If you’re reading this post, then you probably already know that content marketing is a crucial strategy for your brand. However, having clearly defined targets and awesome content isn’t enough. Having a plan to analyze your content promotion and track it from ideation to fruition is critical, so you’ll be able to build off of what’s working and refine your strategy.
In fact, a recent study found that 89% of marketers want to prioritize finding ways to measure their content marketing efforts. Are you one of them? If you want to be, we’ll show you how to start.
This post will explore the different metrics that are crucial in determining which parts of your content marketing strategy are worth the work you put into it. It will also help you find the easiest ways to identify and track these metrics.
What it is: Traffic simply refers to the number of visitors to your site through links and searches. It’s important to note and record which pieces of content are generating the most traffic so that you can refine your strategy accordingly.
How to measure: Utilize your Google analytics to see if your website traffic is increasing or decreasing and measure it on a monthly basis.
What it is: While traffic is important, it’s moot if visitors aren’t spending enough time on your site. Bounce rate refers to the number of people who spend less than 15 seconds on your site. It’s not benefitting your brand if you’re bringing in a lot of traffic, yet those visitors don’t spend time on your site.
If your bounce rate is high, you need to examine the quality of the pages they are viewing and quickly leaving, and develop more engaging content and stronger CTA’s (calls to action).
How to measure: Google Analytics will tell you what your bounce rate is, and which pages your site visitors are landing on.
What it is: SEO ranking refers to how high your site ranks on Google or other search engines for ideal keywords. Most people don’t go past page 2 when they are searching for a keyword, so it’s critical that your content marketing plan includes an ongoing strategy to continuously rank higher.
How to measure: Open a new “incognito” window and search for keywords. Make note of where your site shows up in search results for your keywords. Do this once a month to see the progression of your site and it’s ranking. Take advantage of tools like Ahrefs to take note of your best key phrases, and don’t forget to check what your competitors are using, also.
What it is: Lead generation is the process of gathering qualified leads for your brand, so that you can nurture them and hopefully turn them into clients. This is done through a lead capture which gates your best content, an option to sign up for a trial or a demo, or a CTA on your site that lets the lead indicate their desire to know more about your brand.
How to measure: You can look at leads generated in either your Google Analytics dashboard or your marketing automation software. You’ll likely want to both note how many leads you generate per month and how many leads are generated from your different strategies.
What it is: A conversion means that a lead took an action beyond just being interested. This action is usually referred to when a lead becomes a consumer. This is the ultimate goal of content marketing and should be tracked closely!
How to measure: As long as you have the proper tools set up, you can track conversions through your marketing automation platform or Salesforce. You will also be able to report on where that lead originated, so that you know which types of content and strategies are bringing in the most sales.
What it is: Social following is simply the number of followers you have on any given social channel. When people take it upon themselves to follow you on social, they are self-identifying as having an interest and affinity for your brand. Social is a great way to share your content, so the more followers the better.
How to measure: Every month when you are putting together your content marketing reports, record how many followers you have on each of your social channels and calculate the percentage your followers went up or down. This will help you share and build a successful social strategy.
What it is: Engagement refers to the number of people interacting with your content. This can be done in the form of comments, likes or shares. This is a key metric to indicate whether or people like your content and find it valuable.
How to measure: Every time you publish a piece of content, even something as small as a tweet, measure the engagement with that piece of content after it’s been live for 30 days. This amount of time gives you enough time to let the content flourish and be shared throughout the internet before you measure it.
What it is: Inbound likes are pieces of content that link back to your site or a piece of your content. These links improve your SEO and bring new visitors to your site.
How to measure: Monitor your Google Analytics so that you know when there are new sites linking back to you. You can see how many visitors come to your site through these links, so be sure to check in on your analytics frequently.
What it is: Subscribers (as it relates to your content marketing goals) refers to the amount of people who subscribe to get a weekly or monthly digest of your content. If someone takes it upon themselves to subscribe, it shows an affinity and trust for your brand’s content.
How to measure: Every month, check your marketing automation platform and see how many subscribers you gained that month. It’s important to note where these subscribers were derived from, so that you can scale your efforts accordingly.
What it is: This metric refers to the amount of people who receive your marketing email or newsletter and click to read a piece of your content or visit your site.
How to measure: You can view both the open rate and the click through rate on your marketing automation platform or MailChimp. It’s important to keep note of how your emails are performing so that you can mimic your most successful emails in the future.
Are there content marketing metrics that you track that we’ve not listed? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below!