Use lead source tracking to discover where customers first engage with your brand and boost your marketing and sales success
The modern business landscape is highly competitive. To stand out, companies must craft innovative strategies to connect with customers everywhere they go, online and in the real world. That’s where omnichannel marketing shines. But there’s a catch: To nail this approach, you need to know exactly where customers are discovering your brand.
So, what’s the best way to do that? Lead source tracking highlights the moment customers decide to engage with your brand and explore what you offer. With this invaluable tool, it’s possible to double down on your best-performing marketing channels and stop wasting resources on the ones that don’t deliver. Here’s how it works.
Lead source definition
Before you can track your lead sources, you need to know what they are. A lead source is a pathway that guides potential customers to your brand and sparks deep connections. However, it’s not usually the first place they heard about your company, spotted your website in search results, or read your ads.
Instead, it’s the moment they decided to go from simply noticing your brand to taking a closer look. You’ll know when it happens because they actually take action, like clicking on a search engine results page (SERP) link to visit your website, following the CTA in your email, or calling your sales team after reading a print ad.
Since there’s a precise moment when the customer goes from casual observer to active participant, you can track and measure lead source effectiveness. As you do that, comparing the data will reveal which marketing channels work best and provide actionable insights to craft effective campaigns.
Top 7 types of lead sources to monitor
You have more ways to reach customers than ever before. Think of all the places you discover new brands: Social media scroll fests, podcasts you tune into, pop-up ads while playing online games, trips to the local mall, eye-catching billboards along the highway, or even a tasty sample at a weekend farmers’ market.
With omnichannel marketing, you’re undoubtedly casting a wide net to get your brand noticed everywhere your target audience spends their time. This means your customers likely come from all over, making it unclear which channels resonate most. If that’s your reality, you need a good starting point for the tracking process, like these top 7 types of lead sources to monitor.
Organic search traffic comes from people searching for your keywords and clicking on your website from the search engine results page. You’re ahead of the game if you’re already tracking how well your target keywords perform. That’s because monitoring organic search as a lead source works similarly.
You’ll just go into your Google Analytics dashboard to record the data and then analyze what you see. This lead source works best when viewed from both a macro perspective and a detailed, granular standpoint. To start, look at how many new visitors your website gets. Then, dig deeper by seeing which keywords bring them there the most.
Email marketing attracts qualified leads through campaigns and newsletters sent directly to their inboxes. Although you can—and should—send emails to existing customers, you’re looking to target people who’re on your email lists but haven’t yet directly engaged with your brand.
There are two metrics to track and measure here: open rates and click-through rates. Open tracking tells you which email subject lines and topics generate the most leads. Click tracking is your true lead source metric, though, because it represents when the recipient expressed an active interest in your brand.
Social media channels
Social media channels connect people to brands in real-time through videos, posts, and comments. More than 4.8 billion people spend time on social media worldwide, making it a lead generation goldmine if you play your cards right.