In 2014, marketers greatly increased their investment in content with nearly 60 percent increasing on some level and 12 percent increasing on a significant level. These trends have continued in 2015 and with good reason. You know that your content marketing is working. But which marketing strategies are driving the most traffic and ultimately, revenue?
How are you going to maximize these tactics to keep growing your business? Learning how to measure and evaluate your content marketing performance will help you take your company to the next level.
1. Brand Positioning
Brand awareness is the base of your entire existence. If people don’t even know that you exist, customer engagement and lead conversion strategies are useless. Think about the style of your content. Your format, tone of voice, and visuals can all play a huge role in establishing and positioning your brand.
Start with marketing automation tools. Then look at the Google Webmaster Tools’ keyword report and the Bing Webmaster Tools. Key measurement data to benchmark from these reports includes impressions, clicks, and keywords associated with specific pages.
It’s also important to pay attention to level of branded search, level of new visitors, social shares, and Alexa rating, being careful not too put too much stock in any single metric. Your best metric is qualitative feedback from customers, which is most expensive but also most effective.
2. Thought Leadership and Customer Engagement
Awareness and positioning are a great start, but they don’t actually drive revenue. You must understand who needs and wants your products and services so that you can target the right audience and drive more conversions.
Look at comments on blog posts, reader feedback, number of pages read per lead, and social shares, which includes shares on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn. Consider using SharedCount, which boasts an intuitive interface for tracking social sharing metrics across multiple channels.
3. Lead Quality
Engagement drives converted leads, which is where content marketing transitions to lead generation. Quality of leads is always more important than quantity of leads. It doesn’t matter how many leads you have if none of them are converting.
Focus your marketing efforts around your target audience and pay attention to the strategies that convert the most leads.
Are you unsure where to start? Begin by setting a baseline. Take a look at a given metric (i.e. social shares, number of qualified leads) and measure it against your competitors.
For example, you can run an Alexa report or a BuzzSumo domain comparison report. Once you have your relative rankings, you’ll know what you’re up against and can start doing something about it.
Finally, remember that measuring content marketing performance is an ongoing process. Don’t be afraid to keep experimenting with different analytics and comparisons and to make tweaks as needed to keep up with the most current content marketing tactics.