How to Earn Revenue from Content Even When Traffic is Declining

Content marketing has the power to deliver profits. Organizations that see it only as a required cost center are missing the real opportunities that great content experiences can deliver. With the right strategy and execution, companies will absolutely see revenue growth. That’s true even if traffic is declining.

But what’s the secret to driving sales with content? We’ve got some ideas to share that are actionable for any enterprise content team.

Does Your Content Strategy Have a Clear Path to Revenue Growth?

Content for content’s sake isn’t going to deliver results. After all, content marketing in every field is at high saturation. You want to be louder than or sound different than all the other noise. So, what’s the best way to do this?

A path to revenue growth is how you should be thinking, and that starts with ensuring your content strategy maps this as an objective.

Making Content Part of Your Revenue Growth Strategy

In B2B sales, buyers are eager to learn and engage with content. Interaction with sales professionals is happening less, and their desire to consume content is becoming greater. That means you need content for every stage of the buyer’s journey so that content is directly contributing to your revenue.

Your audience has questions and challenges. The key to winning their business is answering these with consistent, relevant content optimized for critical keywords.

How Do You Attribute Content to Revenue?

In determining how to attribute content to revenue accurately, you’ll find both challenges and opportunities. It’s not a perfect science. It requires different technology tools and a defined process that records vital content analytics and makes them easy to aggregate and understand. Something to keep in mind is that content’s ability to drive revenue is not reliant on traffic, so seeing declines isn’t necessarily an indication of this.

Some ways to streamline attribution include:

  • Map out the buyer’s journey and include content that addresses every stage to use in nurture campaigns.
  • Assign unique and tagged call to action URLs from content so that if a user converts from that page, you’ll know about the referral.
  • Track leads from gated content offers to determine if that content triggered their conversion.
  • Look at the referrals from your landing pages to determine which type of content drove it—social media posts? Blogs? Emails?

The world of attribution is sometimes messy. You won’t always know what content led to revenue, but the more data points you can track, the better.

The Role of Sales Enablement Content in Revenue Generation

Revenue from content isn’t just driven by lead generation ebooks or thought leadership blogs. Sales enablement content plays a big role in making a sale, but it looks different than pure content marketing.

Sales enablement content is material that sales reps use during the sales process. It can be a whitepaper or blog, but much of the time, it’s more product-specific. It is meant to be used when the buyer is past the awareness and consideration stages. They are ready to make a decision.

Examples of sales enablement content include:

  • Case studies: Content like this verifies that your solutions work from a third party.
  • Product specifications: These sheets are all about the technical aspects or components of a product.
  • Demonstration videos: This content shows prospects how to use your product.
  • Comparisons: Your solution isn’t the only one, so delivering a fair comparison with competitors can help them choose. Speaking of…we just launched a report comparing content marketing platforms.
  • Industry-specific one-sheeters: These reference guides speak specifically to a sector’s challenges and the specific ways your company can address them.
  • Presentations or pitch decks: Make these interactive and personalized to ensure they send the best message, resulting in winning the business.

Revenue from Content: Continue Post-Sale to Cultivate Upsells and Loyalty

Once you have a customer on board, you should continue to nurture them with more great content. Continuing to build the relationship will foster loyalty and could include additional sales opportunities.

Your content plan should include pieces that are customer-focused, such as:

  • Knowledge bases to answer general support questions.
  • Community forums wherein customers can connect and discuss best practices.
  • A library of “how-to” content in multiple formats (i.e., video, static images, and text), as people learn differently.
  • Webinars and live stream events that talk about emerging trends in the industry.
  • Exclusive content regarding new products or solutions.
  • Use case summaries that expand a customer’s perspective on the many ways to leverage the product.

Does a Decline in Traffic Spell Disaster for Revenue Generation?

Even if you do everything right and have a defined strategy, you still may see declining traffic. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean that you are losing revenue. Quality is always better than quantity. While traffic is a key metric in content marketing, it often needs context.

If you see a decrease in traffic to your site, compare that to other metrics like time on site, bounce rate, and conversions. If time on site is increasing and bounce rate is decreasing, you likely aren’t hurt by an overall decrease in traffic. After all, traffic that comes to your site and has no intention of exploring what you offer isn’t very valuable.

What’s the Future of Using Content to Drive Revenue?

As you can see, generating revenue via content occurs in every phase of the customer’s journey. As a result, it’s an ongoing dynamic that has the potential to deliver consistent returns—something you won’t necessarily find just using paid advertising channels.

But what does the future look like in this area of content marketing? Here are some final thoughts:

  • Emphasizing the customer experience: The customer experience is critical to content and customers’ consumption of it. They have high expectations that digital interactions will be fast and intuitive. Thus, you need to ensure that your website isn’t lagging on this. If it is, no matter how high-quality your content is, they won’t stick around to explore it.
  • Understanding buyers is more important than ever: Your audience is constantly evolving, and the pandemic demonstrated that flexibility and adaptability were vital. Some segments of your customers have completely changed the way they buy and seek information. It’s critical that you understand this and continue to revisit your personas to stay relevant.
  • Helping, not selling, is the future: Content that’s all about the sale, your product, and your company doesn’t earn you revenue. Customers have little tolerance for this now. Instead, leading with education and a desire to relieve their pain points is what will grab their attention.

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