By Joe Pulizzi published July 26, 2010

Sales Is the Reason Your Content Exists – Content Marketing ROI

Before I launched my business, I read the Bootstrapper’s Bible by Seth Godin.  It was and is invaluable.

Every year or so, I dig it out of the file folders and re-read it.  I always find something new…something I didn’t realize the last time through.

But every time, this is the statement that resonates the most.

Sales is the reason for your business to exist.

Nothing more true can be said about running a business.  With sales, all things are possible.

Don and Heidi Schultz, in their book IMC, the Next Generation, state, “For all the complexity of marketing and communication plans, firms want only four outcomes from them.” Those outcomes are:

  • To acquire new customers
  • To retain and maintain present customers
  • To retain and grow sales volume or profit from existing customers
  • To migrate existing customers through the firm’s product or service portfolio

The same thinking needs to be applied to your content marketing.

No marketer should be developing new content or curating content unless:

  1. The content drives direct sales of a new customer (customer acquisition).
  2. The content leads a current customer to an additional sale (cross selling).
  3. The content attracts someone that looks like a customer (lead generation).
  4. The content ultimately helps lead to a sale (lead nurturing).
  5. The content keeps sales in the house (customer retention and loyalty).

This is the very essence of content marketing.  In the formal definition of content marketing, the ultimate objective of content marketing is driving profitable action. That’s content marketing ROI.

Do yourself a favor with these two actions:

  1. If your content is not doing the above, stop doing it.
  2. If you are not sure if it is or not, invest enough to find out.

Author: Joe Pulizzi

Joe Pulizzi is the Founder of Content Marketing Institute, a UBM company, the leading education and training organization for content marketing, which includes the largest in-person content marketing event in the world, Content Marketing World. Joe is the winner of the 2014 John Caldwell Lifetime Achievement Award from the Content Council. Joe’s the author of five books, including his latest, Killing Marketing. His third book, Epic Content Marketing was named one of “Five Must Read Business Books of 2013” by Fortune Magazine. If you ever see Joe in person, he’ll be wearing orange. Follow him on Twitter @JoePulizzi.

Other posts by Joe Pulizzi

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