If you think that garnering “likes” and monitoring how many times your green content is shared across social media platforms is the Holy Grail, then think again. Consider that it simply means that your customers perceive it as accessible, engaging and useful, but it may not actually be moving the needle and contributing to your brand’s bottom line. Research indicates that marketers are not confident in the effectiveness of their content marketing almost half the time, but that it is a medium or high priority for 90% of survey respondents.
Keep in mind that there is a difference between ROI (return on investment as in pure monetary investment) vs. ROE (return on engagement). ROE is much more meaningful specifically because it includes the extent to which the content is captivating and engaging to your audience. And, even though investing in engagement can be time consuming, it’s also relatively inexpensive to do. Your audience certainly won’t grow exponentially overnight, however you will be building a reputation and relationships that will reap long-term benefits. According to Eric Dayton, creative director, SightWorks, a Portland, Ore.-based digital marketing agency, ROE helps brands build bigger, more robust communities by bolstering loyalty and creating tighter brand bonds that will lead to preference and increased sales.” He offers these engagement tips:
Encouraging, informing, promoting and rewarding customers and contacts to “like” or share your content is a simple technique that increases your fan base. And, it provides a high degree of tracking and accountability. According to Dayton, “Good content marketing shows an understanding of your consumers’ problem/solution which, in turn, generates a deeper connection…” He adds, “It’s a highly effective tool for generating brand conversions because if one influencer among your brand’s fan base provides public approval of your green product, her friends will jump on the bandwagon.” With so many people looking to adopt a greener lifestyle, there is tremendous opportunity to post softly branded content, to pull customers in. Monitoring “Likes” on a monthly and quarterly basis will help identify growth trends which can be used to fine tune related web advertising. Example: a global leader in healthcare, lifestyle and lighting, Philips engages consumers by posting shareable content, including videos, featuring easily implementable energy saving tips and techniques.
Web Traffic Analysis
Discovering who your brand’s fans are and where they are surfing on your site can be enlightening. Those who are diving deeper into pages and content are more likely to be interested in buying. By analyzing your own web traffic (search, direct, social, referral) breakdown as well as that of your competitors, you can better understand your customer’s preferences. As Dayton explains, “Most companies fall down because they just give product info but are not helping the consumer with additional product knowledge. For example, Home Depot’s web-based “how to” section includes options for “advice,” “how-to videos,” and workshops. They use their brand story to deepen engagement. These are the customers that are more inclined to become brand ambassadors.
According to Dayton, “Pay close attention to participation volume—how deeply visitors are actually interacting with your content via reviews, blog comments, and newsletter sign ups. It proves that you’ve engaged them all the way through the funnel and you’ll begin to see the positive results. ”Seventh Generation has several indicators of content interaction on its site. These include: a place to maintain a customer profile, sign up for an RSS feed or newsletter to get monthly tips on eco friendly cleaning, (7 Gen Nation).
Measuring the level of influence or authority that your content commands will provide far greater value in the long run. What ways is your content contributing to the bottom line?