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Reach & Retarget for Google
Reach & Retarget for Google

Connect your Google Ad Account to Wistia. You’ll have the power to “retarget” audiences based on media engagement.

Caroline F avatar
Written by Caroline F
Updated over a week ago


Google officially deprecated Universal Analytics on July 1, 2023, and Wistia now only supports Google Analytics 4.

With the Google Analytics integration, we can send Wistia player events to your Google Analytics account. These can then be used to create audiences for Google Ads.

Connecting Google Analytics

In order to connect Google Analytics in your Wistia account, you’ll want to head to the Integrations page. This can be found by heading to Account > Integrations. Scroll down to the Reach & Retarget Integrations section of this page, and you’ll see the option to connect Google Analytics there.


You will need to be an Account Owner or Manager in order to access the Integrations page.

Google Analytics for Reach & Retarget

Once you select Connect, you’ll be prompted to log into Google and select your Google account that has access to your Google Analytics instance.


We suggest that you connect this integration with an account that has “Admin” and/or “Edit” access to the Google Analytics property you’d like to connect to Wistia.

Once connected to Google Analytics, you can select which Web Property you’d like to send Wistia events to.

Account ID


When creating a new web property in GA that you want to use with Wistia, select the option to Create a Universal Analytics property to ensure that the integration will connect.


In order to connect to a Google Analytics (GA) web property, Wistia needs to create and add two Custom Dimensions to it. However GA has a limit of 20 Custom Dimensions per web property. If there are already more than 18 Custom Dimensions defined on your web property, either active or inactive, the integration won’t connect. To check how many Custom Dimensions you have defined, open GA, click Admin, select the web property in question from the center column, and then select Custom Definitions > Custom Dimensions.

Linking your Google Ads account

When connecting your Google Analytics account, you’ll also have the option to enter your Google Ads account ID so that we can syndicate audiences to both Google Analytics and Google Ads. If you’d like to do this, you’ll need to link your Ads account in your Analytics instance before doing so.

  • Navigate to your Google Analytics dashboard and click Admin in the lower left corner

  • Make sure that you’ve selected the correct web property

  • Under the selected web property, click Google Ads Linking > Link to select the Ads account you’d like to link to the web property

Once you do this, you’ll be able add the Google Ads account ID when setting up your Google Analytics integration.

Sending Event Data to Google Analytics

Once the integration has been set up, we can start to send event data to the Google Analytics account that you’ve connected. The following events will be tracked:

  • Plays

  • % Played

  • Conversions (i.e. Turnstile submissions)

  • Clicked Links (i.e. CTAs or annotations)

  • Subscribed

  • Seconds played


The Conversion and Clicked Link events are only applicable to video plays. The Subscribed event is only applicable to Channels.

How We Send Data

Event data in Google analytics comes with three properties — Event Category, Event Action, and an Event Label. Actions are the events that occurred (ie. Played, % Played) and Labels are always the name of the media where the action occurred.

If a media is embedded by itself as a standalone video embed, its events will have a category of “Video." If it’s embedded as a standalone audio embed, the category will be “Audio.”

If the media being played is part of a channel embed, the category will be “Channel: [Name].” This will make it even easier for you to attribute and measure activity to specific channels embedded on your site, as well as differentiate where events are coming from … pretty cool right??

The Google Analytics Dashboard

So what does it all look like? The first step is to navigate to the Event Tracking section. Click the “Behavior” area of the left hand nav bar, and then select “Events” from the list. The Events section will show the total number of events, the average number of events per visit, and the Top Events. The easiest way to get to the specifics is by the “Top Events” view, pictured below.

GA dash

Depending on how many types of events you have in your installation, you may see a lot of things here. A standalone embed will use the “Video” or “Audio” type, and Channel embeds will have the “Channel” type - so let’s look into that category of events.

GA video Channel events

In here, you’ll see a list of the events available to you, which are the things that we push using the categories we covered earlier. There are some defaults included, but here’s where your custom events would also appear if you configured any. The default events are: played, 25% played, 50% played, 75% played, 95% played, and conversion.

GA play events

Let’s take a look at the data for the “play event” for this case. You’ll see here that this data comes in the form of media titles, which is a way to see in your analytics dash which of your medias got events for being played (the same is true for the other events). Below is an example of what that looks like.

Event Label

Using Wistia and Google Analytics is a good way to get all your top-level media analytics data in the same place you already get your other website tracking information.


The screenshots above may not be exactly like you see, since there are a few different versions of Google Analytics, Universal Analytics, etc.

Adding Audiences

To create audiences for your Google Ads, you’ll need to add a valid Google Ad account ID in the Integration.

Account Connect

If you connect the Google Analytics integration without updating the Account ID field, you will not be able to add our suggested audiences to your Google Ads account. However you’ll still be able to see player event data in Google Analytics.


When viewing a Channel, you can select which of the suggested audiences to add to your connected Google Ads account. To access the Promote page, select the “Promote” option on the left navigation menu.


If both Facebook and Google Ads are connected, just click the button once to have your audiences pushed to both platforms!

Where Audiences Go

Even though these audiences are “Ad” audiences, they reside in Google Analytics. This is also where you can go if you need to create your own audiences using Wistia data for ad targeting.

You can navigate to the “Admin” section of Google Analytics and select “Audience Definitions” to see your audiences.


Audiences that were created for a Channel will be shown here. You can also build new audiences and customize the rules to match any combination of Wistia events you’d like for ad targeting.

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