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We have a true legend of digital marketing on the show today. Rich Schefren has done a lot in the marketing space, to put it lightly! He is a godfather of the modern marketing world and has been a mentor to many of the most famous young faces doing interesting things right now. We are so excited to speak to Rich today as he breaks down his experience in this episode that is absolutely brimming with information. Rich packs so much wisdom into each answer, and his decades of expertise become so apparent that you are definitely not going to want to miss this one! We discuss the discovery of the video sales letter, how he got a billion-dollar testimonial and what it means to be resourceful during difficult times. Rich tells us exactly why he loves his iPad so much, what he learned from the old guard of legendary marketers and how he has gone about laying staff off when it was necessary. We discuss pruning your business, building a strong team through profit-sharing, and the definitive moments from his career, so tune in to hear it all!


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HubSpot has grown into one of the most credible names in the marketing and sales game in the last few years and we are lucky enough to have Kieran Flanagan, their VP of Marketing on the show today! If you listen to this podcast it is more than likely you know a lot about HubSpot already as we often refer to them, as happy customers of the company and having had a few of their team on the show already. The focus of today’s conversation is Kieran’s work on the freemium project at HubSpot and the impact that this initiative had on the company and their progress going forward. We speak about freemium and who it might work for; Kieran believes it is not a surefire way to success for every kind of company and links its usefulness to HubSpot to their product-led model. We also get some great insight into the company and how they approach tasks and challenges and Kieran breaks down their pod method for creating teams. Tune in to get it all!


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The Power of Mastermind Groups

I started throwing founders’ dinners a couple years ago and they’re extremely powerful. Just yesterday, I attended a YEC dinner and there were 30 or so entrepreneurs in one room. We ate really great food in Marina Del Rey, we got to talk with like-minded people, seeing what they’re up to, and seeing how we can help out.

When you’re in a group full of entrepreneurs, whether that’s Young Entrepreneur’s Council or Entrepreneurs’ Organization or another group, you don’t hear much about politics, religion, gossip, or anything that people may normally use to small talk their way through a dinner. Everyone’s just so busy trying to get something done. As a result, these dinners are all about helping each other out and creating lasting relationships.

It’s not even about networking as much as it is about cultivating long-term friendships that can last a lifetime. There are a lot of people in my YEC group who I think are going to be lifelong friends of mine.

Learn More: The Benefits of Joining a Mastermind Group

How to Set Up a Professional Event or Dinner

There are a lot of creative ways you can go about getting the people you really want to talk to and learn from all in one room. The company that helped set up the YEC dinner in Marina Del Rey is called Place Holders. They’ll go out there to the location and set up your meals and everything. I think they’ll get the space booked for you, too.

Other times, the YEC guys will book an Airbnb or something similar. You do have to make sure that it’s a really nice spot. We had a rooftop, a fireplace, and a really long dinner table. There was even a pool.

Often, the hosts will use the space for several days to make their money back. For example, they might invite a bunch of YEC entrepreneurs together for a free dinner. But they actually booked the place for three days, and they’re going to run paid courses or workshops on the other two days.

On the other hand, you could take the more homey route and just invite people to your home. I know YEC people who will cater the food or even just cook the food themselves. They might invite 20 to 30 people to their home for dinner.

Personally, I prefer to keep things intimate because I find that once you have more than eight people, it starts to become a little disorganized. I want to get people to actually know each other better. That’s not saying that more people can’t work; it’s just harder for people to get to know one another on a personal level.

The Best Way to Get People to Interact

I saw something interesting yesterday at the YEC event. We were nearly 75% of the way through, when the hosts suddenly said, “Everyone that’s an extrovert in the room, raise your hand!” And a bunch of people raised their hands. Then they said, “Okay, extroverts move around.”

The extroverts moved around, changed seats, and naturally started to build new relationships that way. Even if you talk to somebody for less than five minutes, you’re able to help that person out. In return, they’ll think of ways to help you out, too. The key is to help without expectations.

The Power of Masterminds

I’ve talked about masterminds in the past. You should always have a checklist of how you want to set things up, because there are always logistics that you need to plan and prepare for when you get a bunch of people into one room.

Also, masterminds aren’t just limited to business owners. Let’s say you’re an aspiring entrepreneur, for example. You can still find other people who are aspiring entrepreneurs and set something up where you cook together and you don’t have to spend a lot of money. For the dinners that I throw, I’ll gladly pay for it myself because, quite frankly, people probably aren’t going to pay to eat my food!

The trade off for me is I’ll throw it near my place, which makes everything much easier for me. Even so, these dinners can typically run anywhere from $500-$800 each time I throw them. You might be thinking, ‘That’s a huge expense.’ It is definitely a big expense, but if you throw these mastermind dinners, connect people, and have no expectations, things are going to come back around to you in the end.

When it comes down to it, the foundation of all meaningful business transactions and referrals is trust and respect. According to Harvard psychologists, people work with you because they like you and respect you. Goodwill always repays goodwill.

I believe in this so firmly that I’ve been running Growth Everywhere for three years and haven’t even tried to monetize it. Neil and I are running Marketing School for free for the same reason. We know that by providing free value and spreading goodwill, we’ll earn back the money we’ve spent tenfold down the road without having to gimmick or hard sell anyone.

Learn More: How To Run Masterminds That Actually Bring Business Benefits (Templates & Agendas Included)

Entrepreneurship Can Be a Lonely Game

Here’s the funny thing about being an entrepreneur. You may get into it because of some idea you have about unshackling yourself from the 9-to-5 lifestyle and living the life you want or pursuing your dreams. But ultimately you’ll find that you’re probably a workaholic. Most entrepreneurs are just working all the time with their heads down. Entrepreneurship can be a lonely game.

So to be able to just get together for one night once a month with a group of like-minded people is really powerful. That’s why you join these groups. That’s why I go to conferences and throw events and monthly happy hours, too. If you’re based in the LA area, feel free to reach out to me, find my contact information, tweet at me, whatever. I’ll invite you.

When I map out kind of what I’m going to spend on these events, it’s probably going to be around $25,000 per year. But at the end of the day, I know as long as it feels right, as long as you’re getting good feedback from people, you’re doing the right thing. It will pay off in unexpected ways in the long run.

Sneak Peek: Marketing Reality TV?

Before we finish, I wanted to let you guys know that I’m thinking of doing a 12-episode miniseries where I go into companies and try to figure out what their marketing issues are in real time. We figure out what their growth issues are, find out what their business model is, and then help these companies grow. Our goal is to determine what kind of marketing engine would help that business grow most.

We’re looking at companies that have a great product and that are interested in growing. I’m just trying to gauge the interest level right now, so I’m surveying my email lists. If you are interested, just leave a comment. If we get enough interest in this, I’ll go ahead and spend the resources to make it happen.

This post was adapted from Eric’s Facebook Live videos: Growth 90 – DAILY live broadcasts with Eric Siu on marketing and entrepreneurship. Watch the video version of this post:

Why Marketers Shouldn’t Have Knee Jerk Reactions

Knee jerk reactions.

Whenever there’s a new work movement, like the remote work movement, tech people will jump onto it. A couple years ago, when I first got into tech, it was holacracy, or self-management in the workplace. Doing away with hierarchical structure and layered management sounded great on paper, so everyone in tech latched onto this movement.

Flat structures work well for some companies. Look at Valve, the game studio that made games like Half-Life and is now managing Steam. They self manage really well. It’s a developer-focused company that has both a flat structure and a remote work environment.

Then there’s Automattic, the creators of WordPress. Their team is almost completely remote.


GitHub has over 400 employees and they’re largely remote, too.

This shift towards a flat management structure was happening at Treehouse, too. We were removing layers of management and titles, and a full 60% of our team was remote when I was there. Most of our team was engineering and developers, so the flat management structure and remote work environment worked well for us. Our marketing team of about 7-8 people had video producers in the office, but that was it.

But this caused a lot of confusion. Without titles, who do you report to? Who’s your boss? How do you manage your goals?

Examine the Status Quo Before Reacting to It

The reason I bring this up is because a lot of companies outside of tech have tried to switch to the whole no-manager model. Treehouse tried to do that. Buffer tried to do that. Zappos also did it…though now they’re reverting back.

A lot of these companies are shifting back towards more traditional management and work environment paradigms because, quite frankly, they still work really well. The whole concept of the 40-hour work week, for example, has been optimized fairly well.

That’s not to say that you shouldn’t question the status quo. You definitely want to ask “why” all the time. But I think when you question the way of things, you first have to ask yourself, “Why are these things the way they are?” before making knee jerk reactions based on your assumptions.

How Knee Jerk Reactions Almost Derailed Single Grain

For example, when I first came to Single Grain, almost all of our team was in San Francisco. I was working remotely out of Santa Monica and I said, “Hey, since I just came from Treehouse, why don’t we make the whole thing remote, because remote’s the new thing to do.” It was the new fad.


I didn’t stop and consider what kind of effect that would have on the company. Eliminating the office and having everyone work from home all of a sudden was the same as eliminating our culture. People knew each other in the office. I totally didn’t take that into consideration, and that was bad. My decision basically took away the culture and I made all of these sweeping changes without thinking things through.

I was operating 100% on knee jerk reactions.

Related Content: Ultimate Guide to Building a World Class Team

But if you’re going to make these big, sweeping changes, you need to stop and think deeply about the status quo.

In retrospect, despite my stint with flat structures, I think managers ultimately do make sense. Quite frankly, most companies literally would not function without management. Some companies can pull it off due to their hiring practices and remote culture, but they started out that way very intentionally and scaled up.

You need to question what’s happening around you. But you don’t want to react too quickly. Just because someone says something’s great or there’s this new trend doesn’t mean you should jump on it immediately.

Knee Jerk Reactions to the Four-Day Workweek

As a marketer, I’m always looking at the new stuff that’s happening and I want to run marketing experiments all day long.

But when you look at a business as a living, breathing entity, you realize that there are real people involved. You affect people’s lives with every big decision you make, and if you can’t be a change agent then there’s going to be a lot of resistance. And wherever there’s resistance, the company suffers as a whole.

At Treehouse, we had the whole concept of four-day workweeks. That might have been a knee jerk reaction on their part. Recently, Treehouse had to do away with the four-day workweek. It just didn’t work anymore.

To be perfectly honest, when I was there, we were struggling and we were about to run out of cash. I was only there for a month or two when the CEO said, “Hey, if we don’t hit numbers this month, we’re going to have to let you go.” I was working seven days a week to make things happen.

Related Content: The Definitive Guide to Building a Remote Team

Always Think Through Your Decisions

Moral of the story? Sometimes things sound good on paper. But you have to know what kind of repercussions there are.

For example, though the average Treehouse employee loved the four-day workweek, we were still being very ambitious. As the marketing team leader, I actually ended up working longer to hit our goals because everyone else was working less. If my entire team had to start working seven days a week while everyone else was working four days a week, that friction would have boiled up to the surface really quickly.

You don’t want to have to worry about these things. It’s better for you to just focus your team on doing real work that actually makes an impact and moves the needle.

My point is, always think through your decisions. Don’t make the same mistakes that I’ve made, or that Treehouse and all these other companies made because of knee jerk reactions to unproven trends. Always be smart about what you do, because that has an impact on everyone else who works for you.

This post was adapted from Eric’s Facebook Live videos: Growth 90 – DAILY live broadcasts with Eric Siu on marketing and entrepreneurship. Watch the video version of this post:

Why You Should Consider Buying an Existing Website

Quick post today to show you how to outrank your competitors fast with SEO.

But first and foremost, in a recent Growth Everywhere podcast I interview the cofounder of Crush Empire, Bryce Welker. He talks about how he acquired 80 million customers (50% through conferences and 15% through cold calls) or got them to take an action, and you should definitely check it out.

And on the Marketing School podcast, we talk about how to outrank your competitors with fewer links. All good stuff for marketers.

Why We Recently Bought a Website

For one of the projects that I have, we ended up buying another website. We went around searching for sites that looked like they were kind of dead by using Ahrefs. Some people were looking for millions of dollars for their sites, but we were able to get one fairly cheap.


A lot of sites in this niche are fairly outdated so we looked at what keywords they were ranking for and basically all we did is just redirect traffic. And, quite frankly, traffic is really up.

Just look for expiring domains in a target niche and look at what tends to rank well and what hasn’t been updated in a long time. Reach out to the webmasters and see if they’re interested in getting rid of it.

Related Content: 3 Things We’ve Learned From Ranking For Competitive Keywords With Viral Traffic

One Man’s Trash Is Another Man’s Treasure

In this case, the webmaster was simply not interested anymore. He wanted to go pursue other things. As they say, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Once you have the site, you can either take it or you can redirect the traffic. We opted for the latter.

If you want a quick fix, and an SEO booster shot, this is one way to go about it. After we used Escrow to complete the transaction, it was smooth sailing.


This post was adapted from Eric’s Facebook Live videos: Growth 90 – DAILY live broadcasts with Eric Siu on marketing and entrepreneurship. Watch the video version of this post:

This post originally appeared on Single Grain, a growth marketing agency focused on scaling customer acquisition.

It’s enough to strike fear into even the most experienced of marketers and bloggers. It can seem like torture by tedium. It’s often the stuff of nightmares. What is this unholy monster?

The content audit.

A well-executed content audit done on an annual basis can deliver big insights into your website’s blog and content marketing strategy that far exceeds its ho-hum reputation.

Too often, we post something and then never go back to it again. Years later, it’s outdated, stale, and completely irrelevant. Good practice demands that we return to our content periodically to ensure that everything is as fresh and beautiful as the day it was released to the world.

A content audit involves taking a look at all the content on your website and assessing its relative strengths and weaknesses in order to prioritize your future marketing activities. It’s a qualitative assessment and evaluation based on the KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) that you select beforehand.

The Step-by-Step Guide to Conducting a Content Audit

This process should not be confused with a content inventory, which is simply an accounting of all these different assets. In other words, it’s a quantitative collection. Although a content inventory is part of the audit process, the audit itself goes much further in depth. The Content Analysis Tool (CAT) can make content inventories a snap. When you start off on the right foot, the rest of the journey is that much easier.

When performed correctly, a good audit will help you to answer questions about the content pieces on your site:

An audit will tell you where you need to focus your future efforts in terms of both an SEO and content marketing perspective. And it can even give you insight into potential changes that will improve your lead generation, sales, and marketing processes.

Before Beginning Your Content Audit

If you’re struggling to understand your visitors’ behavior on your website or why your current marketing initiatives aren’t working, a content audit is easily one of the best things you can do for your business.

But before we get into the step-by-step process of conducting one, you need to answer a few questions.

Why Am I Conducting a Content Audit?

There could be any number of reasons. There’s no one correct approach for conducting a content audit – the exact steps you’ll take will depend on your reasons for undergoing the process in the first place.

Typically, content audits are conducted for two primary reasons:

Of course, there’s no reason you can’t do both. While you’re digging through your SEO metrics, it’s easy to jot down your content marketing data as well. Or you might be approaching your content audit from a slightly different perspective. Whatever the case may be, being clear about your intentions ahead of time will help to streamline the process and minimize extra effort. Know why you’re doing before you start doing it.

What Resources Do I Have Available for My Content Audit?

A good content audit is a time-consuming process. If you’re currently swamped with other priorities, undertaking such a massive project may not be the best use of your time or energy. If you can’t devote the proper resources to it, it’s better to wait until you can.

But if the project must be done, keep in mind that you do have options. Instead of undertaking the entire audit process by yourself, delegate some of the data-gathering steps to another employee in your organization or to an outsourced worker hired through sites like Guru or Upwork.

The Step-by-Step Guide to Conducting a Content Audit

You also have the option of completing only small sections of the audit at any given time, or paying for tools that help to automate parts of your research process (gone are the days of having to manually sift through everything yourself!). More on this later.

What Do I Hope to Get Out of My Content Audit?

Before you begin, be clear about the reason you’re conducting a content audit in the first place. If you aren’t going to take action based on the data that your audit produces, you might as well skip the process altogether. An audit for the sake of an audit is a waste of time and resources.

Any of the following are potential content audit goals. You may have others that are not on this list, and you’ll likely have more than one in mind as you go through it.

That’s the theory. Now let’s put it in practice.

Meet John, Our Hypothetical Business Owner

To help illustrate how to do a content audit, we’ve created John, a business owner with a heart of gold. He runs a small software company that’s developed an SaaS budgeting tool.

The Step-by-Step Guide to Conducting a Content Audit

He’s invested in content marketing for about a year, but he isn’t sure whether all the time he’s spent blogging, creating videos, and releasing infographics has paid off. As a result, he decides to conduct a content audit to see how his individual content pieces are performing and what – if anything – he should do differently in the future.

Because John only has five employees – all of whom are busy wearing multiple hats already – he decides to take on the audit process by himself. Because he’s a busy guy, he keeps the scope of his audit small, checking only the content he’s created in the past year and tracking only a few variables that indicate success to him.

Remember, the size and scope of your audit is completely up to you. This is not an all-or-nothing scenario. Do what you can when you can do it.

We’ll revisit John a little later on.

The Content Audit Process

If you’ve finished your homework (you did answer the questions above, right?), it’s time to get started. Try the following three-step process to complete your website’s first content audit (and feel free to amend it for subsequent ones):

Step #1 – Create a Spreadsheet of All Your Content Assets

Unsurprisingly, the first step in completing a content audit is to find all your content. You have two different options for doing so:

The Step-by-Step Guide to Conducting a Content Audit

Enter or import all the URLs you find into an Excel or Google Docs spreadsheet, leaving plenty of columns for the data you’ll gather in Step #2. Or, if you’d rather not reinvent the wheel, you can add your links to any of the following freely-available content inventory and audit templates:

The Step-by-Step Guide to Conducting a Content Audit

Most audits use a spreadsheet to organize the data, but it’s not the only way. If you despise Excel for some reason (no judgement), you could opt for the WordPress Content Audit plugin. This tool allows you to create a content inventory directly in the Edit screens in WordPress. Set a few conditions, and you’re good to go.  

The Step-by-Step Guide to Conducting a Content Audit

Just go with whatever you’re most comfortable with. Set yourself up for success by using the tools and methods that work for you.

Which brings us back to John, our savvy business owner from Seattle. Because his site is small and he’s pressed for time, he uses Screaming Frog to create the URL list pictured below:

The Step-by-Step Guide to Conducting a Content Audit

To upload your CSV file into Google Sheets, go to File > Import > Upload and select the saved file from your computer. Easy-peasy.

John is well on his way with a handy list of all his URLs. Step 1? Check!

Step #2 – Gather Asset Data

Remember those columns I mentioned earlier? Now’s the time to set them up and fill them out.

The exact data points you’ll want to gather will, again, depend on the goals of your audit, as well as the complexity you want to achieve. Although the lists below may look daunting, it isn’t necessary to collect data on every possible variable. In fact, you may be able to achieve the goals you set for yourself with only a handful of possible data points.

Potential SEO data points to gather (many of these are automatically generated by Screaming Frog):

Potential content marketing data points to gather:

Other items to track:

Once you’ve selected the data points you’ll measure as part of your content audit, label a column in your spreadsheet for each one.

Now comes the fun part time to do the heavy lifting of data collection (and yes, “fun” is subjective)!

Let’s get back to our pal John…

Since his primary goal is to determine what’s working with his current content marketing strategy, he decides to evaluate the following metrics:

While he could track other pieces of data as part of his audit – and probably glean additional insights from doing so – analyzing only this limited number of metrics makes it possible for John to complete his content audit while juggling his other responsibilities. The way he looks at it, he can always go back and add more to his analysis if he has the time down the road.

To find the data points he’s decided upon, John uses the following resources:

The Step-by-Step Guide to Conducting a Content Audit

The Step-by-Step Guide to Conducting a Content Audit

The Step-by-Step Guide to Conducting a Content Audit

The Step-by-Step Guide to Conducting a Content Audit

Learn More: How to Set Up Goals and Funnels in Google Analytics

Once John is done gathering this data, he goes back through his list and assigns a score to each page on an “A – F” rating scale of his own creation.

Pages that receive “A” scores are his cream-of-the-crop, top-performing pages, while those that earn “F” scores are ones he’s embarrassed to find on his site. He also adds a note to his spreadsheet showing the date that his audit was created for the purpose of planning future audits.

And even though John didn’t do this, you could also head over to the Google Search Console to pull even more conveniently organized data. Click on Search Analytics, select Pages, and check Clicks, Impressions, and CTR to get a quick snapshot of how individual pages are performing.

The Step-by-Step Guide to Conducting a Content Audit

There’s a “Download” button at the bottom of the page if you want to export the data as a CSV file and add it to your ever-expanding spreadsheet.

Step #3 – Analyze Your Data

If your site is large, expect the data-gathering process to take a long time. It’s not uncommon for audits to take days, weeks or even months to complete, depending on the size of the website and the organizational resources that are available for the process.

But even if your content inventory is completed quickly, you’ve still got another important step to take – actually putting all your information to use.

To be sure you’re getting something substantive out of your content audit process, you need to establish a set of recommended actions you’ll take once the audit is complete. And in order to do that, you need to dive into the data you’ve collected in order to draw conclusions.

It could be as simple as adding one more column to your spreadsheet: “Action.”

Here, you make the call as to what should happen to each individual content asset, like:

Unfortunately, there are no hard and fast rules that say, “If your content data indicates [this], do [that].” Instead, you’ve got to look at the data you’ve gathered and see if you can identify any trends that could inform your eventual recommended actions.

Take a look at John’s spreadsheet below and see if anything jumps out at you:

Here are a few observations you might have made:

After further exploration, John decides to take the following actions after the completion of his content audit:

An audit might focus on content quality, the customer experience, content performance, or any combination of these.

Use the results of your content audit to come up with 5-10 actions you’ll take after completing it, based on any patterns that emerge from your data.

Then, set deadlines for yourself in order to put these actions into play and block out whatever time you’ll need to do so on your calendar. Add a deadline right into your spreadsheet (when it comes to columns, you can never have too many!).

Analysis Paralysis: What It Is and How to Avoid ItOne important thing to note here. When you’re staring at the mountains of data your content audit may generate, it’s easy to find yourself struck down by analysis paralysis. Basically, there are so many conclusions you could draw and so many things you could do, that you wind up doing none of them. Don’t let yourself fall into this trap.

Content marketer Pawel Grabowski offers many helpful suggestions to combat analysis paralysis, such as focus on what’s most important, break decisions down into bite-sized steps, and don’t worry about being perfect!

As long as you’re tracking your metrics and regularly revisiting the content audit process, you’ll see these shifts occurring and be able to remedy them long before they become big problems plaguing your site’s performance.

Taking Your Audit Further

If you’ve caught the auditing bug while going through the content analysis process, you can always take the skills you’ve learned to expand your audit beyond the borders of just your website.

Look at Your Competitor’s Websites

So now you know everything there is to know about your own content. But unless you have a truly unique product or service, you’re not the only show in town. You have competition for customers.

The performance of your content will always be tied, in some ways, to the content that your competitors put out. Even if their pieces don’t directly prevent visitors from seeing yours, there is a limited number of consumers out there and they all have a finite amount of attention. If they’re using all their energy focusing on the competition’s content, they may not have enough mental focus left to pay attention to yours.

Conducting an audit of your competitor’s content is similar to assessing your own, but with a few limitations. There are a few metrics that you may not be able to pull without having direct access to your their website and accounts. Bounce rate, average time on page, and conversion rate are three in particular that are difficult to discover without accessing the site’s Google Analytics profile or marketing automation account.

But that said, there are still plenty of different things you can track. You can evaluate the number of links pointing at your competitor’s content pages using tools like Majestic Site Explorer or BuzzSumo’s Backlinks.

The Step-by-Step Guide to Conducting a Content Audit

You can measure social shares by looking for a share counter on the post itself, or entering the post URL into a service like BuzzSumo to see a detailed breakdown with their Most Shared feature. It might not be a complete audit, but even conducting this limited level of assessment will give you plenty of actionable data on areas where your competitors are currently outperforming your site.

The Step-by-Step Guide to Conducting a Content Audit

What works for them? Can you improve on it in some way (the Skyscraper Technique is a fabulous way to bring in oodles of traffic)? Which sites are linking to them that might potentially link to you if approached with a powerful piece of content or a fantastic guest post idea?

Track Offsite Content Performance

Another way to expand your content audit is to include your off-site content assets (if they’re relevant to your audit goals). For example, if you’re assessing the effectiveness of your content marketing efforts, you’ll want to include as much data as possible on any infographics, slide decks, or other external content pieces you’ve released to promote brand recognition and viral sharing.

Again, your ability to track the metrics listed above on these content pieces will vary based on the sites hosting them. Gather what you can, but also look for other types of data that are unique to external content sources.

As an example, looking at your Google Analytics account should show you the number of visits that each external piece sent to your site. Comparing referred visits across external content pieces can be a great way to determine the direction of your next big content release.

Check out Reporting > Acquisition > Channels for a general breakdown of traffic by organic, direct, referral, and social (and select Referrals if you want to see the specific points of origin).

The Step-by-Step Guide to Conducting a Content Audit

And if you utilize custom URLs with UTM parameters, for example, you can instantly see what content is sending the most traffic your way from offsite.

Expand the Audit Process to Other Marketing Channels

In addition to assessing your offsite content pieces, you can apply the audit process to your other marketing channels. If you run print ads in trade publications, try to determine how many inquiries you’ve received from each ad (hint – this is easiest to do if you record the source of your first touch with a new prospect in your CRM after your first conversation).

Or take a close look at your e-mail marketing campaigns. Is the content in your autoresponders still up-to-date? Do you have some messages that have a higher open rate than others? Services like MailChimp and AWeber have robust analytics at the ready.

Read More: 5 Ways Cold Emailing Can Help Generate Backlinks

In Summary

When it comes down to it, a content audit isn’t just a one-off process that you conduct once in a blue moon. It’s a mindset that you should apply to both your website content and the other marketing channels you use.

By carefully inventorying your existing content pieces and assessing the data you’ve gathered for each item, you can make informed marketing decisions that will help you to save time, cut costs, grow your brand, and improve your overall advertising ROI.

And remember, there is no one-size-fits-all solution here. Content audits can take many shapes, routes, approaches, and scopes. It all depends on your needs and your goals.

What content audit tools do you use to make it go a bit smoother? What insights did your last audit reveal?  

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