The Problem with Content Marketing Metrics

For many of us, measuring SEO (actually Content Marketing) (means ONLY measuring outcomes.

While it is important to measure desired outcomes, those outcomes don’t just happen. They happen because of the activity that causes them to happen.

The old “we reap what we sow” story.

Does it not make sense to measure the amount of activity that goes into generating those outcomes?

Not only will that keep you on track, but it will tell you if those activities are indeed creating the outcomes you desire.

If they’re not, maybe you need to shift into other activities.

What Activities Does it Make Sense to Measure?

What’s important to Content Marketing success? This tells you what Content Marketing activities are important to measure.

  1. Quantity
  2. Quality
  3. Consistency
  4. Longevity
  5. Who knows you?

Measure How Much You Publish

Like it or not, sites with more content rank higher.

Please allow me to share a specific example illustrating how quantity matters:

Yesterday I listened to an episode of The Growth Hacking Podcast with Laura Moreno where she interviewed a man named Casey Armstrong.

He told a story about a website they brought up for one of their ventures selling some sort of virtual notary public services.

While the details of the service didn’t stick in my mind, what did was a statement he made about the number of pages on their website.

They bought a list of 90,000 registered notary public’s which was delivered in some form of a database.

They then wrote a program to extract records from the database, and create well-formatted HTML pages for each notary public, which they published to their website.

So day one their website had 90,000 URLs that met Google’s criteria for being content that is useful. They created an easy to search directory of notary publics.

But it was his next statement that grabbed my attention. The statement below is not a word but it captures the essence what Casey said…

We expected it to take 6 months to reach our organic search targets. It took only a month.

Quantity matters.

It makes sense to measure how much you publish.

Measure How Good Your Stuff Is

This is a bit harder because we all think we write good stuff. For this reason, it makes sense to come up with a checklist of what constitutes Quality, and have someone else run the checklist.

If you’d like a template checklist to start with, contact me and I’ll share mine.

SEO Needs Link Building

Measure How Consistently You Publish

This one is pretty self-explanatory. If you plan to publish an article every 12 hours, hold yourself accountable to doing so, measure your ability to do so, and when you fail to figure out what went wrong.

Measure When You Start Publishing

While this is not so much measurement as noting a point in time, older websites rank higher, so “measuring” how old your site is and when you started publishing helps you rate yourself against other sites.

Measure Your Outreach Efforts

The SEO purpose of outreach is backlinks, blog post comments, and social shares. Daily and weekly activities increase that.

  1. Offer to guest post on other websites. If no one answers, keep offering.
  2. Share posts with social media specifically for purposes of attracting comments and social shares.


Measuring outcomes is not enough. You must also measure the activities you do every day and every week and every month whose purpose is to obtain those outcomes.

And backlinks matter.

SEO Needs Link Building

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