Webtrends' new digital marketing optimization platform Webtrends Ads relies on Marin's technology, providing search data to help marketers bid accurately and meet campaign performance and engagement goals. The offering supports application and ad creation, bid optimization and measurement for Facebook in one platform.
Webtrends clients gain data on impressions, the amount spent on campaigns, and other paid-search information. Marin clients gain Web site conversion and related financial data. It's also about using consistent data to drive business decisions across the enterprise. Each company believes the integration will add new customers to their existing base. Webtrends VP of products Casey Carey says: "Our goal is to double our customer count in the next year or so," which for this product stands between 1,000 and 1,200.
Aside from adding clients, Carey expects the deal to assist in growing the analytics company's "small position" in the paid-search market. The company sees this as an opportunity to tighten integration between Webtrends products, as well as those from other companies, and help marketers drive brand awareness to increase revenue through Facebook campaigns. "It's less about having a stand-alone solution these days, and more about having an integrated suite to drive greater value," he says, admitting that companies have "maxed out the value they can get from point solutions."
Companies this year will invest $220 million globally to advertise on social games and social media sites such as Facebook, according to eMarketer. Estimates from the market research firm put spending at $293 million in 2011. Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg recently told Bloomberg News that advertisers have increased spending on the social network by more than 10 times during the past year.
Carey isn't the only ad executive who believes marketers need additional support that combines tools. Integrating platforms across a variety of companies have become a value-added solution for clients. Platforms built on Web services with API integration make it easy to pass data back and forth between applications. BrightEdge inked a deal with SEO tools firm SEOmoz to integrate the SEOmoz Linkscape index of 450 billion links in its SEO platform to provide marketers with a list of the exact backlinks that competitors use to rank above the fold in organic search results. These cross-license deals will become more prevalent as companies agree to work together rather than in silos.
Marin Software, which focuses on paid-search keyword data, now has an opportunity to integrate a host of Web analytics data that are difficult to get, like keyword expansion from natural search or site search collected from the Web site, says Marin Director Matt Lawson.
The tie-ins to site optimization also provide an advantage. "With paid search you're trying to optimize the click to drive the ROI, but once people get to the landing page that needs to be optimized as well to have a holistic campaign," Lawson says.
When asked what happens when the integration works so well that clients want more; Webtrends' Carey jokingly says "a merger."
Webtrends Ads rolls out for new accounts in October, with upgrades to existing Webtrends Ad Director available now. It supports publishers across paid search, mobile search, and Facebook Ads, as well as the Google Display Network. The platform -- available in English, German, French and Japanese -- provides multi-byte and multi-currency support, enabling trafficking of keywords for campaigns worlwide. Future extension will support campaigns in Baidu, Naver and other API-enabled networks.