Like many bloggers and web publishers, I have a dashboard to monitor how users interact with content on my website so I can continuously improve the user experience. I discovered a metric called “Clicks” which tracks outbound traffic from hyperlinks scattered throughout my webpage. It occurred to me that I was generously driving hundreds of users to other websites, but getting nothing in return!
VigLink provides a return, a monetary return, for outbound traffic. With little effort, web publishers and bloggers are able to monetize their content through VigLink’s transparent link affiliate and insertion services. VigLink converts existing links on a web page to merchant affiliate links when clicked, and subsequently tracks outbound user activity on the merchant site. Each time a purchase is made on the linked merchant site, the referring web page owner earns a commission from the merchant. In addition to existing links on a web page, VigLink offers intelligent link insertion on keywords to drive additional outbound traffic and purchases. This is possible through Big Data analytics, whereby VigLink Data Scientists build predictive models from all the click data collected, to determine what keywords are likely to lead to purchases.
Since launching in February 2010, VigLink monetizes content for 20,000 web sites across 13,000 merchants (destination sites), tracking millions of clicks per month. Maybe I can finally make my millions using VigLink to monetize content on this blog? In order to develop my in-content advertising strategy AND showcase an interesting Big Data use case, I met VigLink CTO Christian Romming to learn more.
1. What is VigLink and how is your company unique in the industry?
Earlier this month, Twitter stepped up its enforcment of an API restriction that does not allow the building of ‘client apps that mimic or reproduce the mainstream Twitter consumer client experience’. Around the same time, LinkedIn announced that its users would no longer be able to display their tweets on LinkedIn. Will LinkedIn’s user experience be negatively impacted? What might happen to other applications? !
Fortunately, for every door that closes, a new one opens. DataSift is one of a select few companies that Twitter has entrusted to resyndicate and provide access to the full Twitter feed for use in internal analytics applications. Essentially, Twitter is leaving the door open, but through a process managed by third parties. There is one catch – you have to pay a fee for access. The good news is that the fee comes with value added platform services from DataSift, targeted at your specific industry and business need.
What I found most interesting about DataSift is their vision. DataSift believes that every entity (small, medium, or large) should have the ability to take advantage of Big Data, and especially Social Data. As DataSift Founder & CTO Nick Halstead puts it, “We are trying to help democratize the Big Data industry to enable entrepreneurs and enterprises to easily create socially-intelligent applications. No data-scientists required, no Hadoop expertise needed.”
I was so moved by DataSift’s mission, that I used my social network to contact Rob Bailey, CEO of DataSift, to learn more on how the company can bring Big Data even to the little guy for use in analytics platforms.
1. Anyone can access and manipulate Twitter data using publicly available APIs. Why would an organization pay for access to Twitter data through DataSift?