Content marketing is a little frustrating for many small businesses. In the beginning, producing short-term results is very difficult. Depending on your methods and strategy, it can take between 3 months to a year before you see a consistent outcome and results. This is why, despite the long-term benefits, there are still many small businesses that think that content marketing is not right for them. Nevertheless, even over time, it is challenging to reduce effectiveness to a single measure.
Regardless, the best marketers understand that content marketing is a numbers game. Surface statistics, like social followers, comments, shares, and likes, will translate into web traffic. Those visitors will then manifest into a specific number of prospects and leads. Finally, those leads will convert into a specific and predictable number of active customers. In any event, since consumers don’t make decisions in a straight line, determining the effectiveness of your content marketing will need examining matrices at every stage.
Ways to Measure Content Marketing Success
1. Are you attracting fans, followers, and subscribers? –
This is the most basic information for evaluating content marketing success. It means you are interesting enough to attract an audience. Regardless, these numbers are a bit superficial. You don’t want to just attract an audience. You want an audience that most resembles your ideal customer. It does not matter how many followers you have if they are not likely to buy your products or services.
2. How many views are you earning? –
Yes, things like shares, tweets, likes, and comments are great. But, the really important number is how many people are actually seeing your content, either on social media or your website. While visible engagement does give valuable social proof, it does not truly show your content’s organic reach.
3. Do you have any influential followers? –
When talking about “influencers”, it does not necessarily mean a celebrity or popular personality. An influencer can simply be an active online user who has a relatively large number of followers compared to the number that they follow. The greater the ratio, the more influential they are.
4. Is your content inspiring visitors to interact with your website? –
How long are visitors staying on your website? After reading your blog post, are they looking at other articles, subscribing to your newsletter, clicking on product links, or requesting more information? Or, are they just leaving your site? If you are not winning engagement, you need to find ways to encourage visitors to interact with your website.
5. Does your content have an impact beyond your website? –
In today’s world, reputation management is a critical part of marketing. Content marketing is a way to control your narrative and limit the impact of negative conversations. Therefore, it is vital to monitor online chatter. Effective content marketing can boost the number of positive conversations.
6. Is Your Content Driving Sales? –
While most small businesses hope that a single piece of content will move a person to a sale, consumer actions are not so linear. Consequently, content marketing more often focuses on building brand awareness and trust, growing an audience, boosting authority, and nurturing relationships. Nevertheless, actual conversion rates and revenue are linked to overall readership and website traffic.
Ultimately, while a new content marketing strategy rarely produces immediate results, there is a measurable long-term impact. It is best to start by examining surface data, such as the growth of fans and followers. As these basic elements increase, you can then start to look at other matrices. If you take this tactic, you will more easily find what is working and what isn’t. While data-driven content may initially seem difficult, it is the only way to comprehensively know how well your content marketing is doing.
Do you have questions? What haven’t we covered yet that is important to you? If you would like to talk about how to find out if your content marketing is successful, or a related topic, please contact us.