We’ve been thinking a lot about insights lately, and we’re betting you have been too. Frankly, it’s an anxious time for would-be insights providers. That’s because some of the old formulas for insights development and delivery aren’t holding up well with time. Later this month at Content2Conversion, Tim Riesterer, our chief strategy officer, will unveil new research that validates that idea – and demonstrates that not all insights-based approaches are created equal.
When we’ve talked about insights in the past, you might’ve heard us railing against things like “true but useless” information, repackaged third party data points, interesting numbers with no change narrative around them, or the over-reliance on anecdotal evidence to support bold claims. And you might’ve seen us cast our lot in favor of insights based on original, company-generated research, as well as messaging and content built around counterintuitive perspectives that force prospects to think differently about how they’re doing things today.
But all these points about what insights should or shouldn’t be speak to one simple question—a question that should serve as a litmus test when it comes to insights development: What separates insights that excite prospects for a fleeting moment, versus insights that incite them to take meaningful action?
That question was the driving force of a recent experiment Corporate Visions conducted with Dr. Zakary Tormala, a professor at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. The purpose of the study was to gain a better understanding about what type of insights-based story has the biggest influence in terms of inciting buyers to take action.
Specifically, the study tested the messaging effectiveness of two different types of insights-based approaches:
- Risk only insights designed to make prospects feel their status quo is “unsafe” by introducing them to surprising new industry data, statistics or studies.
- Risk + Resolution insights that similarly make the status quo feel unsafe, but that also introduce solutions that resolve the prospect to a “new safe” in the same message.
The study found that by delivering an insights-based message that includes both risk and resolution, you stand to gain a statistically significant advantage in two of the most important areas for buyer persuasion. To learn where—and by how much!—your messaging and content can gain an advantage with this approach, join Tim Riesterer for his mainstage session at Content2Conversion on Wednesday, Feb. 17 at 8:40 a.m.
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