written by
Yves Delongie

Beyond UTM: tracking conversion events.

Customer Intelligence 4 min read

As marketer, you should be very familiar with the need to measure the impact of your marketing efforts. ('Cause that's what your boss also says 🤔😉)

In a previous blog The real power of UTM and JTM tracking, we uncovered the magic of tagging your URLs with UTM or JTM parameters to monitor where your web visitors come from. However, just knowing typical [sources of] journeys doesn't give you a clear picture on what's working and what not...as long as you don't tie certain touch-points to important actions/events you want your visitors to complete. E.g. the moment a trial was started.

Conversion tracking lets you directly see results from your marketing campaigns towards achieving certain goals. And seeing the obvious that different journeys count different 'touches' (aka touchpoints), it also allows you to compare journeys against each other, regardless of length and touchpoint occurrences.

Conversion tracking also defines goal setting for AI-driven pattern recognition. E.g. Lets find out what campaigns contributed most to all those journeys (during the last 3 months) that started a trial.

What are typical conversion tracking techniques?

Two most encountered ways to track visitors are pixels and cookies.
Pixels are pieces of code placed on a site to send info about its visitors to a server.
Cookies are pieces of code that store info about its visitors in browsers so it can be used by a server again later.
And pixels and cookies are almost always used together to increase tracking efficiency.

Google Chrome allows you to manage your cookies.

The largest ads platforms (Facebook, Google) use both pixels and cookies. Many of you may already have those conversion pixels (or tags) on your site. Here's an example of a Google Analytics tag:

<script>
(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m {i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q| []).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m)})(window,document,'script','https://www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga');
</script>

Why is conversion tracking important?

Using journy.io to tag your links lets you see where your traffic comes from (campaign, channel, content, medium,.. etc.). It’s commonly assumed that UTM/JTM tracking is for Google Ads only, or that you should do either UTM/JTM tracking OR conversion tracking. Using either UTM tracking or conversion tracking alone, only gives you one part of your marketing performance story.

But using both UTM tracking or conversion tracking together, allows you to connect all the dots of how people discover and engage with your business, and convert across all your marketing efforts.

And when it comes down to measuring which channels and campaigns are most successful, conversion tracking will give you the data you need to pull together some key marketing health metrics:

  • ROI (Return on Investment) and ROAS (Return on Ad Spend)
  • CAC (Customer Acquisition Cost)
  • Revenue (Total income generated from your marketing investments)

Because at the end of the day, you’ll want to know how much revenue you gained compared to how much you spent on all your marketing efforts.

Measuring ROI/ROAS

Once you have conversion tracking set up, you will want to compare your ROI/ROAS results across all channels and campaigns. With all cost parameters set up, as well as being connected to your favourite social- and ad platforms (Facebook, Facebook Ads, LinkedIn, Instagram, StoryChief, Adwords...etc...), journy.io provides clear indications on ROI/ROAS.

Here's the formula used to calculate a person's journey J ROI:
ROI/ROAS(J) = ( revenue(J) - ∑ spend(all touch(J)) ) ➗ ∑ spend(all touches(J))
E.g. J is won=$1,600; all Facebook+Blog+AdWord spend for J=$400;
ROI(J) = ( 1,600 - 400) / 400 = 3 = 300%

When targeting channel Ch (e.g. Facebook), the ROI becomes:
ROI/ROAS(Ch) = ( ∑ attributed revenue(Ch) - ∑ spend(Ch) ) ➗ ∑ spend(Ch)
E.g. J is won=$1,600; Facebook attributed revenue for J=$800; Facebook spend = $150
ROI(Facebook on J) = ( 800 - 150) / 150 = 4.3333 = 433.33%

You now want to compare Facebook with AdWords on journey J?
E.g. J is won=$1,600; AdWords attributed revenue for J=$400; AdWords spend = $200
ROI(AdWords on J) = ( 400 - 200) / 200 = 1 = 100%

journy.io will report that —at least for that 1 person/journey— facebook provides a better ROI than AdWords! Combining lots of journeys from lots of people for a given period provides total ROI for that given period!

On the details on how revenues are being attributed, or how this all works in a B2B environment where multiple people and journey's represents one sales value, we kindly invite you to register your email on our regular blog updates.