Let me begin by stating that it is a great step forward that Omniture and Lithium have collaborated to make it possible to have data from these two platforms/web locations integrated in Omniture’s report suite. It will indeed allow much richer insight on what customers need and care for; however I do think that this misses the key point and it is, at best, a stop gap solution. The real deal would be Seamless Integration! Take the example presented in Lithium’s web site; why is it again that BuzzAboutWireless is so separate and independent from Sprint’s corporate site? I don’t quite get the need for that separation and I think it should be avoided; that is what I tried to express in a recent post “To, From & Among”
The only case where I applaud “separating” social networking efforts from main corporate web sites is when the company caters to a large number of very different audiences, and it is necessary to drive efforts specific to the needs and desires of each of those audiences. Take an insurance company.. they may have a need to separate the experience offered to senior citizens from the one offered to the parents of teenager drivers; In those cases Omniture and Lithium this integration is extremely valuable.
What do you think?
Thanks for the provocative post. In our experience there is a wide range in social media deployments. Some companies have entirely separate sites designed explicitly to capture enthusiasm from specific marketing campaigns, while other companies embed social media so deeply into their sites that you don't know where the "site" ends and the "social media" begins. Futureshop (www.futureshop.ca) is an interesting example of the latter. It's really the customer's choice, and there is little to no technical barrier to the seamless integration that you are calling for.
Organizational barriers, on the other hand, still exist. Many who are advancing the cause of customer-facing social media in the enterprise have to do so by "running up the pirate flag." They set up separate sites, using SaaS deployments, because they don't have the support from corporate marketing and IT to do what they want to do. Then, when they're successful, they become heroes in their organizations and gain greater influence in corporate-wide social media strategies. It's quite inspiring.
To your point, the value of the Lithium/Omniture integration emerges most fully when social media sites are tightly integrated with a corporate site. The reason for this is that participatory sites provide much richer demographic and behavioral data than conventional Web sites. So people who are engaged in social media areas of a corporate site bring that demographic and behavioral data with them as they interact with the rest of the site. That information will help companies better determine what their customers actually want.
Thanks for your interest!
VP of Products
Thanks for your comment.
Let me add to your point: the organizational challenges also compose the problem when they are structured around products or services versus being aligned around audiences; this invites efforts by each of those organizations that compete for the attention of (sometimes) the same audience.
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