Don’t be. There’s a reason why people are still talking (so much) about content marketing; it works. It influences prospects to consider new solutions, new products and fundamentally, to take action and purchase something they may not have considered before.
Still sceptical? We now have new evidence of its value, certainly with a business buyer. Forrester, a tier one analyst organisation that people rate when it comes to influencing decision making in the technology sector, has recently published new research which says so.
Here’s a snapshot of what we took away from this research from Forrester, which states how third party content attracts and persuades the elusive B2B buyer.
Unsurprisingly, content needs to be credible, objective and trustworthy (naturally) and any claims will ideally be backed up by independent data. It becomes even more persuasive if it’s by-lined to a qualified and independent expert– cue journalist, analyst, product reviewer etc. – coincidentally, the target influencers at the heart of any effective PR campaign.
What is the type of content that buyers rely on to help explore and inform purchasing decisions?
According to Forrester’s research, short-form content like blogs and infographics are the type of content most likely to be digested and re-used by senior business leaders – but only if backed up by long-form data-driven pieces such as white papers.
At Firework, we found this finding encouraging. Numerous conversations have questioned the relevance and value of in-depth material; we’ve heard many a time the question: “surely in this digital era where every form of information is at your fingertips, people simply don’t have the time to read and digest long pieces of content – like white papers?”
With buyers looking for evidence to back up their purchasing decisions, we’re delighted that evidence exists about the value.
- Learning from others remain high up there as valuable when making decisions – peer based case studies, for example.
- And finally, every piece of such content needs to be independent, objective – not sale-sy – and authentic, to influence those decisions.
Yes, we’re heartened by these results. But not completely surprised, given the success that this type of approach has delivered to many of our clients. Still, it’s always encouraging to have this backed up by an independent and influential analyst organisation.