4 Steps to Creating a Content Gating Strategy

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With an effective Content Gating Strategy in place you can drive efficiency for both the user and the host, however, before you can effectively implement any plan of action, you must first consider and build the foundation for your success. This typically consists of 4 key pillars that help to shape your needs, and bring to light any infrastructural weaknesses that may obstruct optimal performance.

A good content gating strategy often follows these 4 steps:

Step 1: Develop buyer personas

The first step of a gating strategy involves recognising and understanding the target audience. What are their needs? What are their habits? What devices do they use? By asking these questions it’s possible to create buyer personas which identify the characteristics of an ideal prospect. This helps to tailor the gating strategy and deliver optimal value to the target audience.

Step 2: Map the buyer journey

With the target audience identified, it’s important to map out the buyer journey in order to recognise how each persona will mature and develop. This will help to evaluate current content offerings and highlight any gaps that may need filling.

Step 3: Conduct a content audit

Once the buyer journey has been mapped out, the next step involves identifying which pieces of content will sit behind a gate. A content audit is necessary in order to recognise what pieces meet the audience’s needs best and what level of value they deliver. This helps determine how much information will be required for access to each piece. The higher the value delivered, the more information requested for access. By conducting an content audit, gaps in the buyer journey can also be quickly recognized and filled.

Step 4: Map the content

After the target audience has been identified and the content evaluated, it is then time to map the content to the stages of the buyer journey. The positioning of this content is essential. There needs be a clear route for prospects to travel from the top of the funnel towards qualified lead status. Clear nurture flows need to be set up across multiple channels that logically support the prospect’s evolving needs as they consume each piece of content and progress.

It should also be noted that it is considered best practice to start gating at the ‘Consider stage’ of the buyer journey. At this point, prospects have already made significant progress and are more likely to appreciate the value of the content placed behind the gate.

Now you have an appreciation of how to build your own content gating strategy, it’s worth looking into whether progressive profiling could work for you. What is progressive profiling? Find out in our blog, here.

Alternatively, why not download our Definitive Guide to Content Gating.


Greg Dorban

Article by Greg Dorban

Head of Marketing, GatedContent.com

With a remit to help global businesses scale their reach and top of the funnel enquiries, Greg is able to link together inbound strategy, conversion rate optimization and tech platforms to create high performing prospect acquisition programs.