Widget Analytics – Measuring the widgets in the wild

Helping web analysts navigate the measurement and tracking of widgets.

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  • February 2008
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U23D Widget Easter Egg – boost your widget analytics by unlocking content!

Posted by widgetgirl on February 4, 2008

U23D widget

As a die-hard U2 fan, I just about lost my mind when National Geographic gave me the scoop on the Easter egg hidden inside of the U23D widget that they launched a few weeks ago. For those of you who aren’t familiar with what an “Easter egg” is, it is a secret compartment or “jewel” if you will that is hidden inside of a widget (or anything else for that matter….but we just talk about widgets here).

Tell me, tell me, tell me….OK! The key to getting to the Easter egg is as follows:

  1. Go to the following link: http://www.clearspring.com/widgets/47572cded2ffd3c3/47572cded2ffd3c3
  2. Mouse over the widget to the “U23D” logo in the upper left hand corner of the widget.
  3. Click and hold your mouse over the logo for 3 seconds.
  4. Release and a box will pop up that requests a password – the password is “u23d”
  5. Voila – zee egg will open!
  6. Grab the widget for your own profile page, start page or blog by clicking on the menu to the right of the widget (and please do this if you are still grappling with “What the heck is a widget?” or “How does one actually share viral content?”).

So what is in the Easter egg?


  • A red-carpet Sundance video interview with U2 bassist Adam Clayton
  • A photo gallery of shots from the film
  • Other content that will be updated periodically over the next few weeks.

This is like crack for U2 fans!!!! And for me writing about widgets and widget analytics – I actually get paid to do this! I wouldn’t be doing my job though if we didn’t break down the measurement aspects of this widget and what has (and will) continue to lead to it’s success. So here are the highlights from this:

  • Great brand – who doesn’t love U2?
  • Great brand – who doesn’t know National Geographic?
  • Excellent content – video clips promoting the movie,
  • Compelling reason to keep this widget around – unlocking of new content (Easter egg) and updated content.

The exciting metrics to analyze on this widget (if I were the analyst at NatGeo) will be how quickly this widget spreads and where it goes. This includes the number of placements of the widget and from which web sites the widgets it being spread the most (successful grabs of the widget). One of the ways that we analyze widgets around here at Clearspring is also looking at the “days-to-double” or how quickly the content is spreading.  So if there are 5 seed placements of the widget and within one day the widget is grabbed five times, we would say that it took one day to double the number of placements of the widget.  Obviously this number tapers off as the widget spreads, but it is a great benchmark for understand how quickly 1000 placements turns into 2000 placements, etc.

This widget has been promoted through ads, on the NatGeo site, in U2 email newsletters (multi-year subscriber here) and various other spots around the Internet. Strategic seeding and promotion in addition to the killer content is what makes a blockbuster widget…and this one is well on it’s way.

Go National Geographic (and U2 – but especially Bono) for crafting an awesome widget! You NatGeo folks are right down the street from Clearspring’s Headquarters….but Bono, let me know if you want to discuss personally. I’ll be in Ireland the week of June 30th and would love to catch up for a Guiness and discuss your widget’s success!

3 Responses to “U23D Widget Easter Egg – boost your widget analytics by unlocking content!”

  1. Wow, I work at National Geo and though I’d seen the widget I didn’t know there was an Easter egg hidden in it. Thanks for revealing the code!

  2. Thank You very much ….

  3. […] it is about 5 months away) and saw their new widget. The last U2 widget on our platform was the National Geographic U23D widget (which had an Easter Egg inside). Cheers to my favorite band of all […]

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