Let me first explain, yes I believe a content marketing strategy can be and should be tied to revenues. The growth of content production continues to boom, with 70% of B2B marketers creating more content than years past. However, only 9% of companies believe their content is highly-effective. In order to know if you content is effective you must measure the value of the content against your returns. The key is to plan it that way from the beginning so here is a step-by-step guide on how to make your content drive revenues:
Step 1 - Understand your company objectives. Your marketing programs are only as good as your ability to tie the results to your overarching goals. Your content plan should be a direct reflection of who you are trying to reach and what you want them to know about you.
Step 2 - Define your personas and build a story for each one of them. Hint, if you can create a theme around your story that can be shared across your content, it makes it much easier to unify the message and the look and feel.
Contact Me to see an example of a cohesive marketing story.
Step 3 - Define the materials (content pieces) you need to help you tell the story. It is helpful to go back to your personas and build a map of what you will need for each at each stage in the lead/sales lifecycle by persona.
Contact Me to see an example of a persona based content plan.
Step 4 - Look at all of your placement and delivery opportunities by lifecycle stage. Remember, early stage viewers may not even know they are interested so capturing their attention quickly and drawing them in, in a matter of seconds is critical. And, make it easy for viewers to “spread the word.” Make it easy for people to share your content. Shared content is three times more likely to get read.
Step 5 - Look for ways to re-purpose content across multiple channels. Don’t just publish a blog post and hope people find it. Share your blog post across social media channels with partners, and advertise content to the appropriate audience.
Step 6 - Make your content evergreen by removing dates and allowing it take a life of its own over time. Link new content to older content to reinvigorate it.
Step 7 - Balance the give and take. Content is designed to be educational and in the early stages you need to give more than you take but as you move through the lifecycle you can begin to ask for something (information) in exchange. The further you go in the lifecycle and the more they engage, the more information you can request.
Step 8 - Track! Track! Track! Only 21% of companies say they are successfully tracking their content programs. Going back to beginning where I mentioned only 9% of companies believe their content plan is highly effective, this is because most companies are still not tracking their content through to the customer value. At a bare minimum you should be tracking:
Visitors to all content pieces
Where are the visitors coming from?
What are they doing next?
With the right technology you should also be tracking all the leads collected by content piece and call to action.
With marketing automation and CRM you should also be able to track: Original lead source, campaigns across the lifecycle (influencing campaigns), support materials viewed, won/lost opportunities by campaign and revenue against cost of the campaign.
My name is KC DeKorte-Cox and I am a demand generation marketing expert with over 15 years of experience focused primarily on helping businesses with marketing and sales alignment strategies aimed at driving growth. I help design marketing and sales programs that scale by leveraging the power of technology, specifically CRM and Marketing Automation.