“We have so much data on the web, almost all of it available for free, that we dive into the data ocean hoping that magically awesome things will follow. They never do.” – Avinash Kaushik
In simplistic terms, digital marketing is the promotion of products or brands via one or more forms of electronic media. Digital marketing differs from traditional marketing in that it involves the use of channels and methods that enable an organization to analyze marketing campaigns and understand what is working and what isn’t – typically in real time. That is the beauty of digital marketing. Watch digital analytics evangelist Avinash Kaushik talk about data and the world of marketing in this video:
The key to any successful marketing strategy is to measure the results of a campaign to identify trends and improve ROI. As a digital marketer it’s important for you to measure and track your marketing efforts so you can see what campaigns are working – and which ones you may need to tweak a little bit to perform better. You might be tracking Google Analytics, AdWords ads, Facebook Retargeting Pixels, Ecommerce actions and more. All of the extra tracking codes can slow down the performance of your website – and makes it cumbersome for you to keep track of which pages have what tracking code snippets.
Enter Google Tag Manager. Tag Manager was created to help you keep track of your various digital marketing efforts that use tracking codes.Tag managers help marketers better control the tags themselves so you can be more effective with your marketing efforts. This amazing tool allows you to keep all of your tracking code and pages together in one central location making it easier for you to add and switch code around whenever you want to.
Tags: These are the mediators between your website and the tools you use to advertise, track, and customize your site. They bring data from your site to the technologies you use that require this data, such as marketing vendors and analytics solutions. Here are a few terms you should familiarize yourself with before getting started on Google Tag Manager.
Container: A container is what holds your tags. A GTM container is a universal tag, that fires your tags to the rules you set in the interface. If your tags are t-shirts then your container is the closet with hangers in them.
Events: These are any action of interest that take place on your site or in your app.
Triggers: As the name suggests, these tell GTM when you want it to fire a tag. For example, “Anytime someone visits a page.”
Variable: A variable is used to store data that is used in defining a trigger and/or to pass information (like product price, google analytics account id etc) to tag(s) at runtime. A variable tells GTM where to fire a tag.
The video tutorial below describes steps to installing Google Tag Manager:
For this reason, the Google Tag Manager comes in handy. With GTM , you can:
- Increase Speed: Significantly decrease load times. Imagine replacing all individual tags on your site with one line of code. GTM loads code asynchronously, which means it deploys the applications relevant to the visitor and the page. This results in faster loading. Slow-loading pages drive visitors away. One lethargic page could cost you a crucial first impression or force visitors to competitors’ sites. Frustrated visitors don’t become customers. This is one of the manyways that time is money in the world of digital marketing. Slow-loading pages are not just an IT problem, they’re a conversion killer.
- Minimize coding errors: Incorrectly applied tags can sabotage your measurements, resulting in additional costs and lost data. Manual tagging is tedious, monotonous process that invites these kinds of errors. GTM condenses tags into manageable form, helping you avoid these issues. When problems fo occur, GTM lets you quickly find and deactivate the offending tags.
- Be Flexible: Tag Manager is also important for social media marketers who don’t have control over website updates. If you’re with a big company and constantly have to go through the IT department to add new tags or if you have a small website and use an outside consultant for website maintenance, it becomes difficult to update tags in a timelymanner. GTM allows you put certain tags on certain pages. Every page has a custom html. It allows you specify that you want some tags on some pages, other tags on all pages and certain conditions to be met for still others.
- Be Reliable: By putting everything in one bucket, you’re making sure that stuff doesn’t get missed. If you have a lot of different webpages, websites or use marketing automation services that have their own landing pages, forgetting to put tags on all those pages will ruin your analytics. As long as you use GTM on every page, you won’t have to worry.