Category Archives: Random Ramblings

Finally, A Place for me – A Social Media Addict

Finally a support group for people like me. My wife will be pleased to know that there is a place where i can get help.  Too bad it’s in the UK!

They say there is a difference in having an avid interest in social media and having a rabid interest in social media….who knew?

Google Chrome – Sweet, Now Google Will Know Everything!

Google just announced today on their blog that tomorrow they will be releasing a beta version of a browser they designed called ‘Chrome’.  While I use and appreciate many of the tools that Google produces, I often question, like many, their usage of personal data for ad displays. 

Google Chrome Interface

Google Chrome Interface

Currently Google analyzes that the content of the pages you look at to display ads that are related to the content of the page.  Once Google had the tracking power of Google Toolbar and now the Chrome browser, Google has the ability to track viewing and purchasing history for individual web users instead of individual web pages.  It is very similar to the power Amazon has to match you with products that people with similar purchase histories prefer, except during your entire web experience.  While it proves somewhat convenient to have products displayed to me on a shopping marketplace, I don’t want to have this targeted bombardment of advertisements in the same way every time I use the internet. 

Google Chrome Beta - Creates Privacy Concerns

Google Chrome Beta - Creates Privacy Concerns

I expect Google will release a statement saying that they will not use the technology for this purpose like several of their projects before, but this is just one more time when we are putting something of incredible strength and power into Google’s hands without any accountability for privacy.

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Christmas Party Season

Yes, it’s that time of year again.  The time when my life revolves around three things work, buy stuff for people, go to Christmas Parties. 

Hitwise.com – Is a 10mm Sample Size Enough?

Hitwise Announces New Features - Hitwise.com

Today Hitwise, a subsidiary of Experian, announced that they were making big change in their tool by offering the ability to differentiate between paid and natural terms that create traffic.  I am very excited about this change as I have been asking for this since I became a client about a year and a half ago.  For those of you who don’t know Hitwise as intimately as I do, let me share. 

Hitwise is a competitive intelligence tool that boasts a sample size of 10mm searchers.  Now, I know that sounds like a big number, but if you sell to a niche like most, that equals about 15 people a day for you entire industry.  By looking at the sample size from a statistical perspective, most industries (not including porn,  internet searches, and music downloads) are not getting a large enough sample size to warrant a P factor acceptable to justify using the data in key decision making.  Especially considering that a yearly Hitwise subscription is actually higher than the average annual salary here in SC.  If the data is not statistically relevant, then it’s just a market-share checker…an expensive market share checker.

 I can tell you that their customer service is great and that their analyst’s blog is very fun.  In the same way ‘Freakenomics’ looks at economics, they look at web analytics.  The blog reports that the tool can predict the American Idol winner and the winners of Australia’s recent federal elections…too bad it doesn’t always offer data that results in clients making money.

* Hitwise.com Update – Jan. 11, 2008 – I had a call with one of the reps from Hitwise.com yesterday and she showed me the new features and some of the features that I have not been using in Hitwise.  In the next couple days I will post another review of Hitwise considering some of the vast improvements they have made and some of the features I have never explored.

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DMA ’07 – “We met at the DMA’s…”

telemarketer.gif

I learn alot at every conference I attend.  DMA ’07 was no different but……the last two weeks, post-DMA, at work has been filled with calls from agencies, database solutions, and package suppliers.  I don’t mind a sales call as long as the sales person doesn’t mind a blow off when I’m busy.  What totally does kill me is sales person who doesn’t do research.  Better yet, they don’t even look at the business card from which they got my name and number.  My card states my title clearly as “eCommerce Director” thus, asking me if we have a web site is quite silly.  As is, “Do you guys sell things on your site?”  My card also has a picture of our product as well as the product is in the name of the company, but I still get questions like,”So what do you guys sell?”

My advice to sales people is go to people’s sites before you call, read their about us page, research their industry (even 15 second on Google will help).  Otherwise, for the sales people that call me, you will be directed to this page for a little advice.

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Hobbies & Helmets

I really have been thinking about getting a hobby lately.  For the longest time I thought that consulting and doing research would suffice as my hobby.  It was not until I saw the picture below that I realized that I will only be fufilled by a hobbie that involves food and helmets.

Big Cheese Burger

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