Have you started writing content to attract parents to your business? One of the trickiest things that businesses, large or small, find with content marketing is how to measure a return on the investment in your content marketing. What metrics should you use? How will you know that your content efforts have worked? In part 3 of my series on Content Marketing, here are The Most Useful Content Marketing Metrics to Help Measure ROI:
If you missed my first two articles on content marketing, you can read them here 10 Good Reasons Why You Should Consider Content Marketing and 15 Proven Steps for Ensuring Content Marketing ROI.
What you use as content metrics will depend on your target customer profile, the format of your content, how you distribute the content and so on. I have taken 4 broad objectives that content might have and suggested the most useful metrics for each of them.
#1. Measuring Brand Awareness
If your content objective is increasing brand awareness then these metrics are a good starting point to see if you achieved that objective. Brand awareness is about maximising the amount of people who see your brand by seeing that you have that piece of content, eyeballs is the name of the game here.
- Reach. How many people in total saw your content when you shared it. This would typically be via social channels.
- Shares. How many retweets, shares, forwards. This gives you an idea of extended reach beyond your own fans or followers.
- Pageviews. If the content was published on your blog, how many pageviews did it get.
#2. Thought Leadership
When you position a piece of content as thought leadership then you are looking at content metrics to do with how people viewed and engaged with the content. Some metrics that might be useful here are:
- Opens and Clicks. If sending via ezine how did your mailing list respond?
- Clickthroughs. How many clicks did you get through to the content?
- Shares. Did they value the content enough to share it to their network?
- Dwell time. The higher the dwell time the more you can have confidence people were really reading your content.
- View time. For video content, e.g. looking at the number of people who viewed to the end of your video.
- Session Duration. How long did they spend on your website total after coming to the content?
#3. Lead Generation
If your content is all about generating leads, for example, you might have a free lead magnet in return for capturing their email address, then there a few metrics to inform whether it worked:
- Clickthrough Rates. If you shared the lead magnet on social media, how many clicks did you get to your landing page.
- Landing page views. How many views has your landing page had?
- Goal completions. Set up a goal on your Google Analytics tied to the thank you URL when people have opted for your lead magnet.
- Goal conversion rate. How many conversions are you getting compared to the number of visits to your landing page. The higher the conversion rate the better.
#4. Nurturing Loyalty
If your content is about nurturing loyalty then you want to look at metrics like
- New vs. Returning Visitors. For example, is your content increasing your return visit rate over time? How many new vs. returning visitors viewed the content on your website?
- Dwell Time. A study by Chartbeat shows that visitors who read an article for three minutes were twice as likely to return as those who read for one minute.
- Bounce Rate. Are people just popping in and out of your content or are they moving on to view other things on your site?
- Unsubscribe Rate. If you share your content on email are people staying loyal to your list? If not then this could be a sign that you are not providing them with the content they need or want.
- Number of Visits/Days Since Last Visit. This is a good metric to see how resonant your content is to make them check back regularly.
These two guides are particularly useful if you have time to read more: Digital Marketing Institute Guide to Content Marketing Metrics and Content Marketing 101 on Blog.Quiet.Ly.
Regardless of what metrics or what content you have, I have these tips for content marketing:
- Define the key objective of each piece of content.
- Define 2-3 metrics you are going to measure once you have distributed your content and check you know where to find the information.
- Measure and then decide if the content worked or not to achieve its objective.
- If it didn’t, then tweak your content and try it again.
- If it did, give yourself a pat on the back and continue re-sharing that content.
Over to you now. What’s your experience of measuring your content marketing? What content marketing metrics have worked for you? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.