Widget Analytics – Measuring the widgets in the wild

Helping web analysts navigate the measurement and tracking of widgets.

Archive for October, 2008

Clearspring Launches Next-Generation of Launchpad

Posted by widgetgirl on October 31, 2008

This week our team released our next generation of Launchpad – the Clearspring product for sharing widgets across the web, through email and onto desktops.  The new version of Launchpad allows you to customize the size and shape of the menu and has a very sleek, new, liquid layout. It is very sharp looking!  You can check out the new menu on the Publisher’s Clearinghouse widget below (warning, it is kind of addictive) by clicking on the “Grab” button.

To read more about the launch, click here to read the full press release.

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comScore Ranks Clearspring as the Number One Widget Network Worldwide

Posted by widgetgirl on October 28, 2008

Exciting news today for Clearspring.  We’ve been named the number one widget network worldwide by comScore!  This is a huge win for us as it quantitatively displays our global reach.  Check out the press release below.

McLean, Va. – Oct. 28, 2008 — Clearspring Technologies, the leading widget network connecting publishers and advertisers to audiences on the social Web, experienced a 59 percent increase in worldwide usage of its sharing service between August and September. The company attributes this increase to a growing social trend of communicating by sharing content online, as well as its acquisition of social bookmarking leader AddThis, and newly formed partnerships with leading media publishers such as MetroLyrics and SnagFilms.

According to comScore, Clearspring logged 254 million unique visitors worldwide in September, easily outdistancing its nearest competitor by 93 million visitors. In addition to ranking Clearspring as the global leader in the widget market, comScore revealed that the company also extended its lead by 34 million in the U.S. market in September, growing 43 percent and reaching over 101 million unique visitors in the United States.

“These rankings signal a much larger trend in the social media industry,” said Hooman Radfar, chief executive officer and co-founder of Clearspring. “The comScore report helps validate our supposition that content sharing has emerged as a mainstream form of online communication with various opportunities for advertisers to reach an important and growing audience on the social Web.”

Clearspring is widely credited for jumpstarting the widget category by being first to introduce click-to-share technology for making embeddable Web content portable. Clearspring also released the industry’s first widget analytics tools and was the first widget analytics platform to be audited by the ABCi. In September, Clearspring, Google, and Adobe were given ‘Innovator of the Year’ awards at the Interact ’08 conference in Washington, D.C.

Clearspring’s easy-to-use services allows people to share Web pages, photos, videos, movie trailers, news, sports updates, trivia quizzes, games, and music with friends and provides a new set of opportunities for advertisers to engage more often with their customers online – specifically on the Social Web. Clearspring’s product offering includes two approaches to advertising with widgets:

* Widgets served as ads through Clearspring’s platform.
* Advertisements within a widget.

Clearspring’s viral distribution enables Web widgets to be shared and distributed across more than 80 blogging, social networking, and bookmarking services. Clearspring’s analytics suite enables detailed tracking and analysis of widget activity and performance for both publishers and advertisers.

Clearspring acquired AddThis, the No. 1 bookmarking and content sharing service on the Internet, in September 2008, helping the company to grow to a size comparable in reach to the 7th largest property on the Web. The recent acquisition only furthers the reach of the universal sharing service.

comScore is a leading source of data and metrics for both the digital world as well as mobile usage that is trusted by brands such as AOL, Microsoft, Yahoo, Best Buy and more. Statistics quoted in this release are found in comScore’s September 2008 Worldwide report.

About Clearspring

Clearspring is the market’s leading widget syndication, tracking and monetization service, used by the world’s largest media companies, advertisers, and independent widget developers. Clearspring helps publishers and marketers extend their reach to the leading social networks, start pages and blogs and to respond to growing consumer demand for a more personalized desktop, Web, and mobile experience. Headquartered near Washington, D.C., Clearspring offers a comprehensive set of widget creation, distribution, management and monetization services. For more information about Clearspring and how to use widgets in your business or to join the Clearspring developer community, please visit www.clearspring.com.

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Wall Street and The Web Analyst

Posted by widgetgirl on October 17, 2008

Below is my Metrics Insider article for today.  TGIF.

Wall Street and The Web Analyst

The ups and downs of the market this past week have brought many companies to a screeching halt when it comes to spending (and productivity). It has been quite a rocky road recently, but there is a silver lining to this dark cloud when it comes to the role of the Web Analyst.

The time is NOW to double down and show your company what their investment in Web Analytics is worth. They bought the software, they hired you and the IT department has tagged the pages on your site and added you to their list of internal customers. It’s “go” time. To be clear – you have the opportunity to bring your analysis and web analytics skills to the forefront of corporate decision-making when it comes to spending the marketing budget in this economy. Why, because ROI will be a greater focal point than ever before as companies tighten their spending and put their dollars where the return is the greatest.

Online ad spending may be curbed, but it isn’t going away. Aaron Baar made an interesting point in the Marketing Daily column back in January of this year. He pointed out that the companies who cut their marketing spend the deepest will have a damaging impact on their brand. I’m paraphrasing what he eloquently stated in the article, but the point here is that even though companies are going to cut back in spending, they aren’t going to stop marketing their goods and services. Their best strategy is to shift the marketing mix where ROI can be measured most effectively and the monetization model is still in the black (even though the values of our investments aren’t – but that’s a different story).

So what does that mean to your organization’s day-to-day activities?

CMO, listen up:

  • Evaluate your marketing spend and ensure that you have the right key performance indicators for every line item and campaign in your marketing plan. Whether it be clickthrough rate or conversion rate, you need to know what the cost per acquisition is for each dollar you spend.
  • Know who the web analysts are in your organization (because I bet some of you don’t even know their names). They are your data warriors and you need them now more than ever.

Web Analyst, it’s your turn:

  • Insert yourself into the campaign deployment process and ensure that every data point needed to calculate ROI by campaign (and creative) is being captured.
  • Know your web analytics tools and use them. Remember those books they gave you in training? Get them off the shelf and ensure you are using the functionality of the system. Now is the time to review all of those cool things you learned in training or E-Metrics Summits like funnel conversion rates and latency analysis (measuring those visitors who return to your web site AFTER having clicked through to your site).
  • Be vocal – don’t be afraid to speak up and let the data tell the story. Data isn’t emotional, it’s factual. It is your job to present the data in such a way that it is easily consumed and readable.

There is money to be made in this economy, but it is time to be frugal. Only data driven organizations are going to know how to “shoot the dogs” and feed the “cash cows”. Yes, we are back to Marketing 101 aren’t we? It is time to help lead your organization through this economic buckle-down, so Web Analysts, step up to the plate.

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