Measure is the final step of the 7 Step Content Marketing Lifecycle. It’s the all-important activity of analyzing and acting on the results of your content marketing activities.
  • Are you reaching your company goals and assisting your franchisees in reaching theirs?
  • What are the evidences that you are getting a return on investment (ROI) for your social media and content marketing efforts?
If you’ve followed the lifecycle steps, you’ve defined your content marketing goals, set up key performance indicators (KPIs) and benchmarks, identified your target audiences, created content specifically for them and published your content according to your planned editorial calendar.

Now, measuring engagement will help evaluate your success.

KPIs Should Attach to Specific Goals

Business goals for franchise social media and content marketing generally focus on building brand awareness, increasing online traffic, driving leads for franchise development and increasing sales at the local franchise level. KPIs that align with all those goals include:
  • Website visits, page views, length of stay
  • Video views on YouTube or your website
  • Document, eBook downloads
  • Lead generation, conversion rate
  • Online sales, order volume, order frequency
  • Length of sales cycle
  • Retention rate for consumers
  • Inbound links
  • Social shares, likes, follows, comments, pins, tweets
  • User signups for email newsletters, webinars, podcasts
  • Participation in contests or polls, online and offline
It’s important to define the data metrics that are critical success factors for your franchise, and not measure everything just because you can. Determine those factors that add the most value for you and your franchisees, put in place the KPIs that best represent your stated goals and track those analytics in order to measure progress.

Measurement Programs Abound

Google Analytics offers extensive website analysis and reporting–analyze visitor traffic and track user behavior–which is essential in measuring content marketing success.

Additionally, most social networks have built-in analytics or insights for tracking engagement.
  • Facebook’s updated Insights page offers a comprehensive view of your page’s likes, reach, visits, posts and demographic analysis.
  • Twitter analytics starts with your timeline activity for the last 30 days. Provides such data as new followers and unfollows, clicks, favorites, retweets, and replies, including reports on the engagement rates for each of your updates.
  • LinkedIn’s analytics for company pages displays the most recent updates with number of impressions, clicks, new followers and interactions to each update. Other metrics include follower demographics and an overview of total engagement.
  • YouTube is the world’s second largest search engine and provides data on the number of video views, demographics, traffic sources, likes, favorites, comments and sharing.
  • SlideShare’s Go PRO analytics provide data on such KPIs as number of views, audience favorites, tweets, downloads and Facebook likes.
  • Google+ Ripples tracks the reach of publically shared posts within Google+ in real time. If your company’s Google+ page links back to your website and you use Google Analytics, a Google+ card in your dashboard will provide number of new visits, unique visitors and page views. AllMyPlus.com, is a free tool that provides you with analytics data such as the +1’s, followers, comments and other data points.
Compiling relevant data from all of your social platforms will give a complete picture of how your content marketing initiative is performing. If you are publishing content across numerous platforms, you will find that technology becomes a necessity as the number of platforms you are publishing to and monitoring content on grows. Specialty software like Cadence9’s c9 prime can make aggregated metrics available at the touch of a button.

Measure Regularly and Evaluate Constantly

It’s been said that all the measurement in the world is useless if you don’t make any changes based on the data. By evaluating your data on a regular basis you can:
  • See what goals are being met
  • Confirm what is moving you along in the right direction
  • See where you may be missing the mark
  • Prove marketing effectiveness to your franchisees
Since social moves at the speed of a tweet, constant monitoring keeps you on top of what people are talking about, sharing and wanting. You’ll know which content is generating engagement and be able to create more of the content your audience responds to, increasing your overall content ROI.

Measuring and evaluating engagement is crucial to being able to make content and social media marketing decisions based on real data, not speculation. Once you’ve started analyzing the impact of your content, you’ll be able to optimize your strategy for higher engagement and better leads, keeping you and your franchisees happy with your digital marketing efforts.

How often are you monitoring your social media engagement and measuring the success of your content marketing?