Marketing Biz: Google’s Grand Plan, Groupon Hiring An Engineering Army & comScore vCE Study Finds Ad Inefficiency
This week’s news revolved around the growing ways in which marketers and advertisers can optimize their digital marketing efforts, from better insight into advertising metrics to ‘instant’ market research.
In parallel, we see changes to the business strategies being implemented by Google and Groupon, and track the launch of new products in social media management and search marketing verticals.
These findings suggest that measuring all dimensions of ad delivery for every placement in a holistic fashion is critical and that optimizing delivery in-flight is a necessary step in the campaign management process. The findings also support the argument that any digital GRP metric must account for validated, not gross impressions. This validated impression measurement mustinclude ‘viewable impressions,’ based on the very simple notion that if an ad is not seen, it cannot possibly deliver its intended effect.
comScore is leading a charge to ensure that advertisers are getting the most out of their digital marketing campaigns. Will agencies and advertisers really begin pressing publishers to provide in-view metrics? If they do, the number, type, placement and rates of display units will change materially.
What’s New? Viralheat 2.0 builds on the company’s flagship offering, and now includes a robust, fully integrated platform spanning social media management, monitoring, engagement, analytics and intent.
The new version of Viralheat looks promising. The emphasis on making the toolset easy to use and act upon is critical, particularly in this crowded market. Too often enterprise-level products of this nature deliver data but don’t allow marketers to turn them into actionable information.
360iTIGER technology automates the crawl and instantaneously organizes data within a web-based spreadsheet, expediting a previously laborious process that took hours or days into something that can be completed in seconds with the click of a mouse. Beyond collecting SEO data such as titles, meta tags and headlines, 360iTIGER is able to overlay social metrics, including tweets, Facebook Likes and Google +1’s, for audited web pages. This provides a critical layer of intelligence for brands as social becomes more important to a website’s search engine ranking.
There are a number of similar or related technologies or extensions that do many of the same things. And I’m not sure that making it cloud-based is that big of an advantage. But any tool that can help search marketers become more efficient without losing visibility is worth taking for a test drive.
Here’s a simple rule: if your product isn’t a condom then don’t name it like one.
This graphic and related post made the rounds this week, skewering the Android naming convention. It was funny but I didn’t agree with the conclusion. Since when has using sex in advertising been a bad thing? For good or for bad sex sells and does so for a wide variety of products. Why not smartphones?
Gone are the days when Google would buy a company only to have it disappear without ever producing a product. Page now expects direct, regular reports from Google’s acquisitions team on how recently purchased companies are performing. “Larry is very keen to make sure that the strategic rationale for every deal is well-understood,” Butler says. That seems an obvious thing for a big corporation, but it’s unusual at Google, a firm known to dabble in ideas just because they seem interesting, even if there’s no apparent payoff. Page’s management style suggests the end of an era. These days, Google means business.
Google has always meant business. From my perspective Google goes through cycles of exploratory expansion and contraction. What we’re witnessing is simply another contraction. In another 18 months time the pendulum will swing the other way. Perhaps it is this ability that makes Google unique.
Gravity reports that is has delivered an average of over one million personalized content recommendations per day to more than 400 million users per month over 10 sites initially. Across these partner sites, they say that click through rates have grown two to three times. Site loyalty, as measured by monthly return rate, is up three fold. Finally — and this is a hell of a claim — its partners have seen page views increase more than 40 percent on average.
The distance between what people say and what people do is huge. If asked, I’m sure consumers would say they don’t like or want personalized content (or search results). Yet, when presented with just that their behavior indicates that user satisfaction increases. Despite the angst around filter bubbles, personalized content will flourish because it works.
Groupon, which already has about 200 engineers working out of its Palo Alto office, is looking to hire as many as 100 more, boosting the Chicago-based company’s headcount out West, the company tells us.
With the FeeFighters acquisition, the focus is clearly on gaining technology aimed to help Groupon’s merchant partners, an area which the company has been diving into more deeply lately, with this month’s launch of the Groupon Scheduler booking service, another product that came out of an acquisition (OpenCal), as an example.
I’m lumping both of these articles together because Groupon is embarking on what I think is a very savvy strategy. They’re moving further away from being just a deal platform for small businesses and instead are seeking to offer a range of business services for merchants. Do you think this is a smart move?
Here’s how it works: people browsing the web come across your questions when they try to access high quality content like news articles or videos. Answering the question gives them near instant access to the page they want. All responses are anonymous; they aren’t tied to users’ identity or later used to target ads. This provides an alternative to the traditional paywall model: site visitors don’t have to pull out a wallet or sign in, publishers get paid as their site visitors respond, and you gain insight into what people think — for just $0.10 per response for the general US population or $0.50 per response for custom audiences.
This is of particular interest to me because I worked on a similar idea back in 2007 at Vizu. The company has since pivoted in a very positive direction but the initial idea of using the Internet to do market research is still compelling. Scaling was always one of the concerns, something that Google clearly solves. As the pace of business accelerates, marketers need market research that can provide fast answers.
The Google comment system, which will almost certainly rival that of Facebook, will have deep links to Google’s network of services and websites, indexing comments in Google Search, and most significantly, the system will be available for use on third party sites.
While this remains unconfirmed, it would make complete sense as Google looks to understand activity and engagement across the Internet.
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(Some images used under license from Shutterstock.com.)
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