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Metrics that Matter hosted by Matt Navarra

Watch the replay of our Metrics that Matter workshop with Matt Navarra and find out how to analyze and use your content data.

Sophie Thompson
30th July 2021

In a survey we ran when we launched ContentCal's Analytics features, we found that 100% of marketers previously found it difficult to get a birds-eye-view on their social media performance. This is a real problem!

But, it doesn't just stop at having the right analytics tools. Knowing what to measure and how to use that data to inform your future content and strategies can be difficult. That's why for our third and final Tips, Tools & Tactics workshop session with Matt Navarra, he sat down to explain the whys and hows of gathering your content data, what to measure, and what to do with it. Because let's face it, big numbers look great on paper, but if they don't mean anything, what's the point?

Watch the full replay below or keep scrolling for a summary of what was covered.

While you're here, don't forget to check out the first two parts of this series, Experimenting with Content, and Collaboration & Community Management.

Matt first began explaining one particular topic that can be a sore spot for many marketers: vanity metrics. We've all fallen for them at some point, as they usually produce the biggest results that make us look impressive, but they rarely have any business impact outside of account growth.

Some examples of vanity metrics include:

  • Likes
  • Comments
  • Shares
  • Follower growth

More in-depth metrics such as leads and conversions are more likely to be attractive to the wider team, as they demonstrate how marketing can translate into sales. Unfortunately, we're still in a time where marketers are having to prove their content's worth to senior leaders, so it's super important to also be tracking metrics that make sense to them too.

Of course, you'll want to choose what metrics you track based on what your overall objective is. Choosing likes or shares as an indicator isn't going to help if your objective is to produce sales.

Choose your metrics based on the marketing funnel

Screenshot 2021-07-29 at 16.07.30

Matt suggests that each part of the marketing funnel correlates with a metric that makes the most sense for your objective. So, if you're struggling to figure out what to track, look at it this way.

More top-of-the-funnel content will be about generating visibility and awareness for your brand - getting your name out there. Therefore, the most logical metric to track would be reach, because you can then identify your growth over time.

Stop chasing the algorithm!

The concept of growth hacking is becoming more and more common, but also becoming less and less effective. In simple terms, growth hacking is finding loopholes in algorithms and using rapid experimentation across platforms in order to boost your numbers.

Not only is it not best practice (because you're less likely to be putting out quality content), but it's very short-lived, as there's no one solid algorithm! Being able to adapt and change is all part of the process.

Getting a good return on investment from your content

ROI is simply a way of measuring if what you gain from spending money and resources on your content is worth it. ROI is not always money-focused, and can also mean other things such as driving growth or awareness to your brand.

For example, ROI to someone in a sales environment could mean pushing a $50 purchase over the line from spending $10 on an ad, or for someone in marketing, it could mean growing an account by 1,000 followers from spending money on an influencer post.

Here's the equation which helps to calculate your ROI:

Screenshot 2021-07-29 at 16.08.35

How to get better value ROI

Matt says the key is to take risks! It may not always pay off, but when it does, the returns will be huge.

Here are a few suggestions he made for getting the most from your content:

  • Video: 83% of marketers says it gives them a strong ROI with algorithms working in their favor, and production costs being low. Short-form, snappy videos work best on social.
  • New platforms: TikTok is a great example of a new app which has surged in popularity (2.6 billion downloads) but is not yet oversaturated as people still learn what it’s about. It also means advertising prices on these platforms tends to be lower.
  • Outreach partnerships: The State of Influencer Marketing 2020 Benchmark Report revealed that you can expect $5.78 return for every $1 spent on social media influencer marketing
  • Email marketing: Email marketing has a staggering ROI of 122% - four times higher than any other digital marketing channel

Let your competition guide you

Using social media management tools, you should benchmark yourself against your competitors. Not only does it allow you to make comparisons, but it also means you can have a sneak peek of their top-performing posts and what types of content does well for them. If you're not already doing that content? Time to give it a go with your own spin on it!

You can also use this data to set your own benchmarks and KPIs, so you have a clearer idea of what 'good' performance looks like for you.

...Then use your data to guide you strategy

Having numbers is great, but it's what you do with those numbers that really counts.

Top-performing posts

Looking at your top-performing posts means you can identify patterns, and know which content to do more or less of. It also allows you to get more of an insight into your audience and what they like, which is super important given the new iOS 14.5 tracking limitations - 75% of Facebook users have already opted out of having their data shared with brands.

It's now up to us to find out what they can get the most value from!

Know your audience

Take a closer look at the age, gender and location splits of your audience. It can help you identify which platforms they're more likely to engage with, what tone of voice they'll respond to, and the formats of content they enjoy looking at. For example, if your audience is primarily 18-30 year old women, social media platforms such as TikTok or Instagram might work better for them than Facebook, who have a much older average audience.

Matt also suggests you should go one step further and pay attention to which groups interact with which content. A young professional might spend their morning commute watching videos - from which you'll know not only to post more digestible video content (with subtitles because it's likely they're using headphones), but also what time of day to post. By testing this, you can help form a longer-term strategy based on whether the hypothesis works, and tweak it accordingly. Finding your best time to post is totally subjective and depends on your unique audience!

Test new formats

If you see a particular piece of content doing well, you should capitalize on it! Try out different formats or create an evergreen bank of content that works which you can repost at a later date.

For example, here at ContentCal, many of our high-performing blog posts get turned into Instagram graphics. It's a quick and easy win that doesn't put pressure on you to come up with fresh ideas.

Screenshot 2021-07-29 at 16.11.24

Matt's key takeaways

  • Choosing the metrics that matter is essential
  • Optimize your strategy for this metric
  • Learn to tell a story with data
  • Data is nothing if it’s not digestible. Make sure everyone in your company is clear on what the numbers mean and how you’re using it to tie into long-term growth. Not everyone speaks like a marketer!
  • Think like a scientist, and steal like an artist! If you've got the numbers to back it up, take ideas from other people - it may work just as well for you!

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