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  • Writer's picturePeter Brand

To Gate or Not to Gate Your Content?

We all know that gating content is very common.  It is a quid quo pro ~ you provide me with something valuable and I will provide you with more information about myself.  The pact usually involves educating a potential buyer and their “willingness” to become a lead.

To Gate

Closed gate

Marketers gravitate to this model because it provides clear attribution of their marketing activities, generates leads for the sales team and hopefully directly impacts revenue.  More advanced marketers might also benefit by pre-qualifying leads, gain insights into what content is the most effective and develop a two way conversation to better understand the needs of the market.  

When the content is world class, it reaches the ideal target audience or buyer and there is clear value, the results can be a lead volcano (albeit rare).  

Not To Gate

There are some clear drawbacks to gating content.  It creates friction, by requiring the visitor to share information like their contact details, credit card for a free trial, and/or answer a series of questions.  The more questions that are asked the lower the conversion.  A high bounce rate can also be expected.

Closed Gate

Just because a visitor completes a form doesn’t mean they are a quality lead.  In fact, a bad lead can be costly as it wastes valuable time and resources of the organization to meet, qualify/vet, etc.  The lead may feel like a win at first but it can quickly become a blackhole.

Important: Consider privacy rules to ensure your organization is compliant with local and federal laws.

From Where We Sit

Quality content will naturally lead potential customers to seek out your company.  If the organization are true experts, have a strong reputation, and are a leader in the field, buyers/prospects will seek you out. 

Your primary focus should be on creating high-caliber content and promoting it to the right audience. Measure their engagement with the content, but think long and hard about the necessity of a gated tollbooth. By being generous with your knowledge and a no strings attached approach builds good will, demonstrates confidence and respect.



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