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Google Analytics is a powerful analytics tool that can give your school the chance to see, in real time, how your marketing is performing, where it is succeeding and where it can be improved. By properly setting up and maintaing Google Analytics, you will have the capability to track and analyze this information, which will remove the guesswork from your decision making and maximize your ROI. However, when you fully take advantage of everything Google Analytics has to offer, you can also diversify your marketing initiatives.

How Can Google Analytics Diversify Your Marketing?

You might think Google Analytics is only useful for measuring the effectiveness of banner ads, Search Engine Optimization and Pay Per Click marketing campaigns, but this is only part of what it covers. Apart from offline marketing (including newspapers, radio and TV ads) Google Analytics can also help you optimize the following marketing initiatives and channels:

Mobile Marketing
As we have discussed in the past, the future is increasingly mobile. If your school has developed a mobile website, Google Analytics can help you track and measure its user activity. This requires that you paste Google Analytics tracking code on each page that you want to track. Google Analytics then provides you with data on mobile visits to your website.

What’s more, you can also use Google Analytics to track traffic to your regular website from mobile devices, including smart phones and tablets. All traffic from mobile devices can be viewed under the “Mobile” section in the “Audience” tab of your Analytics account. This is then further divided into “Overview” and “Devices”.

Mobile Traffic With Google Analytics

Social Media Marketing
Each social media platform you use has an analytical tool (Facebook Insights, Twitter Analytics to help you measure your prospects’ and students’ engagement. By adding a few advanced segment filters to your Google Analytics, you can see the percentage of traffic that comes to your site from social media, and, you can see what this traffic did once they got there.

Google Analytics can also compare social networks (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc), allowing you to understand which one drives the most traffic, has the best lead conversion rates, bounce rates and time spent on your site. Clearly, this kind of information can be invaluable when you are devising recruiting, marketing and social media strategies.

In addition, Google’s Social Plug-in Analytics can help you analyse how users engage with any social plug-in that you incorporate into your school’s website (including a Facebook Like button, Google’s +1 button and Twitter’s Tweet button). Once you configure the JavaScript for Analytics, the plug-in will provide a number of reports, including:

  • Engagement
    This will tell you the number of pages viewed per visit, average time on site, bounce rate, and other metrics for visits that included and did not include social actions.
  • Action 
    This will allow you to compare the number of social actions (+1 clicks, Likes, etc) for each social source and social source-action combination.
  • Pages
    This report allows you to compare the number of actions on each page of your site.

Email Marketing
If your school offers an email newsletter (and it should) or any other method of email marketing, you will need to know the effectiveness of this tactic. There are services out there that can tell you how many clicks ever campaign has received, but it won’t tell you what happens after that initial click. Google Analytics can help you fill in these gaps, letting you know where visitors are coming from and what interested them. This information is extremely important.

What other marketing initiatives have you measured with Google Analytics? Do you feel it is more useful with some than others?