The TinyURL Intro to Marketing Analytics

By TinyURL Marketing

Last updated on October 18, 2022

Marketing analytics takes the guesswork out of your hard work, and improves your odds of making better results happen over time. If you’re looking to get started with it, read on.

What is Marketing Analytics?

Marketing analytics is the process of studying data to evaluate the effectiveness of your marketing efforts. It’s what separates great marketing from, say, yelling into the void and hoping to hear an answer back.

Marketing analytics is more than just being aware of metrics like website traffic or social media engagement: it involves taking the data that you collect and processing them into valuable insights and action steps. The end goal is to use this knowledge to refine your marketing campaigns in real-time.

In this Tiny guide to marketing metrics and analytics, we’ll go over some important concepts and offer you a look at how TinyURL can help you get the most out of your hard work.

What are Examples of Marketing Analytics?

Marketing metrics are quantifiable data points you can use to track the performance of your marketing campaigns. There are lot of different kinds of metrics you can pull from your marketing efforts, so here’s a quick overview of some of the more important ones:

1. Website visitors

One of the most basic and important metrics is website traffic. It shows how much potential your site has to generate new business—after all, people need to hear your sales pitches first before they can buy in.

How many users land on your website every day? Where do these views come from, and when? Is your ad spending really bringing in people, or are you just flushing your marketing budget down the drain? 

Examining your website visitors (and traffic source details, more specifically) can guide you toward answers to these and other important questions. Detailed views of the traffic that comes in through your shortened links will tell you which of your marketing efforts are earning you attention, and which fail to help you get a proverbial foot in the door. Just be on the lookout for direct traffic: it can be rather tricky to put into action.

2. Social media performance

Social media metrics are an increasingly important part of the digital marketing sphere. It’s a broad category, worthy of an article of its own, though important metrics under the social media performance category include:

Impressions: How many times your posts show up on users’ feeds.

Engagement: Likes, shares, retweets, and other ways that people interact with your content.

Reach: How many unique people you reach with your content.

We should note that there’s a downside to social media analytics. Companies like Meta and Twitter rarely let you track where your viewers and followers come from—so if you’re an online seller or business that relies heavily on its social media profiles for lead generation, it can be difficult to keep up with the depth of information you’d get from your website.

3. Conversions

In the end of course, it all comes down to conversions: valuable actions like making a purchase, creating an account, booking a call, et cetera. It’s the holy grail of any marketing effort.

Conversions are often used to derive other metrics, such as return on investment (ROI) to measure the value that your promotional efforts bring in. Since they’re so closely tied to revenue, most business owners are deeply interested in tracking conversion events—though we discourage you from fixating too closely on this single metric.

4. Ad spend

Any marketing, whether through Google Ads, social media engagement, or traditional media will cost you time and money. Smart marketers pay attention to where they’re spending their resources, and which ad formats are bringing in the leads and conversions.

Cost-per-click is often a useful benchmark on its own, with the amount you spend directly correlating with visitors clicking through to your website, and something you can compare to other channels when diving into your ROI.

Why is Marketing Analytics Important?

Marketing Analytics turns raw metrics into actionable insights about your marketing. Whether you’re a small business or a megacorp, you don’t have unlimited time and budget, so paying attention to your metrics is critical to making the most out of your ad spend.

Other crucial benefits include:

1. Tracking your marketing performance

Marketing analytics show you how well your marketing is performing across various levels of scale. You can track specific ads, entire campaigns, or even year-long aggregates to answer loads of different business questions.

Taking a look at your metrics eliminates guesswork, allowing you to make informed assessments without having to resort to subjective discussions.

2. Designing better campaigns

If you know what works, then you can do it again, and do it better. Marketing analytics quantifies the performance of your marketing, and leads you to insights about how you can improve your campaigns.

In time, you’ll find yourself running optimized multi-channel marketing efforts, tweaking campaigns that are underperforming before they become wastes of money, and planning out long-term marketing efforts with ease.

3. Spending more efficiently

Good marketing is all about making smart tradeoffs. If you’re getting more valuable traffic from flyers and QR codes than from social media, then it’ll pay off to focus on traditional marketing. If your visual banner ads do better than text-based Google ads, then you can either lean into visuals or improve your ad copy.

Analytics will help you figure out the ROI on your ad spending, show you which of your campaigns are crushing it, and highlight campaigns you’re better off leaving in the past.

How to Use Analytics in Your Marketing

It’s challenging to deploy analytics in marketing—and that’s true whether you’re good with numbers or not. There are so many different metrics available to the modern marketer, which can make it difficult to get started.

While every business has its own unique needs when it comes to marketing analytics, there are a few general steps that all enterprises would do well to apply.

1. Set goals for your marketing

“Make more money,” is great motivation, but a pretty shaky goal to build your marketing strategies around. Instead, it pays to set specific goals for improving your business performance. These could be:

  • Send more leads over to your sales department
  • Build more convincing campaigns to earn quick conversions
  • Make more people aware of your products or services
  • Earn more brand affinity (i.e. people who like and engage with your brand)

There are plenty of specific goals to target: the importance of this first step is to get you thinking about what your most urgent needs are, and define your current challenges along the way. The key business goals and outcomes that drive your efforts need to be clear if you want to market with purpose and avoid wasting cash.

Identifying your goals will focus your analytics efforts, making other steps like choosing target metrics and tools that much easier to execute.

2. Identify target metrics

Your analytics goals will guide which metrics you will need to focus on. It’s easy to be overwhelmed by analytics jargon and the dizzying variety of metrics that you could be monitoring.

The best way to prevent analysis paralysis is to focus on the most relevant metrics based on your business goals.

Do you need to cut the fat on your marketing budget? Calculate your ROI (return on investment) by dividing your ad spend by the amount of conversions or clicks you’re getting to see which channels have the most bang for your buck.

Need to plan the best times to go on your marketing blitz and post viral content? Take a look at the peak times of your visitors, especially those coming from your target market regions.

Zero in on the metrics you need, and try not to let other factors distract you.

3. Set up marketing analytics monitoring tools

You can’t generate useful insights without good data, so having a comprehensive, reliable set of monitoring tools is a must.

Modern marketers are spoiled for choice when it comes to analytics tools, but the sheer variety and complexity of options can be dizzying. Keep your analytics goals and target metrics in mind when looking for the tools you want to use. Here are some useful basics:

Website traffic monitoring

There are a lot of ways to monitor your website traffic, whether through coded DIY website tools and WordPress plugins, all the way to more powerful (and more complicated) services like Google Analytics.

At TinyURL, we can help you monitor website traffic by tracking every click on your shortened links. We can loop you into where your traffic comes from, your users’ geolocation, the types of devices used to view your links, and other useful metrics, all presented in a simple and intuitive dashboard interface.

SEO monitoring

Dedicated SEO suites like SEMrush and Ahrefs can provide a rich selection of SEO tools to work with. There are also a range of free tools that can provide useful, if more limited monitoring tools, such as Google Search Console, Ubersuggest, and the like.

Social media marketing analytics

Most social media networks have built-in analytics for regular and professional users, but the data they provide can be opaque, to say the least.

Besides the native tools provided by the likes of Facebook and Twitter for their respective platforms, marketers can also take advantage of advanced social media suites and listening tools like Hootsuite and SproutSocial to watch hashtags, social media keywords, impressions, engagement, and other important metrics.

TinyURL also offers a clever workaround to visibility limitations. By directing people to your posts through TinyURL, you can view traffic data for each destination post as if they were pages on a website you owned. No more guessing who came from where–which business owners who work mainly on social media will be sure to appreciate.

4. Be consistent with tracking

Marketing analytics is not a one-and-done deal. Taking a look at your marketing metrics and key indicators as they are right now can only tell you part of the story. 

Marketing data works best when tracked over time, so that you can make meaningful long-term improvements and accurate predictions into the future.

Don’t waste the time, effort and resources you’ve devoted to setting up your marketing analytics tools only to slack off and stop paying attention to them.

5. Mine data for insights

So you’ve got the data. What comes next? 

Analysis is the second half of marketing analytics: it takes into account the objectives you’ve set for yourself, and what those numbers and trends mean for your business.

This part is one of the most important parts of the process, but also the one that can vary the most depending on the size and needs of your business.

Keep your business goals and key questions in mind when it’s time to sit and go over your numbers. Since it’s easy to get distracted by all the different metrics being tracked, having a list of key performance indicators (KPIs) can help you land on the most important conclusions.

The trick to conducting analysis is to begin with your key questions, and stay on topic—at least until you’ve answered what you set out to answer. Branching out and exploring other patterns, trends, and relationships is very tempting (and rewarding) work, but the best approach is to start with what you need to know, then move onto what you can learn.

TinyURL & Marketing Analytics

TinyURL is more than just a link shortener.

Our shortened links are supported by built-in tools to help your business get started with your marketing analytics and website traffic monitoring, or complement the analytics that you’ve already started performing.

Each TinyURL link can become its own data gathering locus, collecting an array of useful metrics, including but not limited to:

  • Link clicks & referrers
  • Geographic sources of your visitors
  • Devices used to view your links
  • Peak traffic times

We track the clicks to empower you with the knowledge you need to make sure your shortened URLs work harder and faster for your brand. Our links may be tiny, but the intel they gather pack a mean punch.

Need to find out how people are getting to your web page? Create unique shortened URLs for your social media posts, fliers, posters, print ads, guest bloggers and influencer tie-ins.

Then, use our simple but powerful analytics dashboard to see how each source contributes to your page views and conversions, even when they’d normally be tagged as direct traffic by other analytics tools.

Conclusion: Tiny URLs, Big Data

That’s it for our tiny guide to marketing analytics! With the right tools and metrics, marketing analytics can amplify the effects of your marketing, whether you’re a small business or a big corporation.

TinyURL’s link shortening platform comes with sophisticated traffic metrics that work great as a first step for businesses getting started with website traffic monitoring, or as a complement to the analytics tools that your marketing team is already deploying. 

Real-time metrics tracking and a streamlined analytics dashboard turn each of your shortened links into an analytics powerhouse, providing useful data that you can use to improve your marketing efforts. 

Check out how our platform can help your marketing analytics and sign up for a TinyURL account today!

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