But demonstrating the tangible results of content is proving to be a contentious area for marketers. Here are five pieces of advice to make tackling ROI easier:
1. Set clear expectations. Choose your platform and medium accordingly
Is the goal for your content to build brand awareness among certain demographics? Facebook Likes can give a clear indication of how well a campaign is doing among specific groups. Using your content to convert fans into leads? Invest in downloadable, quality content that requires users to input their email address.
2. Tag content so you can measure leads
Once you’ve set goals, you can start to measure the number of leads your content is creating. The best way to do this is to tag each ‘entry point’ into your content with an analytics code. This way, you see exactly where your leads are coming from.
3. Think about a new set of metrics
It’s no longer just about Cost Per Click (CPC) or the number of SEO keywords. Content marketing can be quantified effectively by thinking about Cost Per Lead and Cost Per Opportunity.
4. Learn how to link content to revenue
The best metric of all is also one of the most difficult to calculate. That’s why it’s important to map leads against the entire purchase cycle, and see exactly when customers are engaging with your content. This kind of evidence is crucial in determining the kind of content you should focus on for better ROI.
5. Invest in software that measures leads for you
The newest content publishing platforms can analyse what worked best, but very few go so far as to quantify leads in terms of their financial value (once you’ve set the parameters).
Content marketing is a long-term strategy, not just a short-term tactic. If you think of content as a quick way to generate leads and sales, you won’t see the results you want. If, however, you approach content marketing as a long-term solution with long-term metrics, you won’t be disappointed.