June 22, 2009

Buyers Want To Be Market Aware? - by Jim Bloedau of Information Advantage Group

Have you noticed how discussions about what buyers want during their buy-cycles is more about educational information then events and advertising?

Our research shows that across all verticals, programs that lead with white papers that deliver high educational value are gaining strong traction during these austere times. This traction is dependent on the content being highly relevant, accurate, complete and time-efficient. The intent is to capture a buyer’s attention early in the buy cycle to start building lasting credibility and trust - a stark departure from past advertising assumptions founded on the premise that reach and cost serves as a proxy for efficacious relationship building. As a result, a rather dramatic shift of marketing dollars toward white papers and reports is one of the growth items in 2009 and beyond marketing budgets.

Continuing Trend: Increasingly, money spent on traditional advertising, such as collaterals, brochures and events is being heavily cannibalized by an 18% CAGR in online interactive media expected to last through 2013.

This trend in spending is focused on highly informative content driven by a couple of major dynamics effecting buyer preferences.

First, the discussion around the publisher-controlled model being disrupted by the emerging user-controlled model has taught us that Web 2.0 technology requires collaboration and participation in order to enable success--it also adds tasks to our already crowded list of tasks. Blogs, podcasts, video and social networks are the newer entry points encountered when we begin to search for information on needed products or services. We conclude as we move further down this path that relevance, structure, accuracy and completeness are frequently lacking in a rising sea of fragmented facts and opinion. Because so little of this “cyber-clutter” is organized, experienced professionals – as the data in this series of blogs shows - find it is best to be temperate toward Web 2.0 for many of these access points are considered the biggest time wasters when searching for answers during the buy cycle.

image credit: mugley

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