New research from tech PR agency ARPR reveals the impact of press activities on the lead generation process—revealing that media coverage is an indispensable sales enablement tool for sales teams.
The firm’s study, 2019 Technology Marketing Report: The Role of Media Relations in the Sales Cycle, explains that while media relations is often never considered as a conduit for lead gen, website traffic from media coverage outperforms overall web traffic—most notably with 56.26 percent more goal completions. It even vastly outperforms paid search in terms of site engagement.
Among the new report’s key findings:
- The most qualified website traffic often comes from news outlets
- Press releases used to be the standard bearer for making news, but are now a key tactic in reaching and persuading buyers
- Online newsrooms might be the most popular page on your website
Not only is press key in driving prospects to technology brands’ websites, it is also craved by IT sales teams. An astounding 93 percent of sales reps say they leverage their company’s media coverage in communications with prospects.
Press releases, online newsrooms and media coverage are impactful at all stages of a buyer’s journey—from top-of-funnel brand awareness to helping close a customer, the report says. Technology CMOs who invest in strategic media relations will have a leg up in meeting departmental goals, as well as helping the sales team achieve its goals.
As one SaaS sales leader responded in the survey, “Press coverage is a consistent part of all sales processes—from getting in the door to intro conversations to tech validation, business validation and enterprise readiness.”
“Our research proves that press releases, online newsrooms and earned media are impactful at all stages of a buyer’s journey—from top-of-funnel brand awareness to helping close a customer,” said Anna Ruth Williams, ARPR’s founder and CEO, in a news release. “We’re confident this report will help technology marketing and sales teams make smarter investments in media relations activities in order to win in today’s increasingly competitive B2B buying environment.”
The findings reveal that technology sales teams—from CROs to BDRs—understand the persuasive power that earned media coverage can have on prospects. In addition to general brand awareness, this third-party validation gives sales reps credibility and leverage at multiple points in the sales cycle, the study reports.
“In early 2019, ARPR embarked on our next step in de-mystifying media’s role in the sales cycle by surveying IT sales leaders and by analyzing over a year’s worth of data from 15 technology companies. We poured over hundreds of survey responses, 5.6 million website visits, 63 wire press release distributions and nearly 1,000 media hits,” said Renee Spurlin, senior vice president of analytics and digital marketing at ARPR, in the release. “The result is this report.”
Download the full report here.
ARPR surveyed over 100 IT sales leaders and analyzed 13 months of data from 15 technology companies across five industries.