Content marketing is a part of 69% of B2B’s marketing strategies. Small businesses can create an effective content marketing plan that allows them to compete with enterprises, but you must be able to measure your marketing to know if it’s effective or not.
What Is Effective Content Marketing?
Effective content marketing is based on sales. Sure, some sites use this form of marketing solely to generate traffic and build up their site’s visitors, but in the business world, it’s more important to make sales.
Highly targeted and offering high conversions, the right form of content marketing may take time to truly increase sales, but it’s a goal-oriented form of marketing that works across all industries.
Content that’s published may have numerous goals:
- Product sales
- Mailing list subscribers
- Downloads, etc.
How effective is content marketing? It truly depends on a case-by-case basis, but a few statistics to consider are:
- Leading content marketers receive 7.8 times more traffic than competitors
- 56% of marketers believe that content improves their engagement rate
- Content marketing is three times more effective than outbound marketing and costs 62% less
Measuring content marketing effectiveness allows you to refine your strategy and determine what works and doesn’t work for your audience. If you don’t have an effective way of measuring your success, you’ll never know what types of content that you should be focusing on and which should be pruned from your strategy.
How to Measure the Effectiveness of Content Marketing?
Measurements differ from one campaign to the next. You may have a plan to increase subscribers to your newsletter, and if this plan is to be a success, you’ll be measuring the number of new signups that your site receives.
You’ll need to install a program that can help you with measuring, such as Google Analytics. When subscribers add their information to your newsletter, this can be tracked within your respective mail service, such as MailChimp.
A few of the many forms of measurement are:
- Clicks. How many people are seeing your content and clicking on it?
- Comments. Measurement of engagement. What percentage of readers are commenting on the content they read or see?
- Downloads. Free trials, eBooks and other forms of downloads may be your main goal. You’ll need to measure how many people are downloading based on the content that you’re creating. You’ll want to track videos, pages and other forms of content to see how well it’s performing in terms of downloads.
- Dwell time. Sometimes, visitors will come to a site and leave increasing bounce rate. Dwell time is the amount of time people remain on a page.
- Links. Search engine optimization relies heavily on the number of inbound links to your site. When you create statistic-rich or high-end content for the purpose of boosting your SEO, you’ll want to track the number of inbound links generated to each page. You can use third-party tools, such as SEMRush, to track inbound links.
- Sales. Sales and conversions are two of the most important metrics to track, if you’re trying to generate revenue directly from the content that you’re creating, be sure to track these metrics.
- Shares. Content that is shared can quickly generate sales and is so worthy that readers are willing to recommend it to others. Shares can also lead to more social media followers and contacts.
- Views. How many visitors or views has the content generated? Some forms of content work better in certain industries than in others. Measuring views can help you determine how well your content is performing.
Content marketing requires tracking and refinement. You’ll want to create initial benchmarks and then run reports periodically to see what’s working and not working for your business.
Tips for Creating Effective Content Marketing
Companies across the world are turning to content marketing as a cornerstone of their business. But while some companies are finding success, others haven’t found an effective way to execute their marketing.
A few tips that can help you create an effective content marketing plan are:
- Objectives. Before you even begin creating content, sit down with all shareholders and determine your objectives. You need to have your KPIs in place so that you can measure effectiveness.
- Calibrate. Content tone and type will be reliant on the objectives that you set. Be sure to consider what type of content and tone is needed to reach your goals.
- Create. Once you have a plan in place, create. The goal of every plan can only be reached through this step. Dedicate the time and resources necessary to create the content your plan needs to be a success.
- Curate. Every plan should include some form of curation. This is how you interject into news stories or share content from others. The goal is to get noticed, and this allows you to rework a lot of concepts multiple times to find success. Curation allows you to become part of the story – often big stories.
- Promote. Creating content for your plan isn’t enough. You need to promote or circulate your content in any way that you can. Share your content with your audience, other influencers and bloggers and anywhere that is relevant. You don’t want to spam, so you need to be strategic with the way that you promote content. Knowing your audience is the key to success with promotion.
Of course, once all of these tips are in place, you’ll need to convert the traffic you generate. You’ll need to measure your KPIs and see how your efforts are inching you closer to your goals.
Content marketing is only one form of marketing, but it can be the most beneficial for your site’s traffic and revenue. Implementing tips for effective content marketing is just the start of the process.
You’ll need to develop a robust plan and be prepared to wait 6 to 9 months before your marketing really starts to generate traffic and sales. If you already have a large audience and are an authority in your industry, you may start seeing results even faster.
If you stick to it, measure effectiveness and have a solid plan, content marketing can become your most effective and highest grossing form of marketing you use.