This article was written by Tom O’Regan & originally appeared on the Duplici blog

As B2B marketers, we’re constantly changing our definition of success. Our quest to streamline the connection between customers and content is never-ending (and at times chaotic). Despite a tremendous spike in chatter around content marketing, few marketers feel confident in their ability to connect their campaigns to any ROI. However,content does make a difference, and absolutely drives conversions. So how do we fix the disconnect? In short, with an open-minded, holistic strategy.

All B2B Content Is Narrow

When we talk about the funnel, our goal is to widen its reach as much as possible. However, from a content perspective, this strategy can be a double-edged sword. It’s critical to build content that resonates with an expansive audience, but not at the expense of over-generalizing topics, and failing to connect with specific customers’ needs. Great content reflects the perfect balance between inclusiveness and specificity.

Does Data Drive Your Content?

Brands can do a great job of producing great, insightful content. But is data driving your strategy? It should. The best content is data-centric and focused on the right topics. As mentioned above, B2B content is inherently narrow. But narrowing its reach should only be done when guided by key data points. Are you targeting content to the right decision makers? The right company? The right industry? These may seem obvious needs, but many B2B marketers still ignore the data when creating content. 

Metrics Apply To The Cycle, Not Conversion

Are you assigning specific metrics to your content strategy? Be careful, as they can often be a source of confusion rather than clarity. Content is a unique species. It reaches and influences decision makers who are at many different stages in their purchasing process. And considering different metrics are designed to measure activity along different stages of the funnel, they frequently mislead marketers into thinking their content is a flop. In fact, only 26% of marketers feel confident they are seeing any sort of content marketing ROI.

So, How Do We Connect The Dots?

Holistic strategy that synthesizes the points above is the only true method to measure the success of content campaigns. One of the best ways to achieve this is through an Account Based Marketing, or ABM strategy. Companies like Demandbase and Madison Logic have spearheaded growth in the ABM space. Madison Logic’s platform, Activate ABM offers marketers the ability to leverage proprietary data to target content and ads towards the right audience. We sat down with CEO Tom O’Regan to find out more about ABM’s role in strong content strategy. “Account Based Marketing is nothing new,” says O’Regan. “Only now are there measurement and analytical tools that can verify how marketing campaigns are influencing those accounts and generating ROI.”

ABM strategy gives marketers context to the behavior of their content campaigns, something critical for measuring success accurately. “With our platform, we’re able to see what topics of interest target accounts are researching, making content creation a much more targeted process,” Says O’Regan.

Circling back to how we measure content’s success, ABM’s holistic vantage point can pinpoint ROI where legacy metrics cannot. “[The Activate ABM] platform can show overtime how we’ve penetrated certain accounts, how much time a marketer’s ads have been exposed, and how many assets have been downloaded,” says O’Regan. “This ‘always on’ approach provides both sales and marketing with a tangible ROI.” And when our measurement is always on, the success of our content comes a bit more into focus.