Use UTM parameters to track your marketing campaigns

UTM parameters (or tags as they are also called) are really useful. They can help track paid marketing campaigns, newsletters and identify which social media content delivers the best conversions. In this post, we’ll talk about UTM parameters and

  • what they are
  • why are they so useful
  • how to create them
  • how to use them

Beam Analytics has full UTM parameter support to help you track your marketing campaigns from click to conversion. If you already know what UTM parameters are and how to use them, you’re ready to get started!

What are UTM parameters?

You know what a URL is. It typically looks like www.beamanalytics.io or google.com.

But sometimes you might notice that some URLs are super long and look like https://somewebsite.com?utm_source=Twitter&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=milestone

All that stuff after the ‘?’ are the UTM parameters . Helpfully, it has UTM exactly where they are. In the above example, there are three UTM parameters -source, medium and campaign. And as you can see, each UTM parameter is separated by a ‘&’.

Why are UTM parameters so useful?

This is the most important question. Why should you care about UTM parameters?

UTM tracking gives you really accurate data to identify where your traffic is coming from. If you set them up correctly, UTM parameters allow you to see whether a visitor came from a particular Facebook post, article, ad campaign, email and more.

With UTM tagging, you'll be able to see which channels, campaigns, and individual ads work best really easily. This can thus help you tweak your marketing efforts to make sure you’re getting the best ROI for your efforts and marketing spend.

And the best thing? They are super easy to use. Once you know how to create them, replace your regular URLs with ones with UTM parameters and you’re all set.

Some suggestions on how you can use UTM parameters:

  • Compare paid vs organic social media posts You can tag all your organic (non-paid) social media links with a utm_medium=social parameter and all your paid social media posts with a utm_medium=social-paid parameter. And then you can go to Beam and look at the source referrers and choose UTM medium to compare the two.

  • Check the results of individual social media post

You could analyze each individual post that you share using the utm_campaign parameter. For example, you might want to split your traffic and see not only the difference between paid and organic posts, but also the results of the individual posts. You might have a paid campaign for a holiday sale and another organic post you published about a new launch.

  • Holiday sale


  • New launch


So the difference here are the UTM parameters for medium (social paid vs social) and the campaign (holiday sale vs new launch).

As you can see, there are so many ways you can use UTM parameters to track your traffic!

How are URLs with UTM parameters created?

To understand this, it’s important to know a little about UTM parameters. There are five types of UTM parameters. All you have to do is get your URL, place a ‘?’ after it, and then add your UTM parameter. And each UTM parameter is separated by a ‘&’. That’s it!

UTM Source

utm_source: The name of the campaign source where you plan to share the link. This could be the name of the social network you’re doing a campaign on, or the name of your newsletter.

Example: www.beamanalytics.io?utm_source=Facebook

If you are using UTM parameters, this source UTM parameter is required.

UTM Medium

utm_medium: This is the name of the channel where the link is placed. Examples include email or paid social media posts.

You can organize and group utm_medium tags within few of your main marketing strategies:

  • “Email”: email marketing campaigns
  • “CPC”: pay per click advertising such as search engine paid advertising.
  • “Affiliate”: affiliate marketing campaigns
  • “Referral”: organic campaigns on other websites
  • “Social”: organic content posted on your social media channels
  • “Social+paid”: paid campaigns posted on social media
  • “Display”: advertising campaigns you have on other websites

Example: www.beamanalytics.io?utm_source=Facebook&utm_medium=social+paid

If you are using UTM parameters, this medium UTM parameter is required.

UTM Campaign

utm_campaign: The name of your individual campaign. An example is “May+newsletter”.

utm_campaign is the most flexible of all the UTM parameters. You can put anything you want such as sales, features or launches.

Example: www.beamanalytics.io?utm_source=Facebook&utm_medium=social+paid&utm_campaign=Feb+launch

If you are using UTM parameters, this medium UTM parameter is required.

UTM Term

utm_term: This is the name of the keyword for your paid search ad campaign.

If you are using UTM parameters, this medium UTM parameter is optional.

UTM Content

utm_content: The name of the specific link.

In some campaigns, you may be having multiple links pointing to the same location. For example, you might have two different links to your landing page in an email.

utm_content allows you to differentiate between these two links and see which one is better.

If you are using UTM parameters, this content UTM parameter is optional.

There are also free UTM builders you can use. Two popular ones are UTM builder and UTM tag builder.

How to use UTM parameters

Aside from being very useful, UTM parameters are really easy to use! Once you’ve created them, anywhere you’d normally put your standard URL, just drop in your URL with UTM parameters. Too easy!

A few important things to remember about these UTM parameters.

  1. They are case sensitive. So whatever your parameter values are, keep the cases consistent!

  2. You can’t use spaces in UTM parameters. So use ‘+’ or ‘-’ between words.

  3. Use your Beam dashboard to check your UTM traffic. Just click on ‘referrers’ and you’ll be able to pick the UTM parameter you want to check out.


Hopefully you found this post about using UTM parameters with Beam Analytics useful. Any questions or comments, please let us know at hi(at)beamanalytics.io. Take care!

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