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How can I track the performance of ads in publications?

By: Bill Wortman



I am trying to quantify the results of actions taken by readers of print advertising in magazines so that I can calculate the ROI on advertising dollars. I would like to know if readers are going to my website and if they are purchasing? Are they calling directly to learn more and to order products? How can I track the performance of ads in publications?  


Answer: Some forms of advertising lend themselves to a manual compilation of the customer usage and ROI calculations, for example: coupons, specific products, or price points. Also, customer surveys and direct inquiries (“how did you hear about us?”) methods are used. However, website traffic information and statistics requires website design and technology. You can contact your website developer regarding these tools, or you can research and review marketing/advertising ROI information and tools and target marketing over the Internet. The following is an example website:

Additionally, specific website addresses can be used in ads to direct traffic to a page where the number of visitors is measured. For example, if your website is www.abc.com, you could create a page just for those who saw an ad in a specific magazine and use www.abc.com/life. Furthermore, the page could welcome the visitor with a tailored message knowing they had seen the specific ad. When the visitor makes a purchase, you could have the visitor tracked to the page he originally entered all the way through to purchase. This would require some code being written to perform the process. Some companies will simply, ask “how did you hear about our company?” in a required field on their website where a purchaser has to indicate the source. For inbound calls from ads, you could use an operator’s number to track the source. For example, 1-800-555-5555 operator 15.

Published: August 26, 2013

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