ON24 Rolls Out Content Gateway To Help Marketers Maximize ROI
ON24, a webinar marketing platform, added the addition of ON24 Content Gateway to its marketing platform. According to the company, ON24 Content Gateway creates an online content hub for business marketers to curate their best digital assets and understand how their customers and prospects engage with that content. With the Content Gateway Management Service, content is automatically refreshed, helping marketers deliver and delight customers with their newest, most powerful material.
"To win the 74% of modern business buyers who self-service their research, we have to make our content easy to find, consume and, most importantly, engaging enough to captivate our customers' attention," says Mark Bornstein, VP of Content Strategy, ON24. "At ON24, we know webinars engage a customer for almost an hour, and ON24 Content Gateway extends that engagement even further by creating an on-demand experience for your webinars and other content. Not only does this ensure your customers and prospects can access your most impactful assets, it translates that engagement into data that helps identify your best leads."
With the platform, marketers are able to track every interaction so instead of throwing a bunch of content against a wall and then waiting to see what sticks, organizations will be able to identify their best leads as ON24 Content Gateway translates that engagement into data. How do marketers identify the best leads, you may ask? According to ON24 CMO Joe Hyland, since the platform has been tuned with advanced behavioral data and tied into leading CRM and marketing automation platforms like Salesforce and Marketo, their users draw data-driven insight right from the platform. Hyland stresses that this mission sets ON24 apart from its rivals, as their focus is more on lead scoring enhancements, while ON24 strives to help marketers identify “the needles in the haystack” when it comes to evaluating the leads.
The company rapidly evolved from being a full webcasting service provider into a self-service, engagement-driven webinar marketing platform maker. Headquartered in San Francisco with offices in Charlotte, New York City, London, Singapore and Sydney, 1,600 businesses, including athenahealth, PwC, and Microsoft, utilize ON24’s engagement marketing platform to deliver 100,000 webinars annually, engaging nearly 20 million prospects, customers and employees for a total of one billion minutes per year. However, the company was actually born as a 24-hour multimedia news platform with a focus on the retail investors before it became a marketing technology company. When digital transformation began reshaping the news industry and how organizations get their businesses done, ON24 decided to steer their ship in a slightly different direction. Knowing their skilled team can deliver more than just one product for one market, they developed a webinar marketing platform that powers businesses to engage their customers and prospects at scale.
Where does ON24 Content Gateway Sit in the Marketing Stack?
In an interview, Sharat Sharan, President, Co-Founder & CEO, who has taken ON24 to a market leadership position, with 50 consecutive quarters of revenue growth, explains what tools their digital ecosystem at ON24 consists of and where their own platform sits in it: “The value of CRM and marketing automation tools are only as worthwhile as the data they contain. We leverage our ON24 marketing webinar platform to engage our customers and prospects at scale, generating high-quality leads informed by the data we’ve gained from that engagement. Then, we further put that data to work with technologies like Conductor, DemandBase, and Optimizely to further personalize the customer experience.”
A 360-View of Content Performance
Today’s modern buyers tend to be self-researchers. In fact, a study by Forrester discovered that as many as 72% of customers prefer to use self-help options rather than reach out to a company, meaning soon enough, decision makers may never talk to sales. Then, where does this leave marketers? First and foremost, the rise of the number of self-educating buyers makes engaging customers throughout the buyer’s journey mission critical. However, the same modern digital landscape that changed consumer behaviors would also allow marketers to have the luxury of creating entertaining or utilitarian content as the gateway to the long term sale.
In the e-commerce space, for instance, retailers are owning less and less of the pane of glass with their end-customers. What that means is that experiences today with customers are often mediated through the third parties and gateways such as a social media platform. In recognition of the universal need for data-driven insight, ON24 launched its content gateway platform to help marketers extend the reach of their best content, including on-demand webinars, videos, PDFs, and podcasts, from a single media library. According to the vendor, content can be promoted via a content gateway, embedded directly onto any web page, and published to social media sites with a single click. “We are able to expand our audience reach by 65% with ON24 Gateway and we intend to expand on this success even further,” says Beth Giersch, Director, EFTI Operations & Planning at Equinox.
Branded content sometimes may be a perfect gateway to customer engagement when it is used strategically. Aside from the typical use cases such as blog posts, videos, and social media posts, there will always be untapped content types and channels that may create many opportunities to reach a broader audience and engage with them. Audi, for instance, carried away the Wi-Fi naming game that you play to feud with your neighbors in a passive aggressive way. During the New York Auto Show, Audi made an appearance on the visitors’ phone with a list of open Wi-Fi networks hosted by Audi, however, the juicy part of the story is that the company has named its open Wi-Fi networks with short messages directed at BMW's 328 to promote its new A4 sedan model. Some the names were: 328 reasons to choose A4; A4 HP > 328; A4 Torque > 328; A4 Wi-Fi. 328 No-fi; A4 12.3in Screen. 328 0in; A4 3D sound. 328 2D; A4 CarPlay. 328 No; A4 LaneAssist. 328 No. At the end of the day, Audi brilliantly utilized a ubiquitous platform to deliver its marketing message while engaging with the audience.
Have you ever heard of the rule of seven? Well, it is nothing new but if you haven’t tried it yet and are looking for new ways of doing things differently for your content marketing, this is something you should look into. The number seven might be your lucky number as it is the world's favorite number, but this rule is not just about luck. The idea behind this marketing tactic is that if you educate your prospects by putting the continuous and repetitive effort in your content marketing strategy, you can gain your prospect’s trust. Otherwise, just because you run a couple of advertisements or post a few blog posts, they will not be convinced to make a business with you. While applying this rule, it is also important to go beyond the web to deliver frictionless contextual experiences through all channels and devices. As Dennis Shiao wrote in his article: “Content consumption no longer happens when sitting still, but instead when we’re moving, away from a desk or multitasking. Therefore, your content must be ready to reach users in this new world.”
With technology today, thanks to the platforms like ON24 Content Gateway, it is easier than ever to stay grounded in the numbers and make data-driven business decisions. Marketers need to work with the marketing tools that can eliminate biased decision-making processes by taking the guesswork out of what content to produce and which platform to be on. In other words, they need to be armed with predictive insights to uncover hidden opportunities and competitive threats. In parallel to these emerging needs, ON24 made a smart move by adding its Content Gateway to centralize, personalize and analyze customer engagement across multiple touchpoints for a 360-view of content performance.