How to Measure SaaS Content Marketing in 2022 - forget everything you know
If you haven't seen it, it's an amazing course that will get you through everything about blogging and how to grow your business blog.
Right from the start, I heard this in the course:
"Many businesses only focus on publishing more, and don't even measure anything about the blog after that."
It is interesting how many bloggers don't value anything other than the number of published articles.
I have learned by experience that things don't really go that way.
Therefore, I created this guide for you to get the best out of your blog and content marketing efforts.
I will be talking about:
- Why you have to measure the content marketing ROI,
- How you can measure content marketing for SaaS,
- And the 10 most relevant content marketing KPIs that you can't miss out on.
Let's begin with:
Why It's Literally Vital to Measure Your SaaS Content Marketing ROI
To understand why measuring your content strategy is important, you should first understand how content marketing should be done correctly.
Let's summarize it in 5 steps:
- First, you analyze your potential customers and create user personas. Without knowing your target audience and what they expect, you can't reach accelerating growth with content marketing.
- Second, you do thorough keyword research. Without proper keyword research, your article will be nothing more than a word soup that no one knows exists.
- Then, you should have a clear outline. Having headings and bullet points ready to fill will make it easier to turn the keywords into a meaningful article.
- Before you get to measuring, the only other thing you should do is find distribution channels. And along those channels, you will have to build up SEO and get organic traffic, social traffic, and referral traffic.
- Now you are ready to start measuring.
Because unless you do, you won't know which step you have to improve.
And if you don't know what exactly you should focus on, you will either lose a lot of time on the wrong thing, or lots and lots of customers.
Also, if you work on the wrong goals without measuring actual ROI, you might end up with an audience that doesn't bring you anything.
Here is an example:
Let's say that you have a tech startup that provides custom UX and UI elements, and you have a blog to generate traffic and gain customers organically.
What would you write about?
Things that people who might need additional UX/UI elements search for, such as best practices or how to create one from scratch.
You successfully generated some traffic.
So as a content marketer, you kept publishing blog posts about similar topics. The traffic increased each time you published pieces of content, so you just kept publishing...
Until you realize that the traffic didn't turn into customers.
That is because you didn't realize your content lacked actionable items such as CTAs or product positioning that would increase conversion rate.
So all the investment into blogging didn't return as high as you expected...
And now you misled the whole team, and even the investors by showing them increasing traffic, without mentioning that none of those people purchased your services.
If only you had started measuring the actual stuff early in the beginning.
So, how can I measure content marketing for a SaaS?
You have to have the correct content marketing goals to successfully measure blog posts and the success of each piece of content.
Some of those goals could be:
- Trying different positions for CTAs,
- Trying different CTAs for each different type of content (such as guides or lists),
- Getting people to sign up to the email list,
- Getting higher social shares,
- Getting more Product Qualified Leads rather than SQL or MQLs,
- Getting more inbound leads and backlinks,
- Achieving better SERP rankings,
- Trying out different volumes of different types of keywords,
And so on, and so forth.
Then, you should know the difference between Vanity Metrics and Actionable Metrics.
👉 Vanity Metrics measure bulks instead of focusing on valuable specifics.
👉 Actionable Metrics measure actions that bring in money or increase customer lifetime, giving you actionable data about the bulks.
After setting your goals, you can focus on the last step: metrics.
10 Content Marketing Metrics for SaaS
So, these metrics are the best actionable metrics that will show you whether your content marketing strategies are paying off, or if not, where you should focus.
1- Audience Engagement
Audience engagement is found by measuring the number of users engaged with the page they are viewing, and those that bounce very quickly.
In order to increase your audience engagement rate, you should ask them to interact with your content by clicking a certain button, leaving a comment, or sharing it on social media.
Tracking audience engagement can help you determine which types of content work best for you and what your audience perceives as high-quality content that is worth sharing in online communities.
2- Average Session Duration
But what does this mean?
It means that if a user spends less than 3-4 minutes on a blog post, they probably haven't read the whole thing, and they have either bounced to another website or exited.
And this means that they are not likely to make a purchase because they aren't engaged enough with your blog posts.
Writing high-quality blog posts worth all the content marketing efforts will increase the average session duration, leading to an automatic increase in your conversion rate.
Inbound links are when other businesses link your website or content on their websites. This makes your company look credible and authoritative.
As a matter of fact, the more backlinks you gain, the higher your domain authority will get, and the easier you will rank.
4- Bounce Rate
Bounce rate is the number of visitors that left your site after viewing only one page. Those people mostly find your content through organic search but don't get into your sales funnel, because you couldn't engage them enough to dig through the information you provide.
Because it consists of internal links that provide all the necessary information that a visitor might need after they read your first post, it eventually leads to the sales team, if not to the product itself.
A high bounce rate indicates that your content isn't sticky, and you should focus on content creation that actually solves the problem of a reader.
5- Click-Through Rate
Click-through rate (CTR) is the number of viewers that clicked on a certain item, such as an ad or a CTA.
If people only view a page and don't interact with it, they won't get to experience the full customer journey.
Honestly, they might not even be reading.
And it means that they are not interested.
If you have a low click-through rate, you should either retarget the content, or increase the quality of the copy so that you can actually increase your content marketing performance.
6- Customer Acquisition Cost
Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) is the amount of money spent per user to get them to make a purchase.
Even though this metric is not directly related to content marketing success, it can indicate that you are spending way too much on marketing efforts that don't actually get you somewhere.
For instance, you could be spending too much money on promoting your content on social media platforms. At the same time, your main source of traffic is organic clicks and you should actually be investing in search engine optimization (SEO).
You can also play with this metric a little bit, and calculate the cost per view or cost per signup as well to make it more like it belongs to the content KPIs.
7- Customer Lifetime Value
Again, this metric is not directly related to your SaaS content marketing, but it can help you determine whether the signups you get are high quality or low quality.
Customer Lifetime Value is the average revenue a customer brings you during their average lifetime with your business.
Having a low CLV means that customers don't spend enough on you, or they don't stay with you for long.
In other words, it means that they were engaged with your content marketing process and signed up, but the product wasn't good enough for most of them.
8- Exit Rate
Exit rate is often confused with bounce rate, but there is one significant difference:
- Bounce rate calculates the people who only visited one page,
- Exit rate calculates the people that visited multiple pages, and left after a specific page.
This metric can help you determine which of your content campaigns trigger customers to leave your website.
If people tend to exit on the same page every time, even though they searched for different things before, you should probably investigate why that certain page makes your target audience leave your site.
9- Marketing Oriented Revenue
Marketing Oriented Revenue is the amount of revenue that was acquired only by the marketing team, without the interference of the sales team.
Or some companies take the customers that reached sales through the blog as MOR as well.
The comparison between MOR and SOR (sales-oriented revenue) will show you your strength and what your target audience needs to purchase.
10- PQL/SQL/MQL Generated
- PQL: Product Qualified Lead
- SQL: Sales Qualified Lead
- MQL: Marketing Qualified Lead
In other words, PQLs, SQLs, and MQLs make up your total qualified leads, and it is up to you to determine which ones bring the most revenue to your company and focus on that category.
It's not difficult to grow a blog as long as you follow the correct path. Many bloggers just follow the same content strategy they hear from someone else, and stick to it, hoping that it will get them somewhere.
Not all content marketing strategies get everyone to their desired point.
That's why it's most important to measure your content marketing campaigns and decide on what is best for you, with data from your content pieces.