driving profitable customer action. But
to be successful at it, you need to understand what’s working and what isn’t.
Before you start on this path, keep
this message from Content Market-
ing Institute lead consultant Michael
Weiss in mind:
“There is no magic silver bullet.
Remember, this is marketing and it
is organic—it takes time. Traditional
advertising is very hard to measure.
Content marketing is totally measur-
able, but it takes time to get real data.
Unless you are willing to launch a pro-
gram for at least six months, there is
no reason to do anything. You need
time to gather data!”
Once you start a content marketing
strategy or program, you’ll never stop.
Content is a promise to your custom-
ers—make sure you don’t break it.
Return on objective
Sales increase, impact and retention
are just a few of the key measurements
for any return-on-objective (ROO)
program. (I like to use ROO instead
of ROI because it focuses content marketers on the real objectives.) Sometimes ROO can be determined with
one metric; other times four or five
are needed to show an impact on your
organization’s business goals.
ROO measurements come in all
shapes and sizes, and usually include
multiple items to give you the com-
plete answer to your question.
Remember, you aren’t measuring just
for the sake of measurement. The tools
and tactics below are used to directly
determine what a project’s objectives
should be. If you keep that in mind,
you’ll get your ROO.
Here are a few measurement initiatives to get you started:
• Tracking an increase in sales among
those who receive the content program (for example, an email newsletter) versus those who do not over time
• Tracking conversions for online content products (for example, a research
report or ebook) or email subscriptions, and measuring new or increased
sales from that group
• Conducting online readership studies to determine the impact of the
content project, as well as customer
informational needs and trends (for
example, are readers performing the
• Measuring engagement (time spent)
through online research or by using
analytic measures on e-newsletter or
web portal products
what the boss wants to know
When it comes to your content marketing measurement and ROI, your boss
only cares about three things:
• Is the content driving sales?
• Is the content reducing costs?
• Is the content making our customers happier, thus helping with retention?
If the reports you show to the top executives aren’t answering these types
of questions, why show them anything at all? Content marketing is all about
developing content that maintains or changes a behavior. That’s your focus.
devise a strategy
Measuring success should
be part of your overall
content strategy. Here are
some resources on how to
develop that strategy.