Tips and Tactics For Marketing Cybersecurity, Elders are Here to Keep you Safe and Sound.
No doubt inextricably connected to both the spread of crime into the cyber world and the explosion in the number of devices networked together, the fact is that cybercrime is rocketing. Only by the end of the year (2021), the cost of cybercrime is expected to exceed $6 trillion, overtaking illegal drug profits entirely1.
The need for cybersecurity products is obvious but the sheer number of alternative products available for consumers to choose from makes highlighting your own extremely difficult.
We know, from our own experience in securing our clients against cybercrime, just how difficult it is to differentiate ourselves and our products from the masses without losing credibility. However, from that experience, we’ve managed to distill several tactics that increase the uptake of trial offers and, respectively, sales.
The number and types of cyber hazards are vast and increase every day. Although some problems, like viruses in essence, once they are out there, they remain there, other problems come and go - or mutate. The result is that you have to educate your customers a good deal about just what problems they face and how they can be overcome.
C-level executives are a special case in point. They are not I.T. specialists and, though they will understand the notion of risk very well, articulating this risk and encouraging its incorporation into their business plan is particularly fraught
Acknowledge the problem of cyber security.
That the evidence that cybercrime is out there is manifest. That cyber security is necessary for the protection of indispensable data is also blatant but, despite this, cyber security is too often not given priority until the damage has been done.
Given the increasing severity and profusion of attacks on, or breaches of, cyber security and its consequent cost, marketers of cyber security simply must find ways of breaking through this indifference, instilling a sense of urgency and desire for vigilance.
Cyber Security Marketing Tactics
So, now we need to know what we can do about these cyber threats, how we can deliver our services safely to our customers. The tactics below include some of the best, contemporary methods of increasing trial offer uptakes - and consequently sales - as we educate and inform:
1. Content Marketing
Content marketing informs and educates your prospects. By executing it effectively, you build trust and brand loyalty. Therefore, while tackling cybersecurity with it, you will need to establish the need for cybersecurity and your company’s expertise in delivering it. This will require the use of your own materials, taken from real-world illustrations of your approach.
These examples need to be one-ofs, fully notated and with real-life data. They need to relate how your product has averted/cleaned up true-life cyber security attacks, supported by all possible third-party or proprietory evidence. Also, try to find a new angle to come in on regarding cyber security that differentiates your own products and solutions.
The different types of content possible offer you several alternative avenues for you to reach and engage with your audience. Here are some of those content types and typical ways you can use them to reach customers wherever they are in their buying journey:
Blogs can attract prospects wherever they are in their buying journey. Describing different types of cyber-attack (e.g. “What is a Denial-Of-Service attack?” or “What is an SQL-injection attack?”) can help those at the beginning learn about cybersecurity and what it entails. Moving down the funnel, giving best practices for reducing/avoiding attacks or identifying them are effective. Prospects at the bottom of the funnel, ready to buy, want articles outlining just what your product or service does or makes it special.
Blogs centered around topical events like “4 Lessons To Be Learnt From The CIA Employee Case” lets you make the most of search engine traffic surrounding the case whilst also educating your readers. You become recognised as experts in your sphere in addition to receiving respect for your work.
Whitepapers, e-books, guides, infographics downloadable from your website are also great at converting site traffic into potential leads. Now, creating large content on every topic is neither applicable nor cost-effective. Analyse that content you currently offer for which topics are most searched and popular. That will give a basis for future downloadable content production.
Downloadable assets like this whitepaper are a great way to capture TOFU leads
As you see from the link above, there is the landing page it uses also for you to consider. You can create great gated content using long-form assets like this case study. The link needs to take the viewer to a landing page where the topic is introduced with just enough detail for the viewer to assess its worth without releasing everything. With cyber security, landing pages need to quickly and clearly communicate the value of the offer.
According to HubSpot, case studies are a popular way for businesses to reach and engage their target audience. These are excellent for engaging bottom-of-the-funnel leads who already know what their problem is and what solutions will work best.
Case studies like this one are especially helpful for getting buy-in from CEOs and other decision makers.
While composing case studies, make sure that you include plenty of data to show how your cyber security solutions have impacted your client’s bottom line. Providing results like “X number of attacks blocked” or “$X in projected revenue saved” will hit home the need for your solution. Quotes from the client are also helpful as they make the case study more believable and compelling. In addition to a written case study, you might also consider turning your case study into a video for further visual impact.
Explanation videos are another great way to communicate what your cyber security offering does and why it can be valuable to your prospects. This can be an especially helpful tactic when you’re trying to target CEOs and other C-level executives who need more education. According to inbound marketing experts at HubSpot, 75% of executives watch work-related videos on business websites at least once a week, and 59% of executives would rather watch a video than read text. These statistics indicate that executives are open to learning more from video content and may even prefer it over written content.
There are many ways that your company can use video to engage and educate your audience. You might use video content to break down statistics on cyberattacks, recovery expenses, and the value of cyber security solutions. By providing real examples of these issues in your video content, you can help make the statistics more relevant and help create a stronger sense of urgency.
You can also use this visual format to better explain how your solution works and emphasize the value that your company can offer its target audience. As with any offering from a technology company, cyber security solutions can be difficult for those outside of the IT world to understand. However, video content allows you to more easily break down complex ideas for a wider reading audience. This makes it ideal for cyber security companies that need to communicate their value, especially to C-level executives who may need a bit more explanation.
2. Email Marketing
Since education and awareness is a barrier to selling your solution, it can often take a potential lead a significant amount of time to reach the point where they are ready to request a demo or contact a sales representative. In the meantime, you need a way to nurture these leads and move them further down the funnel. Email marketing is an effective way to do just that.
With so many emails in your prospect’s inbox, they may be inclined to delete your email or unsubscribe if they don’t find your content worthwhile. Here are some examples of content that you might include in your email marketing:
⦁ Downloadable content like e-books, case studies, and reports that provide readers with a more in-depth understanding of important cyber security topics.
⦁ Links to your most recent blog posts talking about recent attacks or security concerns and those that break down complex cyber security topics for a wider reading audience.
⦁ Video content that emphasizes the importance of cyber security and communicates the value of your company’s offering.
⦁ A digest of relevant articles from reputable industry publications that helps readers better understand hot topics in cyber security.
⦁ Monthly offers and sales promotions like a free trail, which can encourage prospects to sign up.
Email (along with retargeting ads) are the primary way to nurture leads
Overall, email marketing is an effective way to stay connected to those leads who may not yet be ready to make a purchase. Be sure to regularly monitor your campaigns to see which types of content, subject lines, copy, and images are most effective in regard to open and click-through rates. Also, be cognizant of how many emails you are sending to your prospects. If you flood your prospect’s inbox with emails about the various cyber threats they face, they will become desensitized to them and lose interest.
Webinars are a great way for cyber security marketers to connect with bottom-of-the-funnel leads. Webinars attendees are already interested in learning more about your solution and the threats it protects against, and they typically have taken some time to do research. This means that they are more likely to be engaged in the topics you are presenting.
One vital part of the webinar is including an interactive element. Webinars typically include a question and answer session at the end of the presentation that offers attendees the opportunity to ask more questions about the topic and your services. This is a valuable opportunity to advertise other helpful content or encourage demo sign-ups. Even if you decide to pre-record your webinar, you can still accept viewer questions and respond in a follow-up.
Webinars can sometimes be costly to produce. However, as with other parts of your marketing campaign, there is also an opportunity to repurpose your webinar to get more out of this content. If the webinar is offered live, be sure to record the content and make this recording available later for those who were unable to attend. If the webinar has a great response then you may also want to consider taking the topics discussed there and creating other types of content like blog posts around these topics. The questions that users ask during the webinar are also an excellent starting point for developing new content that addresses your target audience’s greatest challenges.
In order to promote a webinar and drive attendance, paid channels work well. We have been able to get great results from LinkedIn as well as Google retargeting ads.
4. Paid Campaigns
Paid campaigns are great at accomplishing two goals – amplifying your content marketing efforts and getting prospects to arrive at your demo request landing page.
First, let’s talk about content marketing amplification. Many marketers feel that paid campaigns and inbound marketing don’t mix, but the truth is that when you combine these two strategies, you end up with a powerful campaign. Say, for example, you just published a study with some pretty compelling data about a particular cyber threat. With this sort of asset, time is of the essence – the older the data is, the less likely prospects will find it useful. By promoting your content through paid channels, you can start to see results more quickly, allowing you to get the most out of the content you’ve created.
LinkedIn is a great paid channel for cyber security.
One of the major goals of any cyber security marketer is getting prospects to request a demo. While getting prospects to this stage takes a little work and a lot of nurturing, paid campaigns can help accelerate the process for those who are ready to make a purchasing decision. You can use paid marketing campaigns to drive more prospects to your demo request landing page. These ads can help ensure that your brand is visible to those who are ready to buy while making your demo readily available to these prospects.
Some cyber security companies may avoid using paid campaigns due to the competitive nature of paid advertising in the cyber security space. That’s understandable – if you don’t know what you’re doing, it’s easy to spend thousands on cyber security ads and get nothing in return. For paid campaigns, you either need a dedicated in-house person (or team) with experience in this area or an agency that specializes in cyber security paid marketing.
Additional Cyber Security Marketing Tips
n addition to using the tactics above, it’s also important to keep a few things in mind about your audience. Though it’s easy to just target CTOs, these are not the only people interested in your solutions. High-ranking IT professionals will likely have a say in which cyber security solution a company decides to go with. However, with the critical nature of data security, the CEO will often be the final decision-maker, and other C-level executives may also be involved in the decision-making process.
Whether you are marketing to the CEO or the CTO, some things remain the same – it is vital that you are honest about your solution’s capabilities and take a data-driven approach to messaging. Use these tips to stay on track:
⦁ Don’t exaggerate your solution’s results.
If your cyber security solution only blocks 99% of attacks, don’t say it blocks all attacks. Being honest about your success rate and the capabilities of your solution is the best way to build long-term relationships and drive more positive customer referrals over time.
⦁ Use data in your messaging.
Companies who are looking for a cyber security solution need the facts. Use data in your marketing messages to create a sense of urgency and help potential customers better understand the value of your product. In the end, no matter how great your messaging is, the numbers will speak for themselves.
⦁ Create an easy-to-navigate library of premium content.
Potential customers need to be able to access your content to educate themselves about cyber security and make a more informed purchasing decision. Make your content easy to access and navigate by building an online library of premium assets.
If you’re not seeing the results you want from your cyber security marketing campaigns, partnering with an agency that specializes in cyber security may be the key to boosting traffic and generating more leads.
In cybersecurity, the dynamics of the game are changing constantly. This makes it a challenge, but also makes it much more exciting than selling cars, for instance. Build trust, communicate assurance, and enjoy the process!
⦁ Always add value in every interaction. Whenever you are meeting a customer or calling them or even emailing them, ask yourself what value you are delivering in that interaction. Most of us - be it on the buying side or the selling side - are inundated with inputs every minute. We have to sift through this communication overload to determine which conversations are worth spending more time on and which ones need to be discarded.
⦁ The one question you should have an amazing answer to always. Whenever I meet a customer, the typical conversation starter is, "So what's new?" If you don't have a kick-ass answer to this, then you've lost a great opportunity to create momentum in the conversation. You should be finely tuned into every single major development in your company. Did you recently open up a new office? Has your headcount increased significantly since you last met the customer? Did you sign up any new OEM partnerships? Did you execute any cool projects? Have you started delivering any new services?
⦁ Read voraciously. Technology in general, and cybersecurity specifically is evolving at such a rapid pace, that if you're not constantly reading up on what's new in the industry, you're wasting your time, the customer's time and your firm's time. What is Active Hunting? Why crowd-sourcing is picking up such great momentum? What are the risks with IoT? What are the risks with cloud computing? These are the basics that even salespeople should be capable of answering.
⦁ Put all your eggs in one basket. I have seen too often senior sales folks running after every opportunity. If I were in their place, I would simply ask myself, "Do I see this customer becoming a $0.5-1 million per year opportunity". If not, rethink whether you even want to pursue the opportunity or pass it onto a junior colleague. It is far better to have 10 clients giving you $200,000-$500,000 business per year, than 30 clients who don't think of you as their first partner of choice.
⦁ Are you selling to your friends? Imagine a situation where your school friend is the CISO of a major bank. Do you think he would buy easily from you? Of course, yes! He would instinctively trust you because he's known you for years! Now turn the situation around? Do you have 5 CISOs who are as good friends of yours as your childhood mates? If yes, then selling to them should be as easy as asking your friends to do business with you. So befriend your buyers! Learn to be a good friend to your customers, and automatically you will get business.
⦁ Do not promise freebies. Giving away free services in cybersecurity rarely ever works. We do this extremely rarely nowadays. And our strategy here is that even if we do it, we won't share the full set of results. We have to value our own time and effort, and make sure the client does too.
⦁ Do undergo technical training programs. We encourage our sales team to attend our training programs and overcome their mental barriers to learning as much as possible about what they're selling. The more technically tuned they are, the better their chances of exciting customers and winning deals.
Get in touch with us today to find out just how we helped companies transform their