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Google Analytics Funnel Visualization report

November 20, 2009 · Leave a Comment

via: ROI Revolution

Funnels on the Fly in Google Analytics

So there you are – you’re all ready to put more oil in your car, or maybe you’re trying to fill your sugar jar. Maybe you’re all set to do some ironing, but you need to put some water in the iron. Whatever the reason, it immediately hits you that you’ll be needing a funnel – but… OH SNAP!

You don’t have one. Or you can’t find it. What do you do? You improvise of course!

Quickly and with a MacGyver-like moment of inspiration, you grab a 2-liter bottle from your recycling bin and cut the top off. Phew – that was a close one! Now you won’t have oil on your driveway, or water all over your bedroom carpet, and you can go about your day feeling like a secret genius.

Now, a funnel would have still been the best tool for the job, but sometimes it’s just not available. What the heck does this have to do with Google Analytics?

Well, Google Analytics has a great built-in Funnel Visualization report, but the problem is that it only works if you have the foresight to build it ahead of time. Funnels are never retroactive – they will only start working the moment you create them. What if you have multiple landing pages? Moreover, what if you only want to look at AdWords traffic? Well, you would need a separate profile in addition to a properly set up funnel, and all of this has to be set up ahead of time.

The problem is that often you won’t know what kind of funnel you need until it’s too late. Having 20 goals in Google Analytics is great, but you could have a million and it wouldn’t make a difference.

The good news is there’s hope. That hope is called Advanced Segments. Here’s how you do it:

Step 1: Define the funnel.

This part is pretty straightforward. Lay out the path you are trying to get information on, along with any other parameters (AdWords only, US only, etc.), like this:

Step1: /consumer/special/index.html (Landing Page)
Step 2: /order.html
Step 3: /cart.asp
Step 4: /checkout.asp
Step 5: /bonus.asp
Step 6: /order-receipt.asp

Step 2: Create a new Advanced Segment.

First, make sure you change the calendar so that you’re looking at the date range you want to analyze. Then click on the ‘Advanced Segment’ link in the left navigation:

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Google Ad Planner Analytics

November 13, 2009 · Leave a Comment

Smart Digital Spending

via: Marketing Pilgrim

It’s been two and a half years since Google acquired digital marketplace DoubleClick for $3.1B. Over that time, they’ve gotten approval for the deal, made it official and merged their technologies more and more closely. This week they’re announcing another step to that integration—new analytics for its ad manager and better integration with its Ad Planner.

Right now, advertisers must plan their campaigns in one tool and execute them in another, according to Ari Paparo, group product manager at Google. The new tools would integrate the ad platform better to bring planning, execution and measurement to one place.

The new analytics will be very similar to Google Analytics in layout and function:

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Paparo says the new product will streamline reporting on display ad campaigns:

Think of it as something you do when drinking your morning coffee and reading the news. You come in and try to find out what happened yesterday. What performed and what didn’t perform, and where did it perform. It should be intuitive, fast and easy to use.

Once these changes are implemented, Google could build on its progress. For example, Ad Planner could add predictive algorithms to help advertisers find new audiences tailored to their offerings, with traffic estimates, demographic data and more.

What do you think? Will this help display advertisers using Google? What’s in the future for Ad Planner?

 

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7 things to do when using Google Analytics

November 11, 2009 · Leave a Comment

Smart Digital Spending

via ROI Revolution

Everyone’s new at some point right? Well if you’re just starting out with Google Analytics, here are a few things you can watch out for to stay ahead of the game.
1. Missing Page Tags
Probably one of the most common mistakes that can cause problems in your Google Analytics data is missing page tags. Yes, the Google Analytics code needs to be on all pages of the site. It doesn’t matter that someone in sales told you that “all we need are metrics from one or two pages.” You’re setting up Google Analytics already, so you might as well do it right and get accurate data. If any of your sites pages are missing the Google Analytics Tracking Code, you’ll start seeing self referrals (where the real source information is overwritten with your site information) and a variety of other issues will occur as well. Comb through the site a few times and make sure you aren’t skipping any pages and that every page will register with Google Analytics.

2. Mixing urchin.js and ga.js code

For those of you inheriting Google Analytics projects, you may be faced with the task of maintaining or updating a site that was previously tracked using the urchin.js version of the tracking code. Although Google states it is possible to use both the urchin and ga versions of the code as long as they aren’t on the same page, my suggestion is to update the entire site to the new ga.js version of the tracking code. Mixing the two can cause some complications that are better left avoided. Save yourself some future headaches and update everything at once. Plus you’ll get some cool new features with ga.js anyway, so why wouldn’t you want to upgrade?

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3. Not setting up ecommerce correctly
I’ve had numerous people come to me asking why they aren’t seeing any ecommerce or revenue information within the Google Analytics reports. Aside from enabling ecommerce reporting in the Profile Settings, there is actually a separate script you’ll need to setup on your site in order to get ecommerce working. Just grab the code and have your developers work their magic to get the dynamic transaction level variables passed into the ecommerce code for Google Analytics. Can’t get all those fields? Read more about which variables are required and how to set up ecommerce.

Recommended book for all Web Analytics Professionals – Web Analytics An Hour a Day.

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Google Marketing Mix Modeling

November 11, 2009 · Leave a Comment

via: MediaPost

The ‘Big Challenge’ According To Eric Schmidt — And Other Predictions

Google backed away from managing radio and print advertising networks due to lack of “closed loop feedback.”  In other words, the company couldn’t tell an advertiser IF the consumer actually saw the ad or if they acted afterwards. Efforts to embed unique commercial identifiers into radio ads exist, but are still immature. And in print, it’s still not possible to tell who (specifically) is seeing which ads — at least not until someone places sensors between every two pages of my morning newspaper.

Despite this limitation, Schmidt feels that Google will soon crack the code of massive multivariate modeling of both online and offline marketing mix influences by incorporating “management judgment” into the models where data is lacking. This will enable advertisers to parse out the relative contribution of every element of the marketing mix to optimize both the spend level and allocation – even taking into account countless competitive and macro-environmental variables.

That “everything is measurable” and, according to Schmidt, Google has mathematicians who can solve even the most thorny marketing measurement challenges.

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That the winning marketers will be those who can rapidly iterate and learn quickly to reallocate resources and attention to what is working at a hyper-local level, taking both personalization and geographic location into account.

On all these fronts, I agree with him (I’ve actually said these very things in this column over the past few years).

So when I caught up with Schmidt in the hallway after his speech, I asked two questions:

1.     How credible are these uber-models likely to be if they fail to account for “non-marketing” variables like operational changes affecting customer experience, and/or the impact of ex-category activities on customers within a category (e.g. how purchase activity in one category may affect purchase interest in another)?

2.     At what point do these models become so complex that they exceed the ability of most humans to understand them, leading to skepticism and doubt fueled by a deep psychological need for self-preservation?

His answers:

1.     “If you can track it, we can incorporate at into the model and determine its relative importance under a variety of circumstances. If you can’t, we can proxy for it with managerial judgment.”

2.     “That is the big challenge, isn’t it?”

So, my takeaway from this interaction is: Google will likely develop a “universal platform” for market mix modeling, which in many respects could be more robust than most of the other tools on the market, especially in terms of seamless integration of online and offline elements, and Web-enabled simulation tools. While it may lack some of the subtle flexibility of a custom-designed model, this platform will likely be “close enough” in overall accuracy, given that it could be a fraction of the cost of custom, if not free. The tool will likely evolve faster to incorporate emerging dynamics and variables, as the company’s scale will enable it to spot and include such things faster than any other analytics shop.

If Google has a vulnerability, it may be underestimating the human variables of the underlying questions (e.g. how much should we spend and where/how should we spend it?) and of the potential solution.

Reflecting over a glass of cabernet several hours later, I realized that Google’s developments are generally good for the marketing discipline, as the company will once again push us all to accelerate our adoption of mathematical pattern recognition as inputs into managerial decisions. Besides, the new human dynamics this acceleration creates will also spur new business opportunities. So everyone wins.

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Twitter Metrics

November 9, 2009 · Leave a Comment

Smart Digital Spendingvia: DMNews

Marketers excited for metrics opportunities from Twitter tool

Email Data Source last week debuted a Twitter monitoring tool at the Ad:tech trade show in New York. The e-mail data analysis firm will incorporate the Twitter measurement tool with its existing e-mail analytics tool.

The platform will be available to clients, with plans to market it to prospects as well.

Bill McCloskey, chairman, co-founder and chief evangelist at Email Data Source, said the tool will enable marketers to measure Twitter’s impact on the traditional brand marketing perspectives of reach, frequency and effectiveness.

Tweeters and re-Tweeters are, in a sense, broadcasters, added McCloskey.

“This will allow you to see who your most influential broadcasters are over time,” he said. “It puts the social media conversation back in traditional terms marketers understand.”

Email Data Source will monitor how many people each brand message reaches, who are the most successful “rebroadcasters” of that message; the overall impact of the message and how it relates to the brand’s Web traffic.

Sean Cummings, principal of SXC Marketing, said that Twitter-monitoring tools will help clients who are not fluent with the platform understand it better.

“The clients understand GRPs [gross rating points], and it is speaking to them in that language,” he said. “Until they’re all replaced by people who understand digital media, you have to talk to people in a language they understand. Not having GRPs online has hindered its growth.” Cummings is a former marketer, logging time at both at American Express and Ask.com.

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In September, more than 15,000 unique e-mail campaigns contained a brand’s Twitter or Facebook sign-up page, according to Email Data Source’s data. The social media data intelligence could improve a marketer’s ability to evaluate the ROI of marketing efforts through Twitter.

“We’re always trying to understand what our customers are saying, as well as what our competitors are saying to our customers,” said Gretchen Scheiman, partner and associate director for e-mail marketing at OgilvyOne. “This tool gives us the ability to understand both.”

read full article here.

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How does the Google Dashboard rank?

November 9, 2009 · Leave a Comment

Smart Digital Spending

via: eweek.com

Google Dashboard Provides Too Much Info and Yet Not Enough

News Analysis: Google again finds itself in a no-win situation, this time with Google Dashboard. Some claim Google collects too much data in Dashboard, and others say it doesn’t provide enough. Dashboard summarizes the data from the Web services associated with a user’s account. It will list how many Gmail conversations we have going, how many Google Docs we have, Google Calendar appointments and even Web history if we’ve enabled it. But it does not include detail Google collects on us from its server logs, cookies and ads.

News Analysis: With Google Dashboard, Google again finds itself in a no-win situation. In a utopian world, the search engine would be roundly praised for providing a window into the data users generate from using Google applications.

Yet whenever Google puts a foot forward, advertising its action using keywords like “transparency,” “openness” and “privacy,” the company opens itself to a hailstorm of criticism. And that’s what has happened here, with some claiming Google collects too much data in Dashboard and others saying it doesn’t provide enough.

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Dashboard summarizes data from the Web services associated with a user’s Google Account. Dashboard, which can be found here or under the Personal Setting section under My Account, will list how many Gmail conversations we have going, how many Google Docs we have, Google Calendar appointments and even Web history if we’ve enabled it.

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An Online Media Planner finally learns about Affiliate Marketing and WordPress

November 6, 2009 · Leave a Comment

Smart Digital Spending

Just like the title says, I never really knew much about affiliate marketing although I work in digital media. Most of my experience lies in online display, paid search, and traditional offline channels like TV, radio, and print. Back when I was working on the American Express online display direct acquisition campaign, my client was also leading the affiliate marketing team and was going crazy managing affiliate marketing initiatives as well as digital. One thing I do recall is my client mentioning that Amex credit cards were generated more efficiently by affiliates than they were by placing Amex display ads across several different sites. Other than that, I never really knew much about affiliate marketing until the other day when I saw Matt Bailey give a presentation about the subject, and boy was I amazed.

Matt suggested for those who wanted to learn more to check out http://www.affiliatestuff.co.uk/. A couple of days later I finally got around to going to the site and there is a wealth of information there. Not to mention, Kirsty McCubbin who runs the site is so friendly and responsive. I sent an email and she immediately responded, and not with just a few words, but rather was genuinely sincere. Most of my questions were geared towards WordPress and she has a great deal of information about how to use WordPress for your affiliate marketing programs. You can read more information here.

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Are Mobile ads more effective than internet display ads?

November 6, 2009 · Leave a Comment

Smart Digital Spending

Mobile ads three-to-five times more effective than online: analyst

via: Mobile Marketer

NEW YORK – Mobile advertising is three-to-five times more effective than online advertising, according to an ad:tech panelist.

Bruce Braun, CEO of Agent-M, moderated the “Measuring Mobile—Exploring the Metrics” panel. He asked the panelists questions such as “What are the tools and metrics used to justify brands expanding into mobile?”, “Can we apply the same tactics to our mobile campaigns that we’re using in our other digital marketing efforts?” and “How do you measure the unique value of mobile to engage your target in new ways and places?”

“Everyone has a different mechanism for measuring the success of a campaign, but we have normative databases tracking what brands can expect from advertising campaigns on mobile,” said Ali Rana, vice president of digital strategy at Dynamic Logic, New York. “There is still a ways to go but we’re made making progress.

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Where can I hire Android and iPhone Application Developers?

November 5, 2009 · Leave a Comment

Smart Digital Spending

Where to recruit Mobile Game Developers.

If you are trying to find out where mobile application developers hangout, check out some of these groups. Furthermore, if you’d like to recommend a group that is not listed here, please email me at eric@smartdigitalspending.com and I will include it in this post. Thanks.

 

AppForce.org is a highly experienced team of developers, dedicated to produce quality Android software. They confront the challenging projects with passion and dedication, and  have many successful accomplishments. Their primary goal is to keep the products quality high and publishers satisfied.

android developer communityThe Android Developers community is a gret forum for both new and experienced android developers. You can get help with the first steps of Android development – your first User Interface, your first permission, your first file on the Android filesystem, your first app on the Android Market.

iPhone Web Developer groupThe iPhone Web Development community is a great source for general, development, page display, browsing and more questions.

 

 

 

 

iDevGames communityiDev Games has a great forum that provides tips for Mac and iPhone game developers. Learn about game programming fundamentals, graphics and audio programming, programming languages & scripts and more.

 

Meetup iphone groupThe community of Atlanta iPhone Designers and Developers. Okay, maybe you don’t live in Atlanta, but you can still search Meetup.com to see if there are any iPhone or Android developer groups where you live.

 

 

LinkedIn Mobile Application groupsCheck out LinkedIn for Mobile Application groups. There are quite a few, some that specialize in iPhone, in Android, and both.

 

 

 

 

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