How to Track Marketing Campaigns – The Top 5 “Must – Haves”

Having a powerful, well put-together marketing strategy is critical for your company – that’s no secret. However, monitoring and tracking your campaign’s success is equally important. Let’s see why:

Although not as exciting as the creative brainstorming or execution phases of your strategy, where you test out new techniques and tools, tracking is immensely important. It’s where you see what works and what doesn’t, and what should you focus on in order to increase effectiveness. You’ve heard the expression before, “You can’t manage what you don’t measure.”  And if you’re not measuring and monitoring your efforts, you’re likely wasting your dollars.

Why Do You Have To Track Your Marketing Campaigns?

As a Digital Agency, we consult with many CEOs from companies large and small. And not surprisingly, most of these leaders understand the power of digital marketing. They tend to spend a lot of money on it. But just throwing money at Google AdWords, social media marketing and SEO, only to hope something sticks, is a disaster waiting to happen. Many of these business owners only see their marketing budgets go to waste and unfortunately see little to no results.

Tracking lets you see exactly what works and what doesn’t. You will know how to re-plan your strategy and split your budget, without throwing your money out the window. You will only invest in what really works. Your marketing capital will only feed the strongest digital strategies and you’ll  get the maximum returns on your investment. And this is only possible if you track your digital marketing campaigns right from the start.

Here are our 5 “Must Do’s” to effectively track the success of your digital marketing campaigns:

#1. Website Analytics

Google Analytics - How to track marketing campaigns

Let’s start with the most basic way to track your marketing campaigns.  Analytics can show you who is visiting your website, where they come from and how long they are staying on each page. You’ll know which tactics get the most clicks and how are they converting into web leads, phone calls, sales or new customers.

There are a lot of analytics tools around, but you should stick with the most common one: Google Analytics. This is what most website owners use and it’s amazingly free, amazingly easy to use and set-up, even for beginners. Google Analytics works by compiling data from your users and other sources and gives you a detailed report on your traffic, bounce rates, back-links, pay-per-click campaigns and many other aspects. A “Must-have” tool if you wish to measure digital marketing.

#2. Ad Network Conversion Tracking

How to track Facebook Marketing Campaigns

All major ad networks or channels , like Facebook Ads, Bing Ads, Google AdWords or Instagram, provide a conversion tracking tool. These tools are incredibly important because they let you determine whether your paid campaigns are actually working. You’ll get information on new sales, sign-ups, phone calls, app downloads and more.  This is also a fairly quick process to implement and the insight you’ll gain by tracking these efforts will help you manage your budgets more effectively.

#3. Phone Tracking

Phone Call Tracking - How to track marketing campaigns

Some businesses rely heavily on phone leads. At SMDigital Partners, we place a lot of emphasis to encourage phone calls over web leads.  And it’s great when prospects and customers keep calling back. But where are they coming from? How did they find your company? Knowing the answers to these questions will arms you with your future digital marketing efforts.

Our clients tell us that their best leads come from phone calls that are generated from our digital marketing campaigns. Seventy-three percent of our clients want a phone call compared to a web lead.  No surprise there. And, for any small, local business owner, 61 percent of local mobile searches turn into a phone call. But you have to know where the call originated from to be able to amplify those efforts. These are only a few of the reasons why you have to use phone call tracking technology in order to learn how to track marketing campaigns effectively and boost your sales.

So how does it work? Ideally, each campaign is assigned a unique local (or toll-free) number. These numbers are then dynamically inserted into your campaign landing page or website where the call activity is tracked. For example, someone who clicked on your Facebook ad, sees a different number, while someone who clicked a Google ad gets a different number.  Both these numbers point to your main number so the process is seamless to the Client. This allows you to understand where your callers (and sales) are coming from, and consequently, where your marketing money should go.

#4. CRM Tracking

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) - How to track marketing campaigns

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platforms are a more powerful tool primarily used to manage your prospecting activity or sales process. They allow you to create personalized profiles for your prospects and customers, listing their names, address, phone number, referral sources and many other snippets of marketing data to help you really understand your business.

But they can also be extremely powerful when it comes to how to track marketing campaigns.  In most cases, you can filter or sort your prospects by campaign ID, lead source, or referral program which gives you real time access to see how your marketing efforts are paying off.  Furthermore, many CRMs have a marketing and email automation component to them which means you can begin to craft customized, relevant email messages automatically based on the tracking source of the lead. 

For example, if a prospect came in looking for discounts on official New England Patriots Jerseys, you’d want to send them an email message, or maybe a coupon relating to the Patriots – not a generic email about apparel.

#5. KPI Dashboard Tracking

KPI Dashboard Tracking - How to track marketing campaigns

KPI (short for key performance indicator) tracking is about recording and tracking your campaigns by using the previous 4 methods mentioned above – but rolled up into one powerful report.  The prior four tracking tools are all essential to manage and review from time to time, but most business owners don;t always have the time to review each tool, individually, and analyze the results.  So, imagine being able to see ALL your campaign data in one KPI Dashboard Report and drilling down by campaign, or social channel, or phone number.  We refer to them as Executive Reports and these should be produced weekly so all stakeholders get a sense of what is happening overall.  It allows CEOs, business leaders, marketing managers and anyone responsible for digital marketing performance to see the most important business metrics in one easy to understand report.  It’s the lifeblood of our business and effectively becomes the scorecard for success.  Every business needs to have one.

Whether you’re a small business owner, newly-minted director of marketing or a seasoned CMO, these 5 Must-Haves on how to track marketing campaigns are essential to give you actionable intelligence to help you manage your marketing dollars more effectively…and grow your business responsibly.

Need help with your marketing campaign tracking? Want to talk tracking? Want to see a copy of our Weekly KPI Report to help you shape yours? Schedule a quick call with our team or give us a ring at 954-606-5980.  We’d be happy to help.

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