How to Calculate the Effectiveness of Content Marketing
March 17, 2017 | By Jill Marber
Graphs are pretty. Customers like data, and they like to know how their investment in advertising is garnishing a return. One factor that has been frustrating them for years is that content marketing ROI is not the easiest thing to measure; however, metrics can be all-consuming, confusing, and not entirely accurate. If you run into a situation where you need to provide reliable data, there are four key elements that marketers should take into consideration when providing candid insight into the effectiveness of content.
Using your web tools to view how many people came to your website is pretty easy, and the same can be said for blog views. If you share your content on your social media sites, they provide their own metrics in addition to views and likes. Even if it seems like your engagement is low, you never really know what kind of impact you are having. While this can be frustrating, measuring this online consumption is actually easier than it has been in the past. Think about a print ad or radio spot commercial. While the magazines and radio stations could provide data for how many average readers or listeners they have, there was never a way to know exactly how many of them were paying attention to your marketing.
Beyond consumption is distribution, which is the best kind of exposure because you don’t pay for it. When someone shares your content, it means that they don’t only like it, but that they find it valuable enough to tell two friends, and they tell two friends, and so on and so on. Or, in the day of Facebook, they tell 1,000 friends. Either way, if you witness that your posts are being shared regularly, you know that your content campaign is reaching your target, and beyond.
If your content is being shared, liked, and valued, then it should be producing leads. Sometimes you may not know if those leads are directly from your content efforts, but if you have a clear vision of your business objectives, and have been working with potential customers with transparent communication strategies, then you can be confident your content is responsible for a chunk of that success, even if it is a slow, steady climb in the desirability of your business.
Customers take time. Your blog or social media posts won’t become hits overnight and seeing a sales boost usually takes even longer. Experts suggest waiting three or four quarters before comparing sales numbers to follower numbers, unique visitors, and user comments. Of course, there are several factors that drive brand performance, but if you are committing to a content campaign, it should provide a considerable boost.
While measuring your content is helpful and can provide you some much-needed reassurance, you need to remember why you started a content campaign in the first place. In most cases, it was to establish yourself as an expert, add content to your brand, and drive sales. Tactics like Google Analytics can provide some hard data, but there are other tools that prove to be better indicators. Taking into consideration these additional metrics will give a better picture about or not you’re achieving business goals with your content.
Inward Solutions is an Alpharetta marketing and web design form based in Georgia.