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Analytics - MarketingRev - Tech News for Marketers

Archive for the 'Analytics' Category

October 28th

Nuconomy: Site Analytics for the Social Web?


Measuring the Social Web has long been a royal pain, what with Flash, AJAX, RSS feeds, and other slivers of content mashed and remixed into a trail that even Sherlock Holmes might have trouble parsing. NuConomy, an ambitious Site Analytics startup launched in 2006, aims to restore some analytical rigor to the Social Web. TechCrunch and others have blogged it already but it merits a look.  The company opened up for public use today a suite of free analytics tools. If they can deliver on what they promise, then Nuconomy could set a new standard in Web analytics and offer a killer challenge for Google Analytics, not to mention Omniture and others. Here’s a rundown of what it promises, which is a lot. (P.S. – typo on the F.A.Q.. page, marketing team)

-proactive analytics automates the tedious chores of slicing and dicing data and building customized reports.
-promises an “intelligent” data mining engine to continually monitor every aspect of site traffic and user behaviors and automatically highlight the most important things to make businesses better. (data can be retrieved onsite or via email/RSS feed)
-promises to catch formerly elusive but critical data like changes in commenting trends for a particular segment of viewers, etc
-says that companies without dedicated site analyst geeks can now fire its analyst geeks and be unfraid (sorry, analysts)
-claims its metrics measure the social elements of digital media, including Flash, AJAX, and Silverlight applications, along with page views, uniques, and other traditional analytics
-combines and packages multiple flavors of insights into real world behavior on the web (comments, ratings, video plays, sharing links, purchases)
-allows “publishers, advertisers, and business executives to finally see the people behind the numbers (???) and measure the engagement, or lack thereof, in order to cultivate relationships and brand interactions, optimize social media programs, and better monetize ads and e-commerce offerings.” A mouthful but it means mo’ money.
-Builds rich behavioral profiles, or interest maps, for each user by tracking site-level activity for individuals (would be interested in hearing more about how they plan to do this)– such as who is posting comments on bikes or sharing music recommendations with friends.
-This level of detail gives publishers a deeper understanding of user behavior so they can optimize their sites and marketing messages for different audience segments, even different individuals (I find this hard to believe – I regularly move between four computers – how would it work?)
-“features a two-way API that dynamically changes sites based on current metrics and insights, including the ability to show ads or push specific content relevant to a user’s interests.”
-easy to use with plug-ins for tracking users and traffic in WordPress, Movable Type, Community Server, and dasBlog
-partners include Technorati, Microsoft, Six Apart, Pioneer, Kaltura, and Federated Media. (heckuva partner list).
-register for free.

Video analytics and actions spurred by ineractions with widgets are other things NuConomy is offering. It’s a whole lotta package for free. If anyone out there is using it and already has an opinion, feel free to post.

Category: Analytics, Optimization, Personalization, Syndication, social media | 3 Comments »

January 24th

WHIM: Baynote’s Jack Jia

Christopher Kenton

In this week’s What’s Happening In Marketing, Baynote’s Jack Jia discusses the concepts behind his company’s Product Recommendation software, which analyzes customer shopping behavior online to make dynamic and accurate recommendations to other customers. As Jia notes in his interview, Baynote doesn’t rely on what consumers say they like, but on what they actually shop for and buy online. Find out why Baynote thinks this approach to applied analytics is so important.

As always, these videos are unpaid content, produced by MarketingRev and our friends at Miner Productions. I found Baynote at the Web 2.0 conference last year–not in some flashy booth, but in a vendor mosh pit of small demo tables. Their value proposition was so intriguing, I sought Jack out for an interview. But don’t take my word for it, judge for yourself.

Category: Analytics, WHIM | 1 Comment »

January 17th

WHIM 2: Offermatica’s Matt Roche

Christopher Kenton

It’s already week two with What’s Happening In Marketing, and this week we’re visiting Matt Roche, CEO of Offermatica. Offermatica is one of the world’s leading optimization companies, offering technologies that help businesses dynamically test and deliver content that resonates most with customers online. As you’ll hear from Matt there are different types of optimization strategies, from multi-variate testing to behavioral targeting and beyond,  but the goal is always the same–to listen to your customers and deliver content that’s most relevant to their interests.

This is a critical area of technology that marketers must understand, and Matt is as incisive and insightful in explaining the technology as any expert in the field. Offermatica also has a great set of resources on its site to explain optimization in more detail.

Once again, hats off to Miner Productions for a great job on video.

Category: Analytics, Optimization | 3 Comments »

July 10th

Unica Snaps Up MarketingCentral

Christopher Kenton

Unica has just announced the planned acquisition of MarketingCentral, a Marketing Resource Management (MRM) tool that has been popular for it’s on-demand ease-of-use. MRM allows marketers to easily manage and share digital assets used in campaigns, such as images, logos, documents and other working files. MRM typically includes file sharing, work flow and review, and asset management functionality, and is an essential tool for agencies and marketing organizations.

Unica already has an MRM solution, called Affinium Plan as part of its Affinium Enterprise Marketing Management (EMM) suite. But Affinium Plan was built as an enterprise-class solution, targetting complex marketing organizations. MarketingCentral was built as a much simpler on-demand solution for agencies and small businesses to get up and running with MRM quickly. The acquisition will broaden Unica’s appeal to agencies and small businesses, providing an entry-point into EMM with significant scalability.

For MarketingCentral customers, which currently include New Balance, Philips Medical and Saatchi & Saatchi, the acquisition will mean access to a more sophisticated suite of marketing management tools. As agencies continue to expand their technology capabilities, this will become an important opportunity to grow marketing management services.

Unica acquired MarketingCentral for “$12.5 in cash and transaction-related costs”, meaning the actual valuation of MarketingCentral was somewhere south of $12.5 million.

Category: Analytics, Enterprise Marketing Management, Marketing Resource Management | 5 Comments »

May 10th

Unica Announces Cross-Channel Analytics with Insight

Christopher Kenton

I spent a day at Unica’s Marketing Innovation Summit in Las Vegas, where they announced a new addition to their Affinium suite of Enterprise Marketing Management applications. Affinium Insightâ„¢ is a cross-channel analytics application that allows marketers to create visualizations of selected sets of marketing data drawn from different sources. For example, retailers who market both online and brick-and-mortar stores might use Affinium Insight to aggregate campaign and sales data to analyze the relationship between online and offline shopping behavior. The idea is to provide a single view of the customer across all channels of engagement, rather than the current siloed views of customer behavior and campaign response confined to different marketing channels or different marketing roles.

As an upfront disclosure, I spent two months earlier this year as an unpaid guest blogger for Unica’s Marketing Consortium blog, focusing on trends in social media. I don’t have a business relationship with Unica, past or present, but I share some affinities with their marketing team based on similar interests in marketing and technology. They’re a smart group, and very savvy about business and marketing. They invited me to the sold-out show in Vegas, along with about 600 other marketers, analysts and customers. The conference was a mix of seminars, training sessions and case studies, with of course a strong emphasis on Unica’s broad suite of enterprise marketing tools.

Affinium Insight is an important addition to Unica’s current suite of campaign planning, management, automation and analytics solutions. Although the applications all function as standlone solutions, the Affinium suite as an integrated whole is envisioned as a “marketing system of record”, which unifies not only the view of the customer, but the operations of many disparate marketing roles, including executives, analysts, creatives and managers. Affinium Insight perhaps represents the most potent single point of integration, with its focus on drawing many streams of data into a single analytical view.

During a demo of Insight, a number of scenarios were presented that offer a compelling value proposition for cross-channel analytics, and for Insight’s visualization capabilities as well. The most interesting scenario imagined a retailer–say BestBuy–analyzing the shopping behavior of customers in the vicinity of a local brick-and-mortar store. By pulling in demographic, campaign and sales data, a marketer can easily explore the complex relationships between different types of marketing campaigns and their impact on shopping behavior. Which demographic groups shop online vs. in store? What’s the impact of an online campaign on local in-store sales? How far out from the local store do those patterns start to shift?

The implications for marketing operations are significant, and in some ways I felt like I was getting a glimpse into the future of marketing, at least from a tactical standpoint. The ability to overlay many complex layers of data in order to generate simple but holistic views of customer behavior and campaign effectiveness is tremendously powerful. When those insights begin to impact market development, I can’t imagine that it won’t offer a competitive advantage to early adopters.

The interface for Affinium Insight is the same as the rest of the Affinium suite, and the application integrates seamlessly with the other Affinium applications, allowing direct analysis of data, for example, from Affinium Campaign, Unica’s enterprise campaign automation solution. Data can be imported from other applications as well, including SQL. It’s a Web-based application that seems easy to navigate, with drag-and-drop convenience for creating data sets. However, the complexity of building effective and insightful datasets would take some training and practice, suggesting the potential perhaps for some out-of-the-box templates to help marketers get started. I imagine user groups and professional services partnerships can’t be far behind.  

Category: Analytics, Enterprise Marketing Management | 7 Comments »

April 30th

Baynote Announces Community Driven eCommerce Solution

Christopher Kenton

Baynote caught my eye at the Web2.0 conference in San Francisco a couple of weeks ago. They weren’t in a typical exhibit booth with screaming graphics and clever tchotchkies. They were at a small stand-up table in a mosh-pit of other companies doing speed pitches to the constant stream of attendees walking through. But they stood out because they do something different and highly compelling. They continuously analyze traffic patterns on a Web site’s pages in order to dynamically optimize search engine results, navigation and content. In essence, they leverage the actual behavior of the crowd to dynamically shape what gets served up to subsequent visitors, rather than relying on the experts or editors to manually determine content. They’ve been proving their value on sites ranging from Interwoven’s enterprise knowledge base to Intuit’s mission critical TurboTax web application.

Today Baynote is announcing a new addition to their product line, a solution they’re calling Community-Guided eCommerce, which leverages their analytics-to-optimization capabilities to serve up product and content recommendations. Like their other hosted solutions, the new application works behind the scenes to analyze about 20 heuristics that provide a clear picture of user behavior and decision-making–not only what links buyers click on, but more hidden behaviors like where the mouse tracks on a page. The stream of analytics among hundreds or thousands of users allows Baynote to determine, for example,

  • what keywords a user entered to find a particular product
  • what competing products they considered before deciding on a purchase
  • what attributes or options they considered
  • what accessories or add-ons they considered 

Baynote’s Community-Guided eCommerce then uses this data to dynamically generate landing pages that leverage proven search engine keywords, and to provide product recommendations and affinity product links to new users coming into the site. If you’re shopping, for example, for a camera, you might be served up a page that shows that among 2500 people who shopped for the same camera, these were the competing cameras considered, this is the camera most purchased, and these are the accessories most considered or purchased along with their camera. And again, it’s all happening dynamically.

I spoke with Jack Jia, founder and CEO of Baynote, for an hour last week about Baynote’s technology and market outlook. His vision is to change the way content is served up on the Web to more effectively guide users to content they want. User-generated recommendations, popularized by sites like Amazon, represented a great step forward, but they’ve also revealed a lot of challenges. When recommendations are offered voluntarily by users, you don’t really know the motivations behind a recommendation, much less if the recommendation is representative of most users. In most cases, only 1% of a site’s users post any content, and what drives them to post may range from true enthusiasm to a vested but concealed interest in the reviewed product. Jia is more interested in what he calls “the wisdom of the silent majority”–insights gained from what users actions rather than their words.

Baynote’s new Community-Guided eCommerce solution leverages this wisdom of the silent majority to offer a number of useful features and insights to eCommerce sites, which Jia says has increased revenue on customer sites up to 20%. Those features include:

  • Peer-driven Recommendations, which automatically detect shopper segments and serve up product recommendations based on peer group purchasing behavior
  • Seasonality and Fad Detection, which shows shifts in consumer interest and automatically adjusts product recommendations,
  • Product Gap Detection, which identifies products that shoppers are looking for but are not currently offered, 
  • Dynamic Landing Page Optimization, which displays visitor-specific product recommendations based on incoming search-engine traffic
  • Implicit Folksonomy, which utilizes searching, browsing, and purchase behavior to automatically tag all products on the site to increase traffic
  • Built-in A/B Measurement,  which automatically performs visitor split testing 

As a hosted application, Community-Guided eCommerce can be added to any eCommerce site, and it’s being priced on both a subscription and gain-sharing model. Baynote just received nearly $11M in Series B funding from Disney this month, and they’re lining up Class A customers like Motorola, Intuit and Fannie Mae. Based on their technology, vision, backing, and the impact of their products on revenue, I’d expect them to be a worthwhile investment and not a flash in the pan. I do think they may need to come up with a snappier name for the product, though. Community-Guided eCommerce is descriptive, but doesn’t exactly roll off the keyboard. :)

Category: Analytics, consumer content | 7 Comments »

April 3rd

Technical Problems Rock WebSideStory

Christopher Kenton

WebSideStory, one of the Web’s leading site analytics providers, has been hammered over the past two days by technical problems that have shut down both the public corporate site and the hosted application servers. Customers trying to access the popular HitBox analytics service  have found the servers down, including all reports as well as online customer support. Apparently calls into the telephone support line haven’t fared any better.

As of Tuesday evening, the application server is nominally back online, but the navigation and login appear corrupted. A notice on the site states that problems have persisted for more than 18 hours, and two days worth of reports will not be delivered. It’s unclear whether that means “never” or just not immediately. If that sounds trivial, consider the case of a friend who first reported the problem to me. They just launched the first major product release for their company and gained press attention in some of the leading media channels. A big day for marketing. When they go to measure the impact of their campaign, sorry, site is down and we can’t tell you if you’ll ever get your data. Not good.

 I’ve got a call in to WebsideStory to see if there are any more details available.  

System issues 2007 Apr 2-
2007 Apr 3 Tue 1435 PDT - Since Apr 2 Mon ~0700 PDT we are experiencing system issues. All presentation interfaces were slow and occasionally unavailable until ~1245 PDT today. The corporate web site and support portal were slow and occasionally unavailable until ~1400 PDT today. Most scheduled reports were not delivered yesterday and none will be delivered today. There are several remaining issues: Report scheduling services are not available. Session (global and active segment) data processing is currently 30 hours behind, so scheduled reports may not be delivered tomorrow. We deeply apologize for this disruption. WebSideStory takes uptime very seriously, and we are in the process of further upgrading our core systems to reduce the chance of any such occurrence in the future. We are carefully monitoring all systems and will update this advisory when further status is available.

Category: Analytics | 4 Comments »

March 20th

Alexaholic Changes Name To Statsaholic

Christopher Kenton

To end a trademark infringement case brought on by Amazon’s Alexa, best known by marketers as a web traffic rankings site, Alexaholic has changed it’s name to Statsaholic, but continues to provide a direct interface onto Alexa data.

Alexa has long provided one of the most popular traffic ranking databases, aggregating behavioral data from millions of users who have downloaded its browser toolbar. Alexa serves up statistics on site traffic, Internet reach, and visitor demographics, ranking the top 100,000 sites on the Web. Other Web site traffic ranking sites include Quantcast and, while Technorati provides traffic stats and rankings for blogs.

Statsaholic offers a simplified Ajax interface on Alexa data, offering comparative graphing for up to 5 domains, with slick controls for shaping the data to compare site reach, rank and page views according to an array of date ranges. It’s a useful tool for marketers who want to measure traffic statistics, alone and against competitors. Statsaholic founder Ron Hornbaker, commenting on TechCrunch about the name change, mentioned that additional sources of data, such as, are the focus of future improvements to the service.

Meanwhile, many experts in the traffic and search space continue to debate the accuracy and reliability of traffic ranking services, and the methods in which the data is gathered. So don’t spout your Alexa numbers in mixed company. Andrew Goodman from has a good roundup on the issue, and SEOmoz has an exhaustive, if narrowly focused, study and analysis of Website Analytics vs. Competitive Intelligence Metrics in measuring visitor traffic.

Category: Analytics | 3 Comments »

February 22nd

Unica’s Affinium NetInsight Making Big Gains

Christopher Kenton

Following the acquisition of web analytics firm Sane Solutions last year, [tag]Unica[/tag] launched Affinium NetInsight, an enterprise web analytics solution to round out its line up of enterprise marketing management solutions. In the seven months since NetInsight was added to the Affinium suite, it’s been gaining a lot of momentum as a turnkey web analytics solution with a reputation for ease of use and powerful reporting.

Last week, NetInsight was selected by Reed Business Information, one of the largest publishers of industry journals in the U.S., which followed directly on the heels of NetInsight’s ranking among top analytics vendors by JupiterResearch.

Among the strengths cited by Jupiter, NetInsight offers an open and flexible analytics solution, that dovetails with the rest of the Affinium suite to offer “a complete enterprise marketing management solution,” that helps companies manage brand, relationship and internet marketing, including campaign planning and budgeting, prject management, execution and measurement. As a complete suite Affinium includes cross-channel lead and campaign management, marketing resource management, and web and customer analytics.

There’s a lot of competition in the analytics space, but ease of use and integration with a complete EMM solution are paying off for Unica. Affinium can be purchased as point solutions or as a suite, and can be managed onsite or as a hosted service.

[Disclosure:] I have been writing as an unpaid guest blogger for Unica’s Marketing Consortium blog on the topic of Social Media.

Category: Analytics | 1 Comment »

February 8th

HardMetrics Announces Marketing Performance Manager

Christopher Kenton

Leveraging its experience in business process analytics, [tag]HardMetrics[/tag] has announced the release of Marketing Performance Manager (MPM), a  marketing analytics application designed to be managed by marketing end-users without dependence on IT. MPM’s “self-service” application promises to help marketers execute closed-loop marketing programs by rapidly correlating campaign performance with sales and financial data. MPM’s outcome analysis would help marketers analyse and refine campaign performance and demonstrate marketing’s contribution to company revenue and profitabiliy.

Amid a growing field of marketing dashboards and analytics tools, HardMetrics’ value proposition is “eliminating at least 80% of the time, effort and cost involved in closed-loop marketing.” This is acheived through HardMetrics’ “codeless implementation” which allows marketers themselves to input data sources, define dashboards, scorecards and reports, and drill down into data analysis. HardMetrics approaches integration across departments and data sources by eliminating many of the complex steps required to migrate and transform data, and processing data as close to the source as possible, which eases integration and maintains data quality.

HardMetrics MPM offers marketing dashboards, scorecards, reports and alerts drawn from any marketing campaign management platform, or other data source, including the ubiquitous Excel spreadsheet. The application will capture response rates, open rates, lead scoring, event attendance, click-through rates, conversion, as well as any user-defined metrics. It also enables an automatic roll-up of individual campaign metrics into broader Key Performance Indicators.

The software is offered as both an installed application and a hosted service.

Category: Analytics | 2 Comments »