Unlocking Gated Content’s Potential with Email

lockIf your email marketing strategy is on track, you’re already giving your audience a steady stream of compelling content in your email and newsletters. If you’re really stepping it up, you’ve also added gated content to the mix. Like anything valuable, you aren’t giving away this content for free; you’re charging admission in the form of data. When interested visitors buy into your gated content with their information, make the most of it and watch your lead generation numbers soar.

Offer an Enticing Quid Pro Quo

This Latin phrase literally means ″something for something,″ and it’s the cornerstone of any business transaction. Your gated content has to be substantial enough to earn the valuable data you get from email recipients who download it. If they don’t find it compelling, they’re going to pass. To demonstrate the worth of what they’re getting in exchange for their information, give them samples of what they’ll find with your newsletter or a teaser email and lead them back to the central content to learn more. With marketing automation tools, you can create customized landing pages that reach different segments of your audience, enhancing relevance and making your gated content a must-click.

Ask Gradually

Customer relationships, like any other kind, need time to unfold naturally. If you ask for a complete data set on every would-be customer who wants to read your latest white paper, you risk driving off some of them. Your content hasn’t yet established enough value to ask for everything up front. Instead, learn the basics first – a name, a phone number, a company name and possibly a job title, for example. Gated content that has more than four or five blanks to fill out initially can feel like too much, but you can still learn those other key facts about your leads. Ask them for more details on additional gated content. Learn more about them from newsletter subscriptions or email preference pages. Look at how they’ve spent time on your site with marketing automation software.

Make Content Easy to Find

When you publish gated content, make sure everyone who comes in contact with you knows about it. Links in your email marketing content, your main corporate page, your SEO content and on your blog make it simple for interested leads to get their hands on your latest release. A catchy call to action, or CTA, in an email blast is an excellent tool for letting a wider audience know about a white paper or case study quickly. Looking at site analytics also lets you learn about how your customers connect with you and what inspired them to click.

Test Everything

Want to understand even more about your leads’ motivations? Test which subject lines, CTAs, email content and images produce the best response, then refine your message based on your test results. Motivated people are more likely to share their information and download your gated content, so finding the right words to tell your leads why they should download is critical. With software that tracks visitors’ on-site behavior and serves them customized landing pages, you can attribute leads accurately and discover where your best customers come from. Once you know that, your email marketing can target them more precisely.

Personalize It

You need to tell people not only how good your gated content is, but why it’s good for them in particular. Relevance produces results, and customized content tailored to each segment of your market is automatically more relevant to your audience. Think of your gated content as behind the velvet rope at an exclusive nightclub and your returning readers as VIPs. They should be able to log in quickly, download future content more easily with self-populating data fields, and get non-gated content that fits their on-site behavior.

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