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Business Critical: Universal Analytics, Twitter Ads “Random,” Emojis on Desktop

Ryan Parlee

By Ryan Parlee

Business Critical is our weekly collection of what’s new, exciting, and insightful for business leaders from the world of the web, marketing, social media, and more.

Universal Analytics Goes Prime Time

For a while now, Google has been “beta testing” their next generation of their nearly-ubiquitous analytics software.

This week, though, they released the official version, moving the new tracking system out of beta. For those who aren’t quite so data-nerdy, here’s why this is a big deal: Universal Analytics completely shifts the idea of analytics from simple tracking of website interactions into a robust and powerful way to measure consumer behavior across all devices and engagements.

It can track page views, offline actions, mobile usage, and more on a per-user basis — all at the same time. In practice, you could actually build a system that ties real-world interaction at a trade show to later web activity by the same person, and then view that journey data through Analytics. It’s cool stuff.

Watch the video below for some more ideas on how this might work in practice.

Read about Google’s roll out on the official G blog.

Twitter Ads Missing the Mark

Twitter-users-think-ads-randomApparently, there is a lot of confusion about Twitter ads.

According to a new study from Deutsche Bank, 40% of respondents report not noticing ads on Twitter, but 80% said they had seen “Promoted tweets” (which are ads, in case you’re one who isn’t clear.)

Some may view this mix up as a nod to the effectiveness of Twitter’s native ad platform. But, I’m a bit reluctant to call it a victory. I think that brands need to be clear and transparent in their advertising, and confusion from the outset is a shaky way to start any relationship. Nearly 50% of the respondents in this same study reported that ads they have seen “felt random” and only 17% say they find them relevant. Clearly, there’s some disconnect.

As advertisers, we need to make sure that we are targeting the right people with the right messages at the right time — and also making it clear the nature of our relationship with that person. There’s definitely some room for improvement.

See more information from this study on Marketing Land.

Emojis are Here — For Everyone

Those cute little icons and smiley faces that have been popularized mostly by mobile phones are now available to all Twitter users.

Before a new update this week, desktop PC users generally didn’t get to see Emojis that were sent by tweeters using mobile phones, but now they can.

This probably seems a bit silly — even juvenile. But, there is certainly some truth to the idea that Emojis have some impact on both the way we are able to communicate with others in digital media and how we do it in practice. And, especially with limited space and attention, these little pops of color can have a dramatic impact in the way a message is noticed, interpreted, and remembered. Don’t underestimate these guys.

See Twitter Support’s official Emoji announcement — both in tweet form and chock-full of celebratory icons.

Top image via Flickr user Titanas.


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