Oct 10th, 2013
Metrics on a platter
Content marketing requires a lot of work and this work should remain consistent over time. Regularity is key. In order to see progress and to avoid giving up, it is important to keep track of your final objective. It may be engagement, customer acquisition, lead generation, or any other. The success or failure of your objective should be measured, as well as any metrics leading to that objective.
Here are a few metrics you may want to track when doing content marketing for customer acquisition.
Measuring the Number of Views is Only the First Step
The first metric you think about when you are publishing content on a regular basis is the number of views you get for each post. This is the first step to achieve: being sure the link to your article gets clicked.
Once you get a view and the visitor lands on your article, you will have to give him a reason to stay on your page and actually read the article. If the visitor leaves the page after just a few seconds, you did a bad job retaining him. You know that your headline did a good job grabbing the reader's attention since he clicked on your link. However, the content didn't measure up to the promise you made.
Analytics applications like Google Analytics give you the details on how long visitors stay on a given page before leaving.
Blogging platforms like medium, will also help you know if the reader went all the way down to the end of the text. I believe they use a combination of metrics to detect if the reader:
- scrolled down to the bottom of the article
- spent enough time on the page to read the whole content
With the reduced attention span of readers these days, you need to be able to catch their eye quickly, before they leave.
Getting views is not sufficient, you must focus on audience quality. That's why targeting is essential. And also, getting an efficient distribution network for your content is a real challenge.
Content Sharing for a Viral Effect
Content sharing is the second metric you will be looking at. This one is also available to the public. We are talking here about referral. People will read your content (maybe not entirely) and think it is worth sharing (sometimes a catchy title is sufficient for being worth sharing). They refer your content to their network.
You must monitor every social network to see where you content is the most shared. It can give you a good idea on where to find your readers and also your potential customers.
Facebook and Twitter widgets can increase the chance your posts have of being shared. They will also help you keep track of the sharing metrics per network. The more your content is shared, the more it will reach readers and potential customers. If your numbers are good, I would advise you to display them on your widgets; it shows your content is worth it.
Conversion Rate on Call To Actions
When you write for content marketing, you need to include Call To Actions. These will help your readers understand what they are expected to do after reading your post. They may be included in your text, below your articles or simply in the sidebar of your blog. Call To Actions may include newsletter subscription, product registration, leaving a comment, sharing the article or downloading a free eBook.
No matter what your Call To Actions are, you must distinguish the traffic coming from your blog and the one coming from other sources. The former will directly help you measure the impact of content marketing on your business. If someone subscribes to your newsletter after landing on your blog, you should count any product registration or orders coming from that person as an impact of your content marketing strategy. Depending on what you put in your newsletter, you also want to be able to track your Call To Actions there.
Product Registration and Conversion Through the Sales Funnel
Once you set up your sales funnel and get your users interested in your product, you will be able to watch product registration or selling transactions. Once you get your reader to register on your website, you can track the behavior of your customer depending on the way he or she was recruited.
Customers converted from your content are better targeted and are more likely to be interested in what you have to sell. Tracking your users or customers on your blog will also help you know which one is your most faithful evangelist. This is the key for improving referral metrics (referral of your content and your product).
We would love to get your feedback on this article. Let us know which metrics you choose to track the results of your content marketing efforts in the comments below.