It’s a question that is top of mind of for all C-Suite executives: “What’s the return on investment of content marketing?”
The problem is it can be a tricky question to answer.
“Debate rages in all corners about content marketing and its ROI,” says Sarah Mitchell, Director, head of content strategy for Lush Digital..
Sarah is very comfortable with the question of ROI because she knows that if the content has a purpose that’s related to a business objective it can be successful.
But the problem is, “So many people just come at it from a creative standpoint,” says Sarah.
However, Sarah got started in content marketing with a business perspective in mind. She says when you know what business results you’re trying to achieve content marketing is not only more successful but also measurable.
For instance, a really well-written press release can help hit business metrics.
Sarah says that she helped the owner of a new tire company get backlinks and exposure with a magazine-style article to capture more attention.
“It got picked up about 700 times and they [received] about 200 backlinks… and most of the time they printed [the article] word-for-word,” says Sarah.
The reason content marketing works is “Everybody’s looking for content. Traditional media has reduced the number of journalists they’re using,” says Sarah.
However, not every company understands how branded content works and why it can be so powerful.
Sarah’s top tips on how to communicate the value of content marketing
1. Start with a documented strategy: be sure to tie your content marketing to business objectives and then report back on the success of your strategy.
2. Determine the business metrics: maybe it’s more people signing up for your email list or downloading a PDF buying guide.
3. Move customers along the path to purchase: create content that has a consistent voice and message. Make sure each piece created helps to take them closer to the final purchase.
4. Define what success looks like: be sure that everyone understands what success looks like so that you can manage expectations for your strategy.
Mentioned In This Episode
Learn more about Sarah Mitchell
Sarah spent 20 years working around the world in the software industry, starting as a coder and ending up in sales. That’s where she came to appreciate the need for great marketing devoid of spin and when Sarah first started creating her own content to help make her quota. After leaving IT, Sarah worked as a freelance journalist and editor. She started Global Copywriting in Perth, Australia in 2008 and has been working exclusively in content marketing since then. Sarah is the Australian Editor for the Chief Content Officer magazine and a regular contributor at the Content Marketing Institute.