If you don’t know Gartner you should. Gartner is one of the smartest Internet marketing and IT trends “think tank” consulting firm. You could lose a lot of sleep figuring out if Gartner, Forrester or BCG (Boston Consulting Group) is the BEST “write the white paper, sell the consulting services” rock and roll band. U2, Stones or Zepplin? It comes down to personal preference.
I like Gartner for the IT slant into Internet marketing, Forrester for the forest view (sorry about the pun) and BCG for their ability to matrix seemingly disparate stuff. As much as I love these guys I don’t usually recommend their sites. Most of their sites tend toward the overcrowded textual, engineering side of the brain (Gartner is the worst “too much too fast” offender).
How many engineers you know who do more with less? My dad is an engineer and more with less isn’t in his vocabulary. I could go on (and on) about heroes, hierarchies and navigational taxonomy but let’s do that another day. Today let’s admire a STEAL THIS feature hidden in Gartner’s underbrush – steal their MY ALERTS feature (example below).
Why am I excited about his little gem hidden so well in the weeds? Here is why:
- Gartner My Alerts is the best kind of content curation (OPC)
- Easy to Create
- Low Cost Way To Profile and Wrap The Site
Other People’s Curation is the cheapest curation there is. The cousin of UGC (user generated content), OPC is a magical idea and executed so beautifully simple, so innocuous here (I would buzz up something as cool as this too much so Kudos to Gartner on the sneaky restraint they show here).
Easy To Create, Easy To Use Website Feature
The genius of Gartner’s My Alerts area is your customers provide the keywords and tags and you just do what they tell you. Better have GREAT internal search to even think about firing or creating a cool but resource hog feature like this btw. Easy on the front-end probably represents some imagination and pain in the back-end, but not a HUGE leap for most sophisticated internal search algos like Endeca or whatever Adobe is calling the old Omniture now.
Low Cost Profiling and Segmentation
We live in a time of over abundance and hyper relevance. Google’s Panda demands relevance, email marketing is all but over UNLESS you are shipping relevant messages and social is relevance on steroids. Here comes Gartner with a cool new feature that doesn’t break the bank to create and hits the new Internet marketing and web development Nirvana – do a little get a lot. What could you get from such a cool internal search modification?
- Personas and Profiles for anyone using My Alerts
- Enough raw data you should be able to model the rest of your ecosystem
- Conversion rates are bound to go up
- Site heuristics are bound to improve (lower bounce, higher time on site, more pages viewed)
If you do what I do for a living (Internet marketing and someone please explain that to the moms) those bullets above = MONEY. In my last gig a .5% improvement in cart abandonment meant $1M bucks to the bottom line and that was BEFORE Google’s Panda’s “change the SEO universe” algorithm changes. Double my estimate now since Google values sites MORE when their heuristic KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators) improve When KPIs such as Bounce Rates, Time On Site, Pages Viewed, New vs. Returning improve quality scores go up and Google-life gets better. .
The other cool part, and I suspect this is what drove Gartner to create such a new feature, is we are about to be knee deep in cool curation tools. HTML5 and CSS3 mean teams like Atlantic BT’s can make websites do magical, magical things. I keep insisting we aren’t in the “website” development business anymore. Atlantic BT creates platforms, platforms capable of wrapping around visitors with dynamic zones, internal search feeds fired from click path data and enough predictive modeling that we approach Isasc Asimov’s Foundation promise of predicting the future – at least at the macro level.
We are all more predictable than we realize, read Bursts by Barabasi to understand just how scary predictable we can be. Our mathematical patterns can be detected and built upon by smart Internet marketers. Yes I heard the gasp of “privacy scare” too.
Trust Internet marketers because we NEVER look at individual data. Individuals cut out from the pack (no matter how small and relevant “packs’ are getting smaller and smaller) are outliers. The stack, the group, is what we analyze and try to understand. Internet marketers spend our lives thinking about how to make life better for shoppers, visitors or readers. Granted we spend all this time thinking about you because it helps US, but you the customer, you the visitor, are in control. We serve you.
Steal this cool My Alerts feature from Gartner. I bet you lunch “alerts” and “curation” are about to be LARGE and IN CHARGE in your Internet marketing. If they aren’t then you better let me buy lunch (lol).