Content marketing isn’t just about creating content and publishing it on different social media platforms, but the most crucial part begins just after that – measuring and analyzing its success.
Although it is important to evaluate your content marketing activity, only 8% of marketers consider themselves ‘good enough’ at finding the right way to analyze and measure their content marketing success. If you’ve been finding it hard to track results, you desperately need to find a way to measure the impact of your efforts. Before we delve straight into it, let’s get our basics straight.
What is content marketing?
According to the Content Marketing Institute, “Content Marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience – and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.”
If you read the definition again, you would realize that the main purpose of content marketing is to get more conversions. Having a specific process does help you to achieve that.
Here are some basic content marketing metrics that will give you a starting point and an overview to form and analyze your strategy in the right way:
1. Unique visits (website traffic)
One of the easiest and most basic way to analyze your content is to track the number of visitors that viewed the content on your website within a specific time frame. The major part of measurement should revolve around website analytics because your content is web-based.
Having an analytics solution like Statly is a great way to keep track of website traffic, understand the game of keywords, crawl rate, bounce rate, and more. Collecting this information could be game-changing for you and ultimately, improve conversions in a big way.
However, if you’re using Google Analytics, here’s what you need to know:
To measure unique visitors in Google Analytics, click on Audience in the top left and then click on Overview. You will get a graph indicating the number of times a unique visitor has visited a site over the last 30 days.
Analyzing this information could be game-changing for you and it could, ultimately, improve conversions massively.
2. Social media metrics
The content you share on various social media handles could often reveal your true standing in the market in the form of likes, comments, shares and an increase in followers.
Likes and comments: The number of likes and comments directly reflect if the content resonates and is able to evoke a reaction or not.
Shares: The high number of shares means the audience finds the content relatable and valuable.
Follower growth: The rise in the number of followers over a specific period of time is indicative whether your brand is headed in the right direction or not. LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram following are some great platforms to check the total rise in your followers.
You don’t have to take the pain to find the analytics as there are a plenty of tools like HootSuite that are helpful in tracking shares and scheduling posts.
For instance, in HootSuite you get to see real-time results, insights into trends that can help you measure impact of your content across various platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
Apart from HootSuite, some other popular tools which you can use are Klout, Quintly, and SproutSocial to name the major ones.
3. Email and newsletter metrics
Email is used worldwide and according to Radicati’s Email statistics reports, emails will be used by more than 3 billion people by 2020. While there are many benefits of using email marketing, the one that is surely going to keep you in the business is the fact that email’s return on investment is massive.
With email metrics such as:
- the number of opened emails
- email click-throughs
- bounce rate
- overall ROI,
you can easily gauge if your product is able to strike a chord with prospects or not.
Here is a look at how to calculate each of them.
To calculate the click-through rate:
(Total clicks / Number of delivered emails) * 100
To calculate the conversion rate:
(Number of people who completed the desired action ÷ Number of total emails delivered) * 100
To calculate bounce rate:
(Total number of bounced emails ÷ Number of emails sent) * 100
To calculate the overall ROI:
[($ in additional sales made minus $ invested in the campaign) ÷ $ invested in the campaign] * 100
It is worth mentioning here that the statistics you need to track in order to measure your email marketing success may vary based on what you are trying to achieve with your content. Therefore the list mentioned here is not strictly exclusive of these metrics.
These metrics give you an overall idea whether the efforts you are putting are going in the right direction or not? Based on the results you can either plan to change the entire strategy or make amends in the existing one and crack the code of successful content marketing.
4. Lead generation
The ultimate aim and top organizational goals for content marketers are generating leads. Needless to say, one should definitely track these metrics and observe how they can be incorporated into your strategy. Don’t just stick to blogging – explore other avenues, like that of ebooks, which could massively boost your leads.
Using content for lead generation is one of the oldest and most dependable methods. However, to measure the success of your content marketing lead generation campaign, make yourself well-aware with lead generation metrics such as:
Click-through rate (CTR)
(Total number of clicks / Total number of visitors) X 100
Total time spent by all visitors / total number of leads
But before you do that you need to be well versed with the basic lead generation funnel. Here’s a pictorial representation that might help you understand it better:
Lead scoring is the best way to identify high quality leads which is a process of ranking and identification of leads in terms of their chances to convert into sales.
Apart from these basic metrics, it is always a smart idea to keep a check on the cost you are spending on the campaigns. Hence you must also track metrics such as Cost-per-click (CPC), Cost per lead, etc.
The most important reason behind keeping track on the metrics is well explained in these words by Peter Drucker, “If you can track and measure something, you can also manage and improve it.”
5. SEO metrics
If you see a considerable rise in page visits, website rankings, and conversions, then SEO had a big role to play. Knowledge of the right keywords and advising writers on how and where to use them in the content and title are some surefire ways to increase traffic and generate increased click-throughs from search results.
Here are the basic elements of successful SEO strategy:
Keywords: To target what people are searching for when discovering their business in a search engine. Google Keyword Planner is a great tool that can help you in this.
Meta tags: To help Google look at your page title as a signal of relevance.
Content: Creating quality content is the best way to create a great user experience and Google agrees to it. when it comes to creating and curating the most impactful content on the web, Curtely is a tool that can be of great help.
Backlinks: If content is the king, backlinks are the queen and quality matters a lot here.
Social media: To send signals of authority to the search engines.
It is essential to leverage the importance of SEO and incorporate the elements mentioned here with content which is crisp, out-of-the-box, engaging, and actionable.
In order to help you perform the analysis of your SEO strategies better, there are tools such as BuzzSumo and SEMRush that are very useful to discover the most shared content and relevant keywords in just few seconds. You can use them to good effect and see how they can be the game changers.
Your subscription-list could be a direct indicator of the value and impact you leave on your audience. After all, you haven’t made your business blog only to get a huge list of followers, right?
Having a large and loyal fan-base is an effective way to get more views, reads, and visits on your blog. The larger the list of subscribers, the more chances of getting them converted. If the number of subscribers is nose-diving or becoming stagnant, it could be a hint to produce more engaging content to get more traffic, which would further become your subscribers.
What are the metrics that matter to you the most?
The most successful content marketing strategies are those that smartly tick off most of the above methods to track and analyze results. It is advisable to make use of capable social media tools to gain more insights and get more leads.
What are your key content marketing metrics for measuring content marketing success? Are there any other ways or metrics that you would like included on the list?