Content Marketing ROI: Part 3 | Qualitative Indicators Your Content Marketing Works

Content Marketing ROI: Part 3 | Qualitative Indicators Your Content Marketing Works 507 338 C-Suite Network

by Hana Abaza

via Getty Images

Ask anyone and they’ll tell you that I’m a self-professed numbers geek. But there’s something to be said for the qualitative measures of content marketing performance. Increasing the overall awareness of your brand by providing a great content marketing experience can go a long way toward impacting some of your other metrics and raising the profile of your company and your team. Good content can also be used as a platform for additional exposure through media and PR efforts, that can also boost awareness.

Feedback can come in a quantitative form (consider this: every time someone shares your content it can often be considered an endorsement of you and your company) and in qualitative ways. Listen to the comments, emails and social media communications to see what people think about your content. This is a great place to gauge whether or not they like what you’re putting out there and get additional topic ideas that will hit home.

If It Don’t Make Dollars, It Don’t Make Sense

Content marketing ROI is going to become more important as content marketing platforms become more sophisticated. Like all online marketers, content marketers need to be accountable for meeting and exceeding ROI expectations. Metrics can tell you whether or not your content marketing is performing and guide your decision making, but at the end of the day it has to have a positive impact on your bottom line.

So how do you calculate content ROI? There’s no magic formula. Calculating content marketing ROI is just like calculating ROI from any other channel. Take the dollars invested, including writers, content marketing software, paid distribution channels (yes you can – and sometimes should – pay to distribute your content), etc. Then determine the uptick in sales that resulted from your content marketing efforts, and voila. So, it might look a little something like this:

While I completely made up the above numbers, you can see that once you start to scale this for a larger company, the higher the sales point, the better your ROI will be. The other thing to note, as mentioned above, is the long-term benefit of content marketing. Stick with it, and you’ll reap the rewards of a kick-ass ROI over time.

Answering The Top 3 Questions The C-Suite Wants To Know

So, how do you put this all into a digestible format for your executive team? Trust me when I say they don’t want a print out of your Hub Metrics or Google Analytics report. Start by answering the three questions we talked about at the beginning of the post (I know, that seems like a long time ago).

  1. Is it converting customers?
    Take a look at your lead and customer conversion rates. Be prepared to show your executive team how many leads are getting funneled to your sales team and how many customers have come as a result of your content marketing.
  2. Is it saving us money?
    Take your content marketing ROI and compare it with your ROI from other channels. Provided you’ve hit the mark with your content strategy, you’ll likely see a decrease in the cost per acquisition and overall ROI with your content efforts.
  3. Is it helping with customer retention?
    Is your content helping customers? Better yet – is it impacting customer retention or reducing churn? While this one can be a bit tricky because there are so many factors that impact retention, keeping your customers engaged with you through product and content will contribute toward increasing that retention rate.

Hopefully by now you feel confident in your ability to measure content marketing performance and communicate it to your executive team. In the meantime, if you have any questions, let me know in the comments or drop me a line on Google+ or Twitter.

Click here for Part 1 and Part 2 of Hana Abaza’s Content Marketing ROI series.

Hana AbazaHana Abaza is the Director of Marketing at Uberflip where she combines a metrics driven approach with an unwavering commitment to creating an exceptional brand experience. She has a knack for communicating inspired tech solutions to mainstream audiences and, with more than a decade of experience in digital marketing, she gets results. Hana is also an energetic speaker and contributor to the Huffington Post, Marketing Profs, Content Marketing Institute and other industry publications. Find her on Google+ or follow her on Twitter @HanaAbaza.