B2B Marketing Blog

What Marketers Need To Know About Tag Management

By Andrew Nguyen
Nov 25, 2014
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While web technology companies have for many years provided tag management software, tag management today is being called the “required table stakes of digital measurement,” by David Booth for MarketingLand.com.

In this post we’re going to cover what tag management is, how it benefits marketers, some of newest shortcuts for deploying site tags, and show you where Bizible fits in the landscape.

What is Tag Management?

Tag management was born out of the need to simplify the process of altering tags across a website. A tag is simply a Javascript code that is embedded on a website to collect visitor or event information. Managing tags, the associated eporting and 3rd party tracking, can become unwieldy and often involve the development team.

The main benefit of a tag manager platform is agility. For example, when marketers work with new web vendors or web analytics platform they only need to make adjustments to the tag manager, not individual web pages.

It works like this: tag management updates tags using a single container; these container codes are guided by rules in the tag manager, dictating when tags are triggered. Make an update on the tag manager and the update is applied across the entire website.

When changing web tracking events, updating or A/B testing, tag management makes the process efficient.  

4 Other Reasons Marketers Use Tag Management

1) Create a custom marketing cloud -- Marketing cloud vendors like Adobe, Oracle and even Bizible each provide their own set of tags and features. Without tag management, building a custom marketing cloud that utilizes different vendors would not be feasible.

Why build a custom cloud? According to Travis Wright, founder of MediaThinkLabs, building a custom cloud offers the flexibility to use best in class service providers within the major marketing cloud vendors. 

Tealium_6

Image source: "5 Reasons to Build Your Own Marketing Cloud," by tag management platform, Tealium.

When using a new platform or vendor, tag management allows you to avoid modifying the markup on a page and adjust from the tag manager. Marketers can use web technologies that fit their needs, without having to worry whether their marketing cloud provider has it or not.

2) Reduce reliance on IT resources -- Tag management can be summed up by 2 terms: the “container” and the “data layer.” Here’s a clear explanation of the latter:

A data layer is a collection of data on a page that includes any important piece of information from that page in an easy to access format. Imagine the confirmation page on an eCommerce site: you've got transaction details, shipping details, quantities, product IDs, order numbers, etc. It's all scattered about on the page. A data layer stores all that info in a name-value pair in the source code (not printed on the page so the user can see), making it super simple to access by a tag manager.

--Mike Pantoliano, Marketing Director at Ookla.

So what does the data layer allow you to do?

“The data layer allows marketers to correlate and share customer data between applications,” says Erik Bratt, Tealium.

Using information in the data layer, marketers can create tags or change them to reach their objective. Here’s a graphic that helps describe where the data layer resides, and what it does.

 

Containers increase efficiency by allowing marketers to make multiple tag changes by modifying the container.  

3) Improve page load times -- Page load times count, especially for enterprise websites that receive a lot of traffic. Tag management allows users to control when tags are triggered, such as when certain event criterias are met, reducing load times. Furthermore all tag management services utilize content delivery networks (CDN). CDN’s are networks of servers designed to deliver content to the closest users in order to minimize page loading times.

4) Discover new apps -- Many tag management technology companies provide an app store, similar to the Salesforce AppExchange (See Bizible’s listing on the AppExchange.). These allow you to discover tag management products and services around mobile analytics, social media, cross channel analytics, and more. Many of the tools in the app store are turnkey, meaning the tag management service provider has already integrated them into the console.

Tealium and Bizible Simplify Tracking Code Setup

Reducing reliance on IT and developers means marketers can become agile and independent teams.

Tealium, a leading tag management technology company, now includes the Bizible web tracking script to simplify tracking setup and onboarding. Once the script is deployed, Bizible marketing analytics makes it possible for marketing teams to attribute granular marketing information to revenue inside Salesforce.

Keeping Up With The Technology Joneses

Ask an online marketer how fast the learning curve moves and they’ll likely say, “If I left the industry for six months and came back, I wouldn’t have a clue on first day back.”

Web technologies change rapidly and tag management allows marketers to stay ahead by bridging the gap between development and deployment of marketing campaigns. 

Topics: Analytics, website events, B2B Marketing

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