We live in a not real tech-savy town here, people have cellphones but don't appear to use social media much. In order to advertise we decided to put up flyers with pull tabs containing contact information, each of which include a phone number, and a web address for the position.

In order to track analytics of where people are finding the ads we've included a long Google Analytics URL with source information and deployed them to physical locations with ad and source location information included. This long URL has been shortened into a bit.ly link, which is included in the tab. Each location gets a unique long URL (and each ad instance as well...if two ads are the same in the same location they would have the same URL, if two ads are different in the same location they would still each have a unique urls).

A bit.ly link with same the QR code has also been included on the ads; so a person with interest in the ad has a choice, they can call, type the URL in their phone or home browser, or use the QR code to bring up the ad directly.

However, I've recently shown one of the paper ads we created to a designer who thought that the bit.ly URL would be too technical for people to type.

The ads are generated in batch, and thus so are the URLs using bit.ly's api.

If we put a direct link url to the page on the paper ads, we'll end up sacrificing the GA location information, and have little information on our ROI for placing ads; but if the bit.ly ads urls are indeed too technical then people won't be likely to click them.

Is there another way to make this work? I thought about bit.ly custom URLs, but it isn't guaranteed the generated URLs will be usable.

up vote 1 down vote accepted

The bit.ly url is a good idea, from a designers perspective it is ugly. I dont think it is confusing at all. Coca-cola has codes on the bottom of their caps that people use all the time. Mc Donald's use codes in their Monopoly games.

If you want to make it more designer friendly use a CNAME redirect that would accept a mysite.com/bit.lycode and/or a code box prompt mysite.com prompt Enter your code [] window.location redirect.

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