bigger than simply appealing to IT. And tech marketers face a unique set of challenges, forcing them to be particularly creative and resourceful when it comes to finding solutions.
Part 1 of our series explored understanding your decision maker and creating engaging content. Now in Part 2, we take a hard look at one of the most difficult challenge faced by tech marketers today - measuring effectiveness. Is there a solution?
Challenge #3: Measuring Content Effectiveness
Once a marketer has a strategy to appeal to each member of the decision-making group and is producing engaging content to draw them in, it’s important to measure the effectiveness of their efforts. Marketers in the tech industry know this, which is why 87% of tech marketers[i] say that “measuring content effectiveness” is a top priority now or will be within the next 12 months.
Unfortunately, measuring the effectiveness of content is often easier said than done. It can be difficult to understand what happens when a piece of content is published. Which pieces are driving qualified leads? Which ones are falling flat?
Create a content marketing strategy. If you don’t already have a content marketing strategy, now is the time to create one. Just 33% of tech marketers claim to have a documented content marketing strategy. But of that group, 59% report their content to be effective[ii]. The theory here is simple: it’s impossible to measure the effectiveness of content without any goals.
In addition to setting clear goals, it’s also important to document what content is needed, who it’s targeting, when stage in the buying process it supports and when it will be used. As Mike Weir wrote in a previous post, “to effectively nurture, you must reach buyers throughout their journey with targeted, timed messaging that resonates, informs and persuades.”[iii] That’s not easy to do (not successfully, anyway) without a documented marketing strategy.
Quality over Quantity The opportunities marketers have today to collect data are truly limitless. Tech marketers, in particular, are jumping at the chance to gather data at every turn. Common KPIs among tech marketers include, but certainly aren’t limited to:
- Opens and click-thru rates
- Conversion rates, form submissions and downloads
- Website visits, page views and time on page
- Cost-per-engagement and cost-per-lead
- Number of followers and Likes
- Net promoter scores and loyalty scores
These KPIs do provide a broad spectrum of valuable data, however, they are typically reviewed and reported in silos. All too often, they fail to prove marketing’s ROI or deliver holistic, actionable information that can be used to improve relationships with current or prospective customers.
Focus instead on meaningful metrics that can be applied to improving specific stages of the buying process. Think quality of your metrics and what they mean for client relationships and closed sales, not just higher quantities of data:
- Engagement:Meaningful, defined interactions a lead has with content
- Nurturing:Measurements of lead quality and lead behaviors throughout the buying process
- ROI attribution:Progress made toward an overall business objective that can be directly linked to specific marketing tactics.
These quality-centric metrics are possible through technology and customer engagement solutions like LinkedIn. Once in hand, this information can and should be used to constantly iterate and improve content, marketing strategy and lead nurturing practices while also providing a holistic view of marketing ROI to management.
For more insights on how to successfully target and engage today’s tech decision makers with the right content at the right time, take a look at The B2B Tech Buyer’s Purchase Journey infographic highlighting what tech marketers need to know to navigate the new and changing IT sales landscape.
Learn how IT marketers can avoid common mistakes and build meaningful relationships by downloading our latest research: Nurturing the IT Committee Lead.
[i] Content Marketing Institute. B2B Technology Content Marketing: Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends - North America. 2015.
[ii] Content Marketing Institute. B2B Technology Content Marketing: Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends - North America. 2015.
[iii] Content Marketing Institute. B2B Technology Content Marketing: Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends - North America. 2015.