Blog Insights
Get the Best Data from Your Outreach: Google Campaign Tagging

Your team has dedicated time to put together a regular e-newsletter, run a social media campaign, start dabbling in online advertising, or run a good ‘ol print campaign. So how how did it perform? How do you plan to make it better?

For more on our analytics work, take a look at our recently-released White Paper, Universal Analytics: How Will You Get the Most Out of It?

Google campaigns


The majority of marketing tools will give you data on how many people they reached, but if that witty social media campaign drives thousands of new users to your site, but not a single one stays for more than a few seconds, how much of a success is that? The missing part of this equation is user engagement; and it’s tracked through Google Analytics using Campaigns.

Campaigns allow you to attribute users to specific outreach efforts rather than just the medium they originated from (e.g., email, search, social media). So how do you make it happen?

Getting Started with Campaigns

You will be adding a campaign tag to the end of each URL you are promoting.  Each campaign tag consists of 2 to 4 variables that are then captured in Google Analytics. The campaign URL will look like a little ugly, but here’s a sample:

Developing a Tagging Strategy

Building a quality campaign tag is the difference between having the ability to compare outcomes and trends, and just being able to see a snapshot in time. To build your campaign tagging strategy, it’s best to understand each of the five variables comprising a campaign tag and what they can bring to your campaign tracking.  

  • Campaign Name: Title of the campaign. Example: For a monthly newsletter, you would keep the campaign name identical across each monthly release in order to track how each monthly edition performs compared to previous months.
  • Campaign Source: A term that differentiates multiple rounds of a campaign. Example:This would be the edition of a newsletter, such as Fall2014, or September2015This allows you to differentiate between multiple editions of the same newsletter.
  • Campaign Medium: The method for the link to be distributed, such as email or social media. Example: For an email newsletter, this will simply be Email. This allows you to see trends across multiple email campaigns over time, or compare a promotion across different mediums if you choose to expand communications efforts in the future.
  • Campaign Term = Optional. Only used for paid advertising otherwise, do not use it.
  • Campaign Content = Optional. Use if you have multiple versions of the same thing such as unique designs or wording on brochures.

It’s important to create a unique tag for each newsletter or campaign and tie them together by using the same campaign name or medium. The data you collect from these are only as strong as the tagging used. And there you have it. Tag away!

* For reference, here is the Campaign Builder

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