How to get the most ROI from your branded content

By Steve Olenski
Trends and insights

While your team in planning your content marketing strategy it's important to focus on ROI. Steve Olenski from Forbes shares his insight on how to get the most ROI from your branded content.

They say content is king. I don’t but many do. And by “content,” I mean high-quality branded content that goes beyond your own website. The kingdom isn’t run by volumes of content saying nothing (and achieving even less by remaining static on your own site).

However, to retain that crown, it’s important to prove what that ruler has accomplished for its marketing kingdom and brand market share. That means your branded content has to deliver the best return on investment possible to maintain its perch upon the throne.

As the heads of their brands’ marketing kingdoms, CMOs have found that their roles have become quite challenging. However, there are strategies CMOs can execute to enhance the ROI of their branded content.

Make it thought-provoking, not ‘salesy’

Your branded content should not feel like a sales pitch. Instead, the idea is to create something that makes your audience think. It should offer insights on a topic of interest — a good example is this branded articlethat was created for @netflix.

The article told the story of female prison inmates. This is also the theme of Netflix’s “Orange Is the New Black.” The New York Times’ readers were interested in the show and signed up for Netflix. Overall, this type of branded content has delivered more ROI than a banner ad about the show.

Repurpose existing content

Using existing content essentially costs less than producing new content because you’re simply repurposing it. This involves taking the main ideas and adapting them for a content publishing platform.

There are various ways to repurpose your content. First, you can take smaller ideas or elements from the existing content and put those together to generate a larger piece of content. This can be designed around a certain segment of your target audience. Second, you can add a consistent theme throughout the repurposed content that aligns with your brand values and creates a consistent and thematic campaign.

Finally, look to the content publishing platform you use for fresh ideas and directions. Because the platform resides beyond your company, it may be able to offer a new perspective. For example, PowerPost Social serves as a content publishing accelerator by centralizing your brand’s content to help identify what’s already been done so new ideas can be generated to effectively repurpose that content.

According to the founder and CEO of PowerPost, Jim Curran, repurposing content can help build the authenticity necessary to achieve empathy and loyalty from your audience: “Although social networks can be used to supplement your brand’s message, facilitating relationships within your brand’s own ecosystem is mission-critical and provides exponential benefits, including real-time customer feedback and data for ongoing research and development.”

Leverage branded video content

Video marketing has been proven to be one of the most popular forms of content among the greatest number of audience segments. Video is set to garner more than 80% of all web traffic by 2019. It turns out 90% of customers feel watching product videos is helpful in deciding whether to make a purchase. Also, one-third of the time people spend online involves watching videos.

Maximizing video marketing return

It’s a similar story for those in the B2B arena. @HubSpot found research that noted 59% of company decision makers prefer watching a video to reading a blog post. In illustrating the incredible ROI of video, digital marketing expert James McQuivey noted in a Forrester Research study that one minute of video content equaled 1.8 million words. Based on simple cost, branded video content results in better ROI than someone crafting nearly 2 million words.

Realizing the need for branded video content, companies like @lemonlightmedia have appeared on the scene to offer video marketing services like video production, location scouting, casting, and scripting so companies can share engaging, high-quality branded video content with their audiences. According to Hope Horner, CEO of Lemonlight Media, “Entrepreneurs and small business owners can’t afford to ignore stats like these. The reason: branded video is just as critical an asset as a company website, and perhaps even more important when it comes to reaching and engaging customers.”

Use metrics to quantify the ROI

It’s challenging enough to get the ROI you want, but when you actually quantify it, you can better understand which actions will produce the best returns. Focus on brand metrics that address awareness, reach, and traffic, such as social chatter, downloads, video views, and page views. Collect consumption metrics before and after publishing branded content. This will determine whether those areas increased or showed any marked improvement.

Lead generation metrics that come from your email management or CRM system can determine what ROI your branded content has produced. Other measurements include conversion, sharing, and sales metrics. Adding context to these measurements are qualitative metrics like consumer surveys that gauge audience reactions. You can also do user testing to collect feedback on how users felt about certain branded content efforts.

While many believe content is king, it’s not always clear which types of content will deliver the best ROI. By repurposing existing content, maximizing video content, and tracking metrics, the true ruler of your kingdom will be the content delivering the biggest bank for your buck.

Additional reading:

This article was written by Steve Olenski from Forbes and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to

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