The top goals of content marketing are to increase brand awareness, boost engagement, drive traffic and ultimately drive sales conversions. So how can you measure this?
Content marketing is generally a ‘top of the sales funnel’ activity so it’s harder to measure how it translates into sales compared with bottom-funnel marketing activities – like when someone clicks on a banner ad then buys a product. Even so, building awareness about your brand is the most important place to start when it comes to marketing.
Content marketing has become an art AND a science. Data is a science and there are huge amounts of detailed information available about your audience that you can use to reach your market today like you never could before. The creation of content is still an art form, but there are limitless tools available to help make the process more scientific using social media metrics.
Measuring Social Media Results
Marketing automation tools like Buffer can show whether you’re getting the most from your social networking. You can see your most popular posts over time and tell if you need to do more to increase your audience. You can also compare your average social media post’s performance to the average current post performance to see how well it did.
Your social media content can’t really be expected to generate sales. Its role is to entertain people and introduce your brand to audiences who may not become your customers just yet. Your social media marketing is designed to build trust and connect your brand with your audience. When they know and trust you, they’re more likely to search for you online when they need your product or service.
The best way to measure the results of your social media marketing efforts is to track engagement (shares and comments) and traffic to your website where you can measure how many visitors clicked your links, played your videos or signed up to your lists.
Measuring Website Results
Website traffic is the most popular way most businesses measure their content marketing efforts. Google Analytics is the most important tool for measuring how pages on your website are performing. It can also tell you a lot about the actions visitors to your site take when they arrive there. You can sign up for free to get insights to improve your website.
Auditing your website is quite a detailed and time consuming process but the results are well worth it. You can do this yourself by following the steps outlined in this blog or you can hire someone with experience to do it for you.
A/B testing is an important way to measure results from your web pages and find out what appeals most to your market. The ideas is to show two slightly different variations of a landing page to the same audience so you can learn which one converts best for you. You can choose two different headlines or images or colours, for example.
Calculating Content Marketing Conversions
News Cred outlined these 3 core metrics you can use to measure conversions from your content marketing:
1/ Cost per lead – calculate how much you spent to acquire a lead. Work out the total cost to produce your content including creation and distribution. Count your total new leads, including number of qualified leads, you received from the content. Divide your total cost by your number of qualified leads to get your average total cost per lead for content marketing.
2/ Percentage of leads sourced – work out what percentage your content marketing contributed towards your total number of qualified leads if you know how many qualified leads you got from your other marketing programs such as advertising or events.
3/ Conversions – percentage of people who take a desired action – to find the actual revenue sourced by content marketing, you need to know your conversion rate and value of your average sale. Multiply your number of qualified leads by your conversion rate (say 50%) to calculate your number of conversions. Then multiply your conversions by the worth of your average sale to find the value of your content marketing conversions.
When measuring results, be aware – content marketing is not a silver bullet. It’s a strategy that takes time and persistence. It requires consistent marketing, rather than one-off campaigns to realise its full benefits.
This post concludes my blog series on ’11 Keys to Cracking Content Creation – solving the content marketing problem for savvy business marketers’. Leave your name and email at the bottom of this page to download my eBook for a summary chapter and to learn more about me.
A brilliant way to influence your audience today is what author Andrew M. Davis calls Brandscaping – that is – seeking out strategic partners to piggyback on other brands that are already reaching your market.
“It’s not about becoming a publisher in your own right because you don’t have to do all that work… The solution is to partner with authentic, successful, content creators who your audience already trusts.”
1/ Find brand partners who also value your opt-in audience.
2/ Share resources like your expertise and budget with other brands that value the same prospects and customers as you do.
3/ Make your marketing dollars go further and get a better return on investment.
- Singers reach new audiences by doing duets and collaborating with artists who already have their target market.
- When Australian entrepreneur Joe Cross made the documentary ‘Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead’, he asked Breville for a juicer to use for a 60-day juice fast. Breville had never seen such a high demand for its juicers after the film launched to Netflix’s 24 million subscribers.
Who could you partner with who already owns your audience to reach your market?
What products or services do your customers buy before they have a need for yours?
What value can you offer your prospective brand partners?
“What can you do to demonstrate the power of your audience?” Davis asks. “Choose your top prospective brand partners and consider whether your audience would embrace their content. If you find some great content, ask your prospective brand partner if you can distribute it to your audience. If this has a positive impact for the other brand then perhaps you have found yourself a new brand partner. If not, try again.”
Which brands could you see yourself partnering with?
This blog series began with 7 Keys to Content Creation and has expanded into an eBook called: 11 Keys to Cracking Content Creation – solving the content marketing problem for savvy business marketers.
Leave your name and email address at the bottom of this page if you’d like me to send you my FREE eBOOK at the end of my blog series.
An overwhelming number of marketing automation tools exists today to help you streamline and measure your social media marketing. Although it can be tricky to choose which tools are right for your business – discovering this could significantly reduce the time and money it takes to make a sale.
Marketing authority Jeff Bullas says automating your content distribution is so important today because:
1/ Automation tools save time. Sometimes content marketing is neglected altogether because it’s time consuming and results aren’t instant. But persistence is vitally important to build relationships and trust over time with your audience.
2/ Analytics and technology are part of marketing today (the science) and now go hand-in-hand with the creative side of content creation (the art form).
3/ Technology is required for mandatory metrics like clicks, opt-ins and “earnings per click” to measure results from social media campaigns, email marketing, blogs, SEO, Facebook Ads, Google AdWords and more.
A CMO report said marketing and technology and so interdependent now that almost all marketers surveyed were looking to implement marketing automation or data management in the next 12 months as they came to terms with the increasingly complex marketing landscape.
It says: “98 percent of survey respondents saw the current role of marketing as highly complex, and expected the interdependency between technology and marketing to increase in the next three years. 83 percent described the role of marketing as challenging, and 15 percent labelled it ‘rocket science’.”
Some marketers believe automating their social media updates takes the ‘social’ out of social media. The truth is the ‘social’ is in the conversations your posts begin.
Choosing the right marketing automation tools for your business can be a minefield because there are literally hundreds if not thousands of them and they are each slightly different. The Marketing Automation Insider website helps suggest the best tools for your business and compares global market leaders which could be helpful.
Here’s an overview of some of the most popular marketing automation software products out there:
- Popular tools for optimising online marketing include Infusionsoft, Ontraport, Marketo, Wishpond, Squawkbox, Zoho and Hub Spot which integrate and streamline your email marketing, landing pages and CRM.
- Hootsuite, SocialOomph, dlvr.it and Buffer are popular tools that integrate with several social media profiles like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Word Press so you can schedule posts and measure your results all in one place.
- Post Planner helps you find trending content on Facebook and automate publishing to your Facebook page.
- Mail Chimp, Campaign Monitor, AWeber and iContact are some of the most popular email marketing programs to manage your email lists and send targeted emails.
- ShortStack is a toolbox for building tabs for your Facebook page so you can customise your tabs and widgets to encourage your audience to interact with your business.
- Shuttlerock lets you collect, moderate and publish curated content from your brand advocates and fans.
And there are literally hundreds more marketing software products to choose from.
My eBook keeps growing and I’ve added another new key to share with you next week about how you can partner with other brands to reach your audience.
Leave your name and email address at the bottom of this page if you’d like me to send you my FREE eBOOK “11 Keys to Cracking Content Creation – solving the content marketing problem for business marketers” at the end of my blog series.
- Know Which Social Media To Use,
- Use Marketing Automation Tools, and
- Measure Your Content ROI.
Social media posts are the most common type of content created by marketers. When you create a calendar or series of branded posts, you can re-post them at scheduled times throughout the year so you’re not creating all the content you need from scratch every month.
How Do You Choose the Right Channels?
Building relationships and creating your community depends on choosing the right channels.
Creating your content marketing strategy means considering WHO you’re talking to and HOW they want to communicate with you.
Here’s a summary I created of 8 top social media platforms in Australia and how you can use them to reach your market:
Social Media Comparison for Australian businesses
|Social media channel||Popularity||What it’s for||Who uses it (globally)||Summary|
|15 million unique Australian users||Like a 2nd Internet and 2nd most visited website globally – Biggest social platform||Most aged 18-55 with widest age range of all social media 13-55+||I like golf|
|YouTube||13.9 million unique Australian visitors||Video sharing and hosting, 300 hours of video uploaded / minute||Ages very similar to Facebook with a slight male skew because males watch more gaming videos – but generally 50% female & 50% male||Here I am playing golf|
|5 million monthly active Australian users||Sharing photos and short (15 second) videos, content can only be uploaded via mobile devices||90% of users are under 35 with 68% female & 32% male||Here’s a photo of this amazing golf course|
|3.7 million unique Australian visitors||Business networking site, for B2B business to business marketing||79% of users are over 35 and 35% are business decision makers with 31% in senior positions||My skills include playing golf|
|2.8 million approximate active Australian users||Micro-blogging, limits posts to 140 characters, includes photos and videos, # sorts information, engages in real time||Mostly males under 35||I’m playing #golf|
|TripAdvisor||2.1 million unique Australian visitors||World’s largest travel website, hosts 200million+ reviews for 3.7million businesses globally||Travellers of all ages – Mostly aged 45 to 70 in USA||How did others enjoy their game of golf?|
|320,000 unique Australian visitors||Visuals, lifestyle, discovery, aspirational, mainly for cooking, crafts, décor, fashion & health||80% females & 20% males, 20% women online use Pinterest and most users are 25 to 45, affluent and educated||Here’s some golf apparel|
|Google Plus||60,000 approximate monthly active Australian users||Building circles for brands, businesses and individuals, creating communities with similar interests, people spend much less time on Google+ compared with other social media||Nearly 70% are male – mostly well-educated, tech-savvy males, with a growing 45 to 54 year age group||Join my golfing circle|
|Source: Social Media Statistics Australia||Source: Leverage New Age Media, Trip Advisor||Sources: Australian Social Media Cheat Sheet, Jetscram Age Demographics, Digiday You Tube, Trip Advisor, Google+|
More than 99% of Australians surveyed by Sensis in 2015 use the Internet and the majority read online reviews or blogs. Of the 68% who use social networking sites, 93% are on Facebook an average of 31 times a week for 17.5 minutes at a time.
You can see why using social media in your content marketing is so important. But how can you post effectively with time and budget efficiency? I’ll tell you in my next blog post.
Tell me below – what was your biggest takeaway from this?
Leave your name and email address at the bottom of this page if you’d like me to send you my FREE eBOOK “10 Keys to Cracking Content Creation – solving the content marketing problem for business marketers” at the end of my blog series.
‘Content’ takes many different forms including videos, webinars, audio, articles, slides and eBooks and can be written or spoken. ‘Copy’ is always written and includes website copy, email copy, advertising copy and sales copy for printed or digital media.
Too many businesses have only ‘copy’ and no true ‘content’ according to one of my favourite authors, The Content Coach, Sarah Schwab. Sarah says some marketing authorities recommend publishing 5 pieces of valuable content for every 1 piece of sales copy. If you only offer copy then you risk your audience tuning out to your message. That’s why content is so central to building relationships and loyalty with your market.
Repurposing is necessary because so much content is required to fuel your marketing plan today.
Before, it was enough to generate website content and some printed content but now that content is being pushed out to multiple social media channels as well as videos, blogs, emails, audio, webinars and more.
What if there was one way to create multiple forms of content at the same time? Hit the magic switch and you have a video, a blog, a webinar, an e-newsletter, a media release, a website article and multiple social media posts!
There may not be a magic switch but it’s possible.
You can focus on creating one piece of GREAT content that allows your audience to connect with your brand and repurpose it into other forms.
You don’t have to produce every type of content there is. You can choose the medium that works best for you. For instance, if you choose to create a video, you can have it transcribed into a written article. If you write a great blog, you can turn that into an email, an eBook, a media release, a video, a slideshow, an infographic or a webinar.
That’s the idea behind repurposing your content.
“We need to create the minimum amount of content for the maximum amount of impact. It’s never about more. It’s about the right mix, to the right audience, that leads to the right behaviour change. As a content marketer, we should always be thinking about the content we SHOULD NOT be creating. Somewhere along the line, I think we fell into the trap of thinking that more is mandatory. It’s not.” – Content Marketing Institute Founder Joe Pulizzi
“Repurposing old content is great for your readers and for SEO.” – Kate Toon, Recipe for SEO Success. Kate gives great tips for how you can spruce up your old blog posts and turn them into evergreen content on her website.
Evergreen content stays relevant and useful long after it’s published and covers a topic in depth – for example, FAQ’s, how-to articles and tutorials. You can keep directing your audience back to your evergreen content in your regular marketing communications including your social media posts.
How do you choose what social media channels to use for your business? Next post I’ll be sharing my summary of 8 top social media platforms in Australia and how you can use them to reach your market.
In the meantime, leave your details at the bottom of this page if you’d like me to send you my FREE eBOOK “10 Keys to Cracking Content Creation – solving the content marketing problem for business marketers” at the end of my blog series.
Google loves new content. Consistently creating content on your website, blog and other online assets is essential to optimising for search engines.
Finding Your Keywords
Research your keywords to find the most popular words and phrases people are searching for then include them in your content like your FAQs, how-to articles, explainer videos, etc.
For effective SEO, your content should target keywords that are aligned to your niche and not too competitive. This gives you a better chance of attracting backlinks and making your way up the search rankings.
Using Long Tail Keywords
Long tail keywords are multiple-word phrases about your product or service that your market types into search engines when they’re looking for information related to what you offer. Long tail keywords are usually up to seven words long and can be questions or positive/negative phrases. Long tail keywords are even more important today because voice searches from mobiles contain more words than text-based searches.
The Bottom Line with SEO
Always write for your customers first, not for Google. Answering your audience’s questions and writing to appeal to them is always better than stuffing your target keywords into your content.
Optimising Videos for SEO
When uploading video to your website or You Tube, add your keywords to your video title, description and tags. Write a catchy video title and a short, detailed description of your video. The key is finding out what keywords your market would type in if they were searching for your topic. It could pay to do some research and ask your customers and prospects first.
Using Video Transcripts
Adding a written transcript of your videos to your website is beneficial for anyone who prefers reading text over watching videos. It also helps with your website SEO because your video will be full of relevant keywords you can include on your site to boost your rankings.
You can also re-purpose your video transcripts into other content marketing tools and that’s what I’ll focus on next blog.
Leave your details at the bottom of this page if you’d like me to send you my free eBook “7 Keys to Cracking Content Creation” at the end of my blog series on solving the content marketing problem for business marketers.
In 2016, mobile searches will outnumber desktop and laptop searches following the tipping point in 2015, says eMarketer. Research shows most marketers need to catch up by creating more mobile-friendly content.
How mobile-friendly is your website?
There’s a simple check you can do to see if your website is mobile friendly on this website. Google wants your website to be as mobile-friendly as possible, so they published a guide for giving your website visitors a better mobile experience that you can see here.
The use of space to highlight important elements on your web page is really important for mobile marketing. Creating mobile-only deals and promotions is also a new way of selling on your website via mobiles.
How Google-friendly is your business?
The increasing number of online searches from mobile devices is having a major impact on local businesses, especially retail stores and hospitality venues such as restaurants, cafes, and hotels. 50% of consumers visit a retail store within a day of searching on a smartphone, according to Google. If you’re in retail, customising your search appearance on Google and completing the full description of products, services, images, videos and social reviews should be your highest priority.
Did you know – you can change how Google displays your brand in the box that shows up on the right-hand side of a Google search? This is your brand’s ‘Knowledge Graph’ panel and it’s also your brand’s first impression. The branding elements you can customise for Google’s ‘Knowledge Graph’ panel include your logo, contact details and social profiles. A web developer can do this by adding structured data mark-up to your website.
How mobile-friendly are your SEO keywords?
When we use voice search from our mobiles, we say more words than we would type into a search engine. This makes long-tail keywords now even more important for SEO.
Think about how you’d type keywords, for example “Health Food Store”, into a search bar – whereas with voice search you’d say “Where is the nearest Health Food Store?”
Next blog I’ll look at how you can integrate your content with your SEO strategy.
Leave your details at the bottom of this page if you’d like me to send you my free eBook “7 Keys to Cracking Content Creation” when it’s ready – at the end of my blog series on solving the content marketing problem for business marketers.