Luckily, it's really easy to measure your email traction. Follow these three quick steps.
- Create a link you can measure in Bit.ly.
- Add these links to your signature
- Measure, modify, and measure again!
1. Create a link you can measure with Bit.ly or Google Short Links.
Bit.ly is typically used to create short, easy-to-share links. But since it's a redirector, it captures that the link was clicked on and who clicked on it. This is your measure. It's easy to create a link - just paste it into the Bit.ly website and copy the funny URL you get. See Figure 1 - that funny "bit.ly/QhJof3" link is what you want. Click to copy!
|Fig. 1. Create a link in Bit.ly|
http://www.amazon.com/Shipping-Greatness-Practical-launching-outstanding/dp/1449336574/And if I want to make it unique for my Google alumni group, I just add something to the end as a "querystring parameter" - something starting with a question mark and followed by some characters. You may need to try some different combinations, but on Amazon I just used:
2. Create a signature.
In my case, I created a clear call to action and also linked to my other presences, including this blog. See the figure below.
|Fig 2. Create an email signature in GMail. Or whatever.|
Now, the Scaled Recognition website has Google Analytics hooked up, and Blogger (my blog hoster) has great analytics, but by creating a signature with links I can measure specific clicks from MY sent email.
One of the mantras I espouse in Shipping Greatness (note the bit.ly link!) comes from Lord Kelvin: "That which cannot be measured cannot be improved." Now that you have measured, you can improve. You'll get charts like you see below in Figure 3 (just click on Stats in Bit.ly).
|Fig 3. Measure!|
What you'll need to do to make this number meaningful is control for email volume. To do this, create a search in your GMail, or Outlook or whatever, that gives you a count of the number of messages you sent. In GMail I entered the following into the search box:
after:2012/8/30 before:2012/9/6 from:me in:sent
And from there I get a count of the number of email messages I sent. The metric you want to drive up is the click-to-email ratio, A.K.A. "conversion." It is simply this:
# of Bit.ly Clicks / # of email messages sent