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We want more people to apply for Dev Academy and we want to understand how our marketing campaigns perform so that we can market more effectively.
Digital marketing campaigns involve distributing content that the audience finds valuable to build reputation and content that links back to the devacademy.co.nz or the blog to funnel more potential applicants to the site and through to successful application.
Questions we might want answered about our marketing efforts include:
- Do particlular kinds of content do a better job than others?
- Do particular channels (facebook, blogs, twitter, email etc) do a better job than others?
- [More advanced] What is the Return on Investment of marketing efforts in a particular channel? Should we cut some and focus on others?
Organic vs Direct Marketing
By itself, Google Analytics can only give a fuzzy answer to the above questions. We can track where visitors have arrived from but we do not know if this was organic -someone else shared a link to DevAcademy or if visitors came through our own efforts.
A solution is to add UTM parameters to every link that we share. These are automatically parsed by Analytics and allow us to filter and aggregate visitors by the campaign, the shared content, and the medium through which the link was shared.
Let's say we wish to share the following piece of content:
Images work well on twitter and facebook. So we decide to share this image on both of these channels. Let's create a utm link to pair with our image using the Dev Academy UTM Link Builder
To create a utm link we enter parameters to distinguish the link from others.
|campaign||The name of the campaign.|
|source||the specific channel where the link will be shared. E.g facebook, twitter, newsletter etc.|
|medium||a higher level aggregate of the channel. E.g social, email, paid-ad|
|content||the name of the content.|
|term||Usually used for cost-per-click ads targeted at specific search terms. Sometimes you might pair an image with different text or blog-posts with different headlines and see which performs better. Use this prameter to distinguish these if needed.|
We want to link back to the main website so that goes in "Website URL" column. The current campaign is "Join the Future" so we enter that in the "Campaign" column. We create separate links for facebook and twitter in the "Source" column. By tagging with "social" in the "Medium" we will be able to make broader comparisons about how our campaign is performing across channel aggregates. We'll use the "Content" column to identify the particular piece of content. In this case I have called the image "believe-image". We could also use the "Term" column to do this but its optional and we don't need to. We now have two links in the final column to pair with our content and track how well it performs at directing visitors to our site:
Buffer is automatically set up to shorten links shared to twitter with our bit.ly account. If you don't use buffer, sign into bit.ly with the DevAcademy twitter account and paste it in the top left side to make the link friendlier. This also enables more detailed link clicking analytics.
Now we have our friendly link ready for tracking
http://bit.ly/1gQz0PE and we can now embed it in a facebook post:
Checking our google analytics the next day we can drill down to see how effective this content has been. Select Acquisition > All Campaigns then
join-the-future we see:
3 people each on facebook and twitter have clicked links in the
join-the-future campaign through to DevAcademy! Unfortunately none submitted an application. This is only the very start of the campaign so we shouldn't be disappointed.
We can also select
Ad Content to see how the Believe Image performed: