Three tips for creating content marketing for scientists — on a shoestring budget

It is fully possible to keep up with your industry competition, even with limited resources.

Did you know 60-70% of B2B content created is never actually used? This highlights a worrying trend that big dollars are spent, and wasted, in developing marketing collateral that never gets to serve its intended audience.

For smaller marketing teams going up against rivals with bigger budgets, this is actually good news. Get the content and execution right, and it’s perfectly possible for a small advertising spend to yield big results. The idea is to pursue quality over volume, while addressing the needs of your target market in STEM.

For instance, a major turn-off to buyers is ‘sales speak,’ with 75% of audiences wanting less of this. To drive awareness and eventual consideration, employ a more giving, educationally-driven approach. Our own research into scientists’ preferences and behaviors indicate that STEM professionals are most receptive to content marketing — a full 65% of researchers prefer value-add content over direct product marketing.
Are you a marketer working in the STEM sector and on a tight budget? We’re here to help you discover the products and services to advance your business goals. Connect with us today.

Here’s our guide about how to best utilize your marketing budget — to reel in your scientific research audience and get a better long-term return on investment.

1. Pick your time and channel wisely


Aside from a sale, think about what you want from your audience. Do you want them to click on your ad? Visit your website? What’s the call to action? Try to engage people when they’re in the right frame of mind to do what you want them to do.

For example, ResearchGate members tend to be in high-intent discovery mode when on the platform, looking for relevant research to advance their work. This is why content marketing campaigns that are run on the platform are generally so successful, with average click-through rates that are more than double the industry average.

It makes sense to reach out to scientists when and where they’ll be most receptive to products, services, and events that can aid their work. Don’t waste time bombarding your audience in their downtime – on consumer-facing social media, for instance – as they won’t be in the right frame of mind to listen.

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2. Give your audience what they want, not what you want to give them


Making a sale does involve an element of selling, but not straight-away. Building trust is an important first step. For successful lead generation, educational content that serves your audience’s needs is the best path forward. Over 65% of scientists find educational content such as posters and eBooks most useful.

After the initial exchange of resources, you can offer more educational content to forge a stronger bond. Over 80% of scientists we surveyed said that peer recommendations, white papers, and publications have the biggest influence on their purchasing decisions. So why not offer a variety of these content winners to help educate your audience on the strength of your science to contextualize what you have to offer?

3. Play the long game


Sales aren’t made instantly – you need to nurture your leads over time. Don’t let them go cold after all the effort of securing them in the first place. Nearly 50% of scientists we surveyed consider peer recommendations and publications over two months before their purchase, with some beginning pre-purchase research almost one year in advance, for bigger-spend equipment. Be aware that your audience will need time to consider the product or service in question. That’s why it’s vital to target them over multiple touchpoints, with different resources, at every stage of the purchasing journey — from awareness, through interest, and to close purchase.

Follow these three basic principles to drive ROI and make your content work harder for you.

When it comes to creating attention-grabbing content, don’t forget useful tools, like ResearchGate’s Content Gallery, which can help you optimize your assets and keep costs down. Content marketing doesn’t have to cost the earth; in fact, simplicity is key. Take a methodical, multi-channel approach, like the one we’ve outlined above, to improve your marketing outcomes in line with your business revenue goals.
Are you a marketer or advertiser working in the STEM sector and on a tight budget? We’re here to help you discover the products and services to advance your business goals. Connect with us today.

 
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