As with any form of marketing, it’s only worth doing if you’re going to get more back than what you put in – this is what’s known as ROI or Return on Investment.
As I’ve mentioned previously, research by the Content Marketing Institute has found that businesses are prepared to dedicate 40% of their marketing budget to Content Marketing. Depending on the size of the business and resources available, this can be a substantial amount of money.
Obviously, these businesses must be seeing ROI from their Content Marketing. But what is it and how are they measuring it?
What results can you get from Content Marketing?
No one has a magic ball that can predict what results you’ll get from Content Marketing. However, luckily for us lots of research has been done into it and here’s a roundup of some of the findings:
Content Marketing Institute: ‘72% of marketers say that Content Marketing increases engagement’ and ‘72% of marketers say Content Marketing has increased leads’
Twitter: ‘66% of people who are on Twitter have discovered a new business through the platform’
DemandMetric: ‘It’s 3 times cheaper to generate leads through Content Marketing than traditional marketing’
DemandGen: ‘95% of customers consider content trustworthy when evaluating a company’
With these impressive stats, it’s no surprise that 90% of businesses are using Content Marketing to generate inbound leads (Gist).
I’m hoping these figures have convinced you that Content Marketing can help improve engagement with your customers, increase your brand awareness and generate more inbound leads.
You may be saying to yourself this sounds great, but how I do measure the results?
How to measure content marketing ROI
Content Marketing ROI is a % that shows how much money you’ve made (revenue) from a piece of content in comparison to what you spent creating it.
Working out the cost of creating a piece of content can be tricky, but it can be done, and you should be doing it.
Here are some things to consider when calculating the cost of your content creation:
- Marketing officer’s salary (or cost of outsourcing the work to a specialist)
- Cost of including other departments or external agencies
- Cost of distributing the content (PPC, social ads, cost of using a social sharing platform)
The next step is calculating the value of sales that the piece of content generated.
Sometimes this can be easy, for instance, you can easily track a sale that came through from a ‘buy now’ call to action in a social media ad. However, sometimes, the decision-making process is more complex than this, and you’ll have to track the consumer through a longer buying process.
When you’ve gathered all this information, use this formula to work out your Content Marketing ROI:
ROI will be different for each business but generally speaking, if you’re making more in sales from the content than you spent on producing it, you’re doing well.
ROI doesn’t necessarily have to be about money. You may be investing in Content Marketing to improve engagement with your brand. If that’s the cause, you’ll have to look at other metrics.
Measuring engagement from Content Marketing
Some people think of engagement as the number of people who are viewing the content. It’s deeper than this. It looks into how people are interacting with your content and how long they’re spending on it.
Some of the key areas to look at include:
Log into your GA (Google Analytics) account and navigate to the relevant section to see; what pages are getting the most visitors, how long on average people are spending on each page, what percentage are new visitors v returning visitors and how people are landing on your site (referrals).
By logging into the metrics section of each social media platform you can see how many shares or likes each post is getting as well as how many people are commenting. You can also see if engagement on the site is growing or flatlining.
If you post on several social sites, tracking engagement for each can be a pain. I’d recommend using a tool such as Buzzsumo to gather these insights.
As well as allowing you to design beautiful emails, email platforms also give you access to a wealth of analytics. Most platforms enable you to see; month-on-month how many people have signed up to received your emails, the number of people who have unsubscribed, how long people are spending reading your email, what links are getting the most clicks and what type of devices your subscribers are reading your email on.
These are all important metrics that can help shape your Content Marketing plan.
If you’re interested to know more about Content Marketing and how it can help your business, get in touch and we can arrange a time to have a chat.
Or, you can find out about content marketing in my ebook ‘Content Marketing Guide for Busy Business Owners. Sign up to get your free copy.