Whether you run a B2B or B2C company, ensuring that content marketing is integrated into your marketing strategy is crucial for driving engagement, leads and sales.
The top metrics used to measure content marketing success are website traffic (cited by 71% of marketers), revenue (57%), keyword traffic and conversions (46%), and search engine rankings (46%). (MediaPost)
To further elaborate, here are the six metrics I recommend using as KPIs to determine the effectiveness and performance of your content marketing efforts:
Measuring the number of visits you receive after publishing and promoting your content assets will help you understand the initial click through rate and the potential for virality. For instance, if you publish a piece of content and find that you receive an influx in website visits for the day or week, this is a good indication that the popularity of that content piece is moving the needle in some capacity. Also look at the following metrics in relation to your website traffic:
- Referral sources – know where your traffic is coming from and how people are finding you. This will give you a greater sense into where the distribution of your content is having a larger impact over others.
- Time-on-site – understand how long visitors are spending on your site, specifically on the content assets you share out. Measure this against the bounce rate. Doing so will give you more visibility into which content types are incurring more engagement post click.
- Top landing pages – know which pages are incurring the highest amount of traffic and engagement as that will tell you where your content is most effective. For example, say you write multiple blog posts a week, publish white papers monthly and run monthly webinars, but find that your white paper landing pages drive the most traffic, then that should guide your editorial decisions moving forward.
Number of Leads Generated
Providing high-quality content assets for free is the key to generating leads. Therefore, tracking the total number of leads you generate weekly and monthly will help you understand the effectiveness your content pieces. Make sure you segment out your leads generated by referral source and identify where the lead is within your conversion funnel. That way, you can further serve each lead with targeted content to push them further down your funnel into becoming a paid customer.
As defined by Buffer, amplification rate is the number of shares on average for each post. Depending on which social network you are most active on, you may want to consider following:
- Twitter retweets
- Facebook shares
- Google+ shares
- LinkedIn shares
- Pinterest repins
- Instagram regrams
Know that you shouldn’t stop here. Continue on to tracking the actual and potential reach your content marketing assets have, well into any spikes in growth from social media fans/followers, website traffic, leads and sales.
Visit to Lead Conversion
When inbound leads cost 61% less than outbound leads, you have to take the importance of lead generation through content marketing seriously. Further, tying each content asset with its own targeted landing page will help you easily calculate what the visit-to-lead conversion is. This is a great way to see if your content is helping move the needle in terms of engagement that then turns into qualified leads for sales as well as remarketing tactics.
Cost Per Lead
This will you tell you how much each lead generated for each content asset is worth. For example, let’s say you spent $100,000 on advertising your content assets and in turn, generated 2,000 leads – your cost per lead is $50. Once you calculate this out, align it with sales objectives to help you define how much a qualified lead is worth to the company and what the total CAC (customer acquisition cost) is.
Visit to Customer Conversion
Within the B2C world, the possibility of incurring a customer upon an initial visit is higher than it would be for the B2B sector. However, B2B companies shouldn’t discount this metric as it will help you also see which content assets aid the sales team in shortening the sales cycle. In other words, a visit that didn’t need marketing follow up, but that went directly to sales and closed as a paying customer versus needing to be nurtured before being passed off to sales.
We live in a world where people don’t want to be sold to anymore, but would rather take the time to do their own research before buying from you. Per Gartner, 57% of purchase decisions are made before a customer ever talks to a supplier, and by 2020, customers will manage 85% of their relationship with an enterprise without interacting with a human.
As such, harnessing the power of content marketing will help position your expertise while honing in on where your target audience is and why you’re the solution to their pain points.