How to Track the Effectiveness of Marketing Campaigns

Last week we discussed how viewing traffic sources and funneling more high-converting traffic to your site can improve your overall conversions. In this post, we’ll walk through how you can track the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns with the KISSmetrics Funnel Report.

Marketing Campaigns in the Modern World

Today’s online marketers have dozens of campaigns running at any given time. A couple paid channels, drip campaigns, a few A/B tests, and maybe some offline promotions. It can be tough to manage all this on top of an already busy schedule. Thankfully, technology is here to help.

The Typical Day of a Marketer

Meet Jan, the Director of Marketing for a medium-sized B2B SaaS company. Jan has a busy job with lots of responsibilities and goals to meet. She has a few meetings every day, gets dozens of emails, and is under constant pressure to deliver more signups. With each month that passes, she has more and more signups she needs to deliver.

To help drive traffic and signups, Jan is running a few campaigns:

  • Two Facebook ad campaigns
  • A large AdWords budget
  • A strong social presence, with traffic coming from Facebook and Twitter
  • Webinars on multiple channels
  • A YouTube ad campaign

To help track the performance of these campaigns, Jan uses KISSmetrics. There are multiple reports that help her, but today we’ll focus on the Funnel Report.

Using the Funnel Report to Track Acquisition

Let’s say it’s the end of April and time for Jan to review how her marketing campaigns have performed year-to-date. To start, she’ll use the Funnel Report to get a bird’s eye view so she can track the effectiveness of each campaign.


This funnel has strong performance at the top (lots of people visit the site) but it ends up with less than 1% of the visitors converting to customers.

Using Channels to Track Conversions for Each Campaign

To help Jan understand how her marketing campaigns are performing, she tags all URLs with a UTM code, which KISSmetrics automatically picks up. For example, one of her Facebook ads looks like this:

This sends visitors to the homepage, but the snippet after “.com” allows Jan to track the specific campaign. Each “utm_” is called a parameter. These are used to categorize ads and traffic sources. Jan can use them to track each campaign. There are five parameters to use, and Jan uses the URL builder to create these URLs.

Now here’s the best part. The KISSmetrics Funnel Report allows Jan (and all KISSmetrics customers) to segment her reports by any campaign parameter. KISSmetrics also automatically categorizes all these traffic sources into channels. There are seven channels:

  • Direct – These are people who come from a direct referrer. In many cases, these are people who come to you directly by typing your URL into their browser.
  • Organic – People who come to your website via a search engine are included in this channel. Also, people who set up a UTM parameter and have the utm_medium as “organic” or “search” will be put in this channel.
  • Referral – This channel is for those who come to your site via a third party that isn’t a search engine or social site. If they aren’t from those referrers, they’ll be put in this channel.
  • Email – People who are referred via an email campaign with the utm_medium as “email” or “e-mail” are put in this channel.
  • Paid – This channel includes people who come from a paid campaign. They’ll be put in this channel if their referring URL has the gclid parameter or a utm_medium of “cpc,” “cpm,” “display,” “cpv,” “cpa,” “cpp,” or “ppc.”
  • Social – These are people who come from a social network. We have a list of 276 domains and subdomains for such networks. If any visitor comes from a network on our list, they’ll be put in the social channel. Also, people who come from a campaign URL with the utm_medium of “social,” “social-network,” “social-media,” “sm,” “social network,” or “social media” will be put in this channel.
  • None – People who don’t fit into any of the above channels will be put into the None channel.

We can create a new channel by naming the utm_medium something other than email, paid, organic, or social. Jan has done this by assigning her webinars the utm_medium of “webinar”.

It’s possible to dig further into channels by using Channel: Origin. This will display the channel and the original referring domain or campaign name parameter. Since Jan has tagged all her campaign links with a campaign name, she’ll be able to see how each is performing along the funnel.

To view how every campaign is performing, she’ll segment her funnel by Channel: Origin:


This data shows Jan a few important things:

  • The bulk of traffic is coming from Google and Direct.
  • The bulk of customers come from only two sources (a webinar and AdWords).
  • One Facebook ad has brought over 8k visitors, but zero customers. It’s time for Jan to remove this ad.
  • All ad campaigns (with the exception of facebookfreetrial1) are performing above average. AdWords is particularly strong. In order to find out if this is delivering profitable returns, Jan will need to look at what she has spent on the campaign to see if it’s a cost-effective channel. She can do this with every campaign.
  • Since webinars are a strong channel, Jan should ramp up her team’s efforts to produce more partner webinars.
  • The more targeted traffic Jan can get, the better. Not surprising.

How You Can Get These Insights

This kind of analysis and marketing channel breakdown works right out of the box in KISSmetrics. There are no rules needed or custom code to be written. Just install KISSmetrics on your site, and you’ll see how each marketing channel is performing. Any UTM’s you have coming in will automatically be picked up by KISSmetrics. You can also break out of the Funnel Report and use the Cohort and Revenue reports to see how each of your marketing campaigns affect conversion and retention.

43-Second Demo

Want to see the Funnel Report in action? Just hit play below:





Start optimizing your marketing by signing up for a free trial of KISSmetrics. You’ll get access to our suite of reports that guide decision-making and growth.

If you’re not quite ready to signup, you can view a demo of KISSmetrics to see how it benefits both SaaS and Ecommerce companies.

About the Author: Zach Bulygo (Twitter) is a Content Writer for KISSmetrics.


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