Publishing persuasive content can lead to turbocharged sales in businesses. Words carry immense power, and this holds true not just for print media, but for content marketing as well. With the right words, you can influence individuals and communities to support your brand and cause. And this is where strategic content marketing comes in handy.
It is no surprise then that many brands today are investing significantly in content marketing as a strategy.
- 91% of B2B marketers use content marketing
- 86% of B2C marketers think content marketing is central to their marketing strategy
Content marketing is one of the most effective ways to grow customer engagement, drive sales and nurture your brand’s online presence.
Consistent and high-quality content can influence your target audience’s decision-making more than anything else. In today’s competitive environment, your content needs to have a unique, identifiable voice that reaches your ideal customers across all distribution channels. Content can help in strengthening your brand’s credibility and establishing your clientele’s trust in you.
However, there is still a high possibility of you having a hard time pitching a content marketing strategy to your client. The reason: Content marketing is still a new concept for the industry at large. The fact that many companies feel that it is enough to publish content online, and hope for the best, is itself the biggest obstacle that you have to overcome while you pitch.
Challenges of Communicating ROI for Content Marketing
Short-term vs long-term payout
More often than not, brands consider content marketing to be a one-time initiative or a short-term goal. Thus, it is not always easy to convince a client to invest in it. Clients may not be able to gauge the long-term benefits of consistent and high-quality content that drives leads and sales right into their kitty. This might result in them allocating a smaller budget for content marketing.
It is essential to set aside a decent budget for content marketing every quarter. Because, unlike traditional and direct marketing measures, content marketing focuses heavily on creating brand awareness and building relationships with existing as well as potential customers. These goals run on a much longer timeline and require a high degree of consistency to produce any solid results.
With periodic goals, you can easily gauge results and content marketing analytics. Creating effective content requires understanding customers and figuring out what drives them. You need to create and market content that will keep audiences hooked for a longer period. For this, you need to understand what type of language and content they respond to over many months of engagement. This makes it necessary for content marketers to strategize based on a varied, interconnected timeline.
The All-Important Metrics
To communicate the ROI for content marketing, you need to state facts and figures instead of theories. Thus, an ideal place to start will be to support your argument with metrics to convince clients to invest in content marketing. State the following five metrics to show your client how investing in content marketing can eliminate thorny issues.
1. Website traffic
Even if you have a well-designed and functional website, your customers will not land on it until you make them do so. While digital advertisements like pay-per-click (PPC) ads are expensive, they do ensure some initial traffic generation for websites. In the initial months of their online presence, businesses must be open to a flexible budget and try out various mediums to see what works best for their cause.
By using Google Analytics, you can easily find out the amount of traffic a particular piece of content is generating for your website. From the main menu go to Behavior » Site Content » Landing Pages. The report shows the pages that your website visitors are landing on first.
With effective content marketing, you can direct substantial traffic to your website. If your content is fueled with high-performance PPC keywords, your content will perform significantly better on search engines and is much more likely to be discovered by your target customers. This way content marketing can result in significant profits for your clients. Just keep in mind that the process of driving traffic can take a minimum of three to six months to mature, so make sure that you state this factor when pitching to your client.
- Lead generation
People who look for blog posts are looking for information, and not necessarily for products to buy. However, high-quality content is engaging, valuable and targeted. Such content can influence information-seeking people to be converted into warm leads easily. That is the reason why content marketing is extremely pivotal to lead generation.
But how exactly can we measure lead quality? Once your latest piece of content is live, the following aspects can tell if you are attracting quality leads to your website:
- Your leads are getting in touch with your team with pre-sales questions.
- After reading your content, the leads download your lead magnet. This may mean that your leads are or have been thinking about doing business with you.
- After going through your content, your leads are checking the related resources that are part of your sales funnel.
If you can spot one or more of the above-mentioned attributes, rest assured that your content is attracting quality leads who are likely to buy from your brand. Another way to track the quality of your leads is to check if they are visiting the major pages of your website, like those concerning pricing or booking an appointment. To track this, you will have to set the goal in Google Analytics and then track the same in Conversions » Goals » Funnel Visualization.
- Lead conversion
Once you have warm leads, you have to serve them valuable content till the time they get converted into paying customers. Strategic content can be marketed through blog posts, podcasts, social media, emails, and videos regularly. The drill, usually, is to create a pool of regular blog posts and repurpose that content on various platforms or mediums.
This is one of the most significant metrics that quantify the benefits of content marketing. Engaging content will cultivate a community of devoted followers. They act as informal brand ambassadors who consistently promote your brand and business by word of mouth. That is the best form of publicity since people are more likely to trust other people than advertisements. Before you know it, your blog posts become your salespersons, beckoning more and more people to visit your website.
- Social media ROI
Your brand’s engagement beyond your website is also extremely important. In today’s time, social media is one of the best mediums to promote brand awareness. With the number of people who use social media today, brand awareness is the biggest ROI you can get from social media along with additional sales and customer engagement. Your social media engagement can also verify the quality of your content. That is, if your lead finds your content useful and engaging, he/she is likely to share it or engage with it on social media.
A straightforward way to measure this metric could be through your follower count. Other than that, you can also use Google Analytics to see which social media platform is contributing to how much of your website traffic. You can find these details in Acquisition » Social » Network Referrals. This metric becomes essential to analyze because your improved social media presence will boost your brand reputation, drive traffic and generate more leads.
The rapidly developing field of content marketing is now opening up a world of opportunities for brands and businesses. As more and more brands identify content marketing’s relevance and value, the demand for content marketing analytics is skyrocketing. With the right statistics and approach, you can convince brands to invest in content marketing as it can help them reap long-lasting benefits. And now that you have the right metrics to follow, just close the deal!