TechTarget IT Media Consumption, Purchase Intention Survey Reveals Predominant Role of Demo Software Downloads throughout IT Review, Selection Process

Collaborative Research with CMO Council establishes credible industry benchmark reference

Information-technology (IT) media company TechTarget, Inc. today announced the availability of findings from their first, quarterly IT Media Consumption Trends and IT Buyer Purchase intention study, conducted in collaboration with the CMO Council. The most significant finding of the research is the effectiveness – and frequency of use — of demo software downloads at all stages of the IT solution review and selection process.

The quarterly report establishes a credible, timely industry benchmark reference reporting which web, print and other media vehicles provide the highest quality information to organizations facing the task of making large-scale enterprise technology purchase decisions. Based on surveys of a cross-section of IT professionals and business decision makers from TechTarget’s IT Research Panel and 4.5 million registered users the research highlights IT procurement shifts, purchasing intentions, and emerging application and deployment areas. The research also provides insights into the IT professional’s preferred online media destinations and channels, and the types of content being consumed to facilitate corporate IT purchase decisions.

“The most interesting media consumption trends revealed by IT professionals in the survey are the increased use of downloads of trial software at various stages of the IT solutions purchase process, not just the final stage. And, that software downloads are considered to be the most effective online media type when assessing technology,” said Marilou Barsam, TechTarget Senior VP, Corporate Marketing. “This preference suggests that IT pros are putting even more emphasis on trialing a vendor’s product online, and its perceived value for effectively guiding them in purchase consideration has recently increased significantly. It also supports the premise that IT buyers are further leveraging the Web to evaluate technology before meeting face-to-face with vendors. Therefore, IT marketers need to be stronger online and less dependent on traditional, direct, sales presentations.”

The four primary reasons listed in the survey for using trial software downloads were to: find solutions for solving problems; identify technical features that apply to my specific applications; compare products as part of the competitive analysis process; and, obtain preliminary information about products and vendors.

Additional survey highlights include:

  • The online content media types used most frequently when researching/purchasing technology are White Papers, Email Newsletters, Product Literature, Articles, and Software Downloads.
  • Software downloads were considered most effective online media types.
  • Almost all IT consumers use white papers at some point during evaluation, selection process.
  • In the next six months, organizational focus is on research and purchase of Business Applications, Networking, End-User Systems, and Security solutions.
  • Leading top-of-mind issue – attaining alignment between IT and organizations’ business goals

“Technical content publication, distribution and syndication on the Internet have become a significant part of the BtoB technology marketing repertoire,” noted CMO Council executive director Donovan Neale-May. “Understanding online media content consumption preferences, patterns and interests is critical to determining where and how to allocate marketing dollars to improve awareness and consideration. This ongoing research initiative will be valuable to marketers seeking to track and measure the value of Web-based content in helping buyers and specifiers better qualify and assess vendor offerings, as well as anticipate tech sector demand,” he added.

Survey respondents represent a wide range of industries, with the highest concentrations in computer service, financial, government and healthcare segments. The majority of respondents are from large organizations with more than 1,000 employees, 60 percent of which have IT budgets over $500,000. All respondents are directly involved in their organization’s IT purchase decisions, with over 65% describing their decision-making responsibilities as either final decision-maker, decision-making team member, or, strong influencer.

To obtain a summary of the current TechTarget/CMO Survey, click here.

About CMO Council

The CMO Council™ is a peer-powered affinity group dedicated to high-level knowledge exchange, thought leadership and personal relationship building among nearly 3,000 senior marketing and brand decision-makers worldwide. These individuals control more than $70 billion in annual global marketing expenditures and represent companies with over $500 billion in aggregated annual revenues across a wide variety of industry sectors. These include consumer electronics, information technology, telecommunications, entertainment, media, publishing, retail, CPG, financial services, pharmaceuticals, travel, hospitality, health care, engineering, architecture, construction, professional services, and more. More information about the CMO Council can be found at

TechTarget is a leading provider of specialized online content that brings together buyers and sellers of corporate IT products. We sell customized marketing programs that enable IT vendors to reach corporate IT decision makers who are actively researching specific IT purchases. We operate a network of 35 websites, each of which focuses on a specific IT sector, such as storage, security or networking. IT professionals rely on our websites for key decision support information tailored to their specific areas of responsibility. We complement our online offerings with targeted in-person events and three specialized IT magazines that enable advertisers to engage buyers throughout their decision-making process for IT purchases. As IT professionals have become increasingly specialized, they have come to rely on our sector specific websites for purchasing decision-support. Our content enables IT professionals to navigate the complex and rapidly changing IT landscape where purchasing decisions can have significant financial and operational consequences. Since our founding in 1999, we have developed a broad customer base that now comprises more than 1,000 active advertisers who placed business with us in 2006, including Cisco, Dell, EMC, Hewlett Packard, IBM, Intel, Microsoft, Oracle, Research in Motion, SAP and Symantec. More information about TechTarget is available at

TechTarget and the TechTarget logo are registered trademarks of TechTarget, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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Garrett Mann
Director of Corporate Marketing and Content Development

888-274-4111 x 9371

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