Lead Generation Part 2 – Content Syndication

In the first post in this series, we discussed using form fills for lead generation (Lead Generation Part 1 – Form Fills). Content syndication is another popular B2B internet marketing strategy used to generate leads online. Content syndication is a method by which pieces of content, be they articles or reports or blog posts, are shared with permission from the writer.

A typical content syndication agreement usually involves some form of compensation to the original author. This can be as little as acknowledging the author’s name. It could include the author’s name and website address. The agreement might even include monetary compensation.

A content syndication agreement can be for one piece of content or for many. It can also be an ongoing agreement under which the author or authors agree to provide periodical pieces of content that will then be published on a daily or otherwise regular basis. With the explosion of web publishing tools in the past few years, it has become easier and easier for content to be syndicated online.

Content syndication for the purposes of lead generation however means utilizing publishers (usually B2B publishers) whose business is reaching a targeted audience and who would then publish your assets  (see Lead Generation Part 1 – Form Fills) behind a form fill page (often referred to as gated content).  These forms then form the basis from which leads are generated.

Important considerations in using content syndication to drive leads

Targeting
A key factor in marketing is always keeping your target market in mind and therefore before running a lead generation program utilizing content, give thought to some of the following:

  • The topic and title of the asset being used. This will immediately qualify a prospect
  • Is it appropriate to use custom questions?  These will add to the cost of the program.
  • How does your target audience consume information?  Would you use an e-book, buyer’s guide, best practices guide, whitepaper, webinar, video, etc.
  • Geographic targeting?
  • Your target customer’s company employee size

Costs
Content syndication comes with a cost.  You can expect CPL rates of between $40 and $90; however, the range is dependent on network, targeting, topic and asset type.  The overall budget for a content syndication program will vary based on the factors above and the publisher’s minimum, however, typically, minimums tend to be between $4,000 and $5,000 and go up from there.

Timelines
It usually takes a minimum of 2-3 weeks to evaluate options and launch a program -assuming you already have at least one asset developed.   Leads are normally delivered over 1-3 months.  As with any leads, time is of the essence and therefore, once the lead has been delivered, the sales team must be extremely diligent in the follow up process. This is critical to the successful conversion of these leads!

Performance Expectations
With lead generation from content syndication, you need to be patient.  It can take some time to move leads through the sales cycle from lead to opportunity to closed business.  Your company might want to implement lead scoring to prioritize and manage leads.  A long sales cycle might make it hard to evaluate the program initially, so it needs to be monitored over the long term.  A marketing automation tool is extremely helpful in this respect to help track profitability and success. Some popular options include Marketo, Eloqua and Pardot, to name a few.

In the next post in this series on lead generation, we will look at 2 of the most popular types of content syndication – white papers and webinars.

About the Author:

Hartland Ross is the Founder and President of eBridge Marketing Solutions. He has over 15 years experience in marketing and business development, focusing for the last decade or so on the technology sector. Prior to starting up his own internet marketing agency, he operated a successful franchise, worked with two different online advertising startups and was the VP of Sales and Marketing for a national development and training company. He now puts his entrepreneurial and business skills to work running eBridge, which since its inception has supported the internet marketing efforts of over 150 web hosts worldwide.

Posted September 21, 2012
Categories: Blog, Advertising and Marketing General, Demand Generation
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