Does Content Marketing Work? The Data Tells You So

Does content marketing work? That’s a big question, isn’t it? And the answer is a resounding “yes!” But what does the data say? And how does it actually work? Check out the rest of this article to find out!

The first question to ask is if your content is actually generating leads and driving ROI

If you are using social media, the answer is almost definitely yes. The data tells us that content has a direct correlation to social shares and increased website traffic. In fact, content is one of the top reasons why people share on social media. The reason why content is so effective is because it is so easy for anyone to consume. If you put out high-quality content, people are naturally more likely to share it. And when you put out great content, people will tell their friends, family, and coworkers about it. The more you share your content, the more traffic you will drive, and the more leads you will generate.

Did you conduct the right market research to determine your target audience?

No matter what type of content you publish, it will only attract your ideal prospect if they are in your target audience. Before you determine what content to create, you need to do some research to determine exactly who you are targeting. This includes things like buyer personas, demographic studies, and psychographic studies. When you have this research handy, you can craft your content to attract and delight your target audience.

Did you write your content strategically?

The most effective content marketing strategies start with a plan. A content marketing plan is a strategic document that outlines your content creation and distribution strategies, so you know where your content is going to appear and how often. You can’t create strategic content if you don’t know where you’re going to place it.

Did you promote and distribute your content to the right places?

As you know, the marketing landscape is constantly changing. You need to make sure you are using the right channels to distribute your content. Are your customers using search engines or social media? Are you using email marketing or paid advertising? If not, you may just be wasting your time.

A content marketing strategy is only effective if it is producing results for your business

If you’re wondering if content marketing works, the answer is yes. Content marketing does work! In fact, the data says so. We looked at data from Hubspot, where marketers shared how they grew their traffic and brands in 2017. The average increase in traffic for those who did content marketing was 43% year-over-year. That’s a huge increase in traffic! Of those who did content marketing, the average increase in leads was 78%. That’s a huge increase in qualified leads!

does content marketing work

Define your goals

You need to set clear, measurable goals for your content marketing campaign before you create your content. Your goals should cover both the short- and long-term objectives of your marketing campaign. For example, if you’re planning to increase awareness for a new product, you could measure the growth in awareness in your audience and social media feed over time. Or if you’re looking to increase your website traffic, you could track the number of visitors and the keyword that they search for.

Determine your audience

When you develop your content marketing strategy, you need to determine your target audience. This is the group of people who will be reading your content, whether it’s online or in print. Knowing your audience will help you understand what type of content they are most interested in reading and will help you create content that matches their needs.

Research your audience

Before you can create a content marketing strategy, you need to know your audience. If you don’t know who your audience is, you can’t craft a content marketing strategy that will attract them. Use the strategies outlined in the first section to learn more about your customers so you can create content that they’ll want to read. Use the Google keyword planner to find the search terms that your audience uses to find your products and services. Pay special attention to your top performing content. Learn more about your audience so you can create content that will make them want to share it with their friends. And, finally, use Google’s interest graphs to understand where your audience is and what they’re interested in.

Create your content plan

A content marketing strategy should start with a content creation plan. This is a high-level plan of what types of content you will create, its format, and its purpose. For example, if you’re creating videos, you will need to plan how many you will create, what type of video they will be (informative, entertaining, educational, etc.), and what types of questions your audience will respond to. The content creation plan will also include the dates by which you will create the content. And finally, the plan will describe how you will promote your content once it’s created.

Implement your content strategy

Your content strategy should already be in place, so start implementing it. Set a content calendar and write your content in advance, so you have something to share consistently. You can either write content yourself or work with a team member who has the right skill set to help you create great content. While the right skill set is important, the right attitude is just as critical. Be willing to learn and change your approach if necessary to be successful.

The right metrics are essential to measure ROI

The number of impressions or visits your content receives is important, but they don’t give you all of the context you need to make a business decision. Metrics are the key to understanding how your content marketing strategy is performing so you can make improvements, if needed. What content does your audience engage with the most? What content did they view in the first place? What content provided your highest ROI? The metrics you need to answer these questions are what we call engagement metrics.

does content marketing work

Customer satisfaction

The ultimate goal of any business is to make its customers happy. If not, you risk losing them to a competitor. To measure the success of content marketing in improving customer satisfaction, ask your customers to rate your content on a scale of 1-5. If you’re able to get a high rating consistently, you know you’re on the right track.

Sales

If you want to know if content marketing is working, you should measure whether you are getting leads and increasing your overall revenue. This is one of the most straightforward and direct metrics that you can use to help measure your ROI. The number of leads you get after you publish your content is a great place to start. You can compare this number to the number of leads you had before you started your content marketing campaign. If the number of leads increases, that means that your content is working!

Cost of sale

Tracking ROI is easier when you have metrics that align with your objectives. If you want to increase the number of conversions, then you should focus on generating more traffic. If you want to increase the average amount of money a customer spends, then you need to look at metrics like CAC, ROI on Ad Spend, and number of orders made per customer or lifetime value of a new customer.

Return on investment (ROI)

ROI is one of the most popular metrics that content marketers use when determining the value of a piece of content. However, you should be careful when using ROI to judge the worth of content marketing and social media efforts. ROI is simply the ratio of the value of all the benefits (or profit) to the cost of your marketing activities. For example, if you spend $1,000 on content marketing, but get $500 in leads, an ROI of 50% will show you that you’ve gotten $500 worth of value for your investment. However, the $500 in leads is not a direct result of your content marketing activities, it’s the result of your overall marketing program.

Revenue per customer

You definitely want to include revenue per customer in your calculation of ROI for content marketing. This metric allows you to determine the profitability of each customer. If one campaign is generating more revenue per customer than another campaign, that’s a better investment than focusing on generating more leads. If you are paying for leads, you need to ensure that the leads you are generating actually convert and pay for themselves. Revenue per customer is a good metric because it takes into account the cost of generating the lead. If you create content that drives more customers to your website, you can use that number to determine your profit per customer.

You need to be able to measure lead generation and ROI at every stage of the buyer journey

The point of content marketing is to establish and nurture a relationship with your audience. If you can’t define and measure key metrics at each stage of the buyer journey, you won’t be able to effectively guide your content creation, optimize it, and analyze the ROI.

does content marketing work

Identify the marketing activity that is generating the most leads

Even if you’ve optimized your marketing campaign for conversions, you won’t know whether your content marketing is working unless you track the right lead metrics. You need to know which of your marketing activities are driving leads, and which are wasting your time and budget. A good way to do this is to segment your audience by their interest and intent and analyze your content’s performance in each segment.

Determine the percentage of leads that become customers

The goal of content marketing is to generate qualified leads. Before you can measure the success of your content marketing strategies, you need to have a way to measure the quality of your leads. You can do this by determining the percentage of leads that become customers. Once you have a way to measure the quality of your leads, you can start to understand the value of your content marketing activities.

Calculate how much profit or loss you made from each lead

It’s incredibly easy to make assumptions about what marketing activities are worth your time and money. And while a great deal of content can attract new leads, it’s hard to know whether or not that content actually converts them into paying customers. Fortunately, there’s a way to measure the ROI of your content marketing campaigns. If you’ve been tracking your website’s lead generation metrics and paying attention to your buyer personas, you can use your data to help you determine how much profit or loss you made from each lead.

Determine the lifetime value of each lead

If you want to optimize your marketing efforts so you’re generating more high-quality leads that convert, you need to understand how valuable each lead is to you. The lifetime value of a lead is the amount of revenue you expect to make from them over time. For example, if you sell a subscription product, the lifetime value of a lead is the revenue you expect to make from them each month. Or, if you’re a B2B company and you sell to a C-level buyer, you’ll want to know the lifetime value of a lead from a B2B buyer to help you determine the profitability of your entire marketing program.

Calculate the cost-per-lead for each marketing channel

Every marketing channel has a cost per lead. Paid search is the most common. It’s also the most straightforward to calculate. You can divide the total cost of your pay-per-click campaign by the number of leads it generated. For SEO, you can use tools like SEOQuake to track the number of visits and conversions for each keyword you’re targeting. For content marketing, look at your top pieces of content and divide the total number of shares, likes, and other engagement metrics by the number of people reached. If you’re not using a tool, you can simply count the number of page visits and conversions for each piece of content you want to track.

Data is the best way to measure the ROI of your content marketing

For instance, you can run a keyword search in Google Analytics to see how many visits your content marketing campaign generated. You can use Google Search Console to see how many times people have seen your content in the search engine results. There are a number of different ways to measure ROI, but the data gives you the most accurate picture of how well your content marketing campaign is doing.

does content marketing work

Data can show you how many people are reading your content

If you publish a post on your website, you can use Google Analytics to find out how many people viewed your post. Did anyone read it in the first few hours? The next day? A few days later? Or did you lose your visitors? Using Google Analytics, you can learn a lot about your content marketing campaign, including why you are losing traffic. This will help you learn how to optimize your content to get maximum results.

Data can also tell you which content is working and which isn’t

If you’re working with a team, you can ask each individual what they thought of each post and how effective they felt it was. Then you can look at the data to determine which pieces were the most engaging. You can also segment your audience by behavior and see how they interacted with your content. Using the data, you can see which types of content they were most interested in and create more of that.

Data can help you determine the time of day your content gets the most attention

For example, in our experience, when we publish a case study, our clients see an immediate influx of traffic. But later in the day, the number of visitors drops. In order to find out why, we look at the click-through rates and discover that most of the traffic comes in between 11:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. It’s clear that our content is compelling enough to merit attention during work hours, when most of our potential customers are at their desks.

In conclusion, content marketing does work and the data bears this out. If you’re not currently using content marketing to grow your business, now is the time to start. Not only will you see results, but you’ll also be able to better connect with your target audience and build a stronger relationship with them.