Sometimes the most difficult part of measurement is defining what success looks like.

What should you measure, and why?

You probably know what success would look like for your business overall – but I’m guessing there may be a gap between these overall objectives, and how they link to your understanding of how and what to measure in the digital space.

As content marketers, it’s something we come up against for ourselves, and our clients, every day.

To better define success, you really need to understand why you do what you do in the digital space.

How do the different activities you undertake contribute to moving potential customers down the funnel?


There are thousands of diagrams out there on the interwebs of the ‘funnel’.

In the most basic sense, it’s the pathway that takes someone from being a potential customer to being an actual customer.

At the top of the funnel sits every potential client: not everyone in the world (unless that’s your market), but everyone that fits your customer persona.

As these prospects move down the funnel, the numbers drop off, your audience narrows, until you have some sort of conversion to an actual customer. This might be a one off purchase, a sign-up to service, or an action taken by a returning customer.

When we think about our funnel, we like to keep it simple, using the See, Think, Do, Care framework.


Once you understand the different stages in the funnel, you can start to consider where the various elements of your digital ecosystem and associated activities sit within that funnel.

This helps in two ways: first, you can get more targeted in your messaging, and, most importantly, you can set better metrics to really understand where your strengths and weaknesses lie in converting prospects to customers.

Consider all elements of your digital ecosystem – don’t get bogged down at this point in how you’ll measure. Elements of the ecosystem might sit across multiple parts of the funnel. For example, overall reach from paid facebook advertising might be ‘See’, but engagement (shares, comments, likes) might sit alongside ‘Think’.


Now the fun really starts.

What are your business objectives? How do they align with the different stages of the funnel? What digital goal could marry the two together?

These are your overarching measures – to get more specific we need to set some metrics.

Here’s an example of what that might look like:

Goal: Increase brand awareness overall
Metric: Overall social media reach and website views

Goal: Create engaging content to demonstrate best practice and retain/grow client base
Metric: Engagement on social media (likes, shares and comments)

Goal: Grow email marketing list to grow business overall by 10% year on year
Metric: Number of newsletter sign-ups

Goal: Increase x-type of clients by 10% each year
Metric: Number of sales to that customer segment


Now it’s time to get measuring.

If you’re starting out with measurement, it might be good to trial, sit and watch to begin with. Once you see what’s working, keep it up! Do more of the stuff that works, and less of the stuff that doesn’t.

If you notice things that aren’t working, focus on one area of improvement at a time. Set yourself SMART goals to rectify the issue.

Ongoing improvement requires a process of track, measure, refine.

The world of digital marketing requires agility, and I hope these tips assist you to remain agile in this ever-changing world.

Measurement can be an overwhelming beast. If you would like us to step through measurement step-by-step with you, don’t hesitate to get in touch.

You might also be interested in accessing our Digital Analytics Model, which helps you clearly articulate and link your business objectives, digital goals and associated metrics.

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