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How to Create UTM Links to Track Campaign Performance & Increase ROAS

To effectively monitor, measure, and report on the success of digital advertising campaigns, ensure your tracking strategy is in place ahead of launching your ads.

The purpose of advertising is to generate the highest possible return-on-ad-spend (ROAS). Being able to differentiate traffic by source, and identifying the advertisements and variations of those ads that brought in the most revenue or leads, will provide data to demonstrate which ads are working the best and which need improvement. Additionally, URL tracking will provide insight into which platforms are generating the most revenue, allowing for the strategic allocation and suppression of valuable media spend.

The most effective approach to better understanding campaign performance is by tagbenging ads with a specific link, allowing analytics platforms like Amplitude to identify the source and other specific details about the ad. A UTM link contains the following elements:

  1. Campaign Source – Indicates the platform, such as Facebook or Google.
    Example : utm_source=facebook
  2. Campaign Medium – Identifies the channel, such as organic social, paid search
    Example: utm_medium=paid_social
  3. Campaign Name – Name of the promotion or product.
    Example: utm_campaign=staycation
  4. Campaign Term – Keywords or phrases related to the ad.
    Sample code: utm_term=booking_abandon
  5. Campaign Content – Different variations of ads within a campaign
    Sample code: utm_content=red_cta

This tracking strategy requires simplicity, consistency as well as proper documentation to be successful. Keeping a UTM parameters guide accessible for all stakeholders working on campaigns is important to ensure data collection is accurate and consistent. To follow best practices, keep a consistent naming convention with all lower-case letters. Google, google and GOOGLE will all be tracked differently. Also, use underscores instead of spaces, because spaces will show up in the data as “%20”, so “red cta” will look like “red%20cta” instead.

UTM parameters can also be used for A/B testing. By showing two similar ads with one aspect changed, such as the color or copy of the CTA button, you are able to tag each ad with a campaign content UTM code and determine which variation performs better. This allows marketers to continually optimize and select the best performing versions of their ads. These incremental improvements will continue to raise the click through rate (CTR) of your ads and ultimately improve ROAS.

To learn more about measurement and reporting best practices, and to achieve your certification, reach out to us regarding our new online Measurement and Reporting learning path today.

Create your own UTM links using the Campaign Sherpa free UTM Link Generator below: