When most of us think of when and how marketing analytics is most used, it’s at the end of the process. We just did a thing. Did it work? Check analytics.
But in today’s competitive market, it’s essential to leverage marketing analytics to gain insights throughout the lifecycle of your marketing campaigns. Yes, you need to measure your campaigns’ effectiveness, but you also need to leverage that data to understand alignment of tactics throughout your customer journey, measure ROI, and even use it to predict and inform your future strategy.
If you want to catapult your corporation to the head of the pack, consider these three areas where marketing analytics is not only used, but is critical to your success.
1. Measure Engagement All Along the Customer Journey
As Fool.com’s David Zomaya points out, a marketing analytics tool can assess how well you’re engaging your audience with your brand on their buyer’s journey, measure the return on your marketing investment for each paying customer you gain, and predict which marketing and customer retention strategies will be even more effective in the future.
Image via TechTarget
Which content assets work best to turn casual browsers into engaged prospects? How do you move your prospects to the next stage in their customer relationship – and ultimately, to become customers?
A robust marketing analytics tool can identify these inflection points and provide your marketing operations team with valuable information to help increase your engagement and conversion rates. Here are some metrics to watch:
The Awareness Stage
Whether new audience members come across your content through paid or organic search, shares from friends and colleagues, or their social media feeds, you need to measure how effective the content they encounter is in moving them further down the sales funnel.
Measuring impressions and reach allows you to see how many times people see your content and how many unique views your content generates. However, to determine how effective your posts are in driving further interest, you’ll need to measure clickthroughs to your owned content.
Then, once they’re on your owned content, you’ll need to look at your content’s bounce rate. If audience members click through to your website but leave without interacting further with related content or responding to a call to action, you’ll know that you need to revise that content to drive more interactions.
On the other hand, if a user spends a great deal of time on the page, it indicates that your content connected with them. So, it pays to measure time on page as well.
Finally, measure how successful your content is in driving further interest by measuring conversions. Whether it’s signing up for your email list or downloading an ebook, engaging on a deeper level with your content indicates interest in your products and expertise. Content that drives conversions early on is well worth promoting.
The Consideration Stage
At this stage of the buyer’s journey, your audience members have evolved into true prospects. They’re comparing your expertise, services, and products with your competitors’ offerings.
Metrics you need to keep a close eye on during this phase include email opens, clickthroughs to content you’ve included in your emails, shares, video views, long-form content or case study downloads, podcast subscription, and event attendance.
Content collaboration with your sales and customer support teams can help you improve those types of content to be more effective in moving prospects along their customer journeys.
Your sales teams can provide you with common objections they hear, enabling you to address these objections in future content or revisions. And, your customer support teams can help you create content that demonstrates that you won’t forget about your customers once the sale is final.
Don’t stop there. Partner with your subject matter experts to provide your prospects with in-depth information about how your products work, how they will make your prospects’ lives easier, and how to operate them.
After your prospects have researched all the alternatives for a product that will solve their problem, they’ll be looking to narrow down their list until they arrive at a decision. Product comparisons, explainer videos, and problem-specific case studies are all powerful tools that can help drive them to purchase.
The metrics you’ll want to look at for this stage include requests for consultations, requests for free trials, and of course, actual purchases. With a robust content analytics solution, you can identify which content best generates sales.
As with content for other stages of the journey, you might want to repurpose your best-performing content in different formats to appeal to various customer segments. Then, you can revise those pieces that aren’t up to par to perform better with your purchase-ready prospects.
Marketing analytics aren’t only for measuring how well you’re doing in generating sales. They’re also helpful when you’re measuring your content strategy’s effectiveness after the sale.
Research shows that if your company boosts its customer retention rate by only 5%, you’ll likely enjoy a 25% boost in your profits. Creating content that helps your customers get the most value out of their purchases is an effective way to create loyal customers.
If you provide that information in emails, measure the open rate and time on page once they reach the full article on your website. Or, if you use videos to reach current customers, measure views, likes, and positive comments.
If you do an effective job on your after-the-sale content, you’ll likely find that your happy customers are telling their friends and colleagues about your brand. Look at your number of social and other shares to assess how well you’re creating brand advocates.
2. Measure the Return on Your Marketing Investment
Follow Your Prospects
Today’s marketing analytics enable you to follow each of your audience members from the first time they encounter your brand to their first purchase and beyond. The more data points you track, the better you’ll be able to pinpoint the moment where your content convinced them to trust your brand.
Unless you break that trust, you’re likely to make a sale. For that reason, looking for those inflection points – and creating more of them through compelling content – is an excellent return on your company’s investment. Using a multi-source revenue attribution model allows you to identify those steps easily.
Align Your ROI Metrics with Your Corporate Goals
Secondly, make sure that the metrics you measure align with your corporate goals. Measure the progress your marketing content makes toward achieving those goals. For example, your C-suite might want to expand brand awareness into new markets.
In that case, you might not see many sales the first year, but to your C-suite, metrics that demonstrate engagement in those markets would indicate that their marketing dollars were well spent.
Track Your Marketing Assets’ Production Costs
It’s not only the revenue your marketing assets bring in that impact your ROI. Keep close tabs on the cost it takes to produce each asset.
Identifying areas of overspending that don’t produce enough results to justify investing more in them allows you to streamline your marketing budget. A lean, effective revenue-building strategy will position you as an industry leader in today’s inflationary environment.
3. Use Predictive Analytics to Guide Future Strategy
All the data you’ve been collecting along your prospects’ customer journeys can help you predict future behavior when you use an AI-powered predictive analytics tool to guide your marketing decisions. Whether it’s their pain points, online behaviors, interests, or demographics, these data can help you predict content that will be more relevant to their needs.
Identify Promising Leads
Predictive analytics can also identify your most promising leads. Assessing visitors’ behavior and engagement can help sift the “just browsing” portion of your audience from serious prospects.
Create More Detailed Buyer Personas
This leading-edge technology can also look at audience commonalities, preferred channels, and patterns to help you create more accurate buyer personas. With those fleshed-out personas, you can better personalize content you send their way.
Assess Audience Feedback
Whether feedback comes from prospects or current customers, a tool that can quickly assess their comments and arrive at topics that your content needs to address is worth its weight in gold. Predictive analytics can do just that, saving time for your team’s human members and giving them more time to engage in creative tasks.
Use a Centralized Analytics Solution for the Big Picture
Marketing analytics can make the complex simple when you use a centralized analytics solution that helps you see the big picture. With DivvyHQ’s ability to integrate with a broad range of third-party software, you’ll have everything you need in a central location – a content marketing platform that will help you get the chaos under control.
And there’s more. With robust content strategy metadata management right out of the box, campaign management that can handle massive multi-channel initiatives, and the capacity to plan content across large enterprises, it’s your key to chaos-free marketing.
Even better, you can try it free for 14 days to experience the difference for yourself. Start your free trial today!