Content marketing has innumerable benefits. It increases your brand’s authority and visibility, helps your site rank higher in search engines, attracts new social followers and can be used in a variety of other marketing channels.
But for the hard-nosed marketing budgeter, content marketing is annoying. Ultimately, the success of a campaign must be determined by the cost it took to implement against the measurable benefits it influenced—in this case, the number of conversions it influenced.
Because only a fraction of content marketing’s power can be measured in terms of converting power (that is to say, customers who read a piece and immediately converted rather than customers who converted indirectly because of a long relationship with the brand nurtured by that content), the true ROI of most content programs is elusive. Nevertheless, content is a highly efficient—and some would argue necessary—strategy.
If you’re looking to increase the number of measurable conversions you can get from a content marketing campaign, one the best ways to go about it is through a drip campaign. A drip campaign, which uses an automated series of follow-up emails to entice potential leads, can help you improve (and better quantify) the results your content campaign has on customer conversions.
Point One: A Trackable Lead Pool
The fuel for your drip campaign is email addresses. The more you have, the more potential customers you’ll have to convert. The problem is most people won’t give up their email addresses unless they get something of value in return. Fortunately, content can serve as that value. By prompting your avid readers to hand over their email addresses, you’ll build up your pool of potential leads and send them propelling through the stages of your drip campaign.
This is useful to the marketing budgeter because it gives them a more quantifiable figure. Rather than measuring the number of people who saw or read a given article, they’ll be measuring the number of people who entered a lead pool after reading a given article. If the eventual conversion rate of the lead pool is known, they can calculate the monetary impact of that content.
Point Two: Added Campaign Value
When you start a drip campaign, your priority needs to be on building your brand’s authority. Drip campaigns are all about building a relationship with your customer gradually, and that means giving them repeated value and brand exposure in the first few iterations of your campaign. Content can serve as that extra value and you can use the opportunity to objectively measure your content’s staying power.
For example, let’s say in your second and third drip emails you offer free content to your readers and subscribers. If your unsubscribe rate increases during that time frame, you might want to question your content approach. If those emails have the lowest unsubscribe rate in your drip campaign, you can quantify your content’s effects on new user retention.
Point Three: Ongoing Touch Points
Customers can only convert when they’re interacting with your brand, whether that’s on your main website, a landing page or on a social media platform. Ordinarily, content only offers one touch point—when a user reads your article, they can click a link or fill out a form to be qualified as a conversion. Occasionally, that user may venture to other areas of the site, but those touch points are unpredictable and difficult to tie to the initial content piece.
Drip campaigns give you multiple touch points—as many as you want, actually. Each touch point gives you a new opportunity for conversion and can be tied directly to your content pieces as an origin. This not only increases your total rate of conversion, but also increases the measurability of your content’s impact on conversion.
Ultimately, most content marketers have one main goal in content marketing and one main directive in relation to that goal: maximizing the chances for your content to convert, and accurately measuring that impact. Instituting a drip campaign as a complementary strategy for your core content foundation is one of the best ways to achieve these. Since drip campaigns require minimal setup and even less ongoing maintenance, you’ve got nothing to lose in trying one on for size.