The How-To: Capture User Value With Digital Impressions

Going beyond bounce rates and visit-to-leads, here's why content marketing metrics should measure experiences (and not numbers) to predict ROI better.

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By Alex Ionides


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Is a banner or blog worthless if it doesn't lead to a click through? Some would say yes. After all, that click is one vital way that we can measure ROI. But digital impressions –such as ad views or email opens– can hold a great deal of insight.

Here are four big reasons that impressions really count and why they should be considered as part of ROI.

Related: Five Ways to Create Epic Content (Even If You Have Zero Copywriting Experience)

1. Impressions help nurture sales
92% of first-time website visitors aren't there to buy.
This statistic comes from a 2017 survey by the Global Software Company, Episerver. And it makes a lot of sense. For instance, when we go shopping in the mall we're not always there to buy. Sometimes we're just browsing or returning an item.

We mirror these behaviors online. So just because a reader doesn't instantly buy a product or request services the minute they visit the site or read your blog, it doesn't mean all is lost. People access online content to do research, gain inspiration, or just find out how much your shipping costs.

Ultimately these digital impressions are exactly what they say they are– they're a chance to make an impression. A chance to show off a well-functioning website. To have blogs packed full insight and advice. And show prospective buyers that when the time is right they can rely on your business.

How your content marketing can nurture sales: Let's look at an example. Intrepid Travel is a company that offers adventure holidays. They also run a website called The Journal which supports real traveler stories. In this way they nurture sales by building a rapport with their audience, offering a platform for people to try out travel writing, and also intersperse it with Intrepid's own content.

Related: Musings From Dubai Lynx 2018: MENA Needs More AI Solutions Working On Arabic Content

2. Impressions improve customer retention
43% of consumers want to have a relationship with the company they buy from' as per a 2017 report by Adobe in Reinventing Loyalty.
It reveals that marketing isn't just about having an amazing service, or a highly creative advert which makes people instantly want to click and buy. It's also about building an experience for the purchaser that talks directly to their emotions and makes them want to return time and time again.

This makes page views and email opens highly meaningful. If past customers are opening your email, it's a solid sign that they're still engaged with your brand.

How content marketing can aid customer retention: Take Shutterstock. They analyze their own data to provide a yearly infographic of current download and upload trends. As a content marketing strategy it is useful for their customers because everyone can see what is on-trend and fresh. It keeps customers engaged year after year.

Related: Why UAE Companies Lag On Content Marketing And How To Catch Up

3. Impressions help build your brand
According to Episerver, "A personalized experience can increase brand loyalty and brand trust by 20%.'
Every time someone views your blog or YouTube video it builds your brand, and it's more likely to be positive if that experience feels personal to the user. Through each impression, the customer learns a little bit more about a product or how a service can be used, or just gain useful information about the topic in general. When this is done well, it can feel like every contact with the brand is personal.

How content marketing can build a brand: In the US, JetBlue used a series of YouTube videos to attempt to set them apart from other airlines.Let's be honest, airlines are often the brunt of our frustrations and complaints. But JetBlue turned many of these on their head to celebrate flying with infants or tackle flying etiquette. For anyone who has flown a lot, these videos feel very personal.

Related: Intellectual Property Hullabaloo: The Ethical Quagmire Of Online Content Creation & Your Brand

4. Impressions generate new leads
Companies with a blog produce 67% more leads per month than those without one.
The reality is that lots of people aren't searching for your product or service. They're searching for a piece of information or advice. Along the way, they discover something that they weren't aware that eventually leads them to contact your company for more information. It might not happen straight away, but it does plant the seed.

How content marketing can generate leads: Look no further than this article. Maybe you're reading it because you were researching digital impressions and it came up in a Google search. If this is the case, I hope you've seen there is value in improving both the quantity and quality of these impressions when looking to build your brand. I hope you've learnt something about how content marketing can help you do this. And irrespective of whether you're already one of our valued partners, I ultimately hope you're as impressed with impressions as I am.

Related: No Content Marketing? You Just Handed The Market To Your Competitors

Alex Ionides

Managing Director, Silx

Alex Ionides is Managing Director of Silx, a Dubai-based digital marketing agency. Previously, Alex was General Manager of the Dubai office of global PR company Hill+Knowlton Strategies, and Managing Director of Munich-based marketing agency Threeview. He grew up in Vancouver, Canada, receiving a Bachelor of Applied Science in Mass Communication from Simon Fraser University. In addition to his career in marketing, Alex worked for many years as a journalist in the Middle East. He has lived and worked in the US, Germany, Hong Kong, Egypt, and now Dubai.

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