Archive for the ‘web analytics’ Category

What does Adobe acquiring Omniture mean?

September 15, 2009

Adobe agreed to acquire Omniture today for $1.8 billion. Some people say it makes sense, others still are wondering just what the hell happened. There are a couple reasons this makes sense on paper.

1. Adobe can now be a legitimate player in the data business against Google if they want to be. They own the creation, tracking and analyzing business. Google only holds the last two.

2. It can now possibly provide data to the creative types that never looked at SiteCatalyst or Google Analytics. No more arguing blue vs. orange or Buy vs Order.

3. Everything can now be tracked from flash, to pages, to mobile apps to social media. Media monitoring companies like Nielsen and comScore should take note.

That all sounds well and dandy, but traditionally acquisitions don’t go as planned. Corporate politics, culture and core business models interfere. This is definitely an interesting move in the digital marketing world and will be fun to watch what Adobe does in the next couple years. I think we are only at the tip of the iceberg for tracking and optimization.


Google AdPlanner revealed

June 24, 2008

Google revealed AdPlanner which they hope will sway more agency folk to the dark side and using their planning tools, which in return, brings Google even more data. It will be interesting to see if this is the in-road to offline media that Google has so desperately searched for. If they can bring the offline planning side along the online planning and provide analytics on the back-end, it would be hard pressed to say anything else would be better for close to 80% of companies. Obviously there will be some out there that will use other planning adn reporting tools, but if Google’s AdPlanner can directly tie into Analytics, that would be a sweet package.

Now agencies must be careful, as Google is looking more and more like the the agency killer as it makes the basics easier and easier for clients to do themselves. This will be an interesting move in the future of agency/client relationships and where “value” resides.

Google to host Ajax libraries

May 28, 2008

Google announced today that they will allow sites to download five common Ajax libraries (Dojo, Prototype, Scriptaculous, Mootools, and jQuery). Privacy is obviously an issue here as Google could track visitors across non-Google sites. This will help with speed if several sites adopt the usage of the library, but only time will tell if webmasters adopt.

The real question if Google is using this as a means to get more visitor data that they can use to make more money on ad revenue. My vote is yes! They are offering the service for “convenience” but it’s really a way to collect data on more sites outside the Google network.

Eric Schmidt says online more analytical??

April 30, 2008

No kidding…. The Google CEO made this comment at the recent American Association of Advertising Agencies Leadership Conference in Laguna Niguel. This is a no brainer comment coming from the leader of the market leader in online marketing.Just consider how much more data is available through online marketing than traditional print, tv and radio. All this data allows technology firms to be close to the hip to agencies and media companies to provide analysis and reporting.

He predicted firms will look to hire new skill sets to maximize the ever growing potential of online marketing and the vast amounts of data that can be collected depending on the client and goal of the campaign. I see this as nothing new, as Curt Hecht made it clear at teh recent ad:tech keynote speach that Starcom has already made the transition to new skill sets and has Ph.D’s in their office providing analysis and recommendations for their clients. The money is in the data! No longer can agencies just say they provide creative solutions. They need to understand the data and be able to find interesting tidbits to make actionable suggestions. Clients continue to ask harder and harder questions that agencies must be able to answer.

So even though Eric said it, its nothing new. If this is news to agencies, they are in trouble!

Google pursuing TV advertising

March 28, 2008

Google is not happy with owning search, entering the print and radio market and owning the free analytics market. They are now pursuing the TV advertising market as well. If the beta continues to go well, it will likely only be a matter of time until advertisers will be able to buy a national TV buy through a Google managed interface. This will allow stations that struggle to sell remnant run-of-the-mill inventory through a “virtual” sales force called Google.

I am sure that some media sales reps are going to have a hard time with this if I can avoid them completely and buy media through the same interface I look at so often through the day. Actually, it will be kind of nice to avoid some of the reps. Google will also have producers available to create spots for the buy. It will be interesting to see how Google tries to make TV buys through them trackable like the 2-D barcode on their print campaigns. If they can figure it out, I am all for one central reporting repository of data. The likes of Omniture might need to get in high gear with offline advertising, rather than continuing to work with their Genesis partners. After all, Google Analytics is free and if it can track offline as well as online- big kudos!

One step at a time, Google is slowly achieving their goal of becoming the ad agency operating system and not only owning the $20 billion online marketing world, but the $500 billion advertising world.

e-commerce- the relationship-less sale

February 15, 2008

I wonder if e-commerce sites will try and create a better relationship with customers like myself, rather than try and sell things that other people bought when they bought the same item I did. I understand math and statistics and database modelling and how in an ideal world it all makes sense, but from a customer view, I want a trusted relationship with a site. If I trust a site and felt that they understood my needs and situation like a brick and mortar sales clerk, I would be inclined to purchase more.

My example was when I went to a Banana Republic recently. I had a good conversation with their employee about what I was looking for and why. She helped me find some items, but then let me know that they were getting the new spring line in a couple of days and theme matched what I was looking for. I am not suggesting sites become the obnoxious sales force like some retail stores have and ask “Can I help you?” every two minutes, but I believe they could possibly build a relationship better. Hell, their emails seem to act like there is a relationship, just don’t relax when I get to the site. This is the kind of relationship that I would love to see from e-commerce platforms. Suggest some items I might be interested in, and allow me to enter what I am looking for and give me suggestions and then keep that established “e-relationship” alive throughout the visit. Retail salesman can read cues from shoppers about their shopping habits, the person who tries on everything, the person who buys all and returns 90%, and the shy guy who walks in and looks around and doesn’t do much and buys a few items without help. Now in an online world, web analytics can help us tell some of these cues. The person who clicks on a bunch of items and then clicks back, the one who views every single image of the product, length on site, returning customer, etc. etc. E-commerce sites now just need to be more progressive with the data and think in terms of relationship selling.

Some platforms are more progressive than others like iTunes and Amazon, but most are a little behind the times. In order to decrease abandonment rate and increase the industry average conversion rate of around 3%, I suggest e-commerce sites look into the psychology of a purchase, rather than strictly rely on what people “like me” bought.

Hyundai sees biggest % lift from Super Bowl ad

February 8, 2008

Hyundai, the company that was in and then out and then finally in the Super Bowl saw the largest percentage increase in traffic to their site with the Hyundai Genesis ads. Hitwise reported that they saw a 1450% increase in traffic. To be honest, I am not surprised since I had no clue what the car was going to be called, therefore, I could not predict was the corresponding site. I was a little surprised to see that did not see a large spike in traffic % wise as well.

Anyways, whether I knew the car name or not, its good to see success from mainstream media driving people to the web whether there is a strong call to action or not. I do not remember the end tags of the commercial, and barely remember the ad other than it compared to size of BMW 7 series, but it appears that it spiked interest and drove people to the site. One must note that the chart below is based on percentage and not actual visitors, I would be willing to bet a large sum of money would come out on top of that list hands down.

The Hitwise report numbers are below, some interesting numbers are present.

Super Bowl Advertiser
Websites Ranked By Percent Change Based on
Daily Market Share of U.S. Visits
Advertiser Domain

Sunday % Change

Monday % Change
















Office of National Drug Control Policy



New Line Cinema






Under Armour



Bud Light
































Victoria’s Secret












Taco Bell












20th Century Fox






Vitamin Water






Note – the data is based on the daily market share of U.S. visits among all US Internet users from the Hitwise sample of 10 million U.S. Internet users. The Sunday percent change is based on comparing the daily market share of U.S. visits for Feb. 3, 2008 vs. Feb. 2, 2008. The Monday percent change is based on comparing the daily market share of U.S. visits for Feb. 4, 2008 vs. Feb. 3, 2008.
Source: Hitwise

Go Daddy gets Super Bowl ad right!

February 5, 2008

Not only did Go Daddy do their Super Bowl ad well, I said it was a good use of offline mainstream media to drive people to the web on my post Thursday the 31st. The banned “exposed” ad that played on the word beaver, was a a web exclusive ad and they used the approved Super Bowl ad to highlight they had exclusive content on their site. The “banned ad” strategy paid off for Go Daddy. Ad Age reports that they saw 2 million hits on the site during the Super Bowl. I can only imagine how many more yesterday morning as people strolled into work talking about various ads. CEO Parsons said in his blog that traffic 3.5x normal since the ad.

I saw the “beaver” ad and was a little surprised they even tried to get that ad approved, but hey, sex sells. Anyways, I think Go Daddy did a great job of using their $2 million dollar ad to drive people to the web. The numbers this year have blown away the numbers from the previous three years of Super Bowl ads. Parsons says this year has been a smash, amazing results with a fraction of the cost. Last year they had three spots and only drove 500,000 visitors.

This should be a wake up call to advertisers who say driving to the web is not a priority. Many say Super Bowl ads are only for branding, but I would argue there are only a select few brands that can place ads on the Super Bowl only for branding. Brands need to be more strategic with their media spends and make sure they now include an online component. Even my favorite ad, the Tide-to-Go talkingstain ad drove people to

Marketers & small confidence in multi-channel tracking

January 25, 2008

A recent interactive report from Sapient shows that marketers have concerns about multi-channel tracking and most of it is around social networking. I know the article was geared towards interactive, but I want full multi-channel tracking ability to include offline and online. Companies such as Omniture and Web Trends have done amazing things with online trackability, but as a CMO, I would be demanding that I know what offline advertising is doing to increase bottom-line and how it effects online.

Direct response marketers that use TV, print and online need to push harder on the analytics companies to make them begin to look at the big picture. As the word interact was originally used, I see TV and print as an interactive medium when pushing to the web. If a company wants to run a Super Bowl ad, they should be able to track success from several measures. They should use vanity url’s to try and capture the success, but they should also look at search volume, and traffic to a corporate site as well.  I am sure we are all guilty of forgetting a vanity url and using the corporate or submitting a query to Google.

I am glad to see people have concerns on multi-channel marketing as this will drive to better reporting, I just don’t want them to sell themselves short and not demand “true” multi-channel trackability.