What are some of the biggest challenges you face when it comes to marketing your business? One concern we hear a lot from clients is that they don’t really know what’s working to drive leads. If you don’t know how to track where your leads are coming from, you probably don’t know which marketing tactics are actually helping your business.

So take a minute to check out these four (not-so-secret) secrets to tracking your marketing leads.

1. Psst: You Can Track Leads with Call Tracking Technology

For a lot of businesses, phone calls are one of the most important leads they get. If a potential customer is calling you, it’s likely because they’re either ready to buy or they’re trying to decide between you and a competitor. So, as a smart marketer, you obviously want to know what marketing enticed them to call you.

Using call tracking technology is one of the best ways to track phone leads, and it works with both online and offline marketing tactics. Sound too good to be true? It’s actually pretty easy!

OK, so how does this “magical” tracking work? With call tracking technology, you basically associate a different number to each marketing tactic (of course, they all route to your main line to make it easy for ya!) Each number rolls into a report so you can see what number the caller used, which allows you to see which marketing tactic drove that call. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy.

Plus a lot of call tracking technologies also record your phone call so you can hear how your staff handled the call (you might be surprised how many potential “leads” are lost because of less-than-ideal phone calls) Oh, and there are now HIPAA-compliant options for all you healthcare businesses out there!

2. Superpower Your Leads Tracking with Software

Want to dial it up a level? Look for lead tracking software that helps you not only see what type of campaign drove you a lead but can dial into even more specific metrics (plus track online conversions like a form fill or email), by using some handy code.

Wouldn’t it be great to see all your leads in one place, be able to determine what sites they came from, and — get this! — also follow up with them, all from one app?? Lucky for you, there’s lead tracking software out there that can help you do just that!

Imagine not only having deep insights across your marketing tactics, but also being able to keep up with all your leads easily. Sounds like a superpower. But, it’s possible (and affordable, too)!

3. Maybe Use Some UTM Codes?

Have you heard of a UTM code, (for all you acronym geeks out there, that’s short Urchin Tracking Module)? If you’re unfamiliar, a UTM adds special code to the end of a URL so you’re able to track where people accessed your link (by associating the right link with the place you posted it). For example, if you want a way to track how many people are visiting a specific landing page from Google, the link you’d include in your ad would have a code like “utm_source=Google” properly placed within the URL. When these are set up and used correctly, you can see the number of visitors to that link within Google Analytics – and then connect the dots on your reports more easily. It sounds kind of “automagical” but this all depends on you setting up these codes and putting them in the right places (or using software or experts that do this correctly on your behalf).

While UTMs are useful for tracking where people are getting to your homepage or a specific page on your website, they don’t provide information about who your leads are or what, if any, action they took after visiting your website. So, we suggest you use UTMs for things like pieces of content from your blog in conjunction with other lead tracking options.

4. Or, Do it Yourself

Every time I go to the dermatologist, there’s a little box that asks me how I heard of this practice. I can check from a list that includes search engines, social media, Healthgrades, print ads, mailers, or a referral.

This is basically what we call manual lead tracking. You can manually track leads in a few different ways. One is by including options for your customers to tell you how they heard of you in any type of paperwork a customer has to fill out either in person or online. Another is training your staff to ask leads on the phone how they heard about you, which is a conversational approach that can help to build rapport while getting valuable information about your callers.

And this is a great thing to do because it helps you understand what marketing is top of mind with your customers. But — it’s not the end-all, be-all of lead tracking, for a few reasons. One is that your customers probably experienced multiple pieces of your marketing — but they might just list the last or most prominent one that they saw (like a billboard on the way to visit your office that morning!). Another is that people don’t have the precision of memory (or honestly care enough to be exhaustive) to give a comprehensive report of your marketing influence. So it’s a good idea to do manual lead tracking along with robust digital tracking too, to help paint a full picture of your marketing impact.

If you decide to track leads manually, it’s important to have a system in place that allows you to keep track of this information. If you have a lead management system in place, you can add it there. Or, you can create a spreadsheet all employees have access to in order to add and update this information.

An Important Note About Lead Tracking

Lead tracking is, of course, a valuable part of any marketing strategy. You want to know what drove a prospect to become a lead. But, like I mentioned, it’s important to remember that leads are often impacted by a number of different sources. For example, if I’m looking for a new dermatologist, I’m probably seeing information on search engines, review sites, social media, mailers, display ads, and more. So, just because a mailer is what got me to actually call, it doesn’t make those other sources less valuable.

The best marketing strategies are those that work together to help your business grow. And, an important part of any marketing strategy is the ability to see what’s working to drive that growth. Get information about how LOCALiQ can help you grow your business and actually see what’s working on our website.