Selling your Lead Generation Content

Fan of cashYou have committed to content marketing, you have invested in creating content, and your website has turned into a veritable content hub. At every turn, you offer related content to entice a registration and get someone to opt in to to your drip and nurture program. You have enough traffic, but you need more registrations to fuel your nurture program.

What you really need is a new mindset. Your content is not free. You are selling it for contact information.

A Quick Content Selling Test
Go to one of your registration pages. If your form included a $39.99 offer to download the paper and required a credit card, would you pull out your wallet? If you did, would the content you purchased live up to your expectations?

If your registration page fails the test also, don’t feel bad. Most marketers fail this test. But use this as an opportunity to look at your registration page with a fresh set of eyes. Here are three areas to focus on.

  • The Content Sell. It is valuable information, convey that on your registration page. Highlight the value someone will receive. Give them a taste of that value before they buy the content.
  • The Page Function. Every registration page should be laid out to highlight the offer and value proposition and have a clear call to action. Include additional information for someone on the fence about buying it and clearly state that you protect and do not share contact information.
  • Your Promise. Never oversell and underdeliver. As you make new promises about the value of your content, make certain your content lives up to the expectations you set. Don’t leave your buyer feeling ripped off.

Here is an example of content that does not sell, and it isn’t uncommon. The copy below is from a Riverbed Technology registration page. This report was ‘recommended’ to me when I landed on the Riverbed homepage.

IDC: Improving the Business Value of WAN Optimization

As the economy turns sour, and IT budgets remain flat or get reduced, doing more with the infrastructure you have has never been more important. But investing even more money in the same old networking infrastructure, storage, servers and bandwidth is not going to help you reach your strategic goals. Riverbed offers a compelling and powerful return on investment in hard dollars, and a way to leap past the obstacles preventing you from reaching your IT objectives.

Link to the registration page

[note: I do not have a relationship with Riverbed or, to my knowledge, any of Riverbed's competitors]

Would you pay $39.99 for this report? Personally, I would not, here are a couple reasons why this fails the content selling test.

  • It immediately looks like it is out-of-date information. The economy was turning sour in 2008 and 2009, it is 2011 now and most economists are talking about growth.
  • The only solution it promises is a Riverbed sales pitch, not the new approach to investing in or managing IT infrastructure identified as the need. I’m not going to pay for a sales pitch.

Do you want more registrations? Then stop creating registration pages as if your content is free and start making certain your registration pages justify the price you are charging.

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  • http://www.emagineusa.com Tim Croteau

    Very cool post, Eric. Another issue I see often is requiring people to register for info that should really just be freely available, like basic product specs, case studies (that do great selling for you!), etc.

    Truth be told, I don’t have much to add here, but wanted to let ya know this was read and enjoyed!

    • http://digitalb2b.wordpress.com Eric Wittlake

      Thanks for the comment Tim. I’m with you, some white papers are more like company-penned op-ed articles or blog posts, certainly not something that feels worth registering for. Thanks again for the comment!

  • Chris Doig

    Eric, I could not agree with you more. Web sites like Infoweek do this with white papers all the time. I might be very interested in a subject, but I seldom want to go through the bother of filling out all the information they want just to read their sales pitch. About 98% of the time I just give it a pass.

    • http://digitalb2b.wordpress.com Eric Wittlake

      Chris, thanks for the comment. 98% sounds about right to me…