Alternate ways to measure content effectiveness.

Posted by on Oct 21, 2013 in Content Strategy
Alternate ways to measure content effectiveness.

Marketers spend hours upon hours staring down analytics, blazing the trail between click and convert. While we don’t deny this to be necessary exercise in ROI validation, the efforts can be futile (and the conclusions skewed) if the content purpose isn’t clearly outlined at the start.

For instance, direct marketers are quick to question content effectiveness based on the volume of leads generated or products sold. These directives can conflict with the expectations of content marketers who, with very few exceptions, should not be tasked with turning a quick dime.

Great content will ultimately increase revenue, but the path between words and numbers isn’t always clear. Here are some alternate goals that may not be measured overnight, but will ultimately help justify the budget and resources if expectations are clear from the start.

Goal #1: Broaden Brand Awareness

This strategy is ideal for startups and new products with little or no brand equity. The goal is simply to pique interest, and draw new visitors into the brand experience. You might cast a wide net with an SEO-worthy content strategy that blends search, share and all that jazz, or simply target a few influencers who may spread the word on your behalf.

Common characteristics of this strategy:

  • Power packed with keywords
  • Tied to paid media initiatives (PPC, traditional)
  • Hyperlinked to exterior sites
  • Contains references to influential partners

Measurement benchmarks:

  • Increased views
  • Increased shares

Goal #2: Build Influence & Brand Equity

Content marketing is a great way to build credibility for established brands that strive to maintain a leading position in the marketplace. This is especially important for personal brands, innovators, authors and the like. These content strategies should be blended with reach tactics, like those listed above, yet topics should be more targeted in nature to create “ownership” of a certain niche category.

Common characteristics of this strategy:

  • Authentic, authoritative tone
  • Professorial point of view
  • Highly polished writing
  • Laser-like focus on one industry topic

 Measurement benchmarks:

  • Increased audience engagement
  • Increased scores on influencer sites like Klout.com
  • Increase in press/blog mentions
  • Increase in qualified leads

Goal #3: Elevate Value Perception

For upscale brands with price points that proudly live above and beyond the norm, content serves an educational purpose to help audiences understand the process behind product or service development. This information, demonstrative of quality, helps buyers feel as though the increased cost is a worthwhile investment, thus increasing conversion rates at point of sale.

Common characteristics of this strategy:

  • Industry-relative insight – competitive comparisons, before/after
  • Extensive hyperlinking between sales copy and content
  • “Did you know?” content that defines brand process

 Measurement benchmarks:

  • Decreased bounce rates
  • Increased closure rates

Ultimately, if you expect your content to transform into revenue overnight, you might consider investing paid media with hard-hitting incentives first, then supplementing with content to support this strategy. Either way, Muse can consult on a right-fit content plan that meets specific business goals. Content marketing is an ongoing a journey, not a destination, and we’re happy to help you blaze your own path between content development and ROI.

What do your numbers say about your objectives? Drop us a line for a complimentary assessment of your content analytics.