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How to measure the impact of content

image image imageOctober 21, 2020 image image3 min. to read
How to measure the impact of content

Every organization has a unique set of goals — some humble and commonplace, others wildly ambitious. Your team works hard each day to make these goals a reality, pouring their time and talents into the multiple tasks that will get your organization there. 

But without clear metrics, some organizations will never have a clear sense of whether they’re closer to reaching key goals. These metrics — often called Key Performance Indicators, or KPIs — can serve as a beacon, allowing your organization to keep tabs on progress.

When it comes to content, there are four common KPIs that can help you determine where your organization shines, and where improvement is needed. These tips can help you establish and analyze these critical measures of success.

Content should prompt membership growth 

For membership organizations that promise to provide valuable resources, public facing content is a potential member’s first impression of your offerings. Whether someone encounters your organization through a blog post, video or one-sheet, content can serve as the first step in a potential member’s journey.

Rather than filling your content with blatant ads, it’s best to take a more subtle approach.Blog posts could include a call-to-action that plugs your newsletter. From there, your newsletter can pull engaged subscribers into a deeper relationship with your organization. 

By treating content as an important stage in a potential member’s overall journey, you’ll be more likely to drive conversions over time.

Content should drive social media engagement

If your content rarely receives comments and likes on social media, it’s time to reevaluate how you’re promoting it. 

There are two possibilities for low engagement on social media:

  • The content doesn’t align with your audience’s needs and interests
  • The social media copy doesn’t position your content as well as it could

In the first instance, you might need to examine your larger content strategy and make adjustments. But the second possibility is an easier fix. To make the most of social media, experiment with short, snappy copy; hashtags; and compelling angles that entice people to click.  

Content should attract website traffic

If you’re investing time, energy and resources into your content, it’s important your audience actually engages with it. Your website traffic is a crucial indicator of whether your content is finding an audience online.

Social media marketing, media mentions, newsletters and other digital marketing tactics can help promote your content and drive website traffic that grows over time.

Along with steadily growing traffic, don’t overlook related metrics. Effective website content will capture an appropriate amount of time spent on a page, along with low bounce rates. 

Content should climb search rankings

While your top priority should be addressing the end reader’s needs, your content strategy shouldn’t overlook search engine optimization (SEO). This process anticipates Google’s ranking algorithm and formats content accordingly. 

The first few spots in search rankings command most website traffic, so nabbing them is critical to your content’s success. Best practices in SEO include:

  • Using keywords in your headlines, subheadings and body copy
  • Making sure your website loads quickly
  • Using numbered lists and bullet points
  • Optimizing your title tag
  • Earning backlinks from reputable websites

As you produce quality content that uses these SEO tactics, you should see your rankings improve. Be sure to monitor these metrics on Google Analytics or a similar SEO tool.

Your content can drive significant benefits for your organization — but to achieve these results, you’ll first have to create systems for measuring them.

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Heather Nolan is a marketing specialist at Sidecar. A former journalist and social media manager, Heather lives in New Orleans with her husband, son, and grumpy rescue dog.

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