Everything is online today—from food delivery to medical services; you can find all manner of businesses on the internet. So, if you put your business online, you'll probably find ten other competitors already doing the same thing.
That's why you need to have an effective marketing campaign. But how do you ensure you make back every dollar you invest in marketing? Is there a way to figure out if your ads are actually helping you?
Yes, there is—through UTM tags. But what are UTM tags? Why should you use them, and how?
What Are UTM Tags?
UTM (Urchin Tracking Modules) tags are added to the end of a URL to help marketers figure out where their users come from. When you add a specific UTM tag to a URL and post them to a site, you can figure out how much traffic that site gives you.
For example, add a UTM tag to a URL that leads to your site and place that URL on a Facebook ad. Now, whenever a user clicks that ad and is directed to your site, it is recorded by a UTM tracker. You can do the same thing to other advertising platforms.
Here's what a URL with a UTM tag looks like:
This URL routes to the product page for The Senator wallet. But even if you remove all the characters after the question mark in the URL, you'll still be routed to the same page.
All these UTM tags let you track where your visitors come from, what kind of content they clicked on, and even from which marketing campaign.
Ultimately, you'd have an organized list of how many users each platform leads to your site. These UTM tags also work on blogs and sites unrelated to social media.
Why Tracking Your Ads Is Important
"Why should I care about the demographics of the people who click on my ads?" You may ask. If you ask any marketing professional, market research is the key to having an effective marketing strategy—and there's no better way to research than by getting the details directly from the people interested in you.
So, here are some of the reasons why UTM tags will boost your online marketing.
Determine the Best Traffic Source for Your Ads
It's expensive to run ads. Whether paying for a TV spot, a massive digital billboard, or running an online campaign, you'll have to shell out a non-trivial amount to expand your reach.
You can test the waters with UTM tags before diving deep into your pockets. That's because UTM tags will tell you which platforms provide the best and worst traffic. You can make the most informed decisions with an accurate list of how much traffic each source and platform gives.
For instance, you can hire several influencers to launch a product. Each will get their own URL with an attached UTM tag, and after several weeks, you can see which ones are actually influential and which are underperforming.
Armed with this information, you can invest more in the influencer that increases sales and drop the non-performing channels. You can also use the same strategy when choosing platforms (like TikTok vs. Instagram or Facebook vs. YouTube) to invest in for running your ads.
Find Which Platform Is Worth the Investment
As mentioned above, UTM tags will help you choose which platforms you should invest in. This is especially true if your brand has its own following on multiple platforms.
While it's tempting to go all out and pay for advertising on every platform you're on—Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, Twitter, and more—it's often not feasible.
Consequently, some just outright advertise on the platform where they have the most followers. However, this isn't necessarily effective, especially if you get more interactions on another platform.
So, this is how UTM tags can help you choose one or two platforms to put your money where it's worth the most.
First, post the same or similar ads across several social media platforms. The top three, as of now, are Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram. However, Tiktok and Twitter aren't far behind and have massive platforms.
Every platform gets a URL with its own specific UTM tag. After some time, you'll soon figure out which platform directs the most users to your site. You can invest money in the media that give you the most traffic by boosting your ads and consistently posting the best content to keep your users engaged.
Another strategy is to invest in all of them for a while. You don't need to drop big bucks on each platform, as they usually offer flexible prices you can adjust based on your budget. You can then compute the performance of each platform and determine which one is worth investing more in.
You can also see which platform is underperforming, so you can end your investment and concentrate on the platforms that give you good returns.
Post Curated Content
The best way to get into your buyers' hearts (and pockets) is to make them relate to your brand. By creating ads tailored to their lifestyles and experiences, you can build rapport with your audience, making it easier to build brand loyalty.
UTM tags show more than just where the click came from (whether from your email newsletter, online ads, social media pages, etc.); they can also show the country, browser, and operating system of users. You can even figure out when you get the most visitors during the day and the week.
With this knowledge, you adjust your posts to ensure they connect with the people who click on your ads. You can even use this to see which posts work better—video, images, or text.
With this, you can create a marketing strategy that'll satisfy your audience's demands while ensuring that it will fit within your budget.
How to Add UTM Tags to Your URLs for Free
Setting up a UTM tracker and adding UTM tags can sometimes be complex for someone unfamiliar. And hiring a professional will require financial compensation.
But don't fret—you should try Short.io. With Short.io, setting up UTM tags and trackers becomes easy, even for beginners. Short.io is also one of the most cost-effective link shorteners, giving you several features for low prices. Ultimately, it's a convenient and budget-friendly choice.
Here's how to add a UTM tag for tracking your ads:
- Create a free Short.io account
- Shorten a Link, then in the next window, click on Campaign Tracking.
- Input the UTM tags in the necessary fields.
- Click Save.
With that, you now have UTM tracking embedded in your shortened link. If you want to know more, check out our How to Use UTM-Parameters tutorial.
You can also get more info on our video tutorial—the Short.io and Google Analytics Integration Guide—to help you.
Short.io for Your Marketing Needs
If you aim to garner brand exposure, you can hit multiple birds with one stone—Short.io. UTM tags and tracking are merely one of the several features Short.io has that are geared toward marketing. Check out what Short.io can help you with today.