Welcome to the Interact Congress Blog. We have invited some leading European guest bloggers to share their observations on interactive marketing and communication skills within the integrated experience. The blog also offers you a first opportunity to interact with your peers.

For more information about the congress, please visit www.interactcongress.eu

Thursday, 12 April 2007

Gobal online media measurement: where do we stand?

Is online measurement a national or an international matter? The answer is “both”, and the reasons are twofold.

Most of advertising spends are local, few are international. This leads us to conclude that audience measurement has always been a national issue, and methodologies have been following local particularities such as counting habits, culture, and dominance of a media over any other.

Still, as the text introduction of the I-Com (http://www.i-com.org/) interestingly put it: “Around the world, online media and their audiences are being measured (Ad, Site & User Centric) differently or not at all. Commonalities include a predominant national focus and lack of a big picture about who is doing what and with what results. Meanwhile, advertisers would like to see internationally comparable data based on transparent common metrics.”

Compared to measuring traditional media, online measurement is such a complex and innovative task that operators - including research providers - struggle to provide a stable and accepted currency locally. In some countries, millions are invested to understand and create a standard measurement, while internet technologies continue to evolve.

As a consequence joint industry committees (JIC) along with private research operators felt the need to share experiences and best practices. In September 2005, several leading associations (including EACA, IAB Europe, IFABC, I-JIC & OPA Europe) decided to create I-COM, a joint conference about online measurement, in Berlin. The conference’s achievements were as follows:

- Delivery of an International Overview Study (IOS) of Online Site&User centric measurement status around the world;
- Presentation and discussion of major site and user centric measurement systems;
- Creation of an international network amongst professionals in Online Media Measurement;
- Facilitation through forums on key issues including international cooperation.

Like the harmonization of worldwide online ad spends, online measurement needs to be consistently aggregated on a global scale in order to better represent our media. Measurement operators need to work on common definitions, both across countries and locally to make the Internet media clear and transparent.

In the first “workshop” day of the Interact Congress (4th of June), IAB Europe will welcome all leading associations and players to introduce the global initiative for online media measurement (GIM) and announce the next I-COM conference. Three panel discussions will focus on improving the comparability of metrics across countries, sharing local requirements for research suppliers, and discussing new measurement possibilities along with Web 2.0.

Getting to grips with website analytics

“Which KPIs and metrics should I be tracking?”

I got hit by this question while teaching the
Web Analytics Academy in London this afternoon and figured it was worth sharing a few of the key points. Digital marketing is incredibly powerful, but much of that power can be lost if you’re not tracking what you do.

Seems obvious? Read on…The problem is that most folks who run websites and web marketing don’t give enough weight to the analytics. Sure, it’s not the sexiest part of digital media, but it can be the most profound and the most enlightening.

It’s only by tracking you’ll really know what works and what doesn’t, and while it’s part of the fabric of traditional marketing, there seems to be an enormous gap when it comes to extending that theory online. For example, in a media brand, the core key performance indicators include volume (of advertising), yield (of advertising) and the share (of the advertising and audience market).Those are revenue metrics any publisher would readily seize, but when it comes to audiences the same logic isn’t always there.

That’s why at Digital we developed the 5 Ps of web traffic measurement. If you’re stuck for where to start, then try these tips and see the
video of our Web Analytics lecture…

• People (unique users)
• Pages (impressions)
• Persistence (stickiness / duration of visit)
• Pulling power (repeat visits)
• Passion (intensity of their activity; posts, community involvement, bespoke metrics)

Try these out as your starting point and you’ll be well on the right track. If you need more then ask us about the Management Information Academies we developed for media groups.
Need more help? Post your questions in our
Web Analytics Digital Classroom.

European Online AdSpend will be worth over 10Billions€ in 2006?

Going around from IAB country to IAB country presenting myself, listening to their needs and explaining our IAB Europe Masterplan 2007-2010 exercise, I've the pleasure to meet and great fantastic people but also to discover the web-story from each country. You feel the heat, the tipping point in many countries moving away from a secondary medium towards a primary medium. A key-driver might be for many professionals to see that our digital industry will hit the 10billions€ for the 2006 online adspend investment. We all know that it's only one side of the internet play-ground, but it does mean a lot for decision makers I believe...

A dedicated team is working under supervision of Zoran from IAB Slovania trying to provide a comprehensive benchmark sheet in May 2007 enabling us to compare and understand the figures from one country to another. More on this next month, but wanted to share this already with you ;-)

Tuesday, 10 April 2007

Pick their brains

Quick linkdump:
Ads of the World (recent, blog): "an advertising archive and forum discussing great work worldwide"
ihavenidea (articles, blog): "Because the advertising industry we want to work for doesn't yet exist."

Web 2.0 World is a great place, but where's the Money?!

"Everything is free, just take a cookie!" is a line from the video (You can watch it below) that pretty much summarizes the Web 2.0 model. Currently what most Web 2.0 ventures are doing is collecting information and creating an audience, and in some cases, basically waiting to be acquired.
If there is a monetization model out there, most of the Web 2.0 sites and services haven't found it yet, or they just can't apply it. Anyway, here are some suggestions made by experts:

Subscriptions: some very useful services finance themselves with subscriptions, but it's certainly not the way to go for everybody. Even those services that use that model have a hard time fighting with the competition that offers the same services free of charge.

Commission: a nice way to monetize services that offer assistance to shoppers (travelers, and other buyers), but it's really not a model that applies directly to a typical Web 2.0 service. But we can use a Web 2.0 feature combined with a more or less traditional commercial model – and make success.
That is where I see a good monetizing model for the Web 2.0 – using it's main qualities as a feature.

Advertising: even though most investors and financial experts don't really like this model, I still prefer it. It allows the services to stay free, and as the video says, that is what it's all about. As we all know, on-line advertising is growing in numbers, but the Web 2.0 is giving it ways to expand, become more targeted and effective. An average social networking service knows a lot about it's users: besides the general information (name, sex, age, location…) we have an insight to their habits and preferences, favorite brands, hobbies, and relationships.

Something else: Subscriptions and Commission are mostly not applicable, Advertising might bee to intrusive… There are only so few ways to monetize, and so many reasons why we should not use them.
The Holly Grail of Web 2.0 monetization is yet to be found. Meanwhile, everything is free, just take a cookie!