We all need to know how the pounds and effort we're throwing into our marketing campaigns are affecting our bottom line. Sadly, proving ROI is tricky business, especially when you're looking at it from a content perspective as it's not easy to track. That's opposed to PPC ROI which is fully trackable, so your company could be thinking to hand Clive the PPC guy an even bigger budget this year. Here's how to prove content marketing ROI to your boss.
How To Prove ROI
Proving ROI all boils down to the marketing to sales funnel efficiency because when you're looking to prove content marketing ROI, you need to be able to track your content's performance all the way through the conversion funnel. To prove marketing ROI, you need a certain number of visitors as it filters down the funnel to a small number of customers. This means you'll have measurable and achievable goals for growth.
In the simplest terms, you need to know the percentage of visitors who are becoming contacts, and then how many of them become leads. You also need to be able to track a customer through each step of the journey.
When you have these percentage, you'll know how many can be nurtured and pitched to before you know how many of this number can become customers.
To achieve this, though, your marketing and sales team need to have the same goals and aims. They also need to be aware of the company growth target and time frame along with the lifetime value of a customer. By doing this, you're creating a common goal which everyone can work towards and it also allows you to have something to analyse performances against.
The important thing to remember is that the percentage of people moving down the marketing to sales funnel increases the closer to sale, so the number required at each stage per month decreases. The upshot of this is, working back up to the top of the funnel, you need exponentially more visitor for a higher number of eventual customers.
Take a look at the below example for a visual understanding.
For a more in-depth look at how this is achievable and how you can build that funnel, read our blog post on the subject.
The Tools You Need to Actually do it
As you can probably tell, all of the above can be difficult to keep up with when trying to track and prove content marketing ROI to your boss. The point is, all content which you create such as blogs, premium downloads, eshots, landing pages and social media posts all need to be posted through something which is trackable. So, you need a software tool which can track all of this for you.
Some of the more popular tools and content management systems that you might already be using include platforms such as WordPress, Buffer, Drupal and more where you're able to track of all these analytics through various means. Your WordPress site can track visits, Buffer will let you know your social performance, SurveyMonkey can monitor yours newsletter effectiveness.
However, simply tracking the analytics isn't enough to prove marketing ROI to your boss. Instead, reports then need to be made which require some additional tools such as Google Analytics, and perhaps Databox or SEMRush.
Juggling one content management tool and a different platform to create these reports requires both plenty of effort and takes up a lot more valuable time. This is why it's more beneficial to consider a tool which can do all of this for you. Marketing automation tools like HubSpot, Marketo, Infusionsoft and Pardot are platforms where it's much easier to track everything for you, including your content marketing ROI down to the penny.
Image Credit: HubSpot
Out of the platforms mentioned, HubSpot is the best at showing you the details of performances of the individual assets of your marketing campaigns. These include the Landing Pages, emails, blog posts, CTAs, social messages, PPC, keywords and pretty much any other components of your campaign. By combining HubSpot with Salesforce or Adwords, you're able to get a much clearer picture of your campaigns and how they actually impact the bottom line.
The End Result
Once you have the all-in-one tool you need, your life gets much easier because you're effortlessly able to prove your ROI. By showing the results to your boss, you'll find it much easier to get budget sign off and do the campaigns you've always wanted to do. This can then obviously be a repeat process because of the tools you've implemented and how easy it is to prove ROI continually.
The more often you're proving it and the easier it is to do, the easier it will be to get budget sign off and do even more campaigns.
Plus, you'll get one over on Clive in PPC. Double win.
However, to make sure your content process is fully optimised, you need the right software and that all begins with the right CMS.
How To Get More From Your Marketing Efforts
Now that you know exactly what to do to prove content marketing ROI to your boss and the tools you can benefit from, you can begin to improve your inbound marketing efforts. Start by boosting your sales and interactions by making sure you're using the best marketing automation software. Download a FREE copy of our Marketing Automation Comparison Guide which contains everything you need to decide which platform is best for you and your needs: