Look, there are over 86 Million Google results for "startup marketing". I’ve even written some of them. And I massively believe in getting product marketing right, creating content, and using a CRM correctly and jointly between Sales and Marketing. But one article you don’t see much of has to do with the infrastructure of these programs, and infrastructure can make or break you later, so it’s important to do setup correctly and now. It's a really meaty topic, so I'm dissecting it in seven parts.
You are going to have a whole lot of them, and they can affect your website performance. Consider implementing Google Tag Manager if you haven’t already, because it will make your life easier when you inevitably want to add even more of them later. These can be on different pages and even different platforms depending on how you have things setup. Example: conversion pixels might be on your Unbounce Form Confirmation Dialog, or your Hubspot Thanks page, while remarketing pixels will be all over the place.
Your “popup” content tool (may be included in your marketing automation)
Your chat/conversational marketing product (may be included in your marketing automation)
Other remarketing tools like AdRoll, Taboola, Outbrain, etc.
There are LOTS more. It’s important to get all these accounts created and started now so you actually build those remarketing audiences and learnings. If you wait until you’re ready to run a campaign, you won’t have any audiences to market to for a while unless you get LOTS of traffic.
Create YOUR use of Standard utms
UTMs (name is from legacy Urchin, a looong time ago) are Google’s standard way of tracking in GA. There’s no good reason not to adopt their process. However, you need to create a standardized process for YOUR organization to use them.What it does is allow you to rollup and roll-down all your marketing programs to see what’s effective. Want to see if email is more effective than display advertising? That’s at the channel level. Want to see what search terms perform best? Term level. And lots in between. You will also need this when you inevitably start having attribution and customer journey conversations (trust me on this, if you’re just getting started, you’re B2B, and you’re not spending $10k/month or more on media, don’t let the smarty pants in the room convince you that you need a giant attribution model yet. (But you will later.)
A way to create them. I use Google sheets concatenate, but there are many online tools, and your marketing automation platform may have one.
A way to collect them. Your marketing automation tool might have things called “hidden fields” that can grab these little tokens from the url and put them in your system. That is what you want ideally. Beware, there are session implications where if you go from one domain to a subdomain and back, or to another owned domain entirely, you can drop the session and lose the code. A friendly front-end dev can fix this :)
A place to track the results from them! This is the tricky one. GA does it great, but you have to have a decent mastery of GA to setup things like how many clicks, conversions, opportunities, and sales you got from those different rollups. This is where if your marketing automation tool/CRM doesn’t have this, you’re in a tricky spot. You’ll have to connect your CRM/Marketing automation to a tracking product, of which there are MANY many beautiful ones. It’s frankly from my standpoint a PIA at the early stages.
What’s most important here is that you treat this like religion. EVERY SINGLE thing you push out should have a long url with a ? and lots of &. Otherwise you’re stuck with Google’s guess, and it’s better than nothing, but not good enough for you, Mr. Data-focused Tech Startup! Ok, so go do these all now if you haven't already. You'll thank me later. Stay tuned for Part 2!
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