Content marketers will have plenty of aims and goals for their activity this year, but ROI doesn’t appear to be a prime target. 

A new survey from NewsCred shows that only 56% of content marketing professionals are listing the ability to prove a financial return on their efforts as a priority for this year.   

In most cases, content pros are more focused on getting the basics right before making progress. The majority of respondents (68%) said developing a content strategy would be a priority in 2015, while 57% were focusing on improved content measurement through analytics. 

This is not to say that proof of ROI isn’t being documented, though, with 63% claiming a financial return off the back of their posting.

Right content, wrong person

The survey, based on the responses of 715 content professionals, also revealed an issue in ensuring pieces were delivered to the most ideal recipients.

NewsCred found that 66% of content marketers are struggling to identify their top influencers, but a greater focus on strategy and analytics may reduce this figure in 2015.

As brands, agencies and media owners look to make strong progress with their content this year, Shafqat Islam, CEO and co-founder of NewsCred, highlighted that a deep understanding of the people is the only true way to measure ROI on content.

“As an industry, we’re not putting our customers first. We need to start providing real value by moving beyond pageviews, uniques, shares and engaged time,” he commented. 

“Instead, we need to help our customers understand exactly who they’re reaching and engaging – and if they’re really making a meaningful impact on their business.”

Whether or not this will happen is another matter, with a flat 50% of the group saying that understanding their audience would be a priority for 2015. 

Audience recognition 

With content marketers looking to improve in the crucial area of analytics, NewsCred has released a new tool for gleaning real-time insights from the very people that engage with their pieces.

Audience Insights gives brands the luxury of being able to track the types of people that are being reached as well as their behaviour as they interact with a specific article. NewsCred has backed the tool to help brands overcome some of their issues with proving a return as connecting with the right users becomes all the more crucial.