In The Headlights: October 28, 2020: Google Analytics 4 Architecture, Consumer Data Detectives, Email Newsletter Tracking

Google Analytics 4 Architecture, Consumer Data Detectives, Email Newsletter Tracking

In The Headlights

Get ready for Google Analytics 4 with an in-depth audit of your existing Google Analytics setup >

Let’s talk Google Analytics 4 philosophy. One of the biggest mind shifts to make about it is that it’s no longer a reporting tool. Google Analytics 3 (aka Universal Analytics) was built on the legacy foundation of the original Google Analytics that Google bought from Urchin back in 2005. Side note, that’s why GA tracking codes are called UTM codes, short for Urchin Tracking Module.

Google Analytics 4 still uses UTM codes, but the similarities between old and new pretty much end there. GA 4 is an entirely new experience for most marketers, and it’s a brand new application from the ground up. It’s built not on the base of previous Google Analytics, but on the base of their mobile app software, Firebase Analytics.

What’s key to know about GA 4 is that it’s no longer a one-stop shop for tracking, analysis, and reporting the way GA 3 is. Instead, those roles have been broken up.

Tracking is now largely done in Google Tag Manager. This increases flexibility (especially with the new event model) but also increases complexity.

Analysis – true analysis – is now done in Google Analytics 4. This is where you do your data detective work, investigating why you’re seeing what you’re seeing in your data. You slice and dice in Google Analytics 4. It’s really a gussied-up database interface now in many ways, with a sophisticated query engine called the Analysis Hub.

Reporting is now largely done in Google Data Studio. Reporting is what we give to others after we’ve done our analysis.

This is going to be a big mind shift for many marketers who’ve grown accustomed to just doing everything in one application and blurring the lines between analysis and reporting. They are functionally different tasks!

Analysis is all about unlocking data, asking better questions, understanding what happened.

Reporting is all about communicating those findings to someone else.

Once you make that distinction, the roles of each part of the new Google Marketing Platform become clear, and how you should think about and implement each also becomes clear. Keep this in mind as you embark on your Google Analytics 4 adventure.

The Bright Idea

In this week’s In-Ear Insights, we discuss consumer data privacy and data sharing. What happens when we share a consumer’s data without their active consent at the time of sharing? How should we think about changing our data sharing policies as marketers?

Watch/listen to the most recent episode of In-Ear Insights here

And in last week’s So What? (which airs Thursdays at 1 PM Eastern on YouTube), the team tackles setting up email newsletter subscription tracking using Google Analytics 3 and Google Analytics 4.

Watch the most recent episode of So What? here!

Coming up on this week’s So What?, we’ll be tackling part 3 of MarTech basics for personal brand and small business sites, including how to think about and set up a system for content curation.

Are you subscribed to our YouTube channel? If not, click/tap here to subscribe!

Rear View Mirror Data

In this week’s Rear View mirror, let’s take a look at civic engagement; specifically, brands encouraging people to vote. Here in the United States, we’ve got a large election in about a week; what impact, if any, does encouraging civic engagement have on brand Instagram accounts?


Out of 3,992 brands, a full 1,034 have shared something in calendar year 2020 about voting; what’s more, voting posts tend to perform better. We see overall engagements and video views increase as we approach the United States election.

Most important, at least as far as brand marketing goes, sharing civic engagement content helps brand accounts perform better. In an apples-to-apples comparison, brand posts about civic engagement perform substantially better than their non-voting counterparts. The average voting-related post earns 108 more comments, 1,447 more likes, 114 more followers, and 1,905 video views (where video is available) than the non-voting posts.

Key takeaway: Posting about civic engagement during one of the most contested political events doesn’t harm brand accounts. In fact, depending on context, it may help them. Thus, the long-standing belief that not engaging in non-relevant conversations may not hold true. Brand managers obviously need to decide what is and isn’t relevant to the brand, but know that performance-wise, it’s not out of the question to post about civic engagement.

If you’re working with an agency or software vendor, be sure they’re able to process the massive volumes of Instagram data available, and even more important, that they’re using modern algorithms and techniques to identify influencers properly.

Methodology: Trust Insights used Facebook’s Crowdtangle platform to identify 5,113 Instagram posts from 1,034 brand accounts using common voting hashtags such as #IWillVote and #EarlyVoting in their post descriptions. The dates of extraction are January 1, 2020 – October 27, 2020. The date of study is October 28, 2020. Trust Insights is the sole sponsor of the study and neither gave nor received compensation for data used, beyond applicable service fees to software vendors, and declares no competing interests.

In Case You Missed It
Partner Spotlight

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The Academy is designed for manager-level and above marketers, and largely caters to non-technical audiences, meaning you do not need a background in analytics, data science or programming to understand and apply what you learn. One registration gives you unlimited access to all the courses, an invitation to a members-only Slack Instance, and access to new courses every quarter.

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Shiny Objects

Shiny Objects is a roundup of the best content you and others have written and shared in the last week.

Data Science and AI

SEO, Google, and Paid Media

Social Media Marketing

Content Marketing

Get Back To Work

We’ve changed things up in Get Back To Work, and we’re looking at the top 310 metro areas in the United States by population. This will give you a much better sense of what the overall market looks like, and will cover companies hiring in multiple locations. Want the entire, raw list? Join our Slack group!

What do you do with this information?

By looking at this data, you’ll see what the most popular titles are; use any of the major job/career sites to ensure your resume/CV/LinkedIn profile matches keywords and phrases for those titles. For companies, search job sites for those companies specifically to see all the open positions and apply for them.

You can also hit up LinkedIn and see who you know at companies listed, and see if your connections have any inside tips on hiring.

Top Marketing Positions by Count, Manager and Above

  • Marketing Manager : 381 open positions
  • Digital Marketing Manager : 251 open positions
  • Social Media Manager : 189 open positions
  • Marketing Director : 107 open positions
  • Account Manager : 105 open positions
  • Director of Marketing : 96 open positions
  • Communications Manager : 74 open positions
  • Product Manager : 73 open positions
  • Project Manager : 71 open positions
  • Product Marketing Manager : 60 open positions

Top Marketing Hiring Companies by Count, Manager and Above

  • Google : 137 open positions
  • Pearson : 111 open positions
  • Services LLC : 87 open positions
  • Deloitte : 66 open positions
  • Thermo Fisher Scientific : 66 open positions
  • Amazon Web Services, Inc. : 37 open positions
  • JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. : 31 open positions
  • Microsoft : 31 open positions
  • Facebook : 30 open positions
  • VMware : 30 open positions

Top Locations of Hiring Companies by Count, Manager and Above

  • New York, NY : 531 open positions
  • Remote, NA : 280 open positions
  • Seattle, WA : 259 open positions
  • Austin, TX : 255 open positions
  • Atlanta, GA : 225 open positions
  • San Francisco, CA : 225 open positions
  • Chicago, IL : 219 open positions
  • Los Angeles, CA : 188 open positions
  • Denver, CO : 175 open positions
  • Philadelphia, PA : 167 open positions

Methodology: Trust Insights uses the API to extract open positions from a geographic area focused on marketing analytics, marketing, social media, data science, machine learning, advertising, and public relations, with a filter to screen out the most junior positions.

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Join the Club

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Upcoming Events

Where can you find us in person?

  • MarketingProfs, November 2020, virtual
  • Agorapulse Twitter Summit, November 2020, virtual
  • MadConNYC, December 2020, New York City

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Required FTC Disclosures

Events with links have purchased sponsorships in this newsletter and as a result, Trust Insights receives financial compensation for promoting them.

Trust Insights maintains business partnerships with companies including, but not limited to, IBM, Talkwalker, Zignal Labs, Agorapulse, and others. All Featured Partners are affiliate links for which we receive financial compensation. While links shared from partners are not explicit endorsements, nor do they directly financially benefit Trust Insights, a commercial relationship exists for which we may receive indirect financial benefit.


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