Content Marketing: What's the Real ROI?

by Samantha Ferguson on 12 December 2014
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So, everyone brags about the positive ROI they're gaining from content marketing:

  • "41% of marketers confirm content marketing's positive ROI"
  • "The ROI of content marketing has risen 300% over the previous three years"

...But, you're just not seeing it. The problem that you might be having is that the ROI for content marketing is quite hard to measure in specific numeric terms.

In this blog article, we're going to break down the ROI for content marketing to show you what it's really worth.

1. The Super Saver Deal!

Unlike many other forms of marketing, content marketing is usually paid for 'up-front', in one lump sum. Therefore, once you've paid to have content created, it's posted online and can stay there forever, at no extra cost to your business. In this instance it could be stated that content marketing pays for itself in the long run, with the ability to generate unlimited ROI. And the key message here is 'long run'. Content marketing is a continuous process, so although it may not give you the instant rush of leads to your site that say, PPC marketing does, it means that customers will see more of your content and more of you, in the long run.

Studies have proven that 64% of consumers need to hear information from a company three to five times before they believe the message, and the most cost-efficient way to do this is through content marketing.

2. The 2 For 1 Deal!

Content marketing costs 62% less than traditional marketing and generates about 3 times as many leads. So, when you invest in content marketing you're improving your SEO for free!

Regular, high-quality content shows that you hold authority within your industry -- you know what you're talking about and you're here to help others. Content marketing like this improves your SEO because not only do customers remember great content, search engines do too. A recent HubSpot study found that 82% of marketers who blog daily see a positive ROI for their overall inbound marketing efforts.

So, the more targeted content you create, the more customers see of you and that's when they'll begin to remember you. When customers remember your content they start to search for it, and then your SEO increases even further and more people will begin to find you through organic searches.

3. Great Value

If you're a fan of buying social networking ads, on Facebook for instance, have you ever thought of how much money you would lose if everyone decided that as of tomorrow they didn't want to use Facebook anymore? When you place some of your marketing budget in an external site, you are relying on the success of that site to gain ROI. However, when you invest in content marketing, the only company you need to rely on is your own. As content is transferable between different sites and platforms you can post it anywhere and everywhere. So, if Facebook did go down tomorrow, then you could place your content on Instagram, Twitter, or...well, anywhere you want!

4. Buy One Get One Free!

The idea is simple: Buy content marketing, gain customer trust and loyalty for free! Rand Fishkin got it right when he explained content marketing in the simplest of terms:

MOZ image

Now, you can't really measure the true ROI of customer trust, but we can all guess that it's pretty high.

Great content marketing educates customers about your products/services without making them feel pressured to buy, which in turn allows them to feel comfortable with your brand. Interesting content also makes you appear credible, trustworthy, and interested in the needs of customers. Studies show that 78% of consumers believe that organizations who offer custom content are interested in building good relationships with them. That's a pretty high percentage, so you know that if you don't create attention-grabbing content for your customers, they'll only be viewing it elsewhere -- maybe even on a competitors site!

5. Count Your Pennies!

If you really would feel more comfortable having something to measure alongside your content marketing strategy then here's a list of things that you should keep track of:

  • Page Views: Measure how many views or downloads your blogs, ebooks, and whitepapers are getting. You can do this by using a tool like Google Analytics.
  • Video Views: Video hosting platforms like Wistia not only measure how many views your videos have had, they give you a full breakdown of points such as when viewers stopped watching -- this is great for improving your future content by finding out what's engaging, and what's not.
  • Pages per Visit: Tracking page visits can also help you discover how engaging your content is by keeping track of what users look at when they come to your site. If they come to your site to watch a video, and then end up reading a blog article as well then you know you're doing something right.
  • Likes, Shares, Tweets etc.: Measuring how well your content is doing on social media allows you to see how shareable it is. If one week your blog gets 50 shares, and the week after it only gets 10, you know that the previous blog was more interesting to customers and you can write more about that chosen topic.

Although none of the above can give you a clear indicator of how much ROI you're getting, they inform you of what needs improving in order to make your content more engaging and shareable, and therefore increase your ROI.

Final Thoughts

We hope that this article gave you more of an insight into the real ROI that can be gained through content marketing. Although it isn't always measurable in terms of metrics and KPIs, it is measurable in different terms. Content marketing allows you to measure your worth to your customers, and as long as you are worthy to your customers then your ROI will increase.

Let us know what you think about Content Marketing by entering our survey here, and be in with the chance of winning one of five $100 Amazon vouchers!

Content Marketing

Samantha Ferguson

Written by Samantha Ferguson

Thanks for reading! I'm one of the copywriters here at Wyzowl. When I'm not writing, I enjoy walking my dog, struggling through hot yoga classes, and catchin' all the Pokemon.