Content Marketing Starts With Goals


These days, lots of clients are getting more excited about online content. They want to “get out there” and “be recognized.” However, many of these same businesses are unsure how content marketing programs can make a difference to their bottom lines.


The truth is, unless you share your business intentions with your marketing partners, it’s hard for those partners to create an effective program. Of course, no matter which specific targets are in place, all content marketing contains some intrinsic goals, including:

  • Helping potential customers understand you better

  • Creating demand for your products or services

  • Developing trust and preference for your business

However, these universal marketing goals are soft, large, and expensive to track and measure. That’s why Cup O Content so often encourages clients to drill down to more measurable goals. Here are some sample questions we ask potential clients:

  • How do you want to increase understanding?

  • What should your customers understand and why? What will they do with that information?

  • What level of demand do you want to create? What are your sales goals?

  • What kinds of programs can we create to track leads, and how can we assign a monetary value to those leads?

  • How can we measure increased trust?

  • How do you know if a customer prefers you over the competition?

  • Do you know what the competition is doing and what the bar is for outperforming?

Maybe We Should Stop Focusing on Trust, Dependability, and Understanding

While many clients strive for high-level goals (trust, dependability, understanding), many of these goals are actually the early-stage precursors to sales. Marketers used to focus on these kinds of goals because they couldn’t directly associate marketing with sales dollars. Somewhere along the way, many marketers focused exclusively on the emotions that softened sales and gave up on measuring sales altogether.


That doesn’t mean that trust, dependability, and understanding aren’t important–they are–but they are NOT the goal. Sales are the goal, and trust, dependability, and understanding are just ways to warm up a lead. But the focus on big brand attributes can’t be done INSTEAD of converting.


What if You Started Measuring Marketing by Tracking the Sales it Generates?

Sounds obvious, right? But for many marketers, it’s not that easy. After all, 55% of B2B marketers say they are unclear on what content marketing success or effectiveness looks like. And how can we help businesses like yours caffeinate your content marketing if we don’t have goals to shoot for?

If you’re not sure how to get started, here are four marketing goals many clients use to help frame up a content marketing strategy.


Goal: Generate Sales

No matter what else is happening, if you’re not getting sales, your marketing is not working. Some sales take a long time (like selling college choices to high school kids) while others should have a short lifespan (ordering coffee online). Long sales take time and can’t be measured quickly. Transactional sales are fast and easy to measure. No matter which sales lifecycle you’re dealing with, assign a value to a conversion, set a conversion rate goal, and make sure your marketing spends are less than your incremental business.


For example, if a new customer is worth $500 and we want to get 5,000 new customers this year, we are aiming to generate $2,500,000 in revenue. However, if margins are 10%, that means that only $250,000 is profit. So if you spend $250,000 to get 5,000 new customers, you’ve broken even. If you spend $500,000 to get those customers, you’re $250,000 in the hole.

The moral of the story is that you should make money on marketing. While marketing can be an investment, it still makes sense to do the math. How much are you investing? For how long? And when will that investment pay off?


Goal: Grow Web Traffic 2x, 10x, or Even 100x

Most companies have already invested lots of time, energy, and money into a good-looking website. But nice-looking websites are just the beginning. Websites only work if people visit them, and to get people to your site, you need a traffic plan. A site traffic plan can include dynamic content, smart search engine optimization, and lots of off-site content that points to your site, including social media posts, social ads, and search ads.


Goal: Get Better Traffic to Your Site

While more visits to your site are exciting, you also need qualified traffic­–a.k.a., people who are probably going to become customers. With a good website analysis, you can discover who is visiting your site, their age, gender, location, and site behavior. With a little fancy footwork, Cup O Content can set up tracking codes that will even help you measure their interests, family status, job title, and more.


We’ll also be able to tell where good traffic is coming from and increase that stream of visitors. We’ll work to make sure your traffic profiles align closely with customer profiles.


Goal: Capture Visitor Information and Remarket

How do you get website visitors to opt-in? There are lots of popular opt-in tactics designed to capture emails. However, there are also many digital tools that allow you to track website traffic and remarket via ads from LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Google, Tik Tok, Pinterest, Snapchat, and more. You won’t have an email list to reuse, but you will be able to quickly market to website visitors.


Insist on Transparent Reporting Tracks Goals and Progress

One of the most common complaints we hear from clients is their inability to understand digital reports. And having seen some of those reports, we get it.


It seems like some digital marketers go out of their way to make their reports complicated and hard to understand. Cup O Content creates easy-to-understand reports. We create customized analyses for each client based on their needs, goals, and what they want to learn. We will show you what’s working, and what’s not working. We’re dedicated to communicating in clear language–easy-to-understand terms–and explaining what everything means. Cup O Content works hard to make our marketing plans effective, and we want clients to be able to understand how well their investments are paying off. You shouldn’t settle for anything less from your marketing partner.


* * * *

If you’re interested in content marketing for your business, contact Cup O Content with questions. We’re happy to share our approach with you and even give you some free tips, no strings attached. We know one size never fits all, which is why you decide how much or how little content marketing help you want.


Want to learn more about content marketing goals and strategy? Check out these articles from Cup O Content.


Owned, Earned, and Paid Content: The Digital Marketing Trifecta

Digital Kindergarten

Red Flags That Clients Can’t Afford to Ignore

Content Marketing is a Strategy: It’s a Set of Tools

13 Quick Tips to Gain Followers Without Spending Money

Chasing Jargon: Why Can’t We Just Call Them People?

4 Things Millennials Know About Followers That You Don’t

Why Weak Content is Killing Your Business

Why Meta Tags Matter

The Content Marketing Pyramid

The Inconvenient Truth About Content Marketing

What is Content Marketing, Anyway?

Lies Marketers Tell

What is Cup O Content? Content Marketing Resolutions

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