Are Your Priorities Straight?
Barsam says that when a customer approaches TechTarget, they are advised to spread their money over a range of media modes in order to capture an audience at each point in the buying cycle. Multimedia packages should offer a series of options, from fulfilling initial research needs (white papers) to further engaging prospects as they get closer to choosing a specific vendor (webcasts and podcasts), to options such as trial software downloads, virtual events and live events, which “put [a customer’s] company solution in front of them.”
Paying close attention to users can be eye-opening, says Bimblick, citing the number of CFOs he sees participating in business finance webinars.
“It seems counter intuitive to think that C-suite executives would spend time on a webinar,” he says. “But they do, because they are interested in … hearing an expert speak, but also being able to ask a question and hear what others are asking.”
Lannon calls this type of interactivity the “use of ideas,” because its true value lies in providing context and analysis tailored to immediate need, rather than in simply finding new ways to repackage fixed content.
In the commercial real estate segment, there is a focus on in-person events, and Penton’s sales team has responded by working with clients to formulate mini-conferences of 50-75 people. Responding to research that points to an underserved niche market, the company will also launch a trade show in the Midwest in July.
“It’s all about segmenting,” Bimblick says. “If you have a magazine with a circulation of 40,000, chances are most advertisers are not trying to reach all 40,000, because not everyone is in the same stage of the buying cycle. The trick is, how do you actually come up with a way to reach the 5,000 people who are interested?”