January 21, 2020

How To Write To Your Highly Technical Cybersecurity Professional Audience

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Tags: Marketing

When writing good assets for cybersecurity marketing funnels, marketers and content strategists have to show a knowledge and understanding of the technical parts of the software while ensuring that potentially less-technical decision makers have the information they need to make a purchase decision.

You can balance these seemingly opposing types of writing. It will take some extra work in the short term to identify your audiences and build out content that speaks to them directly, but the clarity of purpose and the increase in qualified leads should pay dividends.

Your audience is smart. Treat them that way.

While not all cybersecurity professionals will read at a college level, you can bet that they are familiar with the jargon and technical language common to their profession.

It’s widely said that to reach the largest audience, you need to write on an 8th grade level. The Yoast SEO readability tool uses the Fleish Reading Score to judge reading difficulty, and suggests that you write at a level that most 13-15 year olds can understand. Like most things in writing, this is not a hard-and-fast rule.

Good writing practices prescribe that you write in a way that your audience understands. Even better writing doesn’t make your audience feel as though you are talking down to them.

Using over-explaining common industry terms or technical language in an incorrect way can quickly show a pro that you’re among the uninitiated. This can affect the pro’s trust in your brand and your product. One of the fastest ways to lose an audience is to try to bullshirt your way through a highly technical piece of content without fully vetting that your information is technically correct.

technically correct

There’s a difference between meaningful, technically specific language and buzzwords. Security pros can see through your thinly veiled marketing speak.

So, while marketers love to produce copy that extolls the virtues of artificial intelligence and algorithms, your technical audience may see through these as simple statistical probability and mathematical formulas.

Cut your sales talk, and get to the real meat of your product to sell it to a high tech audience. They want to know what your software can do.

Use your experts

If you sell a technical product to technical audiences, you have technical experts in your company who speak the language you need to include in your writing. Engage members of your security, development, and data teams to help you write, edit, and vet your marketing copy.

If you have the resources, bring on a consultant who both understands marketing and the finer points of your product to act as a technical advisor.

These individuals can keep your team aware of significant changes in the product or selling atmosphere and approve copy before it goes out. At a loss for where to start? Consider speaking to your CISO, director of development, or a middle manager who could point you in the direction of individuals who write good documentation for their code.

Don’t speak to the middle

When speaking to a technical audience, the marketing assets need to be informative and technical. As marketers, we write content that communicates clearly and effectively to our audience.

When you want to communicate effectively and show your company’s expertise, you need to speak the language of the professionals who work with the technology every day.

While there is certainly room in your funnel for content that speaks to novices, if you want to convince seasoned pros and experienced technical decision makers that your product is the right choice, you need to go beyond the 101 lessons.

Speak to the audience that will actually use your product, and you’ll build brand champions that recommend your product. This is the true meaning of thought leadership, that you provide informational and helpful assets to those professionals most closely associated with your brand.

Tailor your funnel for several audiences

While your main audience will be those who use your product, remember that there are several key stakeholders who need assets throughout the sales cycle. Write to each of these audiences in different assets, and clearly define the audience in your writing. Here are some tips for writing to different security software audiences.

  • Security pros need highly technical informational pieces that discuss how the product improves outcomes, discusses best practices, and proves the worth of your product through instructional or thought leadership content.
  • CISO, VP, or Director of Development need technical documents that include specs, ROI, comparisons to similar products, and case studies to prove worth.
  • CEO, CFO, and other non-technical decision makers need less technical documents that discuss product benefits, case studies, and even explanatory content that discusses the problem your product solves.

Also Read: A Value-Added Approach To Marketing To CISOs

In terms of technical content, you want your internal security pros to speak to other security pros, if at all possible. And if you can’t get it written by internal security pros, consider contracting with outside thought leaders, sourcing guest writers, and even just getting time on an internal expert’s calendar for a technical read-through.

Find the right audience for your writing

The “write it and they will come” days of content marketing have sadly passed us by. Today’s cybersecurity marketers have to use all the resources available to them to gain access to their next customers.

When you’ve written your highly-targeted piece of content, consider partnering with TechnologyAdvice to find those hidden audiences of pros and decision makers. We’ll use our database of over 43 million professionals to get your assets in front of the right eyes. Contact us today for more about our content syndication and lead programs.