Google Analytics and Marketo Lead Management End-to-End Integration

On the one hand, Google Analytics is the ubiquitous digital analytics platform used by marketers to measure and optimize their effort against defined objectives. On the other hand, Marketo is a leading marketing automation platform found on thousands of websites. By integrating Google Analytics and Marketo you can enable a 360-degree view of your leads workflow, including offline conversions.

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Stéphane Hamel, Digital Analytics Thought LeaderIf you have a digital analytics project with a high degree of complexity, uncertainty and risk, we should talk. I only accept a handful of client projects every year - typically advanced digital analytics implementations or R&D proof-of-concept for agencies or large clients.

High-level use case

  • Visitors fill out Marketo Forms to download white papers, subscribe to newsletter or services, or, as in this case, request a trial;
  • You want to have a generic and consistent method to track successful form submissions - which, in some cases, don’t end up with a "thank you" page.
  • Once the lead is received, various rules and human intervention are required to qualify the lead and either reject it, proceed to enable a trial, or initiate the sales & billing process after discussing with the client;
  • Track key events affecting the lead, such as a status change – and enable "post back" to Google Analytics using events and ecommerce transactions.

Why you might want to do this

While Marketo excels at lead generation/CRM (oftentimes with an offline component), Google Analytics is more generic and can be leveraged to optimize marketing, onsite behavior and lead generation.

  • You want to improve the number of leads you get through Marketo by leveraging Google Analytics data to understand which traffic sources convert the best, and what is the visitor onsite behaviour leading to those conversions. Looking at Google Analytics you might know how many leads you got, but not the quality and final outcome (ex. closing a sale).
  • If you push the concept further, you can look at which traffic sources and behaviour leads to the best ledas: close rate, value, etc. - and this data comes from Marketo
  • The combined Marketo and Google Analytics data opens new possibilities for advanced analysis;
  • Sometimes, people who have access to Google Analytics don't necessarily have access to Marketo (and vice-versa);
  • Finding resources who know about Google Analytics is generally easier and cheaper than finding qualified Marketo skills

Solution outline

  • The Marketo Forms 2.0 onSuccess() handler can be used to trigger a Google Tag Manager custom event, and from there, track the "thank you" as a Google Analytics virtual page view or event;
  • A hidden form field can hold the Google Analytics Client ID. Whenever Marketo receives a lead, a Webhook uses the Google Analytics Measurement Protocol to register an event against Google Analytics;
  • Any relevant workflow can be modified to include a Webhook to log a Google Analytics event with updated status and other relevant information, or even an ecommerce transaction with all the details;
  • For cases where a lead is generated using the Marketo REST API, the concept can still be applied successfully.

Get the Google Analytics-Marketo End-to-End Cheat Sheet

If you ever have to integrate Marketo and Google Analytics, you can save yourself some headache and get my cheat-sheet (detailed step-by-step instructions and how-to) – or contact me to help you out.