Content Marketing Tips for B2B Tech Marketers
The phrase “content is king” frequently appears in articles, keynote speeches, and articles like this one. Its roots can be traced back to a 1996 essay by Bill Gates in which he wrote, “Computer software is a form of content—an extremely important one, and the one that for Microsoft will remain by far the most important.”
This statement resonates with developers today. What does this mean for your technical content marketing strategy and how you use it to generate conversions? There are two content marketing considerations we’ll take a much closer look at in this article: content length and content promotion.
Polly Alluf, veteran B2B tech marketer, shared some of the developer marketing lessons she has learned along the way. One of her suggestions was to be long (yes, you read that correctly), but to the point.
She believes “developers appreciate long-form posts that top 1500 words - as long as they help resolve challenging issues and save them time in the long run. Sure, their time is precious, but if you incorporate usable scripts, many will stick with the post and read all the fine print.”
Much like the debate over landing page form fields, marketers typically don’t agree on the ideal length of a blog post or whitepaper. But when it comes to technical content, think less about maximum word counts and be
intentional about creating quality content. Not only will this approach lead you to create more valuable assets for your target audience, but long-form content tends to rank better in organic search results because it has more substance.
In another article, we look at an example of a landing page that directed developers to sign up for a free trial. In a traditional B2B lead generation strategy, content such as whitepapers and ebooks are also gated by a landing page.
But when you’re marketing to developers, should content (specifically, product-related documentation) also be gated by a landing page form - even if it just requires an email address? According to Tom Wentworth, another B2B tech marketing veteran, the answer is a resounding no.
According to Tom’s experience at RapidMiner, “we liberated all of our great documentation and you know what? All the developers who converted via our documentation forms ended up converting somewhere else on our site — webinars, product trials, etc — if they were really interested. None of our metrics went down.”
This lesson highlights one of the keys to lead generation in developer marketing. Because developers tend to be so aware of modern marketing tactics, it’s important to understand how a typical lead generation strategy might harm your brand. Gating technical content might increase the number of “leads” you generate, but it could also result in a lot of bad data and make developers less likely to engage with your offering in the future.
For more best practices on marketing to developers and the technical community, download our eBook, “Beyond Lead Generation: A Primer on Developer Marketing”.