How to measure your inbound marketing campaign is a process that should be detailed in a 15-20 page ebook. But my favorite blogs are under 500 words so here it goes. (Remember, “With Inbound Marketing, You’re Building, Not Buying.”)
How to Measure Your Inbound Marketing Campaign: Cost of Labor
Nail this down first. The salary of your marketer(s) or marketing team is what you’re paying to produce results in an organic, content optimized campaign. There may be ad budgets, but more often than not companies that employ inbound marketing are looking for a content driven lead generation strategy that encompasses landing pages, blog posts, ebooks, SEO and social media. All this requires is (the cost of) human capital.
How to Measure Your Inbound Marketing Campaign: Metrics
Companies engaged in online marketing are looking for 4 to 5 things in this order: new customers, new leads, new email subscribers, more web traffic and more social media subscribers. This is the order you want things because each of those things are listed by their monetary value in descending order.
In layman’s terms, this equates to a company wanting more sales, more potential sales, more potential sales, more potential sales and more reach.
How to Measure Your Inbound Marketing Campaign: Tracking
Content marketing and SEO are hard enough. They require oodles of time. But tracking can be the most cumbersome aspect of inbound marketing, especially for small to medium sized businesses who don’t have time to investigate other paid tools or can’t afford to purchase them. Often times these tools do a great job of supplementing your Google Analytics, Webmaster Tools or FB/Twitter insights.
In an ideal world, you would assign a tracking URL for every different channel you disseminate your content on, and even your links that steer traffic from page to page. But you may just be able to get away with relying on Google Analytics’ behavior tab coupled with thorough event and goal tracking.
Find the answers to these questions:
– How many visitors per month coming for organic search and other inbound marketing channels are converting into customers? You can answer this by setting up destination pages/goals in Google Analytics as well as event tracking. Do you have a check out page? Do you have a thank you page after a user makes a purchase or requests a demo? These are destination URLs or goals. Once these are set up, back track their journey in GA to becoming a customer or lead.
– Which search optimized blog posts, keywords or web pages are converting the most customers? You can figure this out by using goal/event tracking as well. Simply filter by source/medium and landing page for each goal/event. This info will tell you which inbound channels are performing best (don’t forget email marketing).
– How many total leads or contact us submissions are your inbound marketing channels (SEO, social media, email, content) producing?
– What is your lead to sale ratio? What is your profit per sale? What is the lifetime value of a customer? These are numbers you can find without Google Analytics.
The most important thing is ensuring that your goal or event tracking is in place and accurately set up. Event tracking requires hard coding but tends to be a lot more accurate in my opinion.
Be sure to include events like email subscribers, video plays, and certain high-value web page views (maybe you have a pricing page or a contact request page). If you include links to such pages within your blog posts, that’s a great time to attach a tracking URL. Try to make your Google Analytics navigating as seamless as possible to find the information you want.
How to Measure Your Inbound Marketing Campaign: Assigning Value, Subtracting Cost
You’ve created content and taken the time to perform SEO and social media marketing. You’ve set up event and goal tracking. Now all you need to do is assign a value to each goal or event, and subtract the cost of labor.
In the same way grocery stores used to struggle to calculate profit margins per square foot, your digital marketing campaigns will be a pain in the ass to define value for each sale or lead acquisition.
All in all this is how you measure your inbound marketing campaigns. At least it’s how you measure it in under 723 words.
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