Let’s face it: You’re either a right-brained or left-brained content marketer. If you’re a right-brained marketer, then the term “audience data” probably makes you squirm uncomfortably. But if you’re a left-brained content marketer, you eat things like audience data for breakfast. Either way, you want to be seen online.
Here’s the thing: Right-brained marketers generally depend upon intuition to solve problems and process information, while left-brained marketers process information in a data-driven way.
It’s important to know your brain’s direction because, for better or worse, your brain decides without you. If you become more aware of how your brain naturally wants to work, you more easily connect audience data to content marketing strategy. (If you’re not sure which brain you have, here’s a helpful infographic from Marketo.)
Right-brained marketers: I feel you. I am you. But we must understand how to land our flying-unicorn perspective on earth to find practical ways to translate audience data. It may not be as fun as flying that unicorn, but when you see how easy and seamless the data can come together you’ll realize why logic is sometimes the only way to get creative.
Left-brained marketers: You’re grounded in solid footing. You love analyzing the applicability of ideas. But don’t let all of your logic go to your head. It’s important to let your heart and intuition do a little work, too – even when it comes to data analysis.
Regardless of your brain orientation, incorporating audience data into your content marketing strategy is crucial. For example, if I was only writing for fellow right-brained marketers, I would simply post an emotional photo with a link to a Craigslist ad, not bothering with all of the important facts.
But since I know that you’re all super-smart, logical marketers who thrive on research and facts, I better make sure you know how to find the right audience data by the end of this article. This, in turn, will help you to start a blog with a solid content marketing strategy that brings in more customers.
You’re a smart marketer, so I feel silly even telling you this. But if you don’t have Google Analytics, head over there pronto.
Because, hear this: Once you get Google Analytics going, you won’t be able to stop. It may become a minor obsession to get nerdy with the new vs returning behaviors of your readers. By studying these patterns, you can learn more about audience behavior, how to acquire new readers, and what makes your current ones tick. (Full disclosure: You may go down a few rabbit holes, such as, “Why are 611 people from Malaysia currently reading my website?”)
Here are a few other ways to measure success with Google Analytics time spent on your page, referral traffic, and conversions. Referral traffic can inform your content marketing strategy by showing you where you’re winning on social.
You may think you’re doing awesome on social media. But you don’t know for sure. (That’s OK. We won’t tell.) It’s often hard to know what filtering photos on Instagram does for your business (other than provide some fun). To get a solid sense of how to measure success on social media through Google Analytics, click the Acquisition tab. You’ll know if your promotional efforts or social media marketing is working if you see a lot of social media sites under Source. If you see that you have a ton of referral traffic from Facebook, but barely any from Google Plus, you’ll know where to focus your future efforts. You also can use other analytics from social media sites, such as this robust analytics tool from Pinterest.
Soak in the knowledge of your “acquisitions,” absorb the information, and then slowly step away so that you can simultaneously execute Step 2.
Successful content marketing requires intention and purpose behind everything you post. The best ways to hone these things? Listening on social media (it’s not as creepy as it sounds).