Digital marketers have been using link tracking and query strings to measure the success or failure of their campaigns for years. The challenge has been how to translate that same measurement to offline campaigns.
Analytics does a great job of tracking online behavior. The challenge is asking your buyer to type in a URL that can be more than 100 characters in length is likely to fail.
A better method of using link tracking for offline campaigns
By combining the digitally friendly aspects of link tracking with a more user friendly short bit.ly link, you will begin to get measurement in your offline campaigns just like you do for your online campaigns.
Step 1: Create your tracking link
Google offers an easy to use ULR Builder tool to create a tracking link that can then be measured within your Google Analytics account
First enter the URL of the page where you want to send visitors. Next identify your campaign’s source, it’s medium and a campaign name. If you like you can add additional details like the keyword or other identifying content.
Once you enter this information hit submit and you’ll be give a link that look something like this.
If your buyer uses this link, you will get an exact measurement of your campaign. However the very length of the URL makes it almost impossible for your buyer to manually enter this into their browser. You need to make it easier for them.
Step 2: Translate your tracking URL with a user friendly bit.ly short link
Bit.ly and others like Google’s goo.gl or tinyurl.com can be used to shorten your link URL.
The bit.ly tool is free to sign up for and easy to use. Just visit bit.ly and enter the full URL in the window in the top right of the screen. You’ll receive a short link that looks something like:
Once you have this user-friendly link, start using it in your direct mail, sales collateral, print ads and more.
Tracking has always been great for tracking your online campaigns. By following these two easy steps these same advantages can be extended to your offline campaigns as well.