Determine Content Performance Before Development

In fall 2013, research from popular content marketing software provider InboundWriter found that typically only 20 percent of a site's online content drives 90 percent of its Web traffic.

To remedy this problem, InboundWriter decided to revamp its software platform, and today the company is unveiling its new predictive analytics software that aims to help writers produce better performing content prior to development. The new software can be leveraged to forecast how content will perform based on an article topic or proposed headline. Moreover, the software also suggests tightly-related topic alternatives that have a higher probability of success. In doing so, InboundWriter provides guidance on how writers can produce content that will have the maximum impact online.

To verify the accuracy of its predictive analytics technology, InboundWriter has run more than 20 pilots with enterprises and media organizations in an invite-only beta program. During these pilots, Web traffic and related metrics were closely in line with the software's projections.

"InboundWriter's new predictive capabilities address major pain points for content marketers, digital publishers and agencies in a way that constitutes a significant advancement in removing guesswork and inefficiencies from online content production," said Skip Besthoff, CEO of InboundWriter. "We believe that we've not only answered the question - Why does most online content not perform? - but we've also developed a disruptive yet simple solution that removes key unknowns such that online content performs as intended."

Besthoff also shed light on the difference between InboundWriter's revamped software compared to its previous offering. According to Besthoff, the prior product focused more on the creation and structure of content rather than research and ideation.

"We realized when we really looked at the data that so much of performance is locked in before you put pen to paper," said Besthoff. "For our second generation product, we kind of doubled down and really focused at the root cause of the problem, which is right at the head of the content creation process. The second key difference is this new product is truly predictive."

Some of the early adopters of InboundWriter's new software include Time Warner Cable, online education company Skilled Up and The Enthusiast Network, which is a network of enthusiast brands for the automotive and outdoor-adventure markets. 

By leveraging the new InboundWriter software, writers can identify the factors that determine the success of an article before it is written and review the projected performance of an article topic in terms of the traffic it will drive to a given website. Plus, the software provides a menu of related topics that enables writers to better balance editorial goals with expected performance, as well as provides guidance on title and content composition without disrupting the writing process. Advanced users also have access to analytics and data regarding the root cause of projected topic performance, including insights on reader demand, competitive content, topic uniqueness and optimal content type for specific content.

"The goal of the new InboundWriter platform is to bring 'science' to the earliest stages of content planning such that the natural writing workflow and creative process are not disrupted," said Besthoff.

It is also important to note that the software is developed with the goal of driving traffic to a website. Meaning that the software may not be ideal for content that has a different purpose, such as news reporting or communicating a certain message. This is because the message for these types of content may be more important than the traffic they generate.