Metrics a must for making the most of content marketing, says Forrester

Latest market research on content marketing strategy shares three key areas of data-driven measurement vital to improving business outcomes

Content marketing strategy
Content marketing strategy

Audience, content and business performance metrics are all vital if marketers want to make the most out of their content marketing strategy, a new Forrester Research report claims.

The Measure Content Marketing for Success report argues that however difficult it may appear, data analytics and measurement lies at the core of successful content marketing. The document aims to provide a blueprint for how marketers can become more effective at it.

The report sets out three main areas of measurement: Content performance, how content drives a specific goal and contributes to visibility; audience performance, how content delivers relationships with valuable groups; and business performance, how content contributes to business outcomes and marketing goals.

The report then details the data-driven insights, sample metrics, and tools and technologies needed to drive each of these three areas, as well as the users who typically excel in them.

For example, content performance requires measuring content across the organisation against channel-specific targets, while core tools to achieve this include Chartbeat, SimpleReach and social analytics. Users who typically excel at content performance are media agencies, and sample metrics marketers should be looking to use for this measurement include typical engagement actions (likes, clicks, shares, views or content downloads).

In contrast, audience performance is about measuring content’s contribution to audience-level performance and relationship and relies on tools such as Web analytics and CRM. Sample metrics include subscriptions, frequency, recency, depth of visits, app downloads and audience quality. Direct marketers are the best users in this area, Forrester claimed.

Business performance, meanwhile, is about measuring content’s contribution to the business’ bottom line through sales and leads, or a proxy for business value, such as brand lift, according to the research firm. Technologies helping marketers achieve this include marketing automation, CRM and brand research, while sample metrics range from contribution to business leads and offline purchase history to brand value.

Users who typically excel in this area are sophisticated B2B marketing outfits, the report authors claimed.

As an example of how brands are using data to improve their content approach, the report flagged Virgin UK’s decision to segment customers by their value to the business and their viewing habits to produce and distribute content that would drive greater loyalty and preference for its services. This resulted in reduced churn and an improved Net Promoter Score.

Related: Marketing predictions 2014: Targeted and more effective content marketing

However, the report noted how difficult marketers were finding it to measure content marketing. Top challenges include linking customer’s content-driven activities to the intent behind them, the spread of content assets across platforms and devices and the challenges that presents to data collection and synthesis, the absence of common frameworks for calculating content marketing ROI, and the lack of focus on audience goals or business outcomes.

Related: Australian marketers ramp up content marketing spend despite effectiveness issues

The latest Forrester report was based on interviews with 13 agencies, marketers and technology vendor companies as well as tapped into several research documents released during 2014.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO Australia conversation on LinkedIn: CMO Australia, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia, or check us out on Google+: google.com/+CmoAu

Signup to CMO’s email newsletter to receive your weekly dose of targeted content for the modern marketing chief.

Read More:

Join the CMO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Supporting Association

Blog Posts

Marketing skills in a virtual world

It wasn’t so long ago that CMOs and marketers came to realise they were under-resourced in managing their rapidly expanding digital activities. In fact, many marketing departments are still today far from optimal resourcing levels, if not noticeably below.

Making Korean brands sexy

If you told someone in the 1980s that South Korean brands would one day supersede many Western and Japanese competitors for innovation, brand management and profitability, they would have declared you insane. But that is exactly what has happened.

Why good leadership starts with leading yourself

Many people first taste leadership when they receive a promotion and find themselves ‘leading’ a team. Over time, the team, and the leader’s responsibility, grows. But do they become better leaders?

Anthony Howard

Executive mentor and founder, The Confidere Group

Smartmobile phones have changed the human life greatly. Nowadays, more and morecompanies are providing best solution for smart mobile pho...

alva christi

In Pictures: 16 great iPhone app battles - Slideshow - CMO Australia

Read more

Interesting to see a big brand like Adobe getting involved in this space when interactive video tools already exist. Interlude's Treehous...

Nedd

Adobe's new interactive shoppable video experience

Read more

Both the elegance and the risk of misuse of NPS lay in its simplicity of collecting the "score". This is why, whilst individual companies...

Pete Nicholls

Against Net Promoter: A new way of interpreting the customer data deluge

Read more

iinet have gone from one on the best customer service providers to as they have grown just another frustrating Telco. As a customer of o...

Disillusioned

How voice analytics helps iiNet hear customer problems on its network

Read more

The interesting question is whether 'campaigns' is even a relevant term any longer. We seem to work in an environment of continuous, omni...

Geoff Brooks

Marketing skills in a virtual world - Customer and marketing relations - CMO Australia

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in