Archive for the ‘Web 2.0’ Category

Recent Talk About PostRank

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

In the past couple weeks, basically since Google acquired Feedburner, there has been quite a bit of chatter about PostRank. Since the Feedburner acquisition wasn’t without issues, the PostRank talk seemed to pick up.

According to their website, PostRank:

… measures audience engagement and provides integrated tools to enable you to customize your RSS subscriptions. Save time, boost productivity, and Read What Matters.

One of the unique things that PostRank does is take into consideration comments and mentions elsewhere on the web (Twitter, Delicious, Magnolia, etc.). It compares it to your recent posts, too. For example, when I first start a blog, getting 1 or 2 comments is a big deal, and thus, will rank that post quite high.

Measuring Student Blog Success

Monday, January 5th, 2009

A couple weeks ago there was a brief conversation on Twitter about how to measure the success of student blogs. This is an interesting discussion because blogs are different than normal websites.

The goal for most blogs is interaction (on every single page, usually) – not so with traditional websites like your university website (again, usually). This makes measuring success and analytics for blogs a bit different. Looking at visitor rate, bounce rate, path analysis for blogs is either a waste of time or not enough. Let me explain.

Must Subscribe Blogs – December 2008

Tuesday, December 23rd, 2008

For this month, I’ve subscribed to 3 great blogs (well, 2, I’ll explain below)  that I hope you find useful and entertaining. It’s worth noting that I was introduced to all these blogs via the people I follow on Twitter. Yet another reason why Twitter is invaluable to me.

More about Twitter

Monday, December 15th, 2008

You may have noticed that I’ve been writing about Twitter lately. You may be asking yourself what exactly Twitter has to do with web analytics in higher education. The answer is nothing (usually!). I do think that there are valuable conversations around Twitter, though, and since I’m interested in those conversations, I’m saying that Twitter is fair game as a topic for this blog – even if I’m not tying in analytics (which we can do!).

Anyway, on with the post.

Analytics is attitude – we need an adjustment

Friday, December 5th, 2008

At work, we’re implementing a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) tool in an effort to better our communication and … well … customer relationship management.

What we’re finding, more than anything else, is that customer relationship management is not about technology at all. It’s an attitude. It’s a mentality. This isn’t a new concept, but I do think that we take it for granted. We expect the tool to just do everything inherently. That’s not how it works – GIGO is so true and happens all too often.

What’s in my RSS reader? – November 2008

Monday, December 1st, 2008

In November, for some reason, I was much more focused on the web analytics tools themselves, reading blogs about both Google Analytics and Omniture, since I use both tools.

Here are a few that are definitely worth adding to your reader (depending upon what tool you use).

Twitter – A Different Kind of Conversation

Monday, November 17th, 2008

There have been a ton of posts and news lately about Twitter. The mini-blogging platform has been everywhere. The presidential election was a hot topic (and still is!), hashtags are all the rage, one user raised $10K for a dowry using Twitter, and it’s even seen by the Army as a possible communication tool for terrorists.

Higher education blogs have mainly focused on how Twitter can help as a marketing, recruitment, advising tool. There are so many great uses for Twitter both in higher education and for corporations.

What about us Twitter-users as individuals, though? How does it affect what we do, our sense of community, our sense of professional involvement?

It’s fantastic to talk about Twitter as a tool to help our students and customers. I’m completely on board with that.

Let’s do something that I don’t like to do a lot on this blog, though.

Let’s talk about us!


Web 2.0, Silos, and Losing Control

Wednesday, September 24th, 2008

There is nothing more difficult to take in hand, more perilous to conduct, or more uncertain in its success, than to take the lead in the introduction of a new order of things.

- Niccolo Machiavelli from The Prince, 1532

That quote was the intro paragraph to an interesting article in the September issue of Campus Technology called Change Management Meets Web 2.0. Wow. Isn’t it amazing that a quote from 1532 could hold as true today as it did then? What’s more interesting is the next line of that original quote:

Because the innovator has for enemies all those who have done well under the old conditions, and lukewarm defenders in those who may do well under the new.

How true. How true. Of course now we’re talking about Web 2.0 (new technologies, new attitudes toward web content) instead of acquiring principalities. But what do we fear? Why is there still some apprehension about Web 2.0 in higher education? I think it can all boil down to losing control (and something else I’ll get into later). As instructors, we lose control to our students. As marketers, we lose control to our advisers, admissions staff, and students. I think we need to come to grips with the fact that losing control in this scenario is ok. In fact, I think it’s essential.

Web 2.0 is no excuse not to use web analytics!

Thursday, September 4th, 2008

I’m not sure how to even start this post. I hate using the term Web 2.0 because it’s come to mean *anything* and therefore not really mean anything. This all isn’t new, but if you think about it, higher education websites are just starting to scratch the surface using blogs, wikis, Twitter, Facebook, Second Life, and others.

How do you know it’s working? How do you know your users/students/etc are finding this stuff useful?