Looking for easy ways to measure your offline marketing campaigns? This blog will walk you through why it’s difficult to track some aspects of marketing and how to accurately measure and attribute revenue back to your marketing.
‘Old school’ methods of marketing haven’t gone away with the rise of the digital age. Marketing methods like TV, print and press are all still great ways to get your company in front of mind.
But while they can be really useful for certain companies, they are also quite tricky to track.
We delve into calculating offline marketing ROI, our top tips for measuring your offline marketing plus how to link your offline sales to your online leads.
Use this handy contents list to get the answers you’re looking for when it comes to measuring offline marketing.
Why is it difficult to track offline marketing?
Where would be without our good friend, Google Analytics? For anyone with a website, GA is an absolute must. It can help you track, understand and optimise your website performance.
But while Google Analytics is a great resource when it comes to measuring your online marketing, what about offline marketing?
Campaigns on TV, in print or press, or even across a local billboard can be hard to track. Skip to the next section to learn our top tips for tracking offline campaigns.
For now, we’re going to delve into why it’s so tricky to track.
Normally, a user searches online for a product or service and finds your website. They browse, and sometimes, they convert. Of course, that’s a very simplified process.
But how does it work when that user comes from an offline source?
While offline marketing does often direct users to your website, how can you track these new sources? Using regular Google Analytics, it’s difficult to attribute sessions to your offline marketing.
Tips for tracking your offline marketing campaigns
The easiest way to track the success of an offline marketing campaign is to use an attribution tool.
Tools like Ruler Analytics will automatically track new leads, their customer journeys and then attribute their revenue when they close into a sale.
This includes offline marketing channels like TV, print, radio and offline sales methods like calls. With Ruler, you can track it all.
Custom landing pages
One other way to track an offline marketing campaign is to use a custom landing page.
Custom landing pages are easier to track, as you can assume the number of users is an accurate measurement of how many people have responded to your campaign.
This is also a great way to compare your offline marketing efforts. If you’re testing out a printed ad in a newspaper versus flyer hand outs, then use two different custom landing pages so you can track impact. Whichever gets more sessions has more success in driving users to your website.
Note: remember, if you’re creating campaign landing pages, you likely don’t want them appearing on users’ online searches. Make sure you list them as non-index so only those with the URL can find them.
Our top tips for custom landing pages? Well, that’s easy.
- Use short URLs that are easy to remember and easy to type correctly
- Keep your URLs branded! Avoid short links where possible as these (on a free account) are unbranded so harder to get right
- If you’re comparing offline campaigns, keep the content on each page the same so you can compare sessions and conversions
Custom Phone Numbers
When running an offline marketing campaign, you might not want to drive viewers to your website. You might want them to call directly.
But how can you differentiate an inbound call from your offline campaign from an inbound call generated from an organic search, for example?
Custom phone numbers, of course!
Just like custom landing pages and URLs, you can use custom phone numbers to measure offline marketing campaigns.
With a call tracking and marketing attribution tool like Ruler, you can assign a number to a set campaign. Ruler will not only count every time that number is call and assign it to your chosen campaign. It will also continue to monitor that user, so that when they eventually convert, you can attribute it back to your offline marketing campaign.
Pretty neat, right?
A simple way to track offline campaigns is with discount codes. Simply name your discount after the channel and you’ll be able to view discount entries in your eCommerce analytics.
By calling discount codes, RADIO20 or DAILYMAIL10, you can specify exactly where a user has come from. But again, remember. Discount codes are easily passed around, so while they still indicate success, it doesn’t necessarily mean that many people saw your original advertisement. That’s the power of word of mouth marketing!
Direct Traffic in Google Analytics
Another way to track success of offline marketing is via non-referral traffic.
Head to Google Analytics. In your dashboard, choose acquisition, and then channels in the side bar menu.
Here, you’ll be able to see a breakdown of your overall traffic by channel. There will be the usual suspects like organic, social and email. But there will also be direct traffic.
Select a timeline that begins with the date you began your offline marketing push, and assess the change of direct hits to your website. It’s likely these people who entered your URL directly into their search bar found you via offline literature.
Measure your Brand Searches in Google Search Console
A more simple (and not so accurate way) of measuring your offline marketing campaigns is by assessing your brand searches.
Head to your Google Search Console and select your website property. Click ‘search traffic’ in the left sidebar. Then select ‘search analytics’ from the drop-down menu.
Choose your date range, specifying your custom date range. Remember, the start date should be when your offline marketing campaign began.
Then, click on the “Queries” radio button. Take a look at your top queries for that date range.
If you see your brand name, that means people typed it directly into the search bar. It’s likely that those people learned about your brand name from your offline marketing literature. But remember, this isn’t an accurate method of attributing success to offline marketing.
What About Offline Marketing ROI?
Well, the difficulties just get greater. While you can track your website and phone calls before, during and after an offline campaign goes live, how do you link all of the data together?
Customer journeys are getting more and more complex. One user could see a PPC ad, then a TV ad. They could find you organically, then see you via social media.
How do you understand how each of those channels and campaigns worked together to drive that one particular user down the customer journey?
Well, marketing attribution allows you to combine your online and offline marketing data. It can be used as a single source of truth when analysing your campaigns.
Modern marketers are swamped with data.
And if we think back to that one user mentioned before, how can any marketers differentiate their sessions from the thousands of others? Even if proper tracking is implemented, the hours of data sifting wouldn’t be worth the outcome.
Luckily, marketing attribution can cut through the noise and provide the data you want, where you need it.
Link your offline sales to your online leads
Think about a normal customer journey.
A user might engage with you and your campaigns anywhere between 2 to two hundred times. Think with Google says average customer journeys for a flight can be up to five hundred.
On top of all of these sessions, you have all of the possible ways a user can convert.
There are online conversions via eCommerce capabilities. But there are also phone calls, emails, form submissions, live chat and in store.
How can you link your offline sales back to online, or offline marketing?
Marketing attribution allows you to close the loop between your sales and your leads.
No matter whether you’re using TV to drive new leads which are then passed to a sales team. Or, if you’re using flyers to drive interest in your website and users are then retargeted to convert via PPC ads, marketing attribution allows you to track each step from prospect to sale.
Benefits of marketing attribution for measuring offline marketing
We’ve already talked about measuring offline marketing campaigns. But marketing attribution allows you to take it to the next level.
Yes, you can track campaign phone numbers to understand how many inbound calls your campaign has generated. But even better, marketing attribution allows you to continue to track those new leads. So, even if they have two, or twenty-two touchpoints between your offline campaign and conversion, you can still attribute them back to your offline marketing.
Here’s how it works:
A user engages with your website. Ruler Analytics tracks their referrer.
As the user continues to engage with your content, Ruler will continue to harvest their marketing data.
When they convert into a lead (whether that’s by phone, email, live chat or form), Ruler will fire all of their marketing and lead data over to your CRM, or wherever you’re storing your leads.
Ruler will continue to track this user. At the point of sale, Ruler will scrape all the revenue data from the CRM and fire it into your marketing apps and tools.
There, you’ll be able to see the real revenue data against the marketing channels and campaigns that drove it.
Why is this useful?
Let us explain.
Track your true ROI
Attribution allows you to measure your true return on investment. It combines all of your online and offline marketing data with your lead and revenue data. You’ll be able to get oversight on how much revenue marketing has generated in sales, and how much is in the pipeline.
Optimise your campaigns
Since you’ll be measuring your campaigns with the one metric that matters, revenue, you’ll be able to optimise your campaigns.
Now you know how many conversions, leads and sales each campaign and channel generates, you’ll have a better understanding of what’s working, and what isn’t.
This is key data any marketer needs to up their game.
Better spent budget
Budget is hard to come by sometimes in marketing. But what if you could spend your budget on what you know will drive more revenue? That’s a pretty great case for more budget, right?
Offline marketing campaigns are a great way to drive new business and traffic. But, without proper tracking, it’s useless.
Marketing attribution is the only way to get true visibility of what in your marketing arsenal is working to drive revenue. And from a business perspective, what more could you want?
Get started with marketing attribution by booking a short demo. Our team will walk you through the platform and how you can combine your online and offline marketing data.