Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Behavioral Redux

If anyone doesn’t believe that the Internet is still evolving with astonishing speed, try this. Just as I finished yesterday’s post on behavioral targeting, I noticed that a start-up in that space had received another round of venture funding. Lotame™ is another attempt at helping social networks monetize their business and marketers reach denizens of the networks. This ad was posted on the founder’s blog. It’s dated May 7, so there may be more than 28 million people 3 months later! According to Marketing Charts, MySpace had 75.2 million unique users in July and Facebook had 39 million. That’s a big pool of potential acquaintances for Lotame and customers for marketers! The question continues to be how to reach them in a manner they find acceptable.

Lotame founder Andy Monfried says that the tools developed for Web 1.0 don’t work in the UGC environment of Web 2.0. One reason is that websites no longer define content. That’s a simple but profound idea.

The proprietary technology the firm has developed is called Crowd Control™. Exactly how they do it is unclear—no surprise. The best hint is that the technology “allows us to aggregate behaviors unique to each page within user content.”
Here’s a link to their video page. There are a number of interesting snippets, but they describe the basic process as collecting, analyzing and leveraging data for marketing decisions. That’s what we’re all trying to do. The take-away from studying this site is the importance of behavioral analysis. In the social media space, it’s not about the site the user is on. It may not even be about the particular page. It could be the functionality on a particular page that provides the common thread that identifies a target market.

That describes analytics at a very micro level. Is that what’s necessary to connect with a Web 2.0 audience? And when we connect on issues that are relevant to them, will they pay attention?

Those are key marketer questions in the Web 2.0 world!

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