How to Figure Out Which Content is Driving the Most Leads

    by Rachel Sprung

    Date

    August 21, 2014 at 12:00 PM

    car

    You spend hours and hours creating content. You start by crafting the perfect title, then you write the content and tweak just about every word until it's perfect, and finally after a lot of time optimizing and improving your writing, you publish. 

    But then what? You may be able to easily see how many visitors come to your blog content, but what about leads? After all, as marketers it's crucial that we understand how many leads are generated because of a specific marketing activity.

    That's where Attribution Reports come in. Attribution Reports allow marketers to create advanced reports by URL, Source, or Referrer to better understand what marketing efforts lead to conversions throughout the funnel. Customers can create these reports based on someone’s first interaction, last interaction before converting, last touch, all interactions, first and last interaction, or a group of recent interactions before the conversion. This report will help marketers deconstruct what marketing efforts are working and pinpoint areas that could be improved.

    Professional customers will receive a lite version allowing them to create reports by URL based on all interactions (think Conversion Assists) or the referral page that led to a conversion. Enterprise customers will get the full report mentioned earlier.

    How to Use Attribution Reports

    To get started, navigate to Reports, and select Reports Home. Click on Create a new report, and select Attribution Report. You will see the following screen come up.

    attribution-report-edit-screen

    Step 1: Select a list. You can create an Attribution Report based on your entire contacts list or you can create a report based on a segment of your list.

    Step 2: Choose a conversion type. This is the date that someone in your database converted. For example, you could select "Create Date" to figure out when your visitor turned into a lead. You could select "Close Date" to figure out when your lead turned into a customer. 

    Step 3: Select a time period. You can select any date range you would like. You can also select time periods such as "This month to date" or "This year to date" that will continuously update every time you open the report. This is the time period in which someone converted on your site.

    Step 4: Choose an interaction scoring type. In the next section, you will choose the attribution model you want to run.

    Step 4a: Choose an analytics property. First, you need to choose if you want to create a report by URL, referrer, or source.

    • URL - This is the URL of the individual webpage someone converted on.
    • Referrer - This is the URL that someone went to before converting on a page. For example, if someone clicked on a link from Twitter to go to your landing page, the referrer URL would be twitter.com, and the URL would be the landing page.
    • Source - This is the marketing channel that someone converted on. These include paid, email marketing, social media, direct traffic, etc.

    Step 4b: Choose an attribution model. There are six types of attribution models: all interactions, first touch, last touch, first and last interaction/touch, and simple decay. Let's pretend that someone came to your website through social media, then a few days later by an email they received from you, then a few days later by a paid ad, and then finally came directly to your homepage, viewed a couple of pages, and then converted on a landing page. We will walk through the following attributions using this example to understand how the models work.

    • All interactions - This model gives equal weight to every URL or source someone touched before converting. In our previous example, that would mean that 25% of the credit is given to social media, email, paid, and direct traffic for the conversion. If you are familiar with Google Analytics, this is the linear model.
    • First touch - This model gives 100% of the credit to the first URL or source visited by a contact on your site. In our previous example, that would mean that 100% of the credit is given to social media for the conversion.
    • Last touch - This model gives 100% of the credit to the last channel or URL someone went to in the session before they converted. In our previous example, that would mean that 100% of the credit goes to direct traffic.
    • Last interaction - This model gives 100% of the credit to the URL someone converted on. In our previous example, that would mean that 100% of the credit goes to direct traffic.
    • First and last interaction/touch - This model gives 50% of the credit to the first touch and last interaction/touch before someone converted. In our previous example, that would mean 50% of the credit goes to social media, and 50% of the credit goes to direct traffic. (Note: When you run this report by URL, it will be called first and last interaction. When you run it by referrer or source, it will be called first and last touch.)
    • Simple decay - This model gives the more recent interactions credit for conversion. In our previous example, more of the credit would be given to direct traffic than paid, but more credit would be given to paid than email, and so on.

    After you run the report, you will see a graph and a table with your information.

    page-leads

    • Breakdown of URL - This column lists out all of the URLs that have played a role in the conversion in your report. If you run a report by URL and all interactions, you will see a list of every single URL that someone visited before they converted.
    • Contacts assisted - This column lists out the number of contacts that came into contact with a URL leading up to the conversion.
    • % of Contacts - This column shows the percent of contacts in your report that came into contact with a URL leading up to the conversion.
    • Score / 100 - This column shows the value of each URL associated with the conversion. The higher the score, the more valuable the URL was for the conversion. If you look at your score, and see a low number, don't worry! There is no "ideal score" that you want to get. For some reports, having a score of 5.1 is great. For others, the highest score may be 50 or above.

    How to figure out how many leads your blog converts

    Content creation is at the heart of inbound marketing. We work to create blog content to attract visitors to our site and take them down the funnel to convert them into leads. At the end of a blog post, it is a best practice to include a call-to-action that links to a landing page with an offer, demo sign-up, or trial sign-up. That is our first step to converting our blog readers into leads. After our readers click on the call-to-action, we hope that they fill out the form on the page and ultimately convert on the landing page. Understanding how many conversions are on that landing page is important, but understand how many conversions came from your blog content is essential to planning out your marketing strategy. 

    To get that number, create an Attribution Report.

    1. Use all contacts as your list.
    2. Set your conversion type as Create Date.
    3. Select any time period you want to look at.
    4. Create the report by referrer and last interaction.
    blog-leads

    Once you have this data, you can then dig into your blog content to better understand what content converts leads. Take it a step further to see if there are any trends in topic, format of post, or time posted that led to a higher volume of conversions. By understanding what types of blog posts drive leads, you will gain a better understanding of how to approach your content creation strategy.

    How to figure out how many leads your pages convert

    Great! You know how your blog is converting visitors into leads. But what about the rest of your pages? I don't just mean landing pages. What pages are being viewed before someone converts on your site?

    To get that information, create another Attribution Report.

    1. Use all contacts as your list.
    2. Set your conversion type as Create Date.
    3. Select any time period you want to look at.
    4. Create the report by URL, and choose All interactions. (Note: You can run this if you are using the Professional or Enterprise version of the report. In the Professional version, all you have to do is select Create Date, your time period, and All interactions.)

    page-leads

    After you pull this report, you will get a better idea of what pages on your website are driving the most leads. Note that this report will include any page that someone went to before they eventually converted on a page with a form.

    This report can help you prioritize what pages you should focus your attention on. Look at the pages that are getting the most amount of hits, and see how you can optimize them. If some of the information is outdated, make it a priority to update them as soon as possible. These are the pages that you should focus your attention on because these are the pages your visitors are focusing the most attention on.

    What else would you want to measure using Attribution Reports?

     

     

    Written by Rachel Sprung

    Rachel Sprung is a Product Marketing Manager at HubSpot. She frequently blogs for the HubSpot Inbound Marketing Blog and Social Media Examiner. Connect with her on Twitter @RSprung.

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