Gates. Not the white picket fence of the classic American Dream. Nor the Bill of Microsoft. This month we are exploring the practice of gating content. We went team wide to collect feedback on how our team members view gating.
What is a gate?
Simply put a gate is a contact form which is a required to unlock content. Across the marketing field there are heated debates regarding the ethics of using gates versus forms and the impacts of locking up your content.
Check out some of the agency team’s feelings on gating. Our first insight is from our newest team member, Amy!
Consider your end goal and if the content is gate-worthy. If you need to increase sales leads, then you should gate accordingly. Users will feel like they’re getting something they find valuable. If you’re going for brand awareness or number of views/downloads, go the un-gated route.
Will the person downloading this think: “Wow, they gave that away for free? It must’ve cost them thousands to make.” Or, “I would’ve gladly given them $7 for this stuff.” If not, don’t bother gating it. Basically it comes down to is the person giving you their information getting their money’s worth? They’re submitting their personal information and risking spam. So if you’re going to make them jump through hoops to get your content, it better be worth it.
Gating content can be a great way to get consumer information; It can also be a great way to annoy people. Use your best judgement.
If it’s content that can be found almost anywhere or content that is meant to align to someone very early in the buying process, you should avoid gating.
Don’t gate every piece of content that you produce. People should want to fill out your form, they shouldn’t feel forced into it.
We only produce free range content people!!! If our content is truly good and valuable than people will want to work with us and reach out on their own. *cough* inbound leads *cough* *cough*
If you’re going to gate- keep it simple and relevant. Asking for a name and email address gives you just enough information to follow up on the lead, where you can then find out more.
Though, offering content for free can help build your brand and costumer loyalty. It really all depends on what you’re looking for to grow your business; nurturing leads that you already have or searching for new ones.