Inbound marketing is certainly a key focus for businesses in 2015, but how can you make sure that your efforts are producing the ROI you’re expecting? We take a look at some ways to measure the success of your campaigns.
What is inbound marketing?
Let’s start with the basics. Inbound marketing is the practice of earning users’ attention in the market, often through the production of quality content that piques their curiosity and has them coming back to your brand time after time. Instead of hunting consumers down, you give them consistent reasons to interact with your brand, be it through useful tutorials or humorous images.
What should you track and measure?
Setting up meaningful metrics is the key to ensuring you can effectively monitor the success of your campaigns. Decide what each campaign is intended to achieve: brand awareness, increased traffic, a better database, more sales...the list goes on.
Bear in mind when you set up tracking that metrics are often meaningless if taken by themselves and out of context. For example, an increase in traffic should be compared against things like bounce rate and time spent on site to get a true picture of how users interact and where improvements can be made.
Here are the top things worth tracking on your site:
Conversions, both hard and soft,help us to understand what users want and how they behave in the lead up to a sale. Conversions are usually defined as a definite interaction with the site, whether that be a newsletter signup, quote request, whitepaper download, call back request or many other things. Most webmasters and marketers will use Google Analytics to measure the success of various goals and events on a website, and to determine where users drop out of the conversion process. It’s this that enables us to test and make improvements.
Social engagement can also be a good way to bring in new business, so set up social tracking to monitor performance. The reach metric will tell you how big your overall audience is, so it’s important that that number continues to grow. But the million dollar question is, are your followers and fans engaging with the content you’re providing?
Posting content that starts conversations and debates and encourages shares will ultimately be the most successful way of obtaining brand loyalty and advocacy. You need people to enjoy what you’re giving them. Trial different types of content to see which get the best response, and then develop your plan around that. You can also use tools such as Topsy to find out what people are saying about your brand
The trick with measuring traffic, as we have stated above, is to look at it alongside other metrics. Generating huge amounts of traffic is only beneficial if a certain percentage is interacting and converting. Think about individual pages on your site and what purpose they are intended to serve, then analyse how people are engaging with them. If your product listing page has a high bounce rate, it suggests users may not be able to find what they’re after easily. If your contact page has a high bounce rate and conversion rate, however, the indication is that people are able to convert easily without having to look around to get what they need.
If you’re using a tool such as Google Analytics you can drill down to each page and discover how it is performing, then set up A/B testing to improve conversions.
Get the full picture
Tracking a range of metrics on your site is all well and good but unless you can create a picture from the various pieces of the puzzle at the end, it is of little value. Use your insight tools to follow consumers’ journeys from initial contact to purchase – that way you can learn more about them and ensure you’re giving them the personalised messaging that so many of us now expect.
Set up funnels to help you analyse where people are dropping out of their journey and use remarketing, for example, to draw them back into your site.
Live and learn
Marketing is a constant learning process, and setting up effective monitoring will allow you to develop your understanding of customer behaviour and continuously improve your site and product offering. This, in theory, will lead to more sales and more revenue and ultimately help you to build a loyal following.
Contact Whitefish Marketing with help to making your digital marketing successful using metrics
Feel free to contact our friendly team on 01303 720288 to assist you with any queries you may have.