There aren’t necessarily standards for what defines success in online marketing. What you’ll measure depends on your goals and initiatives, particularly when it comes to content marketing. Furthermore, the numbers alone don’t tell the whole story. You need to decipher the context around the numbers in order to really know what’s working and what’s not. Here’s advice from our experts on how law firms can improve their strategy by measuring content marketing ROI.
Measuring Content Marketing ROI
ROI refers to return on investment. This is a metric used to see if a strategy is actually working and bringing in enough revenue to justify the current approach. Determining ROI is essential for marketing, as it’s a good way to see if what you’re doing is actually paying off or if you should rethink your strategy.
Make Sure Everyone is on the Same Page
Shared objectives are key, but objectives alone without analytics will not get you far. Begin with a common understanding of how your team will know if they’ve met their objectives. Then talk about what numbers can measure those objectives. Make sure the numbers are meaningful and have purpose.
Compare your content marketing strategy to a sporting event. Everyone on the team knows you want to win the game – but how do you do that? What strategies are you going to use? Furthermore, is everyone clear on how many points each action is worth? You want to ensure that not only do you avoid losing – but that if you win, you know why, and you can replicate your strategy next time.
Identify and construct shared objectives with clear, unambiguous measures of success. Only after you’ve gone through that process can you determine the right analytics and design helpful reporting or dashboards.
How to Create Shared Success Metrics
So how do you go about creating these success metrics? We suggest focusing on a concept called objectives and key results (OKRs). OKRs can help you get to the measurements that matter. The process involves three steps:
1. Set Objectives
To begin with, you need an actual shareable objective. Well-defined strategic objectives talk about how content will deliver value and the timeframe it will happen within. You can set objectives by month, quarter, or year (or even multiple years), but you need a realistic understanding of when the objective should be met. Keep in mind that circumstances and assumptions may evolve so it’s ok to be flexible.
2. Define Success
Remember that you want to unambiguously determine success. To do so, you need key results that measure your objectives. For example, say your firm’s strategic objective is to drive a 25% increase in sales YOY. The marketing department has set a shared objective of providing 10% of all net new sales opportunities within the year. That’s shareable, but you need to dig further. For this particular example, you might set key results such as increasing new leads with content by 20% or decreasing the cost of advertising rates by 15%.
3. Create Analytics
It’s unlikely that a single tool can tell you if you’ve met your key results. Rather, you should consider designing a measurement pyramid. In this model, the top tier represents your strategic goals and key results. The following supporting tiers describe the analytics you need to track to know if you’re making traction on those goals. More specifically, the middle tier should have KPIs and the lower should be focused on the data and metrics that can help you improve your process to reach those KPIs. To properly complete the pyramid for our above example, you probably need to review online analytics, budget statistics, a digital asset management solution, and marketing automation reports. All of these tools together can provide the necessary context behind the numbers.
If you’d like to learn more about how to leverage analytics in-depth, check out this complimentary eBook: A Law Firm Guide to Digital Marketing Analytics.
Ways to Boost Content Marketing ROI
1. Update Content Regularly
Repurposing content and updating existing content is an amazing way to boost ROI. For one thing, working with what you already have is a very low cost way of creating content or refreshing your content strategy. Getting into a routine of updating content is beneficial for search engine optimization and will also ensure your audience has the most up to date information.
2. Promote Your Content
Sure you may have a few people who subscribe to your blog and read it regularly. But most users are going to be unaware that you’ve posted new content. Share your new and existing content on your social media, email, newsletters, client alerts, pop ups, email signatures, etc.
3. Do Research
Survey your audience, conduct a competitive analysis, or ask clients directly about what content they’d like to see. Getting insights from your audience is a great way to figure out what type of content will perform best.
If you’re looking at your ROI and want to know how you can improve it, consider A/B testing. Put out two identical pieces of content but change one item. This will test whether that variable is effective at marketing to your audience. Over time, you’ll learn an exact formula for creating high performing content.
Measuring content marketing analytics helps your firm understand the effectiveness of your digital programs and campaigns, but it takes understanding your business and knowing how to measure results to transform data into action. If you need some help measuring the right metrics or creating meaningful reporting, our team can offer guidance. Contact us today for a free consultation.
This post has been edited and republished from Dec. 15, 2021.