We all know content strategy is the vehicle that drives marketing where it needs to go. And like most vehicles, it needs periodic tune-ups and adjustments, a never-ending evaluation to make sure your content is running in peak form.
But if you want the fastest, most powerful engine on the block, you need to put super fuel in the tank – with intelligent, nimble data.
The days of guesswork are over. Running quarterly campaigns and waiting months to see results belong to an obsolete era. In our fast-paced digital world, leads and customers interact with content in real time. By collecting that data, you can respond with that same immediacy, accelerating engagement, lead generation and brand visibility.
With data in hand, you have the power to drive fast – modifying content on the fly, identifying new audiences and targeting them with razor-sharp campaigns. It’s a heady experience, watching your content hit the mark. Once you deliver this high-impact ROI for your clients, you’ll understand just how essential data is to all content.
So what’s the best way to get started? Mapping out your methodology is a smart first step. Let’s look at some of the data you should consider, and how you can track results to put more horsepower in your content.
What (and Who) Is Popular
How often do you look at the data for your blog and social media posts? A lot of people tend to throw up posts and forget about them as they move on to the next project listed on the content calendar. In fact, your social data can tell you a lot about what people are interested in and what they feel is valuable enough to share.
Analyze everything from titles, publication days/times, content categories, authors, comments and shares. Maybe people really like a certain contributor’s e-books and blog posts the most – and that tells you what products or subject matter are driving interest.
Relevancy, Segmentation & Precision Campaigns
By now, we all know that targeted, highly relevant content performs best. Superficial, generic campaigns are marketing dinosaurs. So how can you use data to drill down into precise audience categories?
Start by creating content about a broad topic, and look at the response rates, keywords, comments, shares and other data that come from that. You’ll spot emerging themes and new communities, and create a fresh round of campaigns that address those finer triggers and pain points, continuing the cycle until you’re addressing multiple campaigns with high-impact, meaningful messaging.
Test, Test, Test
If you’re only running one version of your
banner ads, social posts, email subject lines or other content promotions, you’ll never know what could have performed better. Build A/B tests into your campaigns, so you know exactly what
content works and what elements need to be amplified or discarded.
Don’t Forget Offline Content
Don’t think data is just for digital content. Tie your offline efforts into that same overarching content strategy and watch the synergy between the two drive even better ROI. All that valuable online data — popular themes, new buyer personas, top search keywords—can inject more power into direct mail pieces, sales collateral, kiosk ads and even presentations.
Don’t forget to incorporate tracking elements, like unique URLs or individual promo codes into your offline pieces so you can track their performance, too.
In the end, data is about creating momentum. It’s about acquiring the deep insights that let you tweak, design and promote content that customers can’t ignore. Remember, numbers don’t lie. Fuse cold hard data with fresh creativity and you’ll intensify the impact of every campaign – and create a more vivid, memorable brand experience.