Marketing Tech Friday: What is Tag Management?

Welcome to our inaugural Marketing Tech Friday! The plan is to investigate and research a marketing technology that you’re interested in, but we need your help.
We could write about things we’re interested in, and expect that you’re also interested in them. But that’s not going to help us help you. Instead, we want you to let us know what you want to read about. It’s that simple!
So comment or reach out on Facebook, tweet at us, or even leave a comment on LinkedIn!

But today, let’s look at a marketing technology called Tag Management.

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First of all, what is a tag?

A tag is a snippet of Javascript code that is placed in the head of a page. Most digital vendors require their customers to embed on their web and mobile channels. This allows these vendors to collect visitor or event information.

Interactions can include everything from analytics, remarketing, conversion tracking, and advanced customer insight services.

As digital marketing has become more and more integral for business success, digital marketing applications have boomed. These applications can range from analytics to remarketing to marketing automation. Some of the most popular applications even use tags. For instance, they are used for apps like Google Analytics, Kiss Metrics, AdRoll, Optimizely, and etc.
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Ok, but what is tag management?

As you can see, tags are extremely important for marketing departments. Not only do you use them for digital marketing purposes, but you also need them to measure customer interactions through analytics and marketing automation platforms. You use them a lot.
In the past, if you needed to change a tag, you needed to take a number of different actions. These might include sending emails to a web support team or scheduling meetings. In some cases it could take weeks to get things changed.

It was slow and cumbersome.

Tag management systems allow you to have more control over the tags you need to have on your pages. Instead of having 6, 7, or even a dozen tags placed on a given page, you can place a single tag on a page which acts as a container. That container contains code that listens to rules dictated in the tag manager’s back-end, which informs the container when to fire which tags.
If you needed to try out a new remarketing service, for instance, you could grab the right snippet, drop it into the tag manager, set the rules for when it gets fired, and publish it live to the site. All of this would take only 10 minutes, without ever having to involve your web support or IT teams.

Everything becomes faster, with fewer moving parts.

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Should I immediately go out and purchase a tag management application?

All of this to say, not necessarily. There are a number of reasons why you might try out a tag manager, but it all depends on your business and what your website is used for.
Some sites don’t necessarily use a lot of digital applications. If you have only a few tags needed for your site, a tag management application doesn’t really help you keep things organized.
That’s not the case with everyone. For instance, there are some companies that require a number of digital applications to support both website and business functions. With the amount of tags they are using, it’s more important to keep everything well organized. (I’m looking at you eCommerce.)

For sites that are complicated, the need for a tag management application is imperative.

However, there are other reasons why you might need tag management. To figure out if you need to invest the time and resources into a management application, here is a list of questions to ask yourself:

  • Do you get push back on requested tag changes?
  • Do you change tags often?
  • Can you get changes made to tags in a relatively short amount of time?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, a tag management application may be something you need to invest in.

Tag management is a great opportunity to make your marketing less complex and more agile. Not only does it have the capability to help you organize and set rules for your tags, but it can also help you make your marketing more efficient.

We need to know which marketing technology you want to learn about next! Just tweet at us or comment on LinkedIn or Facebook. You never know, your suggestion may just be the subject of our next Marketing Tech Friday article!

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