Form Play: 4 Content Marketing Dos and Don?ts
August 30, 2012 | SnapApp Marketing
Content is not simply king. Content is your identity as a company or a brand. Content is the online version of who you are in person. When customers, prospects, or people in general consume your content they’re not getting to know facts and figures – they’re getting to know you! Much like face to face conversations, good content tactfully walks the line between building relationships and achieving goals. ?To try to turn this art into a science, marketers often rely on lead generation forms to gain contact information in exchange for content. Used correctly, forms can funnel customers or prospects into revenue generating marketing programs. Used incorrectly, forms can kill the spread of your content and aggravate anyone who has to deal with them. To help you walk this fine line, here are 4 Dos and Don?ts for your marketing forms.
DO Treat Your Forms like a Handshake: When you have good content people will appreciate it, but you don’t need to get in the way of that appreciation. In cases of casual, general interest content, leave your forms until the end and allow your leads to complete the form on their own accord. It’s better to have a few relevant leads from people who wanted to fill out the form as a parting hand shake vs. lots of people reluctantly forced to fill out a form in order to get your content.
DON?T Get Handsy with Where You Put Your Forms: You may want to grab as many leads as possible, but imagine being at a networking event and making people sign a paper before they even talk to you – would that seem normal? ?So why would you ever ruin your content?s first impression by inserting an obstructive form? Always think of the end user when planning where to place a form. Does the placement make sense and happen with the flow of the interaction, or is it awkward within the overall experience?
DO Use Forms to Protect High Value Content: When you’ve already made your first impression with high-level or general interest content like blog posts, infographics, videos, or slide decks, and you have more in-depth and compelling content it’s ok to protect it with a form. For all the effort you or your marketing team put into your whitepaper,comprehensive guide, etc. you want to know who wants to know that information. As this is this is the general norm for high-value content, it’s perfectly acceptable to use forms in this case.
DON?T Use Forms as a Tease for an Empty Reward: If you do place a form at the end of your content, or even when you gate the high-value materials at the beginning, and you entice form completion with a promise of more information or updates, you need to follow up. Don?t just let leads land on the desk of your salespeople or collect dust in a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system. Communicate with the people who have shown an interest in communicating with you.
Forms can be a key component of your marketing content – which is why they’re an integral feature in the SnapApp platform, but knowing how to use them correctly is the difference between building relationships and just making noise. For more information on how SnapApp can fit into your marketing mix, check out our resources page, or feel free to contact us directly.