The goal has to be ROI. So here’s how you measure it.
The goal has to be ROI. So here’s how you measure it.
Measuring success has long been a marketing problem, especially for small and medium-sized businesses. If you don’t have the resources available for massive data analysis, you can’t be sure whether the budget you spent on your website or digital ads will actually provide a positive return.
Fortunately, it’s far from impossible. If you’re wondering how to measure your inbound marketing efforts, consider focusing on these 5 metrics.
1) Social Media Engagement
Inbound marketing, as a philosophy, depends on building a community among your audience. Rather than pushing promotional messages, you seek to provide regular, relevant content that your audience wants to engage with. Naturally, a great way to measure your success in this undertaking is to take a close look at your social media engagement rates.
Measuring success on social media deserves a post in its own right. But for the purposes of measuring your inbound marketing success, engagement is your most crucial metric.
In analytics platforms such as Facebook Insights, you can get a closer look into how many of your followers liked, shared, commented, or clicked on your individual posts. Drive up your engagement, and you will increase the chances of a large audience seeing your content and getting one step closer to becoming a lead.
2) Web Traffic By Channel
Your website should be the center of your inbound marketing efforts. Direct your audience here, and you can nudge them toward becoming leads and customers with enticing offers and relevant content.
Not surprisingly, then, web traffic should be a core metric in measuring your inbound marketing success. Put simply, you cannot reliably convert inbound leads if your audience never even has a chance to fill out a sign up form.
Beyond the pure web traffic numbers, though, this metric also allows you to dig a bit deeper. As part of your inbound marketing efforts, you likely use a number of channels to improve your web traffic. Social media, SEO, and email may all be part of the equation. Breaking your traffic down by channel allows you to analyze the effectiveness of each effort and adjust accordingly.
3) Lead Generation By Source
The above metrics are relatively basic – here we get into the fun part of measuring inbound marketing. Without generating leads, your efforts won’t be successful. So naturally, you need to know just where your leads are coming from.
Ideally, you should track exactly that using tools like Facebook’s and Google’s conversion pixels. You can also set up goals in Google Analytics, allowing you to track the conversions from each tagged URL within the platform. Simply tag your URLs according to their source, and watch the leads visits from that URL generate.
Once you better understand which sources generate the most leads, you can adjust your priorities to maximize your success. For example, if you find Facebook bringing in significantly more leads than Twitter, you can shift resources to enhance your efforts on the network.
4) Landing Page Conversion Rates
In addition, you should also keep a close eye on your lead conversion rates, both site-wide and for individual landing pages. It should be understood that a large majority of your visitors will not convert to leads; in fact, only 2.35% of web visitors convert to leads across industries.
That said, your conversion rates can tell you quite a bit about audience preferences. You may find some landing pages to convert better than others, which could have something to do with the content on the page itself or the other designed to prompt your visitors to fill out a sign-up form. Tracking your conversion rates by individual landing pages allows you to single out the highest performers, and focus your efforts on them or similar examples.
For example, an webinar introducing the benefits of the product you sell, gated behind a landing page, may far outperform an introductory guide aiming to accomplish the same goal. Given the data, you may conclude that your audience prefers webinars to written content, or that the language you use to promote the content was more effective for the former.
5) Lead to Customer Conversions
Finally, never underestimate the importance of measuring your lead nurturing efforts in determining your inbound marketing success. Generating leads, of course, is only part of the equation. If you can’t reliably turn these leads into customers, all of the previous metrics will mean little in terms of actual success.
In fact, one study found that brands who nurture leads receive a significant increase in sales opportunities compared to those who don’t. Tracking your conversions allows you to get a better understanding of how your nurturing efforts are performing, and whether you need to make improvement in order to maximize your inbound marketing success.
Adjusting to Inbound Marketing Metrics
As suggested throughout this post, of course, measuring your marketing success is not enough if you don’t glean actual, actionable insights from the data. If you see your numbers underperforming industry benchmarks, you need to make adjustments that can improve your success and ROI.
Using the above metrics, you can gain reliable insight into whether your inbound marketing efforts are actually successful. But even more importantly, you get an understanding what works and what doesn’t, allowing you to improve your efforts over time. For help in measuring your inbound marketing, and making adjustments to make sure you receive a positive ROI from the philosophy, contact us.
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