Content Marketing Myth 10
No, content marketing must not deliver ‘sales’ to be considered successful. You have a sales deck and a pricing plan to do that for you.
Alright, here’s answering the one question I have been asked a little too many times once and for all. The one reason that most businesses believe that not having content marketing strategy in their growth plan is okay – looking at content marketing from a purely ROI perspective.
The logic here is that if content marketing is not delivering direct sales, it is not a success.
But the truth is that content marketing ‘can’ deliver sales, but it follows a funnel approach that is much similar to your sales cycle. You don’t expect a prospect to subscribe to your product that costs $999 the very first time they’re introduced to it. Do you?
Take a look at this funnel to understand what I mean:
That blog post may not be getting you direct sales. But it is getting your site traffic and getting your brand noticed.
That ebook may not be getting you direct business. But it is helping you build authority in your target market.
That webinar you just hosted may not get you immediate sales. But it did help you get your solution across to a qualified audience.
That case study you wrote may not get you sales. But it does help your salesperson nudge a prospect to take the final step of converting on your product/ service.
If you notice the funnel and the examples I shared above, you will see that content marketing is very versatile. Different content pieces serve different purposes in the sales and marketing funnels.
Does all of it lead to direct sales? No.
But does it make it worthless? Also, no. (Read the above examples again if you’re still confused).
I’m not saying that sales are not important. But there are other metrics that content marketing can have an impact on. Be it the traffic, how you rank on search engines, the engagement your brand sees, your authority in the industry you’re targeting and more – content marketing covers a broad spectrum of goals and hence, you need to measure as many metrics instead of fixating on just ‘sales’.
The best way to do this, as I’ve said before, is define a goal for your content. Identify what you want your content to achieve for you and how you can create content that does that.
Learn to define what constitutes a meaningful conversation for your business. That’s your measure of success for content marketing.
PS. In case you’re forgetting, the whole idea of content marketing is to ‘educate’ before you ‘sell’. If it took you four years to complete your bachelors, I’m sure you can give your audience some time to understand the value your product/ service brings to them!