When we analyzed the data from our 2018 Technology Marketing Benchmarks and Trends Report, one stunning fact stood out from the rest: Blogging shot to the #1 spot for lead generation tactics last year, jumping ahead of past tried-and-true methods like email marketing, social media, and webinars.
Why is blogging such a big deal?
Because content marketing is exceptionally important for software and technology partners, resellers, service providers and vendors. Just over 50% of the report’s respondents – all of them tech marketers – rated content among the highest priorities in their marketing strategies.
This top ranking for content marketing is a reflection of your customers’ desire for engaging, well-written information about the things they purchase. They enjoy reading blogs, digging into product specs, hearing customer stories, and getting to know you—before they ever make a single purchase. In fact, in a highly competitive tech landscape, companies are increasingly turning to content as a way to beat their competition in overall digital customer engagement.
Content Diversity Matters
Here’s the thing, though: Your buyers don’t respond to content in a uniform way. Some will never read a whitepaper, but love short blog posts. Others ignore social media recommendations, but enjoy getting lost in lengthy eBooks and walkthroughs.
So while blogs are by far the most actively used content tactic among tech marketers, they’re not the only way to reach out to new customers. A diverse content strategy is most effective, if your goal is to maximize your audience reach.
In 2018, consider introducing content forms you haven’t used before: webinars, how-to videos, case studies, infographics, (or try an infographic case study to really pack a punch), fact sheets, checklists, use cases, etc. Switch up your formats and test which are the most effective for your marketing dollars.
Focus on the Results You Want
Another way of looking at content marketing is through a results-focused approach. Decide which result is your #1 priority, and drive hard toward that goal.
If increased web traffic is essential for your revenue goals, consistent blogging is your best bet because it drives online visitors. If your marketing list is your bread and butter, a valuable eBook that sits behind a form will be far more effective.
Consistent testing and benchmarking is crucial, no matter which approach you take. Good content marketers are relentless data hounds, tracking down data that informs their content decisions. Benchmarking is the best way to get maximum ROI.
The bottom line? If you’re not producing high-quality content, your competition is going to outshine you. Now’s the time to polish up your content strategy and take your place among the kings of tech marketing in 2018.
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