Life beyond outbreaks - marketing in today's threat environment

Jeff Aboud In-Focus Marketing

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We all remember the mass outbreaks of the late 1990s and early 2000s. Malware such as Sasser, Blaster, Netsky, Bagel, Zotob and others made global headlines and gave security vendors a great deal to talk about. Of course, outbreak time meant that many of our customers were getting infected - or could potentially become infected - but it sure made for great marketing!

Outbreak time was the busiest time for the engineers, furiously working to produce a pattern file and update the virus definition. But it was also the busiest time for marketers, sometimes working around the clock to pull together electronic advertising, press releases, sales tools and other content. It was the one time the company would talk and the press, media and many customers and prospects would be waiting to listen. In fact, some companies would set aside upwards of 80 per cent of their marketing budget specifically for this event.

For many security vendors, the lack of big outbreaks has created a gap in their marketing strategies, resulting in a significant decline in sales. This paper will discuss 'threat marketing' strategy and implementation, and how it can help these vendors keep their names in front of prospects and key stakeholders. It will provide advice and guidance for developing a comprehensive threat marketing strategy, and will discuss how, when, and how frequently to implement the strategy. Real-world examples of successful threat marketing activities will also be presented.


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