Recently TechTarget summarized the implications of a study conducted by SolarWinds that looked at the “Evolving Role of IT.” Not surprisingly the data shows that nine out of 10 IT professionals agree that an increasingly complex infrastructure has affected their roles over the past three to five years. The executive vice president of products and markets was quoted as saying, “The complexity that it’s creating is tremendous. IT pros are trying to chase a car moving 100 miles per hour, and they are on foot.”
From a technology perspective IT Pros report that Cloud and Mobility will see the highest levels of investment in the future according to the study.
And, for large technology investments UBM Tech tells us that an average of 7.2 people can touch a purchase decision – both inside and outside of IT. As a result, the alignment of new business models and emerging technologies brings a great talent and skills gap to the work place – especially in IT.
From a content perspective this can be very daunting for large technology vendors, because IT is expected to both build the business case and implement the solution. In a nutshell, their current and prospective customers need trusted information to help them:
· Stay on the forefront of emerging technology
· Make trusted vendor recommendations for large investments
· Build the business case
· Deploy large scale solutions
· Work with LOBs
· Keep end users happy and productive
· Secure their data
· Deliver business based results
· Save money
And, they need this content yesterday.
Creating content for IT Pros needs to be carefully crafted. You have to understand what makes them tick — to know what to do and what not to do. Tech buyers are looking for a mix of business focused content and the speeds and feeds. Vendor content is essential, but in many cases third party/unbiased content is often more authoritative and trusted. They rely heavily on search and their peer networks both on and offline. IT Pros also expect an optimal mobile experience no matter the content or channel.
If you are responsible for generating content for this audience the best way to start is with your various buyer personas. It is the first step to a content strategy. Don’t have any personas? Check around in your organization first. Some pockets within your company might have done some market research, commissioned studies or conducted interviews/focus groups. Identify your holes and either augment with additional primary research or conduct third party research. Make sure that you have a baseline understanding of their:
· Role in the organization and the purchase process
· Pain points
· Digital, social and mobile behaviors
· Key go-to sources for information
Once you lay this foundation you can begin to put your tech buyers in the driver seat because you’ll have insights into what content will resonate and help the most.
Jenny is a digital content strategist, who leads customer-centric engagements that focus on understanding B2B buying behaviors and developing custom roadmaps.
Her expertise is creating buyer personas and mapping digital content journeys to assess the multi-channel user experience. She helps clients operationalize plans across workstreams and identifies processes to create efficiencies in marketing operations. Jenny also has extensive time under her belt developing and managing customer advocacy programs and community building.
She has helped a diverse group of organizations including Cisco, VMware, Verizon, Microsoft, Dell, BMO Harris, Capital One and many others become more customer-centric.