There’s money in the math, according to a new study, which says content marketers can multiply their revenues by embracing data as a supplemental tool.
Research from The Aberdeen Group suggests that revenue can increase five-fold for marketers that use marketing data to inform their content strategy. That data can support revenue in a number of ways: increasing lead generation and customer acquisition, tracking performance and analytics across multiple channels, and improving the personalization of content to customers.
Without data, those efforts are largely flying blind. But the task of gathering useful data is yet another obstacle for marketers to clear. Many rely solely on their own internal data to measure performance, which is a good starting point—but there are limits to that data’s contributions.
Every brand can benefit from additional data resources to optimize content marketing efforts and provide a better blueprint for digital success
Piecing Together a Data Roadmap
Marketers seeking data are in luck: There are numerous great sources for gathering data to inform content marketing, and many of them provide unique insights into certain aspects of content strategy.
HubSpot, for example, offers a wide range of marketing insights that stretch far beyond content itself. KISSmetrics, meanwhile, can be a useful tool for improving the supporting features around your content such as colors, styles, even delivery methods and timing, all while keeping a focus on conversions.
Big data warehouses can be helpful in driving larger decisions regarding content marketing strategy, and this data can be purchased and used on its own or in conjunction with internal data. And for up-to-date data support that even goes as far as predicting behavior and content performance, seek out a real-time data warehouse.
With all of these data resources comes a warning: Be protective of your data, whether acquired in-house or from external resources. Developers, collaborators, and other business partners may attempt to gain access to your data when working on app developments and other projects. It often seems like a beneficial situation, since that disclosure of data can improve your own product. But as Ad Age points out, your own data is a unique compilation of information, and sharing it with outside parties opens up the potential for that information to be used in ways that are ultimately detrimental to your company, including the potential for that marketing data to make its way to your competitors.
Putting Data to Work
Once your data is generating insights, the steps to execution should be relatively clear. Follow guidelines for personalizing and delivering content; improve your website, calls-to-action, and other similar recommendations. Invest in social media paid marketing, modify your keyword strategy used for search marketing, and focus on maximizing social engagement through social media and timely posts informed by real-time data.
The bigger challenge is making sure your data is strong enough to drive those insights, and that’s what often gets overlooked. When your data insights are being addressed and the results still aren’t coming in, it’s time to re-examine two things: your execution, and the marketing data itself. If you feel confident in the content strategy you’ve employed based on your data’s recommendations, you might not have great information driving that strategy. Consider adding new data resources or swapping out ill-fitting information to generate more relevant, action-oriented insights.
Only when marketers have the right ingredients will they be able to realize their content’s potential.