Business-to-consumer (B2C) marketers have been on the content marketing bandwagon for quite some time. But as we move further into 2016, we are likely to see more business-to-business (B2B) marketers jumping onboard, as well.
Almost half of B2B marketers in 2015 said content marketing was one of their most effective lead generation tactics, and 70 percent of companies in a different study report that content marketing is viewed as a way to reduce overall costs.
This increased return on investment has a lot to do with a renewed focus on search engine optimization for these brands. Google and other search engines increasingly reward valuable content with premium placement in search results, and companies are finding that organic search generates higher-quality leads and sales.
You know marketing professionals take a strategy seriously when they start talking metrics. According to Starfleet Media’s 2015 research on B2B marketing:
- More companies are measuring sales conversions from content marketing than ever before
- 80 percent of companies measure the number of leads generated from content marketing
- 72 percent have found a way to measure the quality of leads that come from content marketing efforts
Content creation takes the long-term view
The most popular reason for this increased investment in B2B content writing is lead generation. However, “raising brand visibility” comes in a close second, with 90 percent of respondents in Starfleet’s report citing it as one of their top marching orders.
Savvy digital marketers should also consider the long-term evolution of online content. With more users adopting ad blockers and more brands rolling out sophisticated SEO strategies, companies offering the best content will win the battle for online visibility.
Unfortunately, even as more B2B brands are exploring the opportunities provided by these strategies, content marketing officers are becoming quickly disenchanted. The percentage of marketers who rate their organizations as effective content creators is down 8 percent from last year, according to a recent Content Marketing Institute (CMI) report.
B2B content marketing should be measurable
Another recent study from MarketingProfs and CMI revealed that only about 21 percent of all content marketers are successfully able to measure the ROI of their advertising—a shockingly low figure.
According to experts, however, one major part of the reason digital marketers have such difficulty determining their ROI is because they don’t know which metrics they should be examining. With this in mind, here are some key points you should focus on when measuring the success of your B2B content creation efforts:
- Open rate of emails: If you have a company newsletter or subscription plan (and you should), you are able to track how many people opened the email messages you sent. You may use the email open rate as a gauge for your blog content writing success, as well. By using the blog title as your email headline, you can use the open rate as a means of determining how much of a hook that headline really is and how interested people are in reading it.
- Conversion rates: You want to be able to convert your website visitors and blog content readers into quality leads and eventual customers. The more anonymous readers you have turning into track-able leads, the better you are doing with your content marketing strategy.
- Shares on social platforms: People sharing your digital content on social media serves as the ultimate compliment. It shows that they found what you had to say so interesting and useful that they would recommend it to their friends. If you’re getting social shares, you’re likely doing good work with your content creation.
- Exit rates: If you wish to have any chance of developing meaningful relationships with your readers and turning them into customers, you need to keep them on your website. The exit rate allows you to track how, when and how quickly users leave your website after viewing your content.
These four metrics go far beyond the rudimentary stats (such as page views) and give more insight into exactly how successful you are as a content writer.
ProPRcopy offers professional and affordable content writing services to businesses and organizations engaged in both B2C and B2C online marketing efforts.