Saturday, 6 May 2017

When Can I See Content Marketing Results?

As much as you probably hate hearing “It depends” in a response to “When will I start seeing the results of my content marketing?”, the simple fact of the matter is that marketers hate saying that even more. Unfortunately, sometimes it is indeed the only true answer.

But if the questions won’t ease up until you receive at least a ballpark estimate, then the answer is more often than not six to nine months. Naturally, there will always be brands that see results before this time and others who will need to wait longer than nine months. Put simply, it depends.
In a time when we have all grown quite used to instant gratification, this answer could be a hard number to swallow. But as common sense usually dictates “Nothing worthwhile is easy.”

What Factors Impact the Time Between Execution of Content Marketing and Its Results?
Two different categories of variables will affect the timeline of content marketing – those you have control over and those you have no control over.

What CAN I Control?
The time and budget you’re willing to invest
Your Goals
Your strategy
How frequently you publish content
How you measure success and failure
How well you promote your content
The level of quality of your content

What CAN’T I Control?
The marketplace
The economy
What your competition is doing

As you could see, while there is a handful of factors you cannot govern, there are many more things that you can. To increase your chances of success and to have a more predictable timeline, you will need to establish a plan for each of these elements.

Here Is What to Do:
1. Choose your specific goals. You are certainly free to use industry standards as a starting point, but no brand is exactly like yours, which simply means that no brand will have the same precise objectives. Choose the goals that will make the most sense for your brand.
2. Evaluate your resources. Be realistic about how much money and time you are able to dedicate to content marketing. If you need to outsource, then do it. Don’t try to bite more than you can chew.
3. Determine your strategy. Again, you are free to research and study the best practices, but your strategy will need to be your own. What has worked for another brand will not necessarily work for you. Think about your specific resources and goals.
4. Consider measurement criteria. Know what defines a win and what constitutes a loss. Any vagueness will make it very difficult to optimize your campaign.
5. Set the publishing frequence. Ensure you post often enough to keep your audiences interested, but not so often that there is no way for them to keep up. Try to engage them, but don’t overwhelm them.
6. Get the word out. All of the best content in the world doesn’t mean anything if there is nobody that knows about it. Post on social media platforms, use PPC campaigns where necessary and create relationships with industry leaders who are able to promote your content to their specific audiences.