Using Google Analytics to Measure Content Marketing
How to Build the Perfect Google Analytics Implementation for Measuring Content Marketing
Developing an accurate and effective Google analytics campaign that adequately measures online content can be very instrumental in facilitating the attainment of an organization’s predetermined marketing objectives. Effective Google analytics offers tremendous benefits in ways that allows an organization to measure the success of their content marketing strategy against basic criteria which encompasses the effective distribution and consistency of relevant marketing contents, the extent of traffic that this content stimulates and the how well they can spur customers to take desired action that translates into remarkable conversion rates.
While a well-designed marketing content and the meticulous implementation of a practical strategy that is well tailored to set marketing objectives is imperative, the development of a proactive Google analytics would unarguably reposition an organization in ways that allows for a more informed approach towards marketing content that produces tremendous results.
The relevance and applicability of Google analytics to the success of your marketing content cannot be overstated. Regardless of various considerations and strategic inputs that should be incorporated in creating your online marketing content, the application of well modified Google analytics would provide continuous quality monitoring that provides both long-term results on how your marketing content is faring as well as short-term A/B tests that allows you to compare web pages and determine which webpage is more effectual in meeting marketing objectives.
With a proper implementation of a modified Google analytics you can be able to monitor the efficacy of your marketing content while integrating necessary strategies that would help in the attainment of set marketing goals while boosting conversion rates.
Devise a Link-Tagging Protocol & Stick To It!
Undoubtedly, UTM codes offer an exceptionally brilliant opportunity to monitor the success of various marketing content while providing comprehensive insight into some of the most intricate facts about your online marketing content and campaign. UTM which stands for Urchin Tracking Module is a valuable tool when integrated with Google analytics as it amplifies the functionalities of Google analytics in ways that provides an unequivocal insight in a number of ways that includes helping you identify the effectiveness of specific ad contents, its helps you know which social media platforms is most suitable for marketing content, helps identify which Website referrals channels the most traffic to your site, it provides information on the source of traffic and much more.
In simpler terms, UTM tagging refers to codes that can be added to various URL allowing you to track the success of a particular link of marketing content independently. For online marketers this allows them to identify the most imperceptible weakness or strengths of an entire campaign and make relevant adjustments to amplify success.
An illustration that adequately demonstrates the effectiveness of UTM tagging involves developing ad content URL links with marginally different UTM codes that are directed at the same website. While both URL links would take you to my website, when I check with my Google analytics, I can be able to ascertain which of the two URL links has been able to generate more traffic, conversion rates and evaluate overall performance of each ad contents. UTM tagging enables you to measure the effectiveness of a specific marketing content accurately.
For a practical approach to setting up parameters for UTM tagging that gives you credibly accurate information about your marketing contents and campaign, it is imperative that you implement the following factors carefully. Firstly, create a clearly defined hierarchy that starts with broad category while descending accordingly to granular detail. Most importantly, tag your URL links with UTM codes in a consistent design as this would enable you to sort traffic from different sources. Consistency and clarity are important factors when tagging URL with UTM codes as this makes the UTM reportable while making it easier to detect the source of traffic.
A major mistake that can jeopardize the effectiveness of UTM tagging is when you tag internal links on your website. UTM tagging is particularly meant for external links and can also be used on links in websites to redirect as a referral to another website. When you customize links in your own website with UTM parameters, it duplicates visits and conversions, making one visit appear as two visits. This could undermine Google analytics tracking thereby giving incorrect information about traffic and conversion rates.
Build Your Own Campaign Parameters
Tagging external links with UTM codes is an effective way to track external links and monitor the progress of your marketing campaign strategy. Similarly, setting up internal custom parameters can be useful in tracking the effectiveness of the marketing content and can be used to accurately track the efficacy of information based content in creating traffic and conversion rates.
typically, organizations marketing content is not usually straightforward as there are often a substantive amount of online content that seemingly appears to be purely informational, entertaining educative and so on. However, the underlying purpose of this content is to attract visitors and engage them long enough to introduce links that takes visitors to the Call-to-action web page.
If you run a blog or a website, there has to be a significant amount of content based web pages that is purely focused on providing valuable content that keeps visitors engaged. While this is imperative to serve the marketing purposes of the organization, it is important to track how this information based contents are instrumental in propelling traffic to take action on the marketing oriented web pages of the company. This is often achieved by adding links within various information based contents on the blog or website. Also ads and CTA layouts can also be strategically placed in the content to stimulate visits to areas of the website where visitors can take actions.
Creating customized parameters for internal links operates just like external UTM codes and can be very useful in helping you reference the efficacy of these distinctively customized internal links on Google Analytics, just like creating UTM parameters.
Creating parameters for internal links also requires a great deal of consistency as this would provide Google analytics with an unscrambled report that would consequently help in tracking which internal and its associated content is most effective in meeting marketing objectives.
Here are Some examples of custom campaign parameters for content:
Distinctively customizing parameters of internal links is very useful in tracking the effectiveness of the informational content. It is important to stress that not all traffics and conversions are generated by external UTM links. Therefore, setting parameters for internal links would help Google Analytics track the efficacy of various informational content that induce traffic to product page through the links attached to them.
Measure Action from Content with Segments
Grouping or segmentation of content is an additional way to assess the effectiveness of your content using GA. when content is properly segmented, this would provide additional tracking of visiting sessions that allows you to determine specific areas of your page view is most effective.
Creating segment has the distinctive advantage of heightened flexibility that allows you to tailor your tracking to reveal specific target. All that is required is to customize your GA to prioritize specific goals which would in turn provide considerable tracking of data that covers 90 days of users’ interaction with your content (blog/web/email content) while providing relevant information on a wide variety of set goals that encompasses purchase, conversion rates, behavioral patterns, traffic source and many more relevant information that you need to improve your marketing content and meet marketing objectives.
The illustration on how to set up segments and integrate these configurations into your Google Analytics that would enable you track specific areas of you marketing content would be shown below. However, it is important to note that there are many considerations that you would want to track and all are not contained in the manual instruction shown below. The illustration provides some segments that could be automatically added to your GA, however, following the instructions would enable you create your preferred segments to add to your GA for tracking.
User’s Who’ve Converted and Ever Visited the Blog: this is probably one of the most important segments to setup in your GA as it shows the extent of traffic and conversion rates which is topmost priority of marketing content. To setup this segment, you would visit admin in GA and select segments under Personal Tools and Assets menu. Choose New Segment, select Conditions under Advanced and then choose Page, Contains and then add /blog/. This input may be different depending on what the URL of the section of the site you’re trying to analyze. Then choose Goal Completions, Per user, greater than (>) and then enter 0 in the field. Label the segment accordingly.
Sessions with Conversions after Blog Visits: To setup this segment, visit admin in GA and choose Segments from the Personal Tools and Assets menu. Choose New Segment, select Sequences under Advanced and then choose Step 1, Custom Variable (Value 04), Matches Regex and then add .+. Then Choose Step 2, Goal Completions, Per User, Greater Than (>) and then add 0. Label the segment accordingly.
Users Who Visit the Blog, Then Convert: To setup this segment, visit admin in GA and choose Segments from the Personal Tools and Assets menu. Choose New Segment, select Sequences under Advanced and then choose Step 1, Transactions, Per Session, equals (=) and then add 0. Then choose “And” Goal Completions, Per Session, equals (=) and then add 0. Then Choose “And” Page, Contains and then add /blog/. Add Step 2, Choose Transactions, Per User, Greater Than (>) and then add 0. Then choose “And” Goal Completions, Per User, Greater Than (>) and then add 0. Label the segment accordingly.
Incorporating all of these modifications would certainly help you build an astounding Google Analytics while offering tremendously profound insight into the efficacy of your marketing content. These additions would provide extensive tracking that would cover a wide range of marketing objectives such as providing comparative tracking on the ROI of your content efforts against what other marketing channels are engaging your customers.
Implementing segments setting to your Google analytic requires that you have an unambiguous idea of the various elements you want to track and measure just like with content marketing statistics. When you are able to prioritize the various aspect of your marketing content that you want to track, your GA would be efficiently positioned to gather relevant and applicable information that would be instrumental to upgrading the quality of your content.
If implemented correctly, internal CTAs and links to related content resources can be tailored in ways that amplifies marketing content for added value.
Essentially, the customization of your Google analytics is largely determined by the goals that you intend to attain with your site and the expectations of visitors. Tracking behavior and trends on your site would purposefully reposition your content in ways that facilitates the attainment of predetermined marketing goals while creating a balance that adapts content to meet the preferences and expectations of visitors.
Look Past Last-Click Attribution
Content marketing is unarguable a slow-burn strategy as I have mentioned in previous articles. Content marketing is instrumental to the generating revenue and is crucial to building brand equity. However this does not happen instantaneously as it is a gradually progressive process which makes it nearly impossible to measure the extent of influence content marketing has on conversion rates.
The popular erroneous assumption of using last click attributions as a measure of the effectiveness of content in stimulating conversion rates is fundamentally flawed as the impact of content marketing in stimulating customer action is usually long-term. The misguided opinion is hinged on the premise that the interaction or behavior immediately preceding a conversion is the one that ultimately caused it. While this may ostensibly be the case and could be actually responsible in some cases, it still does not provide a clear reflection of what is actually happening and could be misleading.
Google Analytics’ multi-channel funnels tool provides an unequivocal insight into the intricate workings of your content and the entire conversions process which would equip you with an accurate understanding that helps you make more informed decisions.
The incisive measurement capabilities of Google analytics would help you discover the various intricacies involved in the conversion process and how to adapt your marketing content while considering other variables for satisfactory results.
While the general assumption is that the content would be directly responsible for pushing visitors to buy a service or product, the content may only increase the visitors’ curiosity prompting them to look for more content or signup for regular email newsletters.
Last-touch conversion measurement is inadequate because it assumes that the last link before the conversion is responsible for the action. This does not reveal the various pathways that were instrumental in building up the urge for conversion.
Understanding the entire pathway to the conversion would give you a broad and inclusive picture on how customers discover your content, their various interactions with your content and factors that contributed to creating the conversion. This comprehensive view would certainly empower you with an insight that dramatically improves the accuracy of assessment on various stages in the conversion process, allowing you to identify weak links and strong areas in the chain from first-touch to last-click.
Assign Dollar Values to Non-Monetary Goals
This concluding phase requires in-depth analysis that if done correctly, would profoundly facilitate your ability to make strategic decisions that would translate into the realization set marketing goals.
When you have been able to collate accurate data about the various channels of data conversion, you can be able to statistically calculate how much value of an independent non-monetary event
This is aptly illustrated when you know the segment of users who click on any given piece of content, 5% will sign up for your newsletter and of those 5% roughly 25% will convert within three months, and of these conversions the AOV will be $50.00, you can start to get a sense of how much money is reasonable to spend on creating content, acquiring visitors and blasting emails.
When you are able to dissect the entire process into fragments that adds up to the conversion you can detect specific aspects that requires enhancements and areas to strengthen for improved impact.
To expedite the process, set up shortcuts in Google Analytics that will take you directly to any report you’ve created.
Incorporating these setups may seem cumbersome and time consuming, however, having an understanding of the immense benefits of these setups in strengthening and intensifying the efficacy of your marketing efforts would certainly make it worthwhile.