This guest contribution is from Thunder Contents.
Nowadays, content marketing is in its prime.
From major companies to startups, everyone around the globe is doing it. The reason is pretty simple:
It allows your potential customers to become attracted to your company through your publications. Just doing content marketing, however, is pointless, unless you can get quantifiable results.
This means that your results should be measurable. If your content doesn’t translate into palpable results, you might as well not publish it.
In this article, we will give you some ways to measure the return rate of your content.
1. Know what you are measuring
Understanding what you are actually measuring is key.
Content marketing strategies are usually built around developing brand awareness and involve increasing the amount of people who sign up for your newsletters, subscribe to your site or engage with your publications on social media.
While this might not increase sales directly at first; that will undoubtedly happen over time.
This means that your first step is going to be to decide what you want to increase and go from there. In order to know how high your return on the content is, you must know how well you are performing right now.
If you are measuring your investments in followers, for example, make sure your cost per follower is as little as possible, and never over 1$.
If, for example, you boost a post on Facebook for 5$, the ROI of this money should be seen in interactions. If boosting for 5$ got you 2 interactions, your interaction price is 2.50. If the same 5$ gets you 100 interactions, your interaction price is 0,05$. Way better, right?
2. Use the right tools
The best way to measure the ROI yourself is by using two simple tools: Google Analytics and Excel. Just follow these steps and you’ll be on the right path:
First, check in Analytics how many people have viewed your posts or page in the period you want to measure.
Find the Cost Per Click of the primary keyword for all of your published materials. (You can do this using Google AdWords Keywords Planner tool).
Use Excel’s formula for linear extrapolation, as content marketing strategies tend to follow linear growth.
This chart from contentmarketinginstitute.com gives us an idea of regular growth from a content marketing strategy.
Now this might be a bit tedious, so it’s a good thing websites like Spyfu exist.
On that site, you can just enter a keyword and you can immediately see most of the Internet’s use of the word and how much it costs per click. This can help you create content with words that tend to be the most profitable.
This method can surely help you translate your content into direct earnings. However, not all benefits raked in from content marketing strategies are cash-related.
There are other indicators you should look out for, like the ones next on this list. Let's take a closer look:
MORE INBOUND LINKS
One telltale sign that your content marketing strategy is working is if more and more inbound links are appearing. If you are correctly using keywords and publishing in the right places, it won’t be long before sites will have links that lead to yours.
Directory sites like Yahoo charge about $300 a year for this service. Nevertheless, if you have high-quality articles, sites like EzineArticles.com or DMOZ.org will surely direct high traffic towards your site.
SOCIAL MEDIA WEB PRESENCE
Social media can be very helpful when it comes to dealing with content marketing strategies. Facebook and Twitter presence is surely valuable, but what about sites like reddit.com or Digg.com? These sites have something that perhaps regular social media doesn’t. This is the fact that one post can reach millions of individuals that regularly enjoy the site.
You are able to bookmark your content onto these sites, and they’ll return a link to you. When their users check your content and share it with their friends, this link will increase SEO value and therefore increase your possibility of appearing on search engines and other websites.
CHECK THE AMOUNT OF TIME PEOPLE SPEND ON YOUR SITE
another telltale sign that your content is successful is if people spend more time on your site. Directing traffic to your site is one of the main goals of content marketing strategies, so if more people are using your site for longer, you must be doing something right.
It’s also important to be on the lookout for the number of visitors and returnees. If you are getting many more visitors or some of them keep coming back, this means that your content is being shown to others or shared, which also means that you are giving visitors what they want.
TRACK YOUR EXPENSES
To find your return rate, it’s important to know how much creating said content is costing you. It’s worth noting that while content marketing, at first, is not meant to increase revenue; this is its ultimate goal.
At the same time, it’s very important to understand that content marketing rarely gives immediate results.
Internet analysts conclude that, on average, content marketing starts showing steady results nine months after starting your strategy.
Then its value doubles, and a 200% ROI is expected after 36 months. This means that low results in the first few months is expected, and this should not stop you from continuing your content marketing strategy.
CALCULATE YOUR COST vs. BENEFIT
This is perhaps the oldest strategy in the book. Nevertheless, the reason it has lasted so long is that it works. Once you have tracked all your expenses and benefits, it’s time to subtract. Revenue minus cost will directly give your ROI. It might be challenging to know what content is actually leading you to more sales, but it’s a study that will certainly be worth it.
A quick example may be: say you are making $2,000, but paying your writers is costing you $3,000. It’s just not worth it, right?
However, remember what was said earlier. Content marketing is time sensitive, so give yourself some time before you start doing math, or it will give you negative results that have no real relation to your strategy.
SERENITY IS KEY
Content Marketing is all about observation, planning, tracking and doing. So now that we have established that it’s very important (and quite simple) to measure your ROI on published content, let’s start doing it on every post!.
It only takes some observation and a bit of research. Just remember the properties of all content marketing strategies and focus on the long-term goal. Plant your seeds wisely and water them with care; so when the time comes for reaping, you collect the most out of your content!
Content Marketing is all about observation, planning, tracking and doing.
So now that we have established that it’s very important (and quite simple) to measure your ROI on published content, let’s start doing it on every post!
It only takes some observation and a bit of research. Just remember the properties of all content marketing strategies and focus on the long-term goal.
Plant your seeds wisely and water them with care; so when the time comes for reaping, you collect the most out of your content!