How to Use Marketing Analytics to Get C-Suite Buy-In for Content Marketing

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Content marketing is red-hot. Not because it’s a passing fad, but because it works. In Hubspot’s recent State of Inbound marketing report, 41 percent of marketers confirmed content marketing’s positive ROI. Like other marketers, you know that content marketing can add real value to your firm’s marketing efforts, but your C-suite is still not convinced content marketing is “worth it.”

So how do you get your C-suite to buy in?

Executives are all about the data and cold hard facts. If you can’t quantify the value of content marketing, they won’t see it as a worthwhile investment. So use the data (and some of your own analysis) to show them how content marketing is positively impacting your firm.

Consider holding a regular meeting — at least monthly — with partners or executives to cover the data you’ve collected and to regularly remind them that content marketing affects your bottom line — and that you can prove it. 

So, what are some of these metrics that you can bring to your team?

Show Them the Website Traffic

In our own experience, we’ve seen a high correlation between website traffic and firm revenue. Intuitively, this isn’t a surprise.

When visitors come to your website, they’re likely engaging with your educational content and learning more about your services, expertise, and past successes. If they find the information they’re looking for and like what they see, you’ll become a trusted source and they’ll come back time and time again.

And when they’re in the market for the services you provide? You’ll be top of mind.

Start by showing your C-suite how a high performance website combined with content marketing can increase firm revenue. Presenting website traffic metrics, especially after implementing content marketing efforts, will show how the traffic (and the content marketing and promotion that is driving that traffic) will help lead to increases in revenue.

SEE ALSO: 4 Metrics to Track ROI in B2B Online Marketing

Include a breakdown on where that traffic is coming from and where the traffic is going to. Are more people coming to your services pages? To your blog? This can indicate what information visitors are most interested in, helping to inform what pages or types of content you should focus on.

Increases in web traffic can directly correlate to increases in revenue. However, because there is often a lag between an increase in web traffic and revenue growth, it’s important that you review the numbers with the C-suite regularly, so they can see how increases in traffic are increasing revenue over time.

Track and Report on Conversions

Conversion tracking helps your firm measure your content marketing return on investment by tracking the actions users take after viewing or engaging with your website and social media content.

Using Google Analytics or another analytics tracking system, you can show your C-suite exactly how many conversions your organization is getting each month. Although the definition of “conversions” can vary from firm to firm, we generally think about it in terms of how many people have provided their contact information in exchange for something valuable.

This could be a Contact Us or RFP form that they’ve filled out, or could be when someone downloads a guide, book, research report, or other piece of gated content. In other words, it’s a measure of how much our contact list is growing. This growth means more prospective clients to nurture.

Showing the C-suite how many new contacts you have each month is another proof point of content marketing’s value. As a long-tail strategy, you can track prospects along the buying cycle and eventually even show how many of those contacts converted into opportunities and then paying clients.

A/B Test Results

Finally, show that you are continually refining and improving your tactics. A/B testing, also called split testing, allows you to study visitors’ behaviors by testing how prospects interact with your website and react to different versions of content.

Test, test, test. Repeat, repeat, repeat. Today, there are a number of tools out there that make running tests on your website simple and most email marketing software have testing capabilities as well. Testing will always pay off, so never stop doing it.

It should be an integral part of your content marketing strategy and an effective way to show the C-suite that you are engaged in getting the absolute highest ROI possible from your content marketing efforts.

What should you test? Almost everything. Test your landing pages to improve your conversion rates. Test email subject lines to see what is grabbing your audience’s attention. Test your website content to see what content or headline visitors are more likely to click on or whether your content is too short or too long.  

If the C-suite is still not convinced, dig deeper. Look at your CMS and see what marketing initiatives captured prospects attention before becoming a client. Are there any trends? Did they download a few pieces of content? Open five emails? Whatever the data is, be sure to collect it, analyze it, and most importantly, show it to your executives.

Additional Resources

How Hinge Can Help

Content marketing is at the heart of Hinge’s flagship Visible Expert℠ program. It is the leading marketing program for delivering greater visibility, growth, and profits. This customized program will identify the most practical offline and online marketing tools your firm will need to gain new clients and reach new heights. 

Content Marketing for Professional Services

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[Ebook] How to Sell Marketing Automation to Your C-Suite

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Author: Dayna Rothman

You want to implement marketing automation, but whose support within your organization do you need to get this done? And what are the questions that each of these stakeholders might ask? In order to implement any type of software, you need the buy-in of key stakeholders, and often these folks reside in the C-suite.

The first step in crafting your business case for marketing automation is to determine who you need to approach and to truly understand what each of these executive cares about. To accomplish this, outline each executive’s individual persona and corporate perspective.

To learn more about how to further develop your business case, download our new ebook Selling Marketing Automation to the C-Suite.

Here are the top C-Suite personas you may want to speak with and their potential perspectives:

The CMO

Marketers should be familiar with the CMO role—and this will probably be your first stop. This person is most likely on board with marketing automation, but that doesn’t mean you won’t have to present your case. What does the CMO care about? As leaders of the marketing department, CMOs are interested in tools to achieve return on investment more effectively. They want to make marketing departments more relevant and effective so that they can drive more revenue. Additionally, CMOs are often the number one customer advocates within the organization—so customer experience will play into all decisions. Luckily, marketing automation can help in all of these areas!

The CEO

Your CEO is a key executive and likely has the most concerns regarding implementation of new tools and technologies. CEOs are accountable to stakeholders, like the Board of Directors and other executives, so all decisions have to be well-vetted. CEOs tend to have a long-term focus, which means that they are often focused on the big picture vs. small details. At the top of the CEOs list of priorities are financial growth and outpacing the competition—so keep this in mind as you build your business case. Focus on showing him the value and growth potential marketing automation can bring your business.

The CFO

Next on the list is your CFO. More than any other executive, this persona is concerned with the bottom line. He is driven by analytics and ROI. The CFO’s primary goals are to manage expenses, ensure profitable growth, and contain potential risks. When speaking to her, be sure to highlight how marketing automation helps measure effectiveness of your marketing programs, enabling you to increase revenue by reducing waste and optimizing expenses.

The VP of Sales

VPs of Sales are focused on sales growth and profit. They care about making quota, expending market shares, and developing their teams. When appealing to the VP of Sales, be sure to focus on how marketing automation will increase the effectiveness of both sales and marketing. Talk to him about how lead quality will improve and sales can spend more time selling and less time prospecting.

The CIO

CIOs lead the technology strategy at your company. That means they connect innovative tools with business needs. The CIO wants to make investments that support the business, and she also wants to innovate and evolve infrastructure to meet future needs. At the same time, the CIO wants to avoid reckless spending on every platform available. Be able to demonstrate why marketing automation is a sound investment.

Encouraging the C-suite to believe in the benefits of marketing automation is a pivotal part of implementing the solution. For more details on how to build your case, download our new ebook Selling Marketing Automation to the C-Suite!

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[Ebook] How to Sell Marketing Automation to Your C-Suite was posted at Marketo Marketing Blog – Best Practices and Thought Leadership. | http://blog.marketo.com

The post [Ebook] How to Sell Marketing Automation to Your C-Suite appeared first on Marketo Marketing Blog – Best Practices and Thought Leadership.


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