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Product flyers and spec sheets (75%) are the content assets most requested by sales teams, according to a study [download page] from Demand Metric in partnership with MarcomCentral. Presentations (56%) are also popular, with research suggesting that these have a significant impact on buyer behavior.

Content that’s relevant and up-to-date is critical, per the Demand Metric report. In fact, 85% of sales teams ask for new or modified content at least some of the time, with more than half (55%) requesting it often or always. A recent Seismic study echoes sales teams’ needs for easy access to hyper-relevant and easily customizable content. The good news is that marketing is able to respond to those requests 82% of the time.

That still leaves almost 20% of bids for new and pertinent materials unmet. Being unresponsive or slow to sales teams’ requests can translate into lost sales, and a majority of respondents in both sales and marketing roles agree that they miss out on opportunities when content is not readily available.

When sales team requests for content are not met, a majority choose to create their own (56%), rather than go without or use outdated materials. Notably – and somewhat logically – the study points to an apparent correlation between the relative responsiveness to requests for content and the likelihood of addressing needs at each stage in the buying stages. In other words, a “very agile” or responsive team can mean a greater chance of sales success overall.

While content is most commonly distributed to the sales team by Dropbox, Sharepoint or another portal (35%), half of all content is still delivered via email attachments. Attachments to group emails (25%) is a popular method of disbursement, especially when the sales team creates no or little content of its own. Another 23% of content is sent via email attachments upon request.

About the Data: The 2017 Content Consistency Benchmark Study by Demand Metric and MarcomCentral collected 328 survey responses, 250 of which were complete. Many of the partial responses were complete enough to use in the analysis. The survey was administered between January 18 through February 17, 2017 and consisted of B2B, B2C and combination of both types of organizations, with the majority of respondents from marketing.

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