Have you ever been drawn by a very interesting article title, such as “How I lost 20lbs in 2 weeks, while eating pizza”? Intrigued, you click on it, but before you can see the entire article you have to fill in your name and email address. This is an example of content gating.
Content gating can be a useful tool to help build your email list, but there are things to be considered before deploying a gating strategy.
Strategy #1: Gate all content - This is an aggressive strategy. Gating even the smallest tid-bit of information on your website could potentially cause the loss of potential customers.
Strategy #2 : Gate no content - This strategy allows any user access to any and all of you online content. This strategy should be used to help you grow as a thought leader in your genre and build brand image over time.
Strategy #3: Gate based on buying stage of customer: For example, a customer interested in a very specific e-book download, is closer to the bottom of your sales funnel than someone merely scanning your blog. Gating your e-book would allow unrestricted access to lower-value material, (while building thought leadership) but identify those who may be ready to move forward.
Before choosing a gating strategy, consider your goals and how they will be measured. Examples of measurable content creation goals are;
-Brand Awareness - This can be measured by survey, increased web traffic, increased conversions, increased ad clicks etc.
-Lead Generation - Your content can be a great lead generation tool. You can measure your success by tracking the length of your list.
-Customer Acquisition - New customers can be measured by new “unique visits” to your website, 1st time purchases, 1st time download etc.
-Thought leadership - This can be measured by the increased number of downloads of your ebooks, infographics etc, clicks on your blog, comments and questions on your blog and social media posts, etc.
-Engagement - Engagement is difficult to obtain organically. Your product has to really hit a string with the customer in order for them to leave a comment and sometimes even just like your post on social media.
-Website Traffic - This is the easiest goal to track, either using google analytics or your web editors analytics page.
-Sales- This is the main goal on everyones mind but not always the goal behind a successful content strategy. Easily trackable and very rewarding.
-Lead Management/Nurturing- Slowly developing content based on the interest of your active audience is a great idea.