how-to-track-leads-email-signatures

How To Track Leads From Your Email Signatures

Email Signature Marketing Automation Drives Leads – UTM Tags Help With Tracking Them In Google Analytics

If you have signed up for an email signature management platform, you’re ahead of the game when it comes to taking advantage of one of the most personal means of presenting calls to action in your everyday communication.

If you haven’t yet, we recommend taking a look at the available platforms to help with managing your team’s signatures.

Why email signature marketing works

Think about how many 1:1 emails you send out daily. You are breaking through the noise of automated emails and hitting inboxes of your VIP’s directly.

They recognize your name.

They open the email because you are addressing them directly.

They get email on all their devices because it is the primary means of business communication.

In addition to the personal message you send to the contact, you have the opportunity to engage them in yet another way. Including a beautiful email signature with a CTA prompting them to learn more about your company’s current deal, event, ebook, blog post, or whitepaper, is such an effective way to send a relevant message to an already engaged contact.

Automation is better than manually updating email signatures

Leading the marketing for an Indianapolis software company, one of the things that I took up on myself was ensuring that our team had consistent email signatures. If we had an event to promote, a tool that we wanted to share, or a product announcement, I would create my signature first. Once I was satisfied with my signature, I would copy and paste it in an email and send it to the rest of the team. It never failed. We would spend HOURS revising alignment, font, links, etc… It was really a pain.

How email signature automation works

Take a tool like xink.io, for example. Once the application is enabled throughout the company’s overarching email system, the xink platform enables the marketing team to create unique signatures that automatically update in the footer of the designated category of users defined in the platform.

It may make sense for your support team to have a different CTA than your sales team. An example may be a link to an FAQ document or a how-to video that answers the top received question from customers. These are some examples to give you ideas.

How to track the clicks from the email signatures

Email signature platforms provide analytics in addition to the management features. You can expect to see data like how  many times your CTA was clicked, the number of opens, and more. Some platforms offer the enablement of standard UTM tagging. However, if you really want to drill down into the signature campaign traffic, including which CTA specifically drove the greatest number of leads, we recommend custom UTM tagging.

Using a tool like oogur, you can easily build links for each individual email signature marketing campaign, segment or group of team members, and clearly identify and track the specific content that drove the greatest amount of traffic and conversions.

A fully tagged link might include the following:

utm_source=xink+email+signature+cta&

utm_medium=email&

utm_campaign=how+to+use+email+signatures&

utm_content=track+email+leads+from+signature+blog+post+cta

I created another post that explains how to see the data in Google Analytics. Check it out here.

Now the question becomes: To include NPS voting or not?

Without NPS Voting: 

custom-email-signature-example
Signature created with xink.io

 

With NPS Voting (Great example to include in support team email signatures!)

email-signature-net-promoter-score-buttons
Signature created with xink.io

 

Have you seen creative email signatures? We’d love to hear about them in the comments!

affiliate-marketing

4 Tips to Ensure Affiliates Are the Right Fit

4 Tips to Ensure Your Affiliate Partners Are the Right Fit

Affiliate marketing seems like a win-win situation. Hordes of eager bloggers who have established themselves in the blogosphere passionately recommend and advocate for your brand, steer consumers towards your retail site, and take a tidy commission for their efforts. Yes, the dream scenario can happen. However, there are ways you can excel in this…and ways it can go disastrously wrong. Here are a few tips to ensure that the wrong affiliate partners don’t end up representing your precious brand.

Whether you are running affiliate marketing in-house or working with an affiliate marketing company, this post will help you run or oversee a credible campaign that you can be proud of.

Too Much?

via GIPHY

As with any type of advertising or marketing, too much of anything is a good indication that things may not be going well. Any barrage of emails, social posts or blog mentions about a particular brand or product is not a positive. You, your affiliate marketing employee or agency should have the talent and discretion to expertly advocate for your brand consistently yet subtly. We all know the dangers of too much advertising, so make sure your team shows restraint. Aggressive SEO tactics, spammy correspondence, and other heavy-handed tactics would indicate that this affiliate partner doesn’t have much of a connection with their audience. There are plenty of talented bloggers out there who do the right thing, so keep looking.

Try Before You Buy

Bloggers succeed because of the honest connection they develop with their audience; authenticity is their stock in trade. So, why would you want someone telling folks about your product or service without ever trying it first? Short answer: you don’t. There’s a lot of ways this could go wrong…the first one being the obvious experience of a blogger clearly not knowing the ins and outs of your product. You want personal input and guidance from your affiliate partner, and, if it’s clear to you that they haven’t used your product, it’ll be clear to the readers also.

Another indication is excessive copying and pasting of your website copy on their page. Sure, you want some of your messaging and details to be reported, but when the page is full of other people’s writing, it’s a safe assumption that the affiliate didn’t take much time to work with what you gave them. Point being, you should send all of your affiliate partners product from your brand and ensure they experience your brand before they vouch for it.

Content is King

Performance-based content producers got to where they are by generating awesome content. Plain and simple. Their opinions and writing style were entertaining and informative enough that their audience was drawn to them and stuck around to the point where the content creator could start monetizing their site. Unfortunately, sometimes success can overtake quality. Any vetting process of potential partners needs to include a hard look at any websites the affiliate partner is using.

Look for clear examples of their content to be prominent and featured on the first page you see. If it’s stacked with banner ads, links, and random products, that may be a red flag, and you should visualize how upset you’d be seeing your brand plugged in on a busy splash of ads and links.

Stay in Your Lane

Now, there are infinite numbers of niches to dive into on the Internet. From wholesome to dark, young to old, simple to future tech…it’s all out there. And while there are some lifestyle bloggers that have a big and diverse enough voice to cover a wide range of products, most have made their name by covering a specific subject. So, if you are selling crochet supplies and the niche expert blogger with thousands of loyal crochet fans starts reviewing energy drinks or sports cars, you might want to reconsider.

Look, this isn’t an easy line of work to be in, and some affiliates might take on some out-of-place products to help pay the rent. Some might even have the self-deprecating and humorous style to pull off an off-topic review, and that should be acknowledged. Generally speaking, however, it’s a good idea to monitor your affiliate partners for topic and tone and enlist the experts to ply their crafts.

Also, it’s possible one of these bloggers has posted a controversial statement in the past, either contrary to your beliefs or just plain offensive. You might not want to be involved in that…the Internet never forgets. In case you missed it, here’s a few examples of how brands have gone awry.

Do you have any affiliate marketing tips? We would love to hear from you!

This guest post was written by Kristen Matthews. Kristen does freelance influencer, affiliate and content marketing for B2C and B2B brands. She can be found on Twitter @KristenWords.

kristen-matthews-influencer-affiliate-content-marketer

google-analytics-utm-campaign-reports

I’m Using UTM Tags, But Now What?

Have you been using UTM tags, but aren’t really sure why?

I had a meeting yesterday with an oogur user and realized that there were some opportunities to share some of my favorite tips when using UTM tags and Google Analytics.

These questions were answered and it seemed worthy of sharing with you in case you were also wondering!

  1. Where do I see the Google Analytics reports for the campaign that I just launched?
  2. Is there a dashboard that I can create to see all of my data?
  3. If I run an A/B test using different CTA’s or links in different areas of my email, where can I see that in Google Analytics? (See response to question #1)

 

Question 1:

Where do I see the Google Analytics reports for the campaign that I just launched?

There are a few different ways which you can drill down and see the reports. The way that I typically navigate to see them is as follows:

Step 1: When you login to Google Analytics, navigate to the Acquisition menu item and click on Campaigns. As you expand that menu item, you’ll see a few different options, but for now, just select All Campaigns.

Step 2: Click into the campaign you are currently running. This campaign name would have been set in your utm_name=______ parameter. By default, you will see the Source/Medium data.

Step 3: Click the Secondary Dimension drop down. Enter “content” in the search field and select Ad Content. For those of you who have named the utm_content field in the links you’ve built to monitor an A/B test, this is where those variates will appear. (different buttons, text link, etc…)

 

Question 2: 

Is there a dashboard that I can create to see all of my data? 

For a really simple way to see all the data from the links you’ve built with UTM tags, I recommend this dashboard that you can implement right out of the crowdsourced gallery in GA. To find it, follow these steps:

Step 1: Login to Google Analytics and select Customization > Dashboards > Create.

Step 2: Select Import From Gallery. Filter by Campaigns by checking the Campaign filter box on the left in the popup.

Step 3: Scroll the Custom Campaigns Snapshot dashboard seen here and click Import.  

Step 4: Choose the Analytics view you’d like to see data from (likely one filtered that excludes your internal IP addresses). Name it something you’ll recognize later and save it. You’ll be able to revisit this dashboard later by taking the first steps over again: Customization > Dashboards.

Tip! Don’t forget to filter by the date range you are wishing to analyze!

google-analytics-utm-campaign-report-utm-dashboard

 

 

I hope this helps you out! Have any other questions about UTM tags or how you can see more campaign data? Reach out! I’d love to chat.

Email nicki@oogur.com.

Tweet @oogurit.

Comment below.

Sign up for an oogur account!

attribution-reporting-google-analytics

Video: Understanding Attribution Models in Google Analytics

Are You Trying to Understand the Google Analytics Attribution Model Reports?

You are not alone.

On my content creation mission, I found a great resource for Google Analytics information that I wanted to share. Have you heard of LovesData?

Benjamin breaks down some of the most frequently asked questions from GA users. He manages several digital marketing courses online as well as educational videos like the one below on his LovesData YouTube channel.

Attribution reports and UTMs

I picked this video because it supports the reason that you should be using oogur. In order to clearly see where your incoming traffic and leads are coming from, you need to do some pre-work for your attribution reports to be effective. If you leave your content up for GA to interpret for you, you won’t get completely accurate data.

For example: If you create a blog post and then share it with your favorite Slack community, all of those clicks and conversions, unless you have tagged them with UTM tags, are going to show up in your GA reports as Direct Traffic. You know that isn’t right, but you won’t be able to tell the difference without the UTM tags clarifying this traffic source for you.

Sign up for an oogur account to get started with UTM tags.

Explanation in Plain English – The Video

 

What did you think?

Answer these questions for me in the comments please!

  1. After watching the video, what do you think about the different models?
  2. How are you measuring success now?
  3. Do you currently favor one model over the other in your Google Analytics console?

Let me know in the comments below!

Just one more reminder… Sign up for oogur. 🙂

hulk-smashing-direct-traffic-google-analytics

What is Google Analytics Direct Traffic?

Why Do I See So Much Direct Traffic in Google Analytics?

Over the years, one of the most baffling and frustrating things to see in my Google Analytics reporting has always been the amount of Direct Traffic which doesn’t tell me a whole lot about how someone got to my website. direct-traffic-google-analytics

When a visitor lands on your website, they reach it by performing one of many actions. They either:

  1. Know your URL because of your killer marketing and advertising which has generated so much brand awareness that they just type it directly into the browser
  2. Love your site, so it is bookmarked in their browser
  3. See one of your ads in their search results for something related to your product or service
  4. Receive an email from your marketing team that has an attractive CTA that they click
  5. Follow you on social media and click on one of your latest updates about a new blog post on your website
  6. Click on the link in your bio or from a conversation in your favorite Slack group
  7. Click from a link in your software they have installed on their machine
  8. Receive a text message from you with a link to go to a special landing page with an announcement just for them
  9. Maybe someone from your team or someone who if a fan of your company shared the link to your website with someone in a chat window on Skype

Which of these are the Direct Traffic culprits?

If your URL is visited from numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and they aren’t tagged to tell Google Analytics otherwise, they have the potential to show up as Direct Traffic in your acquisition reports. Crazy, right?

What’s the big deal though?

Direct Traffic is kind of like this:

incredible-hulk-smashes-direct-traffic

You work your butt off to plan the biggest, most fantastic Christmas party that your team has ever had. Everyone is absolutely raving about it. You have left no detail unplanned. You even thought to get holiday scented soap for the restrooms.

Your co-worker gets up to give a toast to you for doing such an amazing job. But you can’t believe your ears. Did he seriously just take credit for this whole party?

That’s Direct Traffic. Ok – maybe it isn’t Hulk Smash worthy, but you see where I’m going. Direct Traffic will take the credit for all the work that you invest into your campaign if you don’t tell GA to associate it with the campaign you are building.

Let’s start changing the amount Direct Traffic and see better data

It is actually pretty simple. It’s nothing new or magic, it just takes a little time to add a few tags to the end of the links you share and you will start to see that not all traffic is what GA says it is.

The 5 UTM tags that will help you solve this mystery are:

utm_source

utm_medium

utm_name

utm_term

utm_content

Ok – but what do you mean I just need to add UTM tags?

With a link builder and management application like oogur.com, you can pretty easily add these tags to the links you’ll use in your next Tweet or newsletter.

It is wise to do some planning before you get started though.

Campaign Name

First – think about your next campaign. Will you be promoting a sale on swim suits? What will you call it in your CRM? Do you have other platforms where you track your campaigns? If so, try to be consistent in what you use in your naming conventions so it is easy to visibly see how your campaign is performing when you login to Google Analytics next time.

Once you decide the campaign name, you can use that for the utm_name, or Campaign UTM.

Source

Where will you share the links you are building? Twitter? Facebook? LinkedIn? Cool. More than likely, you’ll be using those over and over. Oogur can store those for you so you don’t have to type them in again.

Medium

The utm_medium is that general bucket of where you are sharing your links. In this case, we’ll call the medium ‘social’. As a rule of thumb, if you’re going to call it social now, call it social forever. That way, you’re able to look back a year later and get consistent reporting for that medium. If it performs well, maybe invest more resources into that medium. Makes sense, right?

Keyword

The utm_keyword is not necessary unless you are building a link for a Google AdWords campaign. Otherwise, if where you are sharing is organic, you can skip this one.

Content

This is where you can have a lot of fun. Let’s say your team is really competitive. Sally is confident that her graphic is going to stomp Marcus’ ad. Alright Sally – it’s your time to shine. When you build your links, build one for Sally and one for Marcus and when you share the link, be sure to share the corresponding graphics so you can announce the winner at the end of the campaign.

What I mean with this is that you can track your A/B tests using the utm_content parameter.

Sounds fun, right?

Get started with an oogur account. We just opened up a free tier for you to check out.

Enjoy!

google-url-shortener

Oogur Update: The Transition Away From the Google Shortener API

Google Shutting Down URL Shortener – Here’s What We Are Doing

Have you arrived on the oogur website because you were looking for a better way to manage UTM parameters and the links you build for marketing and PPC campaigns? Sweet. We’ve done our job to get you here.

The not so great news though, is that we have built our application’s shortening and click tracking analytics features using Google’s link shortener API.

Google recently announced that they will be discontinuing support for the service for API users in March 2019. We are being proactive and getting ahead of the timeline.

Three Options

  1. Bitly’s API – a strong contender in this decision. The API allows us to do everything oogur was doing and more.
  2. Firebase Dynamic Links – This is another Google product.
  3. Building our own shortener – The more resource consuming effort.

We will announce the direction we’ve decided to run shortly as we make the updates to our application.

About this update: You can read the Google announcement on their developer blog here.

Get the updates as they happen. Subscribe below.

why-use-utm-tags

Why You Should Use UTM Tags + A Few Quick Tips

Let’s start at the beginning. Why are UTM tags such a big deal?

As I prospect new customers and interview marketers who are actively managing digital marketing campaigns, the conversations typically start out with this question:

Do you use UTM tags?

The response to this question steers the next series of questions I ask.

Response A: Yes.

If the marketer is using UTM tags in their campaign links, they immediately understand why oogur exists. To date, each marketer I’ve encountered is using a spreadsheet to manage all the campaign links and UTMs they have built. They know that the process is a pain to keep up with – especially if they are managing multiple clients.

Response B: No.

If the marketer is not yet using UTM tags, the opportunity to educate the marketer presents itself. Often times, a marketer has heard of UTMs, but they either aren’t really sure of how to use them, they feel that the process is too time consuming, or they just haven’t seen the value to convince them to take the time to add UTMs to their campaign building and tracking process.

Which one are you?

This post will be most useful to those that are not currently using UTM tags or are just beginning to use them.

First, remember this: You cannot manage what you do not measure.

What is a UTM tag?

UTM is an acronym for Urchin Tracking Module. Urchin was the name of the software company that Google acquired back in 2005. Their software was the basis of Google Analytics. It seems like it should be GTM rather than UTM, right? I digress…

UTM tags are additional lines of text that are appended to the end of a URL that tells Google Analytics more about your website visitors. I’ll explain more throughout the article.

Take notice

As you are visiting web pages, take a look in the address bar of your browser over the next few days. You’ll begin to notice additional characters in the query string of the URL you’ve clicked on. For example, if you’ve been scrolling through Twitter and you click on an article of interest, you’ll probably see something like this at the end of the URL:

/?utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=sa-editorial-social&utm_content=link-post&utm_term=sustainability_blog_text_free&sf187410215=1 (this came from this article from @sciam on Twitter)

via GIPHY

Why you should use UTMs

Before we begin telling you what each UTM means, it is important that you understand why you are using them.

  • Are you using Google Analytics?
    • When you look at your data, have you noticed that you see a lot of “Direct Traffic” showing up?
    • Does that seem odd to you?
    • Direct Traffic appears for a few reasons:
      • Someone has typed your website’s URL directly into the browser address bar.
      • Someone has clicked on a link to your website from an application like Slack or another IM client.
      • A user has clicked on your link from some other source that Google just doesn’t recognize as a referrer so it drops it into a bucket called “Direct Traffic”.
  • Would you like to provide better reports to your team about how your marketing campaigns are performing?
  • Are you hoping to run marketing experiments and want to ensure that the winning segment is tracked and fully engaged?
  • Is your client or management requesting detailed information on how their budget is being spent?

Using UTM parameters in your campaign links will help you with all of these requests.

Let’s break it down – What each UTM means to you

Source – a.k.a. utm_source (aside from the base URL, this is the only required UTM field)

When properly used, the source field is used to identify the source of the referring traffic. Using the example of the query string shared above, the utm_source is Twitter. That just tells the Google Analytics data analyst that the user session came from Twitter. When adding UTM tags, this one is a required field.

Medium – a.k.a. utm_medium (not a required field)

The utm_medium is the field you’ll use to identify a bucket of sources. As an example – if you are building links for a campaign that you’ll share on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter, these are all types of social traffic. You’ll need to decide whether you’ll use “social” as your medium or if you want to call it “social media” or however your team refers to these types of sites in your organization.

Campaign Name – a.k.a. utm_name (not a required field)

It feels slightly out of order, but the utm_name is the third UTM in the order of the link building form. You’ll undoubtedly be creating your links to support a current marketing campaign. Before you begin building your links, decide what you’ll name the campaign. It can align with what you’ve named the campaign in Salesforce or another marketing and sales tracking platform. This will be the displayed in Google Analytics as the campaign name.

Ask yourself: Is the campaign going to be centered around a certain product? Is it for a seasonal sale that you’re going to promote on social? Whatever it is, just be sure that you are naming it something easy to recognize.

Campaign Term – a.k.a. utm_term (not a required field – only use if you are creating the link for a paid AdWords campaign)

For organic or unpaid campaigns, you’ll not need to use this field. If you are creating links to share in your AdWords campaign, you’ll add the paid keyword(s) to the utm_term field.

Campaign Content – a.k.a. utm_content (not required – great for A/B and multivariate tests)

When you are creating links, you’ll often times be publishing content that has different graphics or locations representing your CTA. If you are going to be creating a link to share your blog post that you plan to add simply as a hyperlinked line of text in your email signature, you can name that here as “email signature text link”. Maybe you want to create unique graphics that will be shared in different geographic locations. You could create a graphic specific to Indiana and add “indiana” as your utm_content parameter and the other link will represent “illinois”. See the flexibility?

UTM Tag Housekeeping

via GIPHY

Consistency is key. Over time, the results you will see will be much clearer if you stay the course: 

If you decide to use “social” to represent your social media traffic, please always use “social” as your utm_source.

As a best practice, use all lowercase letters in your UTMs

It may feel odd to you at first, but it just takes one link to drive you crazy when analyzing your campaign results in Google Analytics. If you use “facebook” for one link and “Facebook” for another, it doesn’t just create a separate line in your report, it will also jeopardize the accuracy of your attribution reporting. Why does that matter? The ultimate goal is to see the ROI on your campaigns. If the data is skewed, the reporting will be difficult to accurately track.

As tempting as it may be, do not tag content internally on your website. 

UTM tags should only be used in links that you are building to share on sites that are not your domain. If you use them to link internal traffic, you are overwriting the REAL source of traffic to your website. This completely defeats the goal of tracking in the first place.

Tools to use

In your searches for UTM tags, you will likely see a lot of URL builders that have been built for you to use. Google also has their free builder.  These tools are all easy to use, but where they fall short is the management and memory of the links you build which also leaves room for consistency to fail.

You’ll see a lot of blog posts recommending that you use a spreadsheet to either build the links and/or keep track of all the UTMs you’ve used. I’m not a fan of using spreadsheets for marketing campaign tracking. That’s why I started oogur.

Oogur isn’t just a link builder and shortener, but it also retains the memory of all the URLs you’ve built and the UTMs you’ve used. You don’t have to have several tabs open to complete your link building process. Oogur handles it all for you.

After you’ve had the chance to see the inefficiency in maintaining a spreadsheet to keep up with all the marketing campaign links, you’ll see why we decided to have this link builder and UTM tracking application built.

Sign up for an account! If you have questions, feel free to Tweet us @oogurit or drop us a question in the contact form.

Don’t just build it – oogur it!

utm tags demonstrate digital marketing roi2_opt

Using UTM Tags – Critical in Demonstrating ROI in Digital Marketing

UTM tags are critical to your success as a digital marketer

Guest blog post by @MikkoPiippo

Every digital marketer tries to optimize her campaigns and ads. This is just a start: she needs to optimize also the choice of advertising channels. This is impossible without reliable web analytics data.

Optimizing your advertising channels and media budget is not rocket science.

You need to find out the channels providing you with a high ROI. Identify also the channels with low ROI.

Next, you need to allocate more of your budget to the channels with high ROI.

But how can you achieve this?

Track the performance with web analytics

Different advertising tools, of course, provide their own conversion tracking pixels. These are useful for optimizing each channel. For example, you can very well optimize your Facebook advertising using the FB pixel.

But this is not enough for you when you optimise digital marketing as whole: Every advertising platform exaggerates the its own importance.

In a multi-touchpoint, multi-device world you need to have one tool for measuring all your advertising channels. Use one tool and one set of attribution rules for Facebook, AdWords, Twitter, LinkedIn and other campaigns.

Otherwise, you will compare apples and oranges. In this case, it is impossible to know if you should invest more in Facebook of Twitter advertising.

For most advertisers it is enough to have every campaign and ad reliably tracked in Google Analytics.

Unfortunately, every web analytics implementation is broken. The data is almost never reliable.

You might think that your data is perfect. This means only one thing: you haven’t found the bugs yet.

Most of the time, the issues are elementary.

Fix your web analytics implementation

Getting the basics right is the most important step in web analytics. It is much more important than implementing shiniest new things like custom attribution models.

Custom attribution models, custom dimensions and custom metrics are valuable for optimizing a high traffic website. And so are content groupings. But they are useful only if your standard tracking is correctly implemented.

So you should take care of the basics first.

These are:

  1. Campaign tracking.

    • Without campaign tracking, you can’t segment your visitors and conversions based on campaigns. If you don’t segment your visitors, you can’t attribute conversions to correct acquisition channel.
  2. Conversion tracking.

    • The accuracy of your conversion tracking is critical to your success. Without conversion tracking, you can’t optimize anything.
  3. Traffic acquisition costs.

    • You must import the acquisition costs to Google Analytics. Otherwise you can’t analyze the ROI of your campaigns in Google Analytics.
After implementing all this, you can for example:

It all starts with UTM tags

For some of the fixes, you might need developer help. For example, sometimes your developer needs to implement scripts for conversion tracking. Or maybe you need her to automate cost import from Facebook to Google Analytics.

But there are many things you can implement yourself.

Correct use of utm tags is such a thing.

Every marketer can implement correct utm tagging herself. It isn’t complicated at all, it is just something that must be taken care of. And with right tools, it is easier than you think.
mikko-piippo-google-analytics-consultant

Mikko Piippo is web analytics consultant and partner at Hopkins. He blogs and tweets regularly about Google Analytics and digital marketing.





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