The old adage 'I know half my advertising isn't working - I just don't know which half' shouldn't apply in web marketing. Unfortunately, for many businesses it does. Here is how to change that.
First, I am going to assume you have some form of analytics on ALL of your webpages. This article assumes you are using Google Analytics, but the principle apply to other services such as ClickTrack or Omniture.
BTW: - If you don't have analytics tracking on your website - start screaming at your web designer. There is no excuse for not using them. Even free services, like Google Analytics, do an excellent job of providing useful information on the operation of your website.
The easiest way of tracking an advertising campaign is to create a separate landing page for each ad. However, if you have a number of ads that in the same campaign, this can be VERY labour intensive.
This means adding a set of instructions, called query code, to the URL. If you see a website address with a '?' followed by numbers or letter, all the text after the '?' is the query code. To 'tag' individual ads all you need to do is create query code that your analytics package understands.
Don't worry - it isn't that hard.
If you are using Google Analytics and Google Adwords - grab your favourite beverage and relax. Google has already tagged each ad for you.
In this example you will be creating an advert on Facebook. You are going to have to do some work. But, don't worry, Google has made it easy for websites using Google Analytics. A simple tool called URL Builder lets you generated the required URL complete with query code.
First open the Facebook ad page in one tab of your browser and the Google URL Builder in another. Fill in the information until you get to the third step - the one that lets you review your ad. Using the information you entered to created your Facebook add fill in the following fields in URL Builder.
The first field is the 'Website URL'. If you have a custom landing page for you ad campaign, enter it here. Otherwise, enter your websites main page.
Google recommends you always use the 'Campaign Source', 'Campaign Medium' and 'Campaign Name' fields. The 'Campaign Source' is a required field and , as the name implies, is the source of the ad. In example the ad is appearing on Facebook - enter Facebook in the field.
'Campaign Medium' is just as straight forward. In most cases media are email, website, or blog. However, if you are targeting a specific event, group, or application using 'Connections on Facebook' - you may want to enter that here.
The purpose of both these fields is to make it easier for you to identify and separate ads that may appear in more than one location on the web.
'Campaign Name' lets you identify which of your advertising campaigns the ad belongs to. You may have two or more advertising campaigns running at the same time. For example, if you are running a resort, your 'Vacation Special' and 'Spring Special' may overlap in April and May. This lets you see which one is generating traffic.
To make things a bit confusing, Facebook gives each ad a 'Campaign Name'. In my opinion a single ad does not make Instead, I would put the Facebook 'Campaign Name' in the 'Campaign Content' field on the URL Builder. This should allows you to give each version of your ad a different name.
Unlike Google Adwords, which has a simple format for testing, testing in Facebook requires you make multiple ads, each with a unique name. In practise there is little difference in the outcomes. If anything the Facebook results may be more accurate since, conceivably all your ads could appear on the same page.
'Campaign Term' is an optional but very useful field. Usually a place for key words, in your Facebook ads use this field to identify your target audience.
When you click on 'Generate URL' button a formated link with appear in the box just below the button. Simply copy the URL and past it into the 'Destination URL' box in the Facebook form.
That is it. Your traffic from your Facebook ad should start appearing as a separate item in your Google Analytics. And, while this was referencing Google, the other analytic services all provide a method of creating a tagged URL to use in tracking your advertising