How does content marketing affect sales, brand awareness and image? Interview with Prof. Michel ClementDienstag, 10. Mai 2016
Prof. Michel Clement has held the chair for marketing and media at Hamburg University since 2006. His main points of focus include innovative media technologies and business models for digital products and services.
He will be speaking at the Content World conference in Frankfurt in October on how the effect of content marketing on sales, brand awareness and image can be measured. We spoke to him in advance about which problems are generally linked to measuring the success of content marketing.
Prof. Michel Clement, many companies insufficiently measure the success of their content marketing activities. What are the typical errors you frequently encounter in enterprises?
„Principally there are two concrete goals that can be followed in advertising. One is brand positioning, the increase of brand awareness and image. The second, moreover, is profit maximization, a sales related goal.
The big problem with content marketing is that it isn’t clear how strong its effect ultimately is. As a general rule, content marketing isn’t done alone. A whole range of other marketing measures are conducted alongside content marketing. This makes the attribution of effect strength of the individual marketing measures on the formulated goal of increasing brand awareness, image or sales quite difficult. “
If you had to name 5 key performance indicators (KPIs) for content marketing: Which factors would be indispensable?
„There aren’t the five factors. You need to think in advance what is the concrete goal I am using to direct a campaign. Do I want to realize an increase of brand awareness? Do I want to secure a change in brand image? Do I have a simple sales goal?
Key data should be formulated accordingly. Either I set the relationship towards brand awareness, to changing brand image or – and at the end of the day this is the central value – which profit increase is created. You need one factor that considers how the implementation of the campaign will affect profit.“
In your opinion, what are the most important tools in monitoring the success of content marketing campaigns?
„Also in this case it is about which goals I am targeting. If I am targeting a sales goal, I need to set everything it in relation to that. The tools that are implemented need to cover the most diverse ranges in order to evaluate measures. There is no standard tool.
If I want to measure image change for example, I first need to survey the image and make a before/after comparison. On this level there is actually a concrete tool. I can of course measure how often my video was clicked or shared. This however is an indicator that only measures the likeability of the advertising medium and not how many more sales were realized in doing so.
There isn’t a standard controlling tool, rather you need to gather, estimate and edit figures very systematically. This generally isn’t done gladly, as it costs money.“
One current, big trend is marketing automatization, multi-level and channel campaigns that build on each other, depending on user behavior. Do companies need a new system for measuring success for this?
„They don’t need a new system to measure success. The problem is the attribution of effect strength of the individual channels on overall success. If I blast out a campaign via 5-6 channels, it is extremely difficult to attribute if it was the campaign on YouTube, Snapchat or another channel – and the relative, proportional effect strength of each individual channel.
There are a range of scientific and technological processes implemented to ensure the so-called attribution of effect strength.“
Which key focus points of focus will you be addressing in your session at Content World?
„I would like to speak essentially about attribution. I will discuss which types of measurement are available, as well as which processes exist to calculate the relative effect strength of a channel. Primarily it will be about how you can measure the effectiveness of content marketing on sales, brand awareness and image.“