WebTrends Gets Insights, WideMile; Forbes Goes Cross Media; OMMA Behavioral; More on Yahoo! and Microsoft

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Webtrends and WidemileWeb Trends Eats WideMile For Its Insights

Analytics provider, WebTrends, has bought multi-variate testing and site optimization company, WideMile for an unknown sum. Release here. Analytics companies are broadening their tool set to discover actionable, consumer insights for their clients.

A blog post just three days ago from WideMile gives an example by referencing a campaign that was part of the Open Exchange Partner group initiative which includes WebTrends ACR Analytics, ExactTarget, ForeSee Results, Mullen, Voce Communications and Widemile. (This could also be another way the public can be informed about the inner-workings of online marketing and that it is not scary.)

Forbes Media Goes Cross Media

Forbes Media is making a move toward cross-channel attribution for its clients as it has chose analytics firm, MarketShare Partners, to help them make the case for brand marketers across media channels. Quoting from the release:

“It’s never been more important for marketers to understand exactly how their marketing efforts translate to the bottom line,” said Kevin Gentzel, President and Group Publisher, Forbes Media. “Forbes is delivering on this promise of accountability with MarketShare Partners’ breakthrough Compass™ solution, which definitively links an advertiser’s investment with Forbes with revenue and outcomes rather than just impressions or eyeballs.”

Marketing-speak aside, seems like a smart move which will pay dividends in making the case for online ad investment, too.

Recession Redux

Razorfish VP of Search, Joshua Palau, discusses the cyclical nature of this and the previous dot-com-bubble-bust recession of 2000 and how the position of search and display has been switched in an article on Search Engine Watch.

“Remember when your agency tried to talk to you about a study showing the relationship between search and display? You thought search was a ‘nice to have’ and decided to pass. In retrospect, this probably wasn’t the best idea.”

Read more.

OMMA Behavioral Aftermath

MediaPost covers yesterday’s conference in San Francisco focused on behavioral data. For MediaPost Raw blog coverage, start here. MP’s Joe Mandese notes Aggregate Knowledge CEO Paul Martino’s (AdExchanger.com Q&A) comment on a panel near the end of the day regarding client goals. Martino said:

“Everyone of our customers has two optimization goals. Our agency customers always have an audience reach goal, and they also have a cost of acquisition goal. And those two things are inherently in conflict.”

Washington Post Profits, Display Ads Up a Bit

The Washington Post reports that Washington Post Q2 2009 earnings exist. Yes – a newspaper company with profit (even if there’s much than newspapers at WaPo, namely the educational company, Kaplan). There was even good news on the display ad front:

Second-quarter newspaper division ad revenue was down 20 percent compared with the same period last year, and online ad revenue was down 9 percent from the second quarter of last year. However, online display advertising ticked up 2 percent.

WebMD Seeing Black

From its second quarter earnings call, WebMD spoke with analysts about its display advertising efforts and new requirements around pharmaceutical campaigns. CEO Wayne Gattinella said according to Seeking Alpha:

We think we have a very strong pipeline in several strategic pharma brands that are building for the future. In terms of the new requirement to provide more information regarding patient safety information, we quickly responded to that need by reengineering all of our display advertising in a way that could support this greater disclosure, both in display ads, as well as even in our sponsored video promotion.

The company reported a 15% improvement in revenues and is in the process of the previously-announced merging with HLTH Corp in June.  Chairman Marty Wygood adds about WebMD:

“At a time when many Internet and media companies are continuing to see declines in advertising revenues, we’re experiencing strong growth. I expect the second half of the year to have continued strong revenue growth with significant margin expansion. Advertiser demand for our high quality and highly engaged audience is increasing.”

Microsoft and Yahoo! Deal Still Burning Up Blogs

From the blogosphere, more reaction to the Yahoo/MSFT deal from Burst Media, Danny Sullivan on Search Engine Land, Jason Calacanis and Saul Hansell who writes:

“The single biggest effect of the deal is that the now-separate auctions to place ads on the search engines of Microsoft and Yahoo will be combined. Since the two companies don’t have all the same customers, the total number of bidders will increase right away. And more bidders will be attracted to a marketplace that now has 30 percent of the search-ad inventory.”

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