Discover how to track social media success with the UTM parameters


What if your traffic bounces all over the place?

Maybe you’ve different social media contents,

And you’ve email campaigns,

And you’re running paid ads,

And you’re using Instagram stories,

And you’ve YouTube TrueView ads running,

And within that, you’ve multiple Call To Actions …

Definitely, you’ll get confused and wondered which of your campaigns are really working? Or where your website traffic is actually coming from? Maybe you want to know which specific content leads to product sales or other conversions.

So how do you get the full picture of this important data? Simply by using UTM parameters, the tracking tags. Let me show you how this works …

What’s a UTM?

UTM stands for Urchin Tracking Module that was introduced way back with Urchin Software Company and, consequently, supported out-of-the-box by Google Analytics in 2005. UTM parameters are labelling system added at the end of a URL, starting with a question mark “?”. It allows you to evaluate your inbound traffic in more detail, track the performance of webpage or campaign and see where different traffic comes from.

Here’s an example of a normal URL without any tracking:

And here’s the same URL with 3 UTM parameters in place:

*you can make the link much less ugly using a link shortener later.

There are 5 categories you can track with UTM codes, each building on the previous to provide more context on the link you’re trying to track. You should use the first three in all UTM tracking links. The last two are specifically for tracking paid campaigns. Google also provides a quick breakdown of the technical specifications for each type on their Campaign URL Builder page.

  1. Campaign Name: give each campaign you’re running a specific name so you can keep track of your efforts. For example, this could be the product launches, promotional campaigns, contest names, slogan, or whatever makes sense to you.
  2. Campaign Source: used to identify which website is sending you traffic. This could be the social network, search engine, newsletter name, etc.
  3. Campaign Medium: the type of marketing medium that the link is featured in, like organic social, paid social, email, and so on.
  4. Campaign Content: used to track the specific types of content that point to the same destination from a common source and medium. It’s often used in pay-per-click (PPC) campaigns or with two identical links on the same page (sidebar link, header link).
  5. Campaign Term: used to identify the keywords you’ve paid for in a PPC ad. Since AdWords has its own tracking methodology and a deep integration with Google Analytics, you’ll rarely need to use this field.

How to Build UTM Parameters?

You don’t need a programmer to set up UTM parameters at all. You can simply create a free Google Analytics account and set it up on your website. Then, use the Google Analytics Campaign URL Builder to input each parameter individually and Google will auto generate a URL with the correct syntax.

It might look complicated at first glance, but that’s not true. And even if, a great marketer should not neglect these important codes in order to build successful marketing campaigns. Certainly, Following a few best practices makes it pretty easy.

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One thought on “Discover how to track social media success with the UTM parameters

  1. A good article… keep going

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