Monitor These 7 Key Marketing Parameters to Measure Your Content Marketing Success
Are you done after you create your content? Is posting these contents enough to assure that your content marketing is a success?
The answer to the above questions is a resounding ‘NO’.
Content creation is only the beginning of the content marketing process, it’s only the tip of the iceberg. What you need to always keep in mind is never failing to keep track of whether the content you are creating is giving you the results you craved or not.
The internet is full of articles on how to successfully plan and execute a content strategy and moreover how to painstakingly produce awe-inspiring and sharable content. But when it comes to the success of the same, it can be a very tricky business. And as a digital marketer, collecting data periodically to check if your investments are panning out or not is what will distinguish you as a good internet marketer.
You are investing your precious time and money in a content marketing campaign and as in any investment, it is mandatory to measure how much return you are getting on them. We call this ROI (Return on Investment). An ROI will give you a much-required checklist of future actions. Depending on the success of a particular campaign, you can decide whether to continue with it or tweak it for something more impactful by making a few fine adjustments.
Long back in the digital marketing ecosystem, mostly page views were considered as a valid metric to measure a website’s success, mostly because there were not many present then for an in-depth analysis. But nowadays, there are tons of metrics that will help you trace every single penny you have invested in your business.
Google Analytics is a powerful tool to help you measure most metrics related to your website and content marketing. It’s comprehensive and highly effective. Other important and frequently used tools are Moz, Majestic, Mention, Buzzsumo, HubSpot, Kissmetrics, Hotjar to mention a few.
Content can now be used as a powerful tool to drive sales and thus a well-fleshed out content strategy is crucial for your business to soar high and above your counterparts. Along with this, having a well-thought-out framework to continuously measure your efforts is also equally pivotal to make your content marketing strategy a resounding success persistently.
Measuring the success is important and in this article, I will explain the different metrics to keep an eye on in every aspect of your content marketing.
So, without any further delay and ado, so let’s head straight to the topic.
1. SEO ROI
Ensuring a steady stream of organic traffic to your website is a must when it comes to generating leads and increasing the overall visibility of your brand, its products and services. And to achieve this particular feat, we have to rely on content marketing and SEO (Search Engine Optimization).
But after we create and optimize our content, and post them online, how do we measure whether it’s working as it’s supposed to or not? Well, there are several key metrics that determine whether a content marketing campaign is successful or not in terms of SEO, namely:
- Organic Ranking
- Visibility or Impressions
- Click through Rate
- Number of backlinks acquired from authoritative domains
SEO is mainly used to increase the ranking of a website in search engine result pages but content marketing does more than that. To measure the ROI of your content, you should keep an eye on your organic ranking for keywords that you have targeted on your content. If you are a business be it a small, medium or big, a well-executed SEO job should show your brand on the first page of search engines when visitors search for keywords related to your content topic.
You can easily monitor your content ranking searching with the relevant keywords manually or using tools. Tools like Google Search Console (formerly Google Webmaster tool) can list all the data you need to know the current rankings of your content. An overall consistent improvement in organic ranking confirms that your content marketing is sailing in the right direction.
It is a known fact that a visitor rarely clicks on any link present on the second page of search engines. So, effective organic ranking means being present on the first page which also means that the visitors knowing your brand more than other businesses present on the second page. That, in turn, means increased visibility and recognition.
The impression data on Google Search Console shows you how much impression your content is generating over time. If you see consistent growth, it’s a clear sign of content marketing success.
Another metrics to measure the content marketing result is the click-through rate (CTR). Usually, high ranking websites and contents get higher CTR than lower-ranking websites and contents. If more and more visitors get familiar with your brand, your website will naturally acquire better CTR. If your audience and customers feel empowered through your content, they will certainly click more on your brand links thus increasing the organic click-through rate.
Similar to ranking and impression data, you can analyze the CTR on the Search Console tool. A steady increase in click-through rate shows the positive results of your content marketing.
Having a strong backlink profile is of utmost importance for any brand’s online success. If you see authoritative websites are referring and linking to your content, it confirms that your hard work behind your content marketing efforts has started paying off.
Keep an eye on these four aspects of your website and you will get a crystal image of how your content marketing efforts are panning out for you.
2. Social Media ROI
Social media platforms are the real playground for digital marketing nowadays and including them in your content marketing strategy is a must. So, if you are investing in creating content and marketing them through social media platforms then how do you know whether they are increasing the buzz and the much needed social clout or not?
For that you have to keep your radar on the following social metrics:
- Number of shares
- Follower growth
- Social mentions
- Social messenger messages
- Overall engagement
Social media promotion is mainly for getting more eyeballs on your brand. A successful content marketing campaign means an increased number of social shares that confirm more people are reading, watching, and referring to your content.
Also, an increased number of followers is a measure of how relevant and popular your content is. If your viewers like what they see, they will follow your brand, subscribe to your profile, and sign themselves up for watching and following future contents put up by you.
Similar to social followers and shares, user comment is another equally powerful metric. When a user comments on your content on a social media channel, it means he or she wants to engage with your brand. A steady and constant increase in this reinforces your content quality.
Social mention is another awesome metric that tells you that your consumers are spreading the good word about your brand to other potential consumers. It increases brand recognition and overall visibility to your target audience.
Increased followers, subs, content shares, and user engagements are the real proofs of your content marketing success. These are the first few steps in creating a brand image that your readership can bank on and the ultimate ROI for your content marketing strategy through social media.
Tools liked Facebook Insights, BuzzSumo can be really powerful and efficient to discover the social media performance of your content marketing strategy. So, follow these metrics and you will know what is working and what is not.
3. Email ROI
Email marketing is one of the oldest forms of internet marketing, which is still relevant and powerful. It’s a great way to notify your audiences and customers about the goings-on in your company, new developments, and most importantly funnel potential leads to your company’s landing page.
So, a strategic content marketing plan should involve email marketing as an outreaching tool to connect with the existing readers and at the same time increase the follower base.
The email metrics that best determine whether your content marketing strategy is up to the par or not are:
- Increased email subscribers
- High open rates
Email marketing does not always mean peppering your consumers with new offers and sales information. Emails can be a great way to provide value-added information and thus empowering your audience. You must entice your consumers to check your content before convincing them to give your business a shot. So, if your content is successful in snagging your prospective customers’ attention, then more people will subscribe to your newsletters and thus increasing potential leads.
If your previous emails delivered valued content to your audience then your next email will indeed hook more readers. This means increased open rates which ensure more consumers will open your emails to consume the content. So, if you saw high email open rates in your last few content marketing campaigns, it means your content marketing is doing its job very well.
Ultimately, the key email metric to determine your content marketing success is the number of people clicking on your content link on the email to go and read the content. Ideally, a well-planned content marketing strategy eyes for high email click-throughs. Thus if you have it, it shows your content marketing superiority.
4. Traffic ROI
Website-traffic is a set of metrics to check if all of your content marketing efforts are aligned correctly to bring more visitors to your website. The key points that are worth keeping an eye on are:
- Unique visitors
- Average time on page
- Bounce rate
Unique visitors are the first time visitors of your website, so the more the number, the better. And an increase in unique visitors’ number is a clear signal of your content marketing success.
Pageviews also determine if visitors are interested in clicking on various pages of your website and spending further time to consume more content. More the number of page-views, the better the profit margin. A big rise in the number of pageviews confirms content marketing success.
To know whether your content is engaging and useful to your visitors, you have to check their average stay-time. If you notice a continuous increase in the average time on page, this states that your consumers are dedicating more time to read your content which means your content is a success.
Your content should be insightful and interesting to keep the audience hooked to it rather than clicking out quickly. To determine that, monitor the bounce rate of your website and content. When more visitors are opting to exit your content without coming back to it, that means decreased interest and generally means you have to up your game pronto to reduce the bounce rate. And in the opposite, a low bounce rate confirms the top-notch quality of the content.
Using tools like Google Analytics you can analyze and measure the number of unique visitors, page-views, average time on page, and bounce rate. Besides, you can also gauge how these numbers are increasing (or decreasing) after a content marketing campaign is launched, which in return tells its story.
5. Brand Awareness, Exposure, and Authority
How would you know other than sales and lead conversions that your brand is popular and the talk of the town?
Well, the easiest way to do that is by keeping a track of all the brand mentions on the internet. You will know people are talking about your company, referring and recommending it by various mentions of your brand on other websites, relevant blogs, influencer posts, and social media shares and tags.
When big-wig bloggers and authority websites are talking about you then that means your content marketing efforts are appreciated and creating the buzz.
You can utilize tools like Mention.com and Google Alerts to monitor the internet and listen to your audience talking about your brand.
As we discussed earlier, earning backlinks from niche authority sites is another metric that determines that your brand is generating the right kind of clout and attention.
Apart from brand mentions, website’s Domain Authority (DA), Citation Flow, Authority Score, etc. let you measure the authority and influence of your domain. Ideally, these improve when you naturally earn top-class backlinks from relevant authoritative websites. And this usually happens when you embrace and dive deep into content marketing.
You can use Moz, Majestic, SEMrush to determine the aforesaid key metrics.
6. Growth in Brand Collaboration Proposals
Your brand’s authority building should always be a top priority because if you are recognized as a brand with authority in your niche then you are in line for some well-deserved collaboration with other brands, which can further upswing your brand’s recognition and success.
So, how would you know if your brand has risen to the level where other companies and influencers in your niche are requesting to get in on a piece of your content?
Increased interests in your brand can be determined by a metric like interview requests from authority websites and influencers to help spread the word about your brand and casting the net far and wide to reach more target audience globally.
With the increase in your brand’s authority and trust, your Domain Authority also increases. So, with increased Domain Authority, you will eventually get more requests for guest posting on your website from other brands who want to improve their inbound link profile by getting a backlink from your domain. Similarly, you will receive loads of requests from brands to author and contribute content on their websites for their readership.
As an authority in your niche, your brand will be used as an example of success and you will get a ton of requests from various platforms in your niche for key speaking assignments in forums and conferences.
When you achieve the above metrics then you will know that you are an influencer as well and an important cog in your niche that your counterpart respects and looks up to. And of course, all these start happening when you start creating breathtaking content on a regular basis.
7. Track Conversions/ Sales
The ultimate goal behind content marketing is indeed sales and profits.
Whatever content marketing strategy you adopt and however effective it maybe does not count if it does not improve your company’s bottom-line in terms of revenue generated and profits earned.
So, keeping an eye on the ultimate prize is very important.
Track your lead conversions and sales in relation to every marketing strategy you adopt. It will help you make informed decisions about whether a particular strategy is working or if you have to scrap it and apply something new to upsurge sales and engagement.
Funneling visitors to your sales page and ultimately converting them to paid customers is a mix of art, science, and commerce. And doing so using content marketing is perhaps the most effective and profitable in terms of cost per sale.
Finally, you can use tools like Google Analytics to create different content marketing goals to measure sales conversions and profit margins.
Content marketing is just another form of internet marketing where the consumer comes first. Always strive to provide them with improved solutions and valuable content to keep them invested in your brand. Remember, don’t ever settle for your comfort zone because what is working today may not work tomorrow.
Do not get overwhelmed with the varied metrics available. Start small with basic metrics that you are sure of and work your way upwards as your business grows as well as your knowledge.
Please comment down below how you measure your content marketing success, which internet marketing tools do you use and how it had helped in achieving your business goals. Also, please let me know if you guys would be interested in a detailed article on which tools to use for which metrics and how best to utilize them for maximum output.
So long for now.
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Mentored by Mr. Soumya Roy, the Founder, CEO of PromozSEO Web Marketing Academy.
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