When you hear “UTM codes”, you may think that it’s far too complicated to try and understand. However, if you think about them like “Name tags” for your link, then it may be more digestible. These ‘name tags’ appear in analytics reports and let a website know exactly where the traffic is coming from. They also allow you to get the credit you deserve for clicks and the performance of marketing activities on your website. If you’ve struggled in the past with marketing attribution, read on for our Beginner’s Guide to UTM codes and they’ll be your close friend in no time.
UTM codes are a simple string of characters that are added to the end of a link in order for it to be tracked in Google Analytics. By putting a “?” at the end of your link, you are telling Google Analytics to start looking for the different name tags that you have assigned to the link. All you have to do is simply add ‘name tags’ (or parameters) to the end of your link for the feature to be activated.
There are several things that you can track when you are creating a campaign code, but we’ve found if you focus on the following three parameters, they will be the most useful to your marketing efforts.
What it tracks: where the traffic is coming from. Typically, this means a specific website. Common sources include Facebook, Google, Bing etc.
Displays as: utm_source
What it tracks: the type of traffic the click is bringing into the site. This can answer questions like if it’s paid, social media or from a newsletter. This can include cpc, email, social, referral, display etc.
Displays as: utm_medium
What it tracks: the performance of a specific campaign. It can help you differentiate your Facebook ad campaign and your email marketing campaign, and help you determine what is working best.
Displays as: utm_campaign
This part is what most folks are the most intimidated by, but thankfully it is very easy! First, check out the Campaign URL Builder and follow these steps:
- Paste your general URL into the box & create your name tag by filling in the different fields below.
2. COPY your code from the ‘generated campaign URL’ field and PASTE it where it needs to go!
The final step in executing the use of UTM codes is actually seeing them show up in Google Analytics! Follow the steps below to see where to find your campaigns in the Google Analytics dashboard.
To successfully move forward with your digital strategy, it’s crucial to know where your web traffic is coming from as well as what is working and what is not. This will help you focus on the things that are bringing in the best traffic for the least amount of money.
For example: Say you have ‘winter wonderland’ landing page that you’re sharing across multiple platforms and in several campaigns. Without UTM codes, you wouldn’t be able to tell what’s driving the most and best traffic. By using them, you’ll be able to see that visitors from your newsletter are spending the most time on the page and your Twitter campaign is driving the most overall traffic, but spending less time on site.
Learning the basics of what a UTM code is, what it can do, and how to track different metrics is a great step forward in learning to become more strategic with your marketing. These simple steps will help you understand where you results are coming from and will hopefully provide insight into how to move your business forward in the digital sphere.
For more ways on how to stay-up-to-date on the lates digital marketing and tourism trends, be sure to subscribe to our newsletter and follow us across social media at the links below.
Grabbing your audience’s attention is half of the battle when you are crafting an effective social media post. But have no fear, we’re here to help you boost the engagement of your organic posts with these 5 quick tips!
This is, perhaps, the most important element to your posts if you want users to take action and engage with your content. Start by asking: What do you want them to do? Do you want them to click? Subscribe? Read more? Be sure to provide directional language like “Learn More About” and “Click Here for Hotel Deals” to encourage them to take action! Read our blog for more tips on creating an attention-grabbing call-to-action!
2. Clickable Links
Clickable links go hand-in-hand with your calls-to-action. If you are asking them to do anything that involves clicking a link, make sure the link is actually there! On Facebook and Twitter, make sure that you put the link in the post (see below) so they can have easy access. If you want them to take action on Instagram, include the link in your bio or as a swipe-up feature on your story.
Make sure to include hashtags on both Twitter and Instagram to not only help your users stay informed but encourage them to use the hashtags with their photos! Including a call-to-action in your posts about using your hashtag is a great way to get users to take action. Read our blog for more ideas on where to put your hashtag!
4. Location Tags
Location tags are especially important for destination marketing organizations. If a potential visitor sees your Facebook or Instagram post and is automatically intrigued by what you posted, they’re definitely going to want to know where they can find that when they come to visit. Adding a location tag is an easy way to keep your visitors informed on where to find things in your destination!
5. Images + Video
While the copy of your post is important to help engage a customer, it is also important to include eye-catching images or video to grab their initial attention. Posts with images or video, on average, perform better than posts without images or video. Check out this guide to help make sure that you’re posting images and video with the correct dimensions.
When you’re crafting your next post on social media, be sure to keep these quick tips in mind so you can keep your audience engaged and interacting with your posts. For more tips and tricks on how to master the latest digital marketing trends, be sure to subscribe to our e-newsletter.
This week, we published the first website traffic analysis for the 50 official state tourism offices. The analysis was conducted by TwoSix Digital to benchmark and rank traffic to each tourism organization’s website. The analysis ranked each state by total traffic, average monthly visits,
The state of California currently leads all tourism offices with more than 7 million website visits in the first quarter of 2019. They topped the scale ahead of second place Florida by more than 4 million website visits. Rounding out the rest of the top five are Hawaii, Colorado and Michigan in terms of total website visits in the months of January through March.
An interesting note was the dominance of mobile traffic–more than 77% of the website visitors accessed the state tourism websites via their mobile device.
All of the data was gathered via SimilarWeb, a third-party traffic and website analysis application. SimilarWeb’s innovative marketing intelligence allows users to gain insight into any website’s statistics through a global panel of consumers that work across a range of devices and websites.
The state with the most engaged traffic was Washington, followed by Alaska, Connecticut, Delaware,
Another interesting note on the complete data set was that even though California had the most overall traffic, they produced the least engaged traffic based on our engagement scale ranking.
We do realize these numbers will not be “apples to apples” in terms of overall website visits recorded through Google Analytics or other tracking software installed on an individual website. But, by collectively recording the aggregate data for all 50 states from an identical source utilizing the same methodologies, we will be able to draw a very accurate analysis of the traffic positioning.
The traffic analysis will be updated each quarter throughout 2019. In those updates, we will include additional insight into how consumers utilize state tourism websites. The full year of analysis will even out seasonality trends and provide a more complete view of each tourism office’s website traffic and engagement metrics.
Click here to download the complete data set and the infographic!