A lot of people seem to be using various free URL shortening methods to ensure their web pages fit into the character limits of various social media sites such as twitter. Eg if you have a web page URL address that is huge – this limits the space left for you to create a powerful piece of copy to help readers continue on to your link. Also if you’re printing leaflets or transferring your URL address onto paper format it’s quite difficult for the reader to transpose a long URL address without making errors. Why not make it easy for them and shorten your URL For example http://bit.ly/ is an easy way – paste your long URL into this site and it gives you a free short code.
However there is also another great function on the http://bit.ly/ site and this is when you sign up for a free account. It allows you to track the clicks on to your URLs. If you had a number of different publicity materials going out (email newsletter, email footer, printed leaflet, on the back of staff Tshirts) why not give them all a different bit.ly address and then at the end of your campaign you can see which of the different marketing comms. channels have been most successful. In the old days this used to be done by a team of marketing assistants, newspapers, clipboards and guesswork – now it can be done almost instantainiously – and all free of charge. Thank you Mr Bit.ly and others.