“Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.” Joe Pulizzi, Founder, Content Marketing Institute.
Why Content Is King
Content marketing is considered superior to other types of marketing strategies because it is evergreen, can drive sales, can build positive brand sentiments, can result in loyal customers, and improve your brand’s SEO. Content marketing sounds too good to be true, right? Well, it isn’t! Content marketing can be incredibly effective but you have to set realistic expectations for your content marketing campaigns.
“It’s essential to understand the difference between content marketing and traditional marketing. Traditional marketing often functions in campaign cycles, which are short periods in which marketing is pumped out in high density. Content marketing takes a different approach: it’s all about long-term consistency of quality and output. The upside is that content marketing is over 60% cheaper than traditional marketing and generates triple the leads if done correctly.” – Takin, Aspiration Marketing.
Elements Of A Success Content Marketing Campaign
Content marketing is unlike traditional marketing in that there is the potential to accumulate sales from a single campaign for months, even years after the piece has been published. Take for example this Best Down Jacket editorial on Wirecutter that features our client Stio. It was originally published in 2016 and still produces sales today.
There are three elements to executing a successful content marketing campaign:
- The content needs to be relevant to the audience and offer meaningful insights.
- The affiliate creating the content needs to be relevant within the target community
- A distribution strategy needs to be in place. Gone are the days of posting a piece of content and expecting traffic to flood to the page without promoting it via email, socials, forums, etc. And remember, content marketing is a passive marketing tactic rather than an interruptive marketing tactic, so you have to ensure meaningful efforts are made to distribute the content.
How To Measure The Success Of A Content Marketing Campaign
First and foremost, you need to have a clear objective for this campaign. From the perspective of affiliate marketers, the objective of a content marketing campaign/paid placement is to drive sales. Yet, immediate conversion rates are not the only metric to evaluate when gauging the ROI of the campaign.
- Traffic by Source/Medium – Using Google Analytics Source/Medium report and the affiliate network dashboard, review the traffic being referred to your site via the content campaign. This metric gives you a high-level impression of the effectiveness of the affiliate distribution strategy.
- Engagement – To understand if the piece of content itself is effective, evaluate the average time on page, bounce rate, and click-through rate. You can request this intel from the affiliate who has published the content and the affiliate program dashboard.
- CR/Lead Generation – The thing to note about this metric is that there are many factors outside of the hands of the affiliates that can affect conversion rates. The conversion or sale occurs on your website, not the affiliates. A shopper may have the intent to purchase when clicking through the affiliate link embedded in the content piece, but fail to complete the purchase due to a poor interaction on your site. Maybe the shopper’s desired size or color isn’t available, maybe their card is declined due to payment processing issues. Whatever the case may be, the conversion rate is not always a reflection of the campaign’s success.
For more detailed guidance on strategizing your content affiliate marketing campaigns contact Clique today.