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December 18, 2014

A Guide to Attributing Content Marketing Initiatives to Your Pipeline

71% of marketers are increasing investment in content marketing,  however 85% of B2B marketers are failing to attribute their content marketing to business results. And the currently traveled path which relies on gut instinct and soft metrics, as opposed to strategically-aligned data, is getting tougher and tougher to travel.

Time is running out. And soon enough, there will be no excuse for content marketers not to tie their efforts to the pipeline.

The good news? The technology is here now, it’s just a matter of putting it to use.

Michael Gerard, CMO of Curata and Joe Gelata, our own Director of Demand Gen discussed the measurement of content initiatives in last week’s webinar: “Measuring the Impact of Content Marketing on Your Pipeline” (full version at the end of this post). While Michael spoke to developing your own content marketing “dream” dashboard as a whole, Joe added some specific tips for video. Let’s take a look at the key takeaways.

Focus on Pipeline

Michael explained that a lot of the focus for content marketing up until this point has been on increasing production. And sure, that’s an important starting point in order to make sure teams are publishing enough content to engage their audience, collect leads, and have a chance to nurture them, but it’s time to move beyond the vacuum before the funnel and see how your content is impacting your entire pipeline.

Top of Funnel: Consumption

Metrics that analyze the effectiveness of your top of funnel assets surround prospect’s content consumption. This includes things like:

  • Blog: page views, unique visitors, average time on page
  • Asset: downloads, form completions
  • Social Media: click-throughs
  • Email: clicks, opens
  • Feeds: clicks, views

Measuring Video’s Top of Funnel Impact:

For video, you can measure the effectiveness of your top of funnel videos with similar metrics, however, lucky for you, video provides more insight on content consumption than any of it’s text-based counterparts. While downloads, form completions, and email opens show that your prospects have started to engage with your content, they don’t provide insight on how much of that content they consumed – a pretty key metric to determine whether or not that’s great content!

With a video marketing platform, you can see what percentage of people are making it to the end of your video, where viewers are dropping off, and even where people are re-watching your clip.

Middle of Funnel: Nurturing

The middle of the funnel is all about nurturing those leads you’ve captured. Michael recommends focusing on the following metrics:

  • leads generated (first, last, multi): how many leads is each content piece responsible for generating? Which asset was a lead’s first touch? Which was their last? What was their general content consumption flow?
  • leads touched: how many leads and which ones were influenced by your latest content asset?
  • content score: you can attribute different value to different content. Some content might mean more about a lead’s quality than others, these should receive a higher point value in your lead scoring model.

This is the point where MAP and CRM integration become particularly valuable. As demonstrated in the webinar, a CRM tool like will allow you to track your published content and determine an individual lead’s “content story”.

Create a “campaign” to track a particular content activity like browsing a web page, downloading an asset, reading an email newsletter, etc. This way, you can go beyond lead generation and determine if your content is contributing to further action by these leads. (Watch the webinar at the end of this post to dive into detail on implementing this tactic for your own content initiatives.)

Measuring Video’s Middle of Funnel Impact:

With a video marketing platform, you can map video viewing behavior to individual leads and score them based on their video consumption. John’s viewed 85% of two webinars and more than 90% of three product videos? Looks like you have yourself a well-qualified lead right there!

Bottom of Funnel: Deals Influenced

When you’re at the bottom of the funnel, you’re really trying to determine the deals and dollar values that your content is influencing. You might measure that in the following way:

  • % and/or $ value of opportunities influenced or generated
  • % and/or $ value of opportunities won

Content Marketing MetricsTo get these metrics, you’ll need to use a CRM like with the potential integration of a plugin like Fullcircle which help to bring that data together.

You might report on these metrics for one piece of content, several within the same campaign, or even across content types (like video!) to determine which is more impactful with your audience.

Measuring Video’s Bottom of Funnel Impact:

With the help of a video marketing platform, integrated with your CRM, you can determine the percent or dollar-value of leads influenced/generated/won by video. In addition, with the individual lead data we discussed in the previous section that helps you identify high quality leads and pinpoint their specific interests, your sales team is much better equipped to tailor sales calls and close more deals.

Surely your content marketing efforts are driving phenomenal results throughout the pipeline. Now it’s a matter of identifying that value and improving it for even better results.

Dive into greater depth on measuring content marketing’s impact throughout your pipeline in the webinar recording below. Plus, listen to the Q&A to hear the answers to questions like: when to set up a campaign in Salesforce, how to use video in email, the ideal frequency of content, and measurement on open/ungated content.

Kimbe MacMaster

Kimbe MacMaster

Kimbe is the previous Manager of Content Marketing at Vidyard. She loves all aspects of content marketing and has a special place in her heart for using video to drive real business results. She is also moderately (okay extremely) obsessed with her fluffy chow chow, Noah.

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