Content marketing outperforms product-centric campaigns in STEM

Convincing people to buy your product or service takes time and effort, from awareness-raising to driving purchase intent. But a change in approach could help you market smarter.

COVID-19 has changed how and where we work, not just in a physical sense but also in how we learn. The way we consume information has shifted – we’ve become more dependent on online content to progress and succeed, both individually and commercially.

This digital boom has increased the sheer volume of communication aimed at scientists, meaning they’re bombarded with information wherever they go.
Are you a digital marketer looking to connect with scientists and researchers? Contact us today for a free consultation to learn more about how we can help you achieve your business goals by reaching and activating your target audience online.

For marketers, this is bad news: when audiences are saturated with information, they become immune to key messages. What’s more, if you target someone when they’re not in the right frame of mind, they won’t pay attention.

Fundamentally, scientists’ needs have changed. They only want information that helps them succeed in their new set-up. Irrelevant information simply passes them by. To capture their attention, you need to demonstrate the value of what you’re communicating.

Here’s how.

Choose your channel


For starters, you need to understand the researcher’s journey. The key is to engage them when they’re working and in discovery mode, instead of chasing them around the internet on sites they visit in their leisure time. Use the right channels and the best medium and you’re more likely to grab their attention.

Increase trust


Scientists are more likely to trust content they come across in familiar environments they consider reliable. Leveraging platforms such as ResearchGate can boost dwell time and click-through rates. For example, CTRs on ResearchGate are routinely double the industry average – because researchers using the platform are more likely to be engaged and receptive to new information that can benefit their work.

Think in terms of the full funnel


Once you have a captive audience, it’s important not to waste it — yet many marketing brands still fall into the trap of thinking that simply advertising products and citing their benefits will lead to the behavior change they’re looking for. In reality, it’s not that easy. We’re all familiar with the sales funnel: awareness is a key factor, but advertising can’t be the sole lead-generation activity. It needs to be tied to a wider content marketing strategy. This means giving your audience what they want over several touchpoints.
Are you a digital marketer looking to connect with scientists and researchers? Contact us today for a free consultation to learn more about how we can help you achieve your business goals by reaching and activating your target audience online.

Tweaking your approach to better meet audience needs is the key to success. At ResearchGate, we’ve seen improved results with a more content-marketing driven approach over traditional product-led campaigns. We call this the ‘Bite, Snack, Meal’ model:

Bite


Whet your audience’s appetite. Showcase multiple versions of your ad, directing researchers to an Application Note. This is a STEM researcher’s first taste of what you have to offer, but it shouldn’t be the last.

Snack


Share more research output, with several Application Notes in a multi-offer Content Gallery. This easy-to-digest content format provides educational value while establishing brand authority.

Meal


Generate demand by offering long-form educational content, like an eBook. According to our data, 65% of scientists find educational content the most useful for learning about improvements in techniques and methods in their area of research. In exchange for this type of content, you generate leads by collecting professional contact information from each download via an auto-populated form.

Right content, right time


Content marketing is all about getting the right content in front of prospects at different stages of your funnel. It’s a way to help move prospects without them feeling like you’re overtly selling to them, which can raise their level of suspicion (and possibly annoyance). For the best results, all of your marketing activity should be tied to your campaign objective and measured accordingly over a three to six-month period.

Keep in mind that these things take time, and sales figures can’t be expected to rise sharply on day one of a campaign. It’s important to nurture your leads so they’re open to your messages and feel comfortable exploring the opportunity further on their own timeline. 57% of a B2B brand choice occurs during the awareness and knowledge phase. Content marketing with a multi-touchpoint approach means you can engage your target audience again and again, leading to a lasting, meaningful relationship, rather than a short-lived broadcast.
Are you a digital marketer looking to connect with scientists and researchers? Contact us today for a free consultation to learn more about how we can help you achieve your business goals by reaching and activating your target audience online.
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