You need Google Analytics. Measure more than web traffic, too, like even phone calls.
Phone calls? Yes. You can use Google Voice forwarding phone numbers which can be included in your analytics data and will track the number of calls you get per number. By using one of these voice numbers for each separate campaign or media types, you can find out which campaign or media type is getting the most direct dials.
That doesn’t mean the numbers offer clear, definitive measurements as to which methods of promotion work better than the others. But, they offer a good indication. And you can measure print and broadcast, too.
Use a unique landing page such as “YourCompanySite.com/1” or “/100” or a short campaign name to track direct traffic from specific ads. You may have seen this on television, e.g. “NewProduct.com/tv”or “/sale” etc. Now, not everyone will use the entire URL and may just enter the main web address. So there’s another option: you can create a new, unique URL and landing page for each campaign – which should have links to your website or specific pages on your website. All measurable.
Of course, with digital ads across the web, such as through the Google Display network or Facebook Ad Manager and third-party apps, you can direct the link to specific landing pages within your site. Using digital ads on specific publication web sites, you want to use a measurable URL simplifying service like goo.gl or bit.ly to verify the traffic each publisher reports to you.
Custom landing pages on your site for each campaign and media type or the use of landing pages with campaign-specific URLs – completely separate from your site – are highly recommended, too. These same strategies can be applied to social media posts, broadcast, outdoor, anything. The cost is minimal. The metrics matter.
If you’re already designing a landing page for your campaign, the price to duplicate across multiple pages with slightly different addresses is insignificant. Costs for custom URLs and hosting will vary – but again, these are pages with links to your site, not a new site – and are measurable. Google Voice phone numbers are also inexpensive and offer more than forwarding capabilities, too.
With all that said, you don’t have to get a response from an impression of your ad for your campaign efforts to be successful. The right message and image will resonate with the right audience. The real battle is to own a small piece of real estate in the brain of your target.
When you want some data to make your decisions, though, remember to set up your metrics ahead time, so you can see how your campaign measures up.