Modern business corporation management guru Peter Drucker is often cited for reminding us that what gets measured, gets managed. It comes from a book he wrote all the way back in the 1950s – long before the age of digital marketing. Today, successful marketers put his recommendation to work by using UTM codes.
These special codes are added to the end of a URL to track the performance of marketing campaigns. They allow you to accurately measure how many people actually engage with your online advertising. After all, maybe it’s not the price or product that’s underperforming. It could be your offer. UTM tracking can help.
Underneat the code
The average consumer no longer pays much attention to the ever-lengthening URL that populates their browser tab. This is mainly because more than half of all global website traffic has been generated through mobile phones since 2018. It’s the content, not the website address, that drives attention.
Website pages with UTM codes are longer. They employ a snippet of code added to the URL. The telltale sign of UTM code usage is “?utm_” and then a series of five variants that allow you to track:
UTM, by the way, is an acronym for Urchin Traffic Module. Urchin Software Corporation was acquired by Google in 2005. The Urchin software was renamed Urchin from Google, which ultimately became what we know today as Google Analytics.
The code’s addition doesn’t impact a webpage. Its only purpose is to calculate the marketing effectiveness – and give you much deeper insight into answering the question, “Who’s coming from where?”
Best usage for UTM codes
One of the most insightful areas of information a UTM can provide is determining which links are being used if you engage leads or prospects with newsletters or email campaigns. Each link can be assigned a unique UTM and you can see which work better than others.
Social media can be a rich source for lead generation. UTM codes can help you determine which social channel or platform offers superior performance in terms of facilitating people further along the buyer’s journey. The objective for social media posts is to be shared. Long UTM codes can make that difficult, so use a link shortener.
Both sides of the marketing equation
UTM tracking can help you measure marketing message effectiveness, but let’s be honest: the perfect message sent to someone who doesn’t need or want to buy your product won’t make any difference.
The public’s desire for anonymity and advertising or social media platform walled garden operations have made it increasingly difficult to identify prospects. UTM codes can help you measure the efficiency of your messages, but it’s more important than ever to accurately identify only the people in your market who are actively searching for what you sell.
Lead generation efforts such as organic search, social media, and even cold emails or cold calling must be augmented with machine learning and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to move you past the barrier of anonymity. We can help. We can help you identify who is ready to buy right now – actual names and contact information. Discover how.