Content Strategy Strongly Impacts IT Sales

by CXOtoday News Desk    Oct 12, 2017

content

Companies with technical products and services should focus on a complete content portfolio before they engage sales, suggest researchers highlighting that businesses with high quality, relevant content and a clear content strategy can climb the success ladder much faster than those who are still ignoring it. A new study released by engineering and technical content provider, IEEE GlobalSpec, in partnership with engineering-focused marketing agency, TREW Marketing, also found that companies want to interact with content before engaging with sales.

The stydy adds that “Ninety percent of engineers surveyed are more likely to do business with companies that regularly produce new and current content.” Of that content, engineers most specifically prefer case studies, books, e-books, and white papers. The other types of content marketing include presentations, podcasts, infographics, videos, and newsletters.

Content marketing is becoming increasingly more important to sales due to the steady decline in traditional marketing methods and savvier web users. In its simplest terms, content marketing is creating and distributing content that your target audience will find value in. It isn’t pitching products or services—rather, it’s giving potential customers information that will make them want to reward you with their business, or at the very least, subscribe to your blog or a Facebook Like.

Businesses in the modern, digital era, have to work much harder now to get their products and services in front of their desired audience. For instance researchers found that if you’ve noticing a huge drop in the effectiveness of your ads that were previously working for you, the answer could be content marketing.

Nonetheless, the study shows that when it comes to tools for sales success, sales people often overlook content marketing. “To give your salespeople a competitive edge, equip them with useful content that will support their efforts when meeting with buyers and help them stay competitive in their industry,” the study explains.

“Marketing is changing for technical audiences. For companies to win in technical markets, they have to know their audience and adapt both marketing and sales efforts accordingly,” said Rebecca Geier, CEO and Cofounder of TREW Marketing and author of Smart Marketing for Engineers: An Inbound Marketing Guide to Reaching Technical Audiences. “This includes understanding the types and sources of content most important to their audience, online and search preferences, and when sales should engage.”

Hubspot reports with proper content strategy, coupled with consistent and high-quality implementation, businesses can achieve four-times higher probability of being successful. Further, 33% of inbound- and 31% of outbound marketers regard many outbound methods as a waste of time and money. Also, marketers who can calculate ROI are 60% more likely to get higher budgets. Unlike outbound marketing, inbound marketing is 100% measurable and quantifiable.

In all its probability content strategy sets a path to create, distribute and track the usage of content in relation to the buyer’s journey and the marketing touch points in the sales funnel. In her book, Selling with Noble Purpose: How to Drive Revenue and Do Work That Makes You Proud, author Lisa Earle McLeod writes that the more purpose-driven a company is, the more successful it becomes. Producing content that is thoughtful and useful can help sales people sell more.

Some experts think content strategy should be separate from content marketing strategy, but for others, content strategy is a subset of the company’s overall marketing strategy. And all that is under the umbrella of corporate strategy that unites marketing strategy, operations strategy, financial strategy, HR strategy, among others. Close collaboration between the teams can only be a positive in terms of ensuring the content you generate is relevant and valued, believe researchers.