Host: All right, we’ve got a few questions coming in. The first one is, “Can this tool be used for mobile apps, or you know, marketing with mobile?”
Dan: Yeah, so with UTMs, you can use them with mobile apps, but you’re going to need a link attribution company as well. Because if you want to measure the installs, you’re going to need to have some sort of link attribution tracking. There’s companies out there like Tapstream, AppsFlyer, we use branch.io for a lot of our attribution tracking. And what happens is is we take our campaign information, we build that inside of the link attribution company’s format, and then they give us certain URLs we share in different places.
And then they obviously tell us if somebody installed the app, not only clicked and made it through, but they store like campaign return, campaign medium, campaign source. So that way what we’re able to do is now search and run numbers on which advertising or messaging is giving us the most installs and then be able to drive return on investment from those installs. But you’re going to need a link attribution company as well.
Host: All right, and it looks like someone is asking about if they need to write individual URLs for each campaign. Is there an easier way to get around this?
Dan: So you will want to make sure that you customize your UTMs for each individual campaign. So if somebody was of course, if you’re driving all the traffic back to your websites and you’re using five different channels, well you’re going to need five different UTMs for each one of those channels, which would be five different URLs, even though they’re all headed to the same place.
The easiest way to make that happen is as I was saying earlier, check out the UTM Chrome extension that we built. We have a presets function in there so that way you can save presets for your most commonly used things, and it will make it a lot easier for you to build, copy, and paste all of your UTMs. Some people use the Google Spreadsheet method that I had talked about before. But yes, there is a process to it, it does take time. But the value is there.
Host: All right, and it looks like we have another question from Brad. He says, “Dan, our experience is that UTM codes can get scrubbed out depending on what channel an ad is running through. Are you really saying that 100% of UTM codes should be trackable back to GA without any drop off?”
Dan: If everything in the world was 100% none of us would be alive, right? So like the Internet is never 100% and that’s something you’re always going to have issues with — something is potentially going to break. I don’t know which advertising platform that is scrubbing your UTMs, I have heard of some platforms which do tend to drop them based upon a redirect. But I have not had the issue with Google AdWords, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn.
We do get all of our links coming back to our sites, and they’re not being scrubbed. Now I will also add this. There are some people out there that have ad blockers on which will not allow you to track this information. There are also a lot of people that use different Chrome extensions which will garble your UTMs but that’s just part of the Internet, I mean if everybody on the Internet was 100% anything, we’d have massive problems.
And in analytics alone, if you don’t see a 5% variance in certain things, then you have something wrong. Because nothing is going to be 100% accurate, no matter what you use. Anything from Salesforce all the way down to Auto Pilot HQ, there’s always going to be something that’s a couple percents off.
Host: Okay, and we have a question from Roy who is asking us, “Can you use Google Analytics if you’re using LeadPages for Facebook Ads but with no website?”
Dan: I don’t see why you wouldn’t be able to use Google Analytics with LeadPages. LeadPages allows you to drop an analytics script on their pages. I’m not sure if that’s available on a free or a paid tier, but you can put the Google Analytics script on a Lead’s page.
Host: All right, you mentioned a few companies for tracking with mobile apps a little bit ago. Could you repeat any of those?
Dan: Yeah, of course, so what are the ones we really like right now, because they allow us to do what’s known as deferred deep linking and deep linking is branch.io. They have a link attribution part to it. I would say that their link attribution for acquisition is not the best in the entire marketplace. But they are one of the best when it comes to deferred deep linking. The best for the link attribution are going to be companies like AppsFlyer, Appboy as well has another pretty good attribution model. Yeah, those are a few, and if you want some help when picking them out, definitely just hit me a note on Twitter, @DanielMcGaw, and I’ll be able to help you there as well.
Host: Okay, here’s another question from Trevor. He says, “You mentioned Auto Pilot HQ, are you using those for making marketing automation? And what would you recommend for a startup?”
Dan: So we use marketing automation, all kinds of different stuff. Everything from Auto Pilot HQ all the way up to Marketo and Pardot. There are a lot of different tools out there. I would love to give you a recommendation but I know nothing about your business. A startup is very vague, right? Because there are companies that are funded $200 million that are called startups. So I don’t really know what that means in this day and age anymore.
But it really depends on the business model you have. If you’re a SaaS business, you choose one type of automation. If you are a sales business that’s doing B2B sales, you have a different automation suite. So I would need a whole lot more information to give you some recommendations because there’s like 300 automations tools. Auto Pilot is one of the ones that’s very well respected.
A lot of people do like their tool, but at the same time, Intercom.io is also considered a marketing automation tool because it automates emails and messages to your customers. It just really depends on what do you need, and I don’t know that answer based upon the word “startup.”
Host: Okay, we have one final question that popped up, “Doesn’t using shorter links on social networks hurt brand awareness since the brand’s domain will be hidden?
Dan: The Bitly URL is going to be the least of people’s concerns when they’re clicking a link. The biggest concern that people have had in the past is, “Where does that link really take me?” Now, the great thing is is that with Facebook, if you do drop a long URL in it, Facebook no longer shows URLs in your posts. So it will still show a link, but it will show it now as an image. With Twitter, you have to shorten URLs because Twitter is going to force you to shorten your URLs. Whether you like it or not, they’re going to try to shorten it to a t.co.
Now, if you are worried about brand, what you can do is what cool companies try to do, and it doesn’t really help a lot, is create your own branded short URL. And Bitly actually offers this as a service. Bitly will allow you to go purchase a short domain, so for an example, Wistia which is a large video streaming company is one of our clients. They have a shortened link which says “Wistia” in it, and it’s a shortened URL. And if you use Bitly at all, it automatically replaces it with that. Now to me, that would be brand, right? Because that’s just cool, it makes me feel good about your brand. But using Bitly isn’t going to hurt your brand.