You are a tech marketer looking to develop exceptional content that drives brand awareness, generates qualified leads and performs as a sales tool to nurture prospects through the sales cycle. You’re wrestling with a decision: what content will really drive ROI for gated or ungated content? This article will help you answer that question. Keep reading for the ultimate gated vs ungated content showdown analysis so that you can determine when and how to use both strategies for success.
The Key Difference Between Gated and Ungated Content
Gated content is any piece of content that an individual has to fill out a form in order to receive, whereas ungated content anyone can access on your website. While gated content is a strategy for lead generation, ungated content is meant to improve SEO and increase brand awareness. Okay, we have our terms defined. Now onto the good stuff to learn why and how your tech company can utilize both gated and ungated content in your content strategy.
The Benefits of Gated Content
Gated content is one of the key components of a successful inbound marketing strategy. However, people still struggle with the idea of putting content behind a wall and the implications behind that. A question we often hear at Kiwi Creative is, ‘doesn’t gated content restrict potential leads from your content?’
The answer? Yes and that’s a good thing! Gated content is an opportunity for your strongest leads who are further in their decision process to opt-in to your content. Once a lead has filled out a form to download your content, those leads can be nurtured through automated workflows and additional related content.
The goal behind inbound marketing is to sell smarter not harder. When a lead downloads your piece of content, it gives you the opportunity to identify sales qualified leads so that your sales team isn’t wasting time chasing leads that are nowhere near ready to buy!
Questions to ask yourself before gating content:
Gated content is a strong strategy to drive lead generation and customer acquisition when used strategically. Below, learn the top three questions you should ask yourself before gating a piece of content.
- What stage of the funnel will resonate with this piece of content?- Typically, for a piece of gated content to produce good lead volume, it needs to be valuable and worthy of a prospect giving their information to receive it. Typically, gated content is best when it is more technical and targeted toward Consideration or Decision Stage prospects.
- Are analytics showing that people want more on this topic?
Producing gated content takes time, resources and effort from your team. If your content analytics aren't’ showing that your prospects and customers are interested in this content.
- What are next steps for lead nurturing after someone downloads the piece of content?
In order to have your content work as a sales tool, you need to have a strong inbound marketing strategy in mind when developing content. Always have a next step whether that’s enrolling a prospect in another workflow, enrolling that prospect in a sales sequence, or having your sales team follow up personally.
The moral of the story? Work smarter, not harder. Spend your content creation time on material that your audience wants and follow up!
Strong Gated Content Examples
Struggling to determine if you should gate your content? Below are strong, gated pieces of content that drive lead generation and customer acquisition.
- White Papers
- Technical-Focused Checklists
- Product Demos
The Benefits of Ungated Content
Think of ungated content like a welcome mat and an open door to your brand. While gated content is valuable for lead generation, ungated content is just as important for overall inbound marketing success for one strong reason. Search engines like Google are not able to crawl your gated content so if you aren’t utilizing ungated content, you won’t be found by prospects! It is essential that you consistently post relevant, ungated content to drive organic search to your website and boost brand awareness.
Additionally, ungated content is great for trust building with prospects since it removes any roadblocks to visitor action. This is especially important with prospects who are in the Awareness Stage of their buyer’s journey and are not ready to download a high level piece of content or fill out a form to talk to your sales representative.
Strong Examples of Ungated Content
Struggling to determine what content will drive brand awareness, improve SEO, and improve your brand image to prospects and customers? Below are strong examples of ungated content that drives ROI.
- Product/company videos
- Tip Sheets
Utilizing Both Gated and Ungated Content Without Doing Double the Work
A strong inbound marketing strategy utilizes both ungated and gated content. However, this does not mean your content team is going to have to do double the work! A tactic we use often for our B2B tech clients is taking a gated technical paper and repurposing that content to make multiple blogs with minimal effort! Additionally, creating multiple ungated pieces of content like infographics or blogs is an excellent way to tease a gated piece of content!
Do you need help with your content strategy? As a digital marketing agency specializing in B2B technology and software, the team at Kiwi Creative have the tools to help. Get in contact with us today to get your content strategy in order!