Roadmap to Success: Essential Elements of Content Marketing Strategy
How to follow basic KPIs
When setting up your measurement program, start by deciding how often you will collect your data. A good time to start measurement is the effectiveness of marketing on a monthly basis. It has worked well for CMI, although we monitor statistics every week to make sure monthly goals stay on track, especially those we can respond to quickly.
Next, create a spreadsheet that documents and tracks the following:
Your marketing goals. If you have more than one, it can help to prioritize them. (At this point, you should have agreed goals with your management team, if you do not have it, now is the time to move to the same page.)
Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) that you will use to measure the marketing effectiveness of your content.
Your plan to collect this performance information.
Who will be responsible for collecting and reporting this data.
Here is a simple spreadsheet that you can use based on our experience at CMI. If you plan to share your indicator worksheet with your colleagues (which we strongly recommend), consider using Google Sheets or another shared platform for everyone to view and make changes. if necessary.
Click to enlarge
I can not emphasize enough that everyone working on content marketing needs to know the key performance indicators to measure the marketing effectiveness of your content. Whether or not they are directly involved in your content analysis, it is essential that content creators understand how their work has an impact on society's overriding goals.
Here are some examples of key performance indicators you might want to follow:
numbers to present to your direction . If you are not sure what you should measure, ask yourself these two questions:
Do these metrics support my key objectives?
Can I use these settings (ie, will they give an overview of how I can improve my program)?
Do not simply measure to have figures to present to your direction. @cmcphillips #metrics Click to Tweet
Unless you can answer "yes" to the questions above, you probably do not need to collect the data, at least in the beginning. This Michele Linn post presents some critical data points that you can collect and use immediately: 4 Google Analytics reports that any content buyer should use .
Where the subscribers come from (eg, e-books, our blog, webinars, co-registration opportunities, etc.)
Exclusion rate per month and sources of withdrawal
LICENSE-RELATED CONTENT: Simple Tips for Analyzing Your Site's Performance with Google Analytics
Content Marketing Measurement Tips
Our measurement processes are constantly evolving. It takes time to track, analyze, and report on performance. But over the years, we've realized how critical this measurement and optimization cycle is to the success of content marketing. Keep these tips in mind when building your measurement process:
Conversions of tracks
Although some vanity indicators (eg, Twitter followers, website traffic) are easy to follow, they are rarely independent of other data. We follow our social growth, allowing us to examine trends and anecdotes about the areas in which we get the most share and social conversations. However, we found that it was more important to track conversions for e-mail subscriptions, topics of interest, and records for a CMI activity such as Content Marketing World. This helps us adjust our content marketing plan and we are confident that we respect the interests of our readers and our expectations, which certainly contributes to our bottom line.
Although some simple parameters are easy to follow, they are rarely independent of other data. @cmcphillips Click to Tweet
CONTENT APPEARING TO HOME: Intelligent (and less intelligent) ways to use vanity parameters
Collecting Actionable Measures
Collect only the data you want to use and can act. For example, years ago we created a key performance indicator document that allowed us to track month-to-month growth in areas such as our email program, our website, and our website. social channels. After a year of review of these key performance indicators, the CMI team reassessed these parameters and made a significant change: we now only follow the most exploitable measures, for example and recordings from # 39; events.
Discuss with peers in the industry and learn from them
At the beginning of our efforts to measure content performance, we focused on growth in specific areas – social subscribers, e-mail subscribers, and so on. But we found that this did not take into account everything CMI does on each of these channels each month. And we did not capture the conversions of our tweets, articles and emails delivered each month. After listening to the presentation of Andy Crestodina at Content Marketing World and read his articles we set up a better follow up of the objectives. Now we can see not only the activity that engenders commitment but also those that convert. We rely on many industry peers and CMWorld speakers for their continuing education and advice.
Be prepared to adapt
At one point we realized that we were following opt-ins by email, but that we were not doing anything with this information. We have refined the process to examine the deliverability of emails, exclusions and completed profiles – all areas where we can take action to improve the efficiency of our messaging. What you follow over time will likely change, so evaluate your list of measures quarterly, twice a year, or annually to ensure that you are capturing the data that will best answer your key questions. We review our indicators on a quarterly basis to ensure that they continue to align with CMI's objectives as they evolve.
Automated data collection
Think about how you can automate data collection with the help of reports. With the help of our team, we were able to automate dashboards in Google Analytics, Salesforce and our marketing automation system . We can look at these dashboards every week and then every month to update our KPI document. However, if automated data collection is not an option, consider additional resources and team members you can access if you need help evaluating the performance of your content . Since many team members are impacting our marketing processes at different times, assigning supervisory responsibilities for each KPI has improved ownership and accountability.
CONTENT: RELATED TO HANDING: Design for Better Analysis: Five Decisions Web Designers Fail to Establish
Take the time to analyze
It is not enough to collect data and add it to a spreadsheet. You need to analyze the data to understand where the opportunities for improvement lie – and what is the best way to achieve these improvements. For example, if the data shows that our content marketing strategy blog posts all contain a high number of Facebook shares, LinkedIn posts and tweets the best ways to take advantage of these topics perform well on our other content platforms and lead to a conversion.
Measuring the results of your content marketing business allows you to continually learn what your audience likes and use that information to improve. The result? Happier prospects, happier customers and happier management.
What analytics tools and tips help you track and measure the performance of your content?
Do not miss your chance to learn from your peers. Register today for CMI's weekly newsletter to never miss a trick.
Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski / Content Marketing Institute