Wherever you are in your digital marketing strategy a content audit is always something you need to make time for.
Now, you might be the person who cringes the moment you hear the word ‘audit’. If that is you don’t worry, you’re not alone. Hopefully at the end of this blog post will bring a fresh new perspective on this term.
[Tweet “Content audits can be a powerful part of your marketing strategy”]
Because, well content audits are an essential component of a business and digital marketing strategy. It allows you to identify gaps in the system and capitalize on opportunities.
Content audits can be a powerful part of your strategy and why they should be built into every business framework.
Content Audits Are Healthy For Your Business
Where are you in your business with your content marketing?
Is your content marketing strategy working for your business? Where should you be focusing most of your digital marketing efforts next?
Maybe you’re about to start blog for the first time. You feel this is the right time and place for you to begin this part of your digital marketing journey.
Perhaps you have an established blog but you’re not sure it’s working or if your content is resonating with your target audience. Are the keywords you choose working? Are the visuals making an impact?
Maybe you’re just ready to start spending some money on ads. You want to reach a new audience or get more laser focused on one of your primary audience segments.
Wherever you are with your business chances are a large part of your digital content marketing strategy is about creating content. Which might be in the form of a:
- Blog post
- White paper
- Webinar etc.,
The intention of your online content can vary too from:
- Creating brand awareness
- Educating your target audience
- Building relationships
- Generating more traffic to your website
- Improving lead generation, conversion rates and sales
- Boosting engagement on social media
- Establishing yourself, your business as a voice of authority on a specific topic etc.,
Whether you’re a service based business, product brick and mortar or e-commerce store, your digital content marketing strategy is beneficial to your business for a multitude of reasons.
So it makes sense to keep your content strategy in tip top shape.
Get your content in shape
We all know how important it is to stay in shape. The incredible benefits fitness has on our productivity are widely known and science backs this up. Strong body = strong mind.
Just like we need to reassess our health regime we need to do the same for our marketing. Am I eating a well-balanced diet? Am I exercising enough or doing the right kind of exercising? Am I getting enough sleep? Am I managing my stress well?
We shouldn’t limit ourselves to looking at one source. There are many factors that need to be considered to understand what contributes to our health and optimal best.
The very same is true for your marketing which is why content audits are so essential. We can’t look at just one data point.
In order to validate assumptions, we need to consider a number of data metric points. What might have worked before might not be working now.
[Tweet “Get your content in shape with a content audit”]
Whether you are a business owner or marketing professional, the same is true for both. Content audits will allow you to identify gaps in the system and capitalize on opportunities.
Why not develop confidence in your data through content audits? This will allow you to make more informed decisions about your marketing strategy and get it performing at its optimal best.
You work hard to create your marketing content. You don’t want to create it just for the sake of it. You create it with purpose that stands out.
“Why fit in when you were born to stand out” – Dr. Seuss
Standing out from the crowd often requires looking within and doing the proper health checks.
1. Develop a marketing measurement framework
Minimize your risks and maximize your opportunities for your best return on investment (ROI). Get reacquainted with many of your basic marketing functions. Build a stronger framework to allow the creativity of your strategy and plan to flow more dynamically.
As you begin your audit think about your marketing strategy and the goals you set. What are those goals you set and how are they tied to your online content strategy?
Your goals should be built into the core of your digital marketing framework.
Take those marketing goals back a notch to your business objectives. What are your business objectives? Are the efforts you are putting in to your marketing strategy properly aligned with your business objectives?
On paper it might seem like they are. By building a digital marketing measurement framework you can create benchmarks that will allow you to better analyze your efforts. This will help build a strong backbone to your content audit.
This doesn’t need to be complicated either. A simple chart in Word or Excel is often all that you need.
2. Run a digital content audit
Google Analytics – These are 5 free reports in Google Analytics that need to be considered in order to run a strong content audit. These important reports are:
Social media listening – Social media management tools like Hootsuite, Social Mention and Google Alerts are excellent ways to track mentions, keywords, competitors etc., which are essential to your content audit.
Review your blog editorial calendar and product/service roadmap – Reviewing your blog editorial calendar and product/service promotional road-map allows you to align the results you get back from the digital and non-digital audit.
The comprehensive audit – You can also dig a little deeper and conduct an official content audit with the assistance of a digital marketing firm like InnovaMap who specialize in content marketing.
Ideally, when you conduct an audit you want to run comprehensive reports on the entire website. This type of content audit would include search engine optimization (SEO), finding and addressing all technical issues that could be hurting your rankings (i.e. indexing and crawling errors), broken links, content issues. You can even take it up a notch and run a competitive analysis on your site with your defined competitors.
This more advanced audit allows you to optimize your marketing efforts which in turn saves you a lot of time and money.
3. Run A non-digital content audit
In addition to running your digital content audit you will want to look at other data points that complement to your audit. For instance:
- Identify and talk to stakeholders – Talking to your stakeholders is essential and should not be skipped as part of your content audit. Have you engaged directly with them recently? Their insights are essential when it comes time to a content audit.
- Conduct interviews – Interviews with clients and strategic partners are excellent for content audits. Get feedback first-hand allowing you to dive deeply into issues that are not always so easily identifiable on the surface.
- Conduct a survey – Surveys are another excellent way to conduct a holistic audit and get another unique perspective on your content abnormalities and unknown opportunities.
These are some of the non-digital data driven aspects that help shape your marketing strategy, digital marketing measurement plan and content audit.
[Tweet “Content audits are healthy for business”]
In the end you want to be able to analyze your results and conduct a fair ROI. The data you pull from your audit needs to make sense to you.
You will want to ask yourself:
‘Did the results inherently impact my strategy’?
If they did not perhaps you are not looking at the right metric points. Or maybe you are looking at too many data points.
This is a common flaw when looking at analytics. We tend to get overwhelmed, lost in the sea of data or stuck on vanity numbers. More times than not, we see people forgetting what they are trying to achieve with their content strategy.
The best advice we can give is to ask yourself:
‘Are the data points important to help me make more informed decisions?’
If the answer is no, don’t waste your time. Time is money and you don’t want to get stuck looking at data points that don’t help your bottom line.
In closing, conducting content audits is a very healthy strategy for your business. It allows you to identify gaps in the system and capitalize on opportunities. Furthermore, it allows you to better prioritize your efforts, validate your assumptions and realign your marketing efforts.
And, just like we need to reassess our health regime we need to do the same for our marketing.
Diana Davies-Harju, Marketing at InnovaMap
InnovaMap – we use the science of marketing to connect you with your target audience.
Contact us to learn more on how to start integrating techniques for engaging the brain into all your marketing strategies.