Content Marketing KPIs: Avoid flying blind!Freitag, 15. April 2016
The success of inbound marketing can be measured by a diverse range of content marketing KPIs. Although it is moving in the right direction, several companies still adopt the haphazard principle towards content marketing that even a blind hen will find a grain of corn at one point or another.
What are the three most important KPIs of content marketing that no marketing specialist should ignore?
Can content marketing even sell?
Prof. Dr. Michel Clement, Professor of Marketing & Media at Hamburg University will address content marketing KPIs and at Content World on October 17.
What might at first glance look like a relatively dry subject gains considerable relevance when you bare in mind just how many companies are flying blind when it comes to content and social media marketing. The digital agency, Namics, found out in its study that 85% of companies in Germany and Switzerland run their own content marketing, but only 32% have a matured strategy on how to do so.
An important element of any solid content marketing strategy is of course to be clear how you exactly define content marketing success.
When can I say that I am reaping the benefits of investing in content marketing? Can I expect direct sales? Can I really afford to think of content marketing with regards to its reach and not to consider sales aspects?
No reach, no point
Success can essentially be thought of on three levels. Firstly, the factor of (relevant) reach. Obviously, it doesn’t help much if produced content simply sits on its backside with no direction. The Internet is unfortunately swamped with half-dead corporate blogs and YouTube videos with single digit click rates. The content explosion we are currently witnessing only exacerbates this issue all the more.
Reach is the prerequisite for impact. However, even the best reach doesn’t help you if it passes by your key target audience. Good reach KPIs, apart from the number of unique users per time unit, include also the time spent on the website, the drop rate and general behaviour on the site. This information assists you in recognising whether users are utilising the rest of your web content – or whether they were merely attracted initially, however are not interested in a long-term relationship or connection to your content.
Soft conversion: no customers yet, but soon!
The next level, delving deeper than just reach, are content marketing KPIs that measure increasing brand commitment. This can be achieved for example via soft conversion, i.e. how many new newsletter subscriptions were won via a blog? How many new likes have I received on my Facebook page?
Content marketing KPIs measure to what level potential customers are moving towards your brand, to what extent further information is actively requested. The creation of newsletter circulations plays a decisive role in this, as newsletters facilitate companies in communicating in more of a promotion and product-oriented manner than social networks, blogs etc. enable.
At the end of the day… conversion is key!
It is very clear that first when chat turns to cash are middle to long term content marketing investments justified!
The most important questions that companies need to ask themselves on this third and decisive level are:
- What is conversion for us? At a conference such as Content World, the answer is clear: conversion is a registration for the event. For an online fashion shop, it is of course purchases generated by product links on a fashion blog. For software providers it could be e.g. installations of test software teased as interesting information on a supplier’s website. For Mercedes Benz it was the “My New Employee” campaign featuring German TV star, Christian Ulmen, where initially Vito test drives were arranged via their YouTube channel. The second step was the conversion to actual sales.
- How do I measure conversion? A conference or trade fair can measure for example traffic on content sites (e.g. from an event blog or news page, as used e.g. for CeBIT) that then lead to concrete registration pages and then actually booked tickets. Navabi, an online women’s fashion supplier, measures the success of its Style Curve blog, focussing on how much traffic then lands on the shop site from the blog.
A content marketing KPI system can be constructed in three levels: from measuring reach, to soft conversion, to actual monetisation generated by content marketing.
Prof. Dr. Michel Clement’s presentation at Content World (October 17, 2016 Frankfurt / Main) will deal with this topic intensively and will enable conference participants to set up and/or review their own KPI systems.