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Does Gated Content Work? How to set it up right | SRPro
You may be bent on collecting information and generating leads to drive sales. But it takes two to tango. Gated content involves the consent of your customer. It only works within an overall content and lead nurturing strategy, designed to build your audience over time. When you provide content that enriches your target audience, you will earn their trust and establish yourself as a credible source for information.
Prospects deserve your respect. They know what they need and what they value. Disappoint them once with an unworthy piece of gated content, and you lose credibility. You are asking people to reveal their identities. Privacy is a sensitive issue, and many other lead-hungry companies are asking the same. If your gated content is followed by a flood of spammy sales emails, you lose potential customers for good.
What Is Gated Content?
Gated content is a piece of content that people can access or download only after filling out a form. The publisher places a “gate” that readers open by identifying themselves. A sign-up form typically requires a name and email address. You can use it to collect additional information as well.
The technique is used widely by B2B companies as a lead generation tool. As much as 80% of B2B content is gated. This is a surprisingly high percentage, considering the amount of ungated content B2B companies produce.
What Are the Advantages of Gated Content vs. Ungated Content?
6 Questions to Ask Before You Gate Your Content
1. What Is the Purpose of My Content?
The purpose of gated content is to collect information about potential customers and generate leads. If you are trying to raise brand awareness, improve your SEO, or reach a broad audience, gating is not an option.
2. What Stage of the Funnel Do I Target?
Reaching prospects at the top of your funnel is more easily achieved with ungated content. Before someone will provide any personal information, they need to trust you and be genuinely interested in your product. At this stage, they expect specific content that helps them in their decision-making process and are more inclined to leave an email address. Be aware that these people are comparing, and you need to provide relevant data and valuable product information.
3. Is My Content Worthy of Being Gated?
Even though gated content is free, you are asking the reader for a “price”: to give up their anonymity. You are signaling that the content is too valuable to be given away openly. This raises expectations regarding quality. Make sure not to disappoint your potential customer.
Gated content needs to be unique. There is no point in gating content that is openly available elsewhere. You could offer a video interview with an expert or an ebook, such as a how-to-guide.
Secondly, provide highly professional, in-depth information. Give the reader something useful to work with. You could offer a white paper on a specific feature of your product. Make sure to raise curiosity about additional features that could be interesting.
4. What Will I Do With the Information I Collect?
Only gate your content when you are sure you can put the collected information to good use.
Once you’ve collected leads from a specific content gate, don’t let them vanish inside your CRM. Your gated content is one step in your lead nurturing strategy. Segment your email list accordingly and enhance your email marketing.
5. What Do I Put Before the Gate?
Your prospects may be at an advanced stage of the funnel, but you still need to convince them to go through with the sign-up process. This means engaging pre-gated content and a powerful CTA. Create something that stirs the readers’ curiosity and encourages them to take the hurdle.
6. What Can I Learn from Analytics?
One advantage of gated content is that you can track conversions and measure your success. You can trace sales back to the gated content and evaluate the success of the technique. Moreover, you can A/B test your pre-gated content, landing pages, and sign-up forms to optimize them.
Should You Use Gated Content?
Informative content is available abundantly for free on the web. Businesses compete for SEO ranking and readers. Gating your content puts a damper on both. On the other hand, collecting information about your audience through a well-placed sign-up form can help you be more specific when targeting your audience. This can give potential customers a sometimes much-needed push down the funnel.
As a marketer, the question you should ask yourself is how to use content to attract prospects and build sufficient trust and credibility to turn them into customers. Use the above questions to determine whether gated content could be an effective tool in your lead nurturing process.
Want to know more about developing and building a successful lead generation process? Drop us a line here: info@SRpro.marketing. We are here for you!