What is Growth Hacking? | The Hacktics' Guide to Growth Hacking | Part 3

growth hacking hacktics growth hacking utm tracking utm tracking parameters what is growth hacking Nov 01, 2019
What is Growth Hacking? In the last blog piece we discussed the importance of Mapping our Conversions Events. Moreover, when we map out our conversions, we can start to understand how to use these Events to discover our ROI, segment our audiences and build automation into our marketing funnel.
Therefore, the aim of Part 3 of the Hacktics' Guide To Growth Hacking is to flesh out Tracking and how we use UTM tracking parameters to IDENTIFY which click(s) actually resulted in a conversion.
Furthermore, as stated in Part 1, at Hacktics we believe the Essential Skills of growth hacking to be:
  1. Tracking
  2. Data Feedback (Loops)
  3. Advanced Audience Segmentation.
  4. Report. Find patterns. Scale.
  5. Automation
The Secret to Growth Hacking...
As promised in Part 1 and 2, we're going to take the next red pill into the world of Growth Hacking. As I mentioned in Part 2, there are two core components to analyzing and optimizing just about any funnel:
1) Conversion Mapping, (which we discussed in the last blog) and now,
2) Tracking.
Put on those blue light blockers. Here we go.

"UTM tracking parameters allow you track and IDENTIFY which click(s) actually resulted in a conversion."


What is Growth Hacking? | Essential Skill 3: Tracking Parameters

Let’s talk about UTMs.
Now before we dive headlong into what UTMs let me reiterate the point I made above:
UTM tracking parameters allow you track and IDENTIFY which click(s) actually resulted in a conversion event being fired - a request a quote, a demo, a download, a purchase.
Do you get that? Because that's about as important as it gets.
That means no more guessing how your inbound clicks are preforming. No more guessing on your best lead source. No more guessing on whether the almighty BOOST actually landed you some business.
We've moved on to the world of P R O O F.
When it comes to Clicks and Conversions, UTMs are the strings that connect these pillars.

Your Traffic. And a new Habit.

Does your traffic come from emails? Facebook? Google Search? YouTube?
Awesome; do your traffic how you see fit.
Nonetheless, I would implore you with this piece of advice: Make it a habit to use UTMs on as many inbound links as possible.
If you've put in the effort to build an experience for a viewer on the other side of a click, you owe it to yourself or your team to measure the performance of each inbound click.
By doing this, it allows you to isolate your best streams, turn up the budget and spend into what is driving your conversions.

What are UTMs?

Using UTMs (Urchin Tracking Module) is a way of passing parameters (tracking data) into your Google Analytics.
UTMs allow you to pass through 5 layers of information: Source, Medium, Campaign, Content and Term/Keyword.
(If you don't know what that means, please see this architecture layout:
So if I were promoting this blog post with Twitter Ads, my UTM would be something like this:
Medium=ads (I'm running an ad, this is not an organic click)
By using these UTMs, I am able to crack open my Google Analytics (I show you where to find for this in the Coggle link, above) and will be able to see a click's time on page, sessions and whether or not they actually fire any Goals and 'converted.'

UTMs = Split Testing

If you see my UTM [Term] above ^, you'll see that by using tracking parameters, it allows you to run split tests and different ad variations.
Meaning, not only can you measure your split test with the same ad platform, you can use the UTMs to track and compare multiple inbound sources against one another (assuming your using UTMs across your marketing efforts).
UTMs will help you identify your best split tests, your best ads, your best emails, your best campaigns, your best traffic, etc.
Read that again if it didn't make sense; Because that's the ticket to Growthville.
If you can track your split tests, then that means you find your winners.
If you can find winners then you can keep split testing those winning traffic sources all the way up to ROI Level: 9000.
"But certainly it can't be that straightforward?" you ask, incredulously .
"Well..." I respond, debonair-ly.
It is. UTMs are easy; They most certainly work if you used them correctly.
BUT...it's the setup and execution (and getting them to work correctly) - that's the real pain in the butt.
So, let me help you with that.

Why is Tracking So Important?

Have you, your clients, or your manager ever had these questions:
Where are my clicks coming from? Which channel - Facebook, YouTube, Google, Email, etc - is providing the best leads or buyers?
What is my real cost per lead/ acquisition?
What landing page is actually converting best with this traffic?
How many landing pages views did this campaign generate?
Where should I allocate more budget and energy next time?
If you use UTM tracking and conversion events you are well on your way to knowing the answers to these questions.

"A key to growth hacking is to identify your conversions and then measuring the conversion rate of different traffic sources." 


So, you're saying The Secret to Growth Hacking is Tracking?

Tracking and conversions definitely don't get the love they deserve, but at the end of the day this is key to growth hacking.
So, yep. That's the secret to growth hacking - you have to be able to track what's working and what's not.
The secret is identifying your conversions and then measuring the conversion rate of different traffic sources.
It's important to note that while UTMs are the glue that stick the click to the conversion - it's your diligence in reporting and finding patterns that will be the real key to growth.
Nonetheless, you won't be able to find these little nuggets of gold until you start using UTMs.

Where do I start?

Now that's a good question to ask.
My advice: Start simple by using a free tool like Google Campaign URL Builder.
Next, you could look into UTM tools (something like UTM.io).
Nonetheless, as you start to build more UTMs, you'll find the Campaign URL Builder is way too slow to create multiple links at once.
But start there first - it's more than enough to get started.

But UTMs take so long to make?

If you've reached this frustration, it's a good sign you're own your way to seeing the light. If you haven't started, let me save you some time (and frustration).
I ran into this problem of needing to generate and store hundreds of UTM tagged links.
I looked into UTM software tools, tried a few, but at the end of the day, I decided to take matters into my own hands.
First, I learned how to rock dynamic parameters and tracking template when running Facebook and Google Ads - meaning, I get to skip the manual creation of these by utilizing tracking systems built into the ad platforms. This is a MAJOR time hack I discuss in Funnel Accelerator
Second, I just decided to make my own UTM generators. Here's why:
They're fully customizable, they're advanced, yet simplified, and... they're FREE using Google Sheets.
However, if you don't count yourself among those with endless time to learn the CONCATENATE, LOWER and SUBSTITUTE functions, I'd happily encourage you to enroll in my Funnel Accelerator program, where I will provide the following for you:
UTM generators for Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google Display, Google Search, LinkedIn, Email and Custom Short Links. I also provide an overview on how to copy my generators and adapt them to your needs.
Again, you can build your own FREE generators with Google sheets or I would invite you to save the hours and headache by joining Hacktics, copying my generators and learning how I use a well-refined nerd tool.

The Final Excuse: UTMs Are Ugly and Tacky.

Well of course they are.
If you're not familiar, UTMs are big, ugly, super long URLs in your search bar that unveil your super cool campaign naming conventions to the world.
So, I'd advise we hide the tackiness.
Unless you like showing the viewer:
YourAwesomeWebsite? /utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=ad&utm_campaign =blog_promo&utm_term= part_3&utm_content=ad_version_a-copy_b
I'd suggest you use a javascript via Google Tag Manager to simply mask these from the browser;
This allows you to gather the needed event tracking data without letting your viewer in on your oh-so-sophisticated TOP OF MID FUNNEL, TESTIMONIAL 2, OPT-IN-3, FINAL TOUCH VERSION 4 scheme to take over the world.
And, yes, I SHOW YOU HOW to deploy this code using Google Tag Manager in my Funnel Accelerator program.

Conclusion: Tracking

As mentioned above, if you've put in the effort to build an experience for a viewer on the other side of a click, you owe it to yourself to understand the behavior of people once the get there based upon the source from which they're coming.
When you learn to use UTMs, you're able to track and identify which click(s) actually resulted in a conversion being fired.
Last, by looking under the hood in Google Analytics (and knowing where to look) you'll be able to isolate your best streams of converting traffic and spend more time, energy and budget on what's bringing growth to your soon-to-be global empire.

What is Growth Hacking? | Essential Skill 4: Data Feedback Loops

Here's a sneak peak at Part 4:
"What is Growth Hacking? It's knowing your Feedback Loops.
Let me ask you an honest question: What good is setting up funnel if you can’t analyze the data? If Facebook Analytics is the only analytics tool you’re using then I want to let you in on a hint: Of all software in your marketing stack, I cannot think of too many more powerful than the raw data of ... "

Hacktics | Growth Hacking Accelerator

Growth Hacking Accelerator a Growth Hacking course by Hacktics | I Help Growth Hungry Entrepreneurs Build Unstoppable Sales Funnels with Growth Hacking.
Growth Hacking Accelerator course outcomes:

1) Funnels + Growth Hacking
Scale and automate your time by building and selling automated sales funnels. They're trackable, predictable and run on autopilot.

2) Tracking + Traffic
Leverage paid ads systems to generate qualified leads in your sleep. Use ROI-rich tracking systems to prove the leads came from you. 

3) Landing Your First Client
How to find business owners who are more than willing to pay you, which deliverables to pitch them, the contract to use and how to get paid online.
What is Hacktics?
Built with a bottom-of-the-funnel-up mentality, Hacktics provides a framework and foundation for the growth hacking skill set required for today’s digital marketing.
Our role here at Hacktics is to provide an understanding and step-by-step implementation of these ‘technical’ components - and to help our students build a foundation of tracking and systems. With this base layer and framework in place, we then help our students build ROI-driven marketing and automation.
Hacktics was founded by Jason Wilmot. He currently leads Hacktics, provides coaching and direct consulting. Jason is an entrepreneur, author, and a former Apple Distinguished Educator.