Friday, October 12, 2007

WebTrends Engage Conference

Earlier this week, I attended WebTrends’ Exchange conference in Las Vegas. Here are some highlights of the conference.

Evening before the conference

On Monday evening, WebTrends provided us a chance to see Live Diet Coke and Mentos show by, you can see these guys in action here:

Expert Panel on Engagement

Picture courtesy June Dershewitz of Semphonic.

As the name suggest the theme of the conference was visitor engagement. I had a privilege to be on a panel with Gary Angel, Andy Beal, Manoj Jasra, Jim Novo and Jim Sterne. All of us, except Andy Beal, came from Web Analytics background and were in agreement that Engagement was not an excuse, it is a metrics. Andy Beal brought some interesting points about how we should look at engagement not from just web point of view (which was mostly the focus of this conference) but should take other channel e.g. offline into consideration when measuring customer engagement.

360 degree view of the customers

Remember the Predictions I made in January of this year? (Yes they have all come true, 100% on the mark; I just have to do a follow-up post). I wrote
“Web Analytics won’t be standing alone - Marketers will want 360 view of the customers.”.
Guess what? 360 view of customer was another of the subject that was discussed in this conference. Another validation of my predictions.

WebTrends Gone Wild!!!

On Tuesday evening, WebTrends threw a great party at the Palms hotel. The view of Vegas strip from the club was excellent, great choice of venue. It was interesting to see these web analytics folks “engaged” in dancing, free drinks and with each other.

New Products from WebTrends

I was very impressed with Visitor Intelligence and WebTrends Score. I have to say Visitor Intelligence is a great tools for doing advanced segmentation. A very easy to use interface, just drag and drop dimensions and measures and build your segments. It also has the ability to exports the cookie ids so you can take action on your segments, yes I am talking about targeting (behavioral targeting in particular).
Visitor Score allows you to score visitors engagement with the sites, product, attribute scores to various actions that a visitors takes on the site. Visitors Scores will allow you to measure visitor/customer engagement with a very simple interface. However the challenge most of the business will face it to determine what score to assign to which activities (and this is where I can help you). As I wrote last week,
If defined properly (that’s the key) engagement metrics can be good measure of past and predictor of future. Here is tool which can help you in defining engagement. Also, score provides a way to segment your users and then do on-site Behavioral Targeting.
According to my friend Jacques Warren
“Score will need to run on Visitor Intelligence, which will in turn need to run on Marketing Warehouse. This means that you will need to get new money to pay for them, whatever you have spent on the regular product.”

My New Prediction
WebTrends is on the right track with their new products and you will see them giving Omniture run for their money. Omniture get ready for some stiff competition. The more I think the more convinced I get that Webtrends is making the right moves. Howvere WebTrends has to make some more moves to get these products adopted by the market. I have my opinions on how Webtrends can make these products a success, and I already talked to them about it. Thank you for listening, I hope you will also act on what I said. If you are from Webtrends and want to listen to those again I would love to talk with you(Note: I will be at eMetrics next week). I have talked to several people about my concerns and they all agreed, so this is not just me.

Other reads:
Jacques Warren
June Dershewitz

What’s Next for me
I have a lot to write, two main ones are

  1. A follow-up post on my Predictions

  2. My view of the future and how cookie deletion won’t matter, yes, you will have to wait for it. I have discussed my views with two fellow bloggers and they have promised not to reveal it.

Next week, I am going to eMetrics, where I will be speaking about Behavioral Targeting
Then I am off to India for a week.

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