“This article brought to you by XYZ” is pretty commonplace these days. In fact, consuming sponsored content is so normal now that Nielsen estimates readers spend the same amount of time on the page when reading both editorials and sponsored articles on average. Sponsored content simply isn’t leaving any time soon.
Consumers Want to Self-Educate. Give Them Content!
Sponsored content has taken hold to address changing buying behavior when it comes to how purchasers learn about the products they might buy. The majority of readers (70%) actually prefer to learn about a product via branded content rather than traditional advertising. Buyers are doing more and more self education before getting in touch with a sales rep for a traditional pitch meeting. As such, the resources brands are creating for purchasers to consume is changing. By delaying a hard sell or overt product pitch, brands can maintain a relationship with their audience in a healthy way.
Branded content is 22x more engaging than display ads. Readers spend an average of 36 seconds engaging with branded content, but only 1.6 seconds viewing banner ads.
Sponsored content can discuss pain points your audience has while mentioning ways to address those pain points, some of which might involve your product. Sponsored content is a terrific tool to use when it comes to qualifying if a prospect is worth that sales outreach down the line – if a radiologist is reading “How to Maximize Scheduling Flexibility during Breast Localization,” that’s a great indicator they’ll also want to read a product comparison guide about your wire-free ultrasound guidance solution versus a traditional wire-guided option.
When it comes to content marketing, you need to put your customer first and your product pitch second. While you may be in a B2B space, you are still selling to a specific person with specific pain points. What would your eventual reader’s role be in the buyer’s group? What motivates them to buy? How does your product or service directly make their life easier at work?
As an example, Cloud 9 partnered with Orthodontic Products to run a lengthy campaign aimed at educating orthodontists on the benefits of their cloud-based orthodontic practice management software. Part of their campaign focused on discussing pain points Orthos feel when using more dated solutions and some features that modern solutions can offer.
The article FIVE MUST-HAVE FEATURES FOR YOUR ORTHODONTIC PRACTICE MANAGEMENT SOFTWARE has been read over 10,000 times to date on the OP website. It has led to nearly a thousand additional clicks and views of more pointed product-based content for Cloud 9. This article has had success because it isn’t a hard sell. It naturally answers questions that normal readers of Orthodontic Products magazine have every day. What’s more is that Cloud 9 now has a pretty good idea that the 10,000+ readers are looking for new practice management software (and they included a nice call to action to a case study at the bottom of the article). As part of their KAIROS campaign with Orthodontic Products, they can easily retarget all those readers with additional content!
Finding The Right Partner to Amplify Your Message
You’ve undoubtedly heard of social media influencers with huge followings who get paid to promote other brands. The reason these individuals find success is that their audience trusts their voice and judgement. Those influencers have their own brand that they lean on and won’t tarnish their brand with low-quality endorsements. Your brand can benefit from similar associations, you just have to find the right partner to work with to amplify your message. Here’s some things to look for in a publishing or media partner:
- Their audience matches your target audience
- They’ll share knowledge and data to make your content more effective
- They recommend additional tactics that will support your sponsored content
- You both work together to clearly define what would make your campaign “successful”
- You both identify buyer’s group roles so sponsored content can be curated to the reader
Our Offer To You
MEDQOR caters to over 6.3M healthcare professionals across our ten healthcare brand magazines. We’re dedicated to driving adoption of advancing technologies across healthcare to improve patient outcomes. We do this by providing healthcare professionals industry leading content they can trust.