Curating targeted and relevant industry news content delivers dynamism and sociability to support the B2B buy cycle. B2B buyers are already overloaded with periodical information hundreds of various RSS feeds, custom newsreaders or news sites. There is a unique opportunity for marketing executives to increase their authority by adding relevant, curated news content to their current, content marketing activity.
Marketers need to secure the attention of B2B buyers who have budget influence and budget authority. However, although these buyers are online, they’re not reading company blogs company website content as authoritative industry content. In fact, B2B buyers discount company content as part of the corporate marketing mix. So, how does a marketer access B2B buyers with industry authority that can influence vendor selection?
Below I’ll briefly review a 2007 paper published in “New Media & Society” on the study of website credibility and share some thought how B2B marketers may fast-track their website and online blogs to an industry authority, with the help of relevant industry news.
In their 2007 paper “The role of site features, user attributes, and information verification behaviors on the perceived credibility of web-based information” professors Andrew Flanigan and Mariam Metzger performed a study of 574 participants to assess their perception of credibility across various types of websites and web sponsors. Their objective was to build on the initial studies of web credibility of online properties. How did the design and information on a site affect the perceived credibility of an online property? The paper users 2 primary dimensions of credibility such as 1) source credibility 2) trustworthiness. Other secondary dimensions of credibility include site dynamism, composure and sociability.
Regarding their first hypothesis, Professors Flanigan and Metzger were able to verify, with a high degree of significance, the following findings:
- News organization websites were perceived to be significantly more credible than e-commerce, special interest, and personal websites.
- Sponsors of new organization websites, advertisers, were rated significantly more credible than sponsors of all other genre of websites measured.
- Message credibility of news organization websites were rated significantly higher than all other genres of websites measured.
Thus the team concluded that “the genre of website under consideration impacts the perceived credibility of the [website] sponsors, the message residing on the website, and the website overall.” News websites sites are the most credible web properties online.
Marketing executives have a new content curation opportunity. Leveraging this research, content marketers and internet marketers can gain an edge in the several ways. I’ll highlight three that could have an immediate impact:
- Curate quality, relevant, industry news on your own web properties or an online industry website. Support corporate blogging with quality 3rd party news articles around the key issues relevant to customers and prospects. These curated news articles from established authorities would increase corporate website and corporate blog credibility with website users.
- Providing easy access to key content serves B2B prospects. Marketing executives are very familiar with the news authorities their customers and prospects consume on a daily basis. If they were able to provide access to relevant, topic-specific, articles to customers and prospects, they would add convenience and familiarity for the executives that currently consume the same information, elsewhere, but must manually filter through thousands of different articles.
- Providing easy access to curated 3rd party content enables niche publishers to reach relevant readers at less cost. Publishers invest substantial time and money delivering quality content online. If such information is not behind a registration wall, publishers can benefit by receiving higher quality traffic of targeted, specific readers that value such content.
- Marketers should take advantage of the 2nd dimension of credibility mentioned in the paper and build their online communities with depth and dynamism from the flow of news media content from the news authorities of their industries. Depth of content means that curated news media content can be referenced, as a credible resource of information at any time. Dynamism means that content consists of continuously fresh and highly relevant information from trusted sources.
The executives who have budget influence in your industry are getting their daily industry news from several sources that you consume as well. How would your brand credibility change, with these important customers and prospects, if they could secure the most relevant news from you, their corporate partner?
It takes several years to establish the authority successfully achieved by news organizations and industry trade journals that provide industry news. Curating authoritative, highly relevant, online news will increase the perceived credibility of the B2B brands that share this content. Such credibility should attract more traffic and inbound leads from those who have the power to choose your product or service after conducting relevant online research.