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      Archive for the ‘Webtrends Analytics’ Category

      Webtrends Marketing Warehouse becomes Visitor Data Mart

      posted by Webtrends Analytics 5:08 PM
      Monday, April 5, 2010

      One of the biggest challenges that software vendors face is adapting their solutions to meet market needs, especially in a quickly evolving and changing market like web analytics.  Webtrends has adapted its Marketing Warehouse solution to meet the ever-changing needs of its enterprise customers.  Today’s organizations are using our solution to help fuel marketing action systems such as email and CRM as well as fueling integration of the online visitor data we collect and enrich with their offline data sources in their enterprise data warehouses.

      As customers have changed how they use our Marketing Warehouse solution, it has become clear that the name must reflect this usage.  I am proud to announce that Webtrends Marketing Warehouse is now Webtrends Visitor Data Mart.  The solution is the same, only the name has changed!  Check out our new web pages on Visitor Data Mart.  I think you’ll like what you see.

      Engage 2010 – What’s in it for you?

      posted by Webtrends Analytics 5:08 PM
      Monday, April 5, 2010

      There really is something for everyone at Webtrends’ Engage 2010 conference!

      A sincere “thank you!” to everyone who submitted a session topic for our three-day customer conference Engage 2010, which is held next year in New Orleans February 1-4. After careful consideration of each idea, we ended up with what we feel is a wonderful array of topics in a variety of session formats that will spur forward-thinking discussions about how to get the most out of enterprise customer intelligence.

      Why are we so confident that attending our popular Engage 2010 conference will provide new insights into ways to enhance your digital marketing efforts? Because we’ve considered the type of work that you do – the marketer, the executive, the analyst, the system admin, the online retailer, the publisher, the advertiser – and we thought about what you need to know to stay on top of the fast-moving game of attracting and keeping customers.

      Here, let me show you what Engage 2010 has in store for you – no matter your area of expertise – should you smartly decide to register:

      Social Media Marketers

      Email Marketers

      IT/System Admin/Analysts

      Publishers

      Online Retailers

      Web Development and Designers

      Executives/Management/CMO

      Advertisers

      As you can see, at Engage 2010 we’ve got something for everyone. Even you! Get registered now.

      engage-logo-1 register-button

      Social Microsites: Building a better Mouse-Party

      posted by Webtrends Analytics 5:08 PM
      Monday, April 5, 2010

      Mouse party

      For years, the standby of many online direct marketers has been the use of web advertising & emails to drive customers to a linear “Conversion Microsite”. While this model remained a huge percentage online of media and production spend in 2009, I’m going argue that its dominance is waning. Brands are using Facebook to create a new class of Social Microsites that are more effective at creating both campaign-specific and long-term momentum for brands, and provide a model for what is to come.

      Mouse-Traps vs. Mouse-Parties

      Underlying this microsite evolution is a shift in the way marketers look at the online “conversion funnel”. The traditional, linear approach:

      1. Click on Banner
      2. Land on Microsite
      3. Fill out the Form

      …has been designed and refined with a constrained, one-way funnel (A-I-D-A) in mind. Effectiveness depends on winnowing down and qualifying out prospects quickly until you are left only with the handful who actually convert (fill out the form). And most attempts to create a “better mouse-trap” have focused on removing everything but the call to action so that prospects have no recourse but to either convert or leave.

      Recognizing the potential of Social Microsites requires broadening one’s view of the traditional marketing funnel to include social momentum components – such as sharing, word of mouth, referrals and evangelism. If you engage prospects in a meaningful way – and aren’t just shoving conversion form in their face – a large percentage of them will create momentum and value for your campaign… assuming the tools are available for them to do so. In this approach, the goal is instead to create a “better mouse-party”, that attracts prospects and customers through the social momentum it generates and amplifies.

      Facebook: This first real landscape for Social Microsites

      These word-of-mouth marketing principles aren’t new, but until recently there hasn’t been a place where the online audience and social marketing tools came together on a scale that could deliver significant, repeatable results. Enter Facebook.

      Facebook, with its trifecta of Ads + Pages & Tabs + Custom Apps for an audience of over 350 million, arguably offers marketers the first large-scale online landscape with all the necessary ingredients to support this kind of social marketing and momentum. We are seeing brands and agencies increasingly shifting their focus from “traditional” microsites into properties and programs that leverage Facebook as a focal point and momentum hub for a given campaign.

      While these Social Microsite initiatives often carry ROI goals that are inherited from traditional Microsites (clicks, interactions, conversions), they also target social momentum metrics that offer as more value in the long term: engagement, share of voice, insight, evangelism, etc. And just as Interface Design was the key to conversion success in traditional microsites, so is Social Experience Design critical to creating effective momentum in this new landscape.

      Predicting the Future: Social marketing evolution will accelerate

      While Facebook Ads + Pages + Apps have been the first to combine these elements into a landscape that foreshadows the evolution of traditional microsites into something much more social and integrated – other models are already on the horizon.

      Companies are using Facebook Connect to create social momentum on their own properties, and Facebook’s forthcoming OpenGraph API will likely extend that capability. Google has a raft of social momentum and integration frameworks in play, and while they have yet to explicitly connect these to AdSense – it can’t be long. Finally, advertising networks- hungry for differentiation in a crowded market- are working quickly to integrate social capabilities into campaigns that cross sites, properties and mobile experiences.

      Ultimately, the pace of evolution will likely be governed by marketers’ ability to capture the metrics associated with these new social momentum models. In order for Social Microsites to overtake their conversion-centric ancestors, they will have to be more effective at capturing direct marketing budgets… which means proving ROI. Certainly an interesting opportunity – and challenge – for those focused on measuring online marketing effectiveness today.

      Kevin Tate Headshot - close crop_bwGuest author Kevin Tate
      Kevin Tate is a principal at StepChange Group, who develops Facebook, widgets, and social websites for Microsoft, Clorox, Nike, Frito Lay, Ernst and Young, Bayer, and more. Kevin was formerly the VP of Marketing at Kronos, and VP of Business Development at Fort Point Partners. He is a frequent speaker on the topic of Social Marketing, and currently serves on the board the Portland Advertising Federation.

      Announcing more speakers and helping launch IgniteNOLA

      posted by Webtrends Analytics 5:08 PM
      Monday, April 5, 2010

      rives
      Engage New Orleans M.C., Rives

      Last month we announced a first and second round of speakers. Today we are pleased to announce our final list of selected speakers.

      This year’s Engage in New Orleans is shaping up to be an epic conference for us. We have top executives from the leading marketing and measurement companies as well as the new and established publishing brands. Additionally, we will have our usual mix of workshops and demonstrations for applied learning on Webtrends solutions. But, it’s not just the line up of speakers that is impressive. We’re also doing a unique format.

      Sprints
      At Engage 2010, we are doing Ignite-style presentations – or sprints – instead of traditional hour-long keynotes. Presenters have 10 minutes to share their most valuable insights on a wide range of topics important to digital marketers, analysts and customers. Some of the Engage Sprinters include:

      • David Alston, VP of Marketing for the social media, marketing and engagement company Radian 6
      • Jennifer Zeszut, founder and CEO of the sentiment analysis startup Scout Labs
      • Steve Woods, CTO for Eloqua
      • Sean Power and Alistair Croll, co-founders of Watching Websites
      • Douglas Karr, CEO, DK New Media
      • Selina Allibhai, COO, Acronym Media

      IgniteNOLA
      Speaking of Ignite, we were inspired to use this format from attending and sponsoring Ignite Portland here in our headquarters hometown. We partnered with the locally-based, non-profit that organizes the event, Legion of Tech, to reach out to event planners in New Orleans to kick off the Engage conference with an Ignite. And so IgniteNOLA was born! We are so pumped about starting this Engage with a night of entertainment put on by the local tech scene. It’s also an honor to be the patron for this inaugural event that will live on in New Orleans long after our conference concludes.

      Planners are now accepting talks for IgniteNOLA.

      Big thanks to Legion of Tech and congrats to the IgniteNOLA organizers! We look forward to the show!

      engage-logo-1 register-button shape-agenda-button

      Webinar: Proving the ROI for Webtrends’ Optimize

      posted by Webtrends Analytics 5:08 PM
      Monday, April 5, 2010

      Prove testing and site optimization ROI and get your 2010 budget approved!

      Webtrends' Optimze

      It’s the end of 2009, and many companies are planning the allocation of their marketing dollars for next year. For a marketer who needs to make the case for a testing and site optimization budget – even with the world-wide increase in company time and dollars spent on digital marketing efforts – it’s still a tricky business. There are questions that need solid answers: What does an ROI calculation for site conversion testing look like? What benefits come from landing page testing? What are the associated costs of such testing?

      On December 17, 2009 at 11am (PST) Webtrends’ Casey Carey (VP of Products) and Bob Garcia (Product Marketing) will help you answer these questions – and more – in our upcoming webinar Build Your Business Case for Optimization. This is the first in our Optimize Webinar Series, which is designed to help the forward-thinking digital marketer get the most out of their campaigns.

      Casey and Bob will address business-case questions:

      • How do I test offers, messaging, or sign-up forms?
      • What is site testing and optimization?
      • What types of sites and pages can benefit the most from testing?
      • What are the tangible business benefits of site testing?
      • What are the associated costs and sourcing options?
      • What does a typical ROI calculation look like?

      Webtrends’ Optimize is a self-service solution designed to help companies increase their conversion rates, conduct targeted tests quickly, identify smarter ways to deliver relevant content, and easily create custom reports to show ROI.

      Chances are the digital marketing teams for your competitors already have their 2010 testing and site optimization budget approved. Sign up now for the Build Your Business Case for Optimization webinar and get the business-case answers you need for your testing and site optimization budget.

      Microsites are not worth the effort for small marketing departments

      posted by Webtrends Analytics 5:08 PM
      Monday, April 5, 2010

       

      blog_traffic

      At least not in most cases, and not from our experience. Last summer, we launched the Open Campaign, an experiment designed to take you “behind the scenes of a marketing campaign” and show, openly and honestly, all the components that go into designing and executing a successful digital marketing campaign. We wanted to show it, track it and share it all in one place, which is why we decided this campaign should live on a microsite.

      Over the course of several months, we got a substantive amount of interest in the campaign and strongly positive feedback about the concept along with some bottom line success. Most marketers would be proud of that outcome and label the project a success. However, we see the data as an opportunity to get better. The Open Campaign microsite was a tremendous amount of effort for our 14 person marketing team. Looking critically at it, I’m convinced the campaign idea is sound, however, the execution within a microsite is not efficient for our team.

      Microsites = Starting Over
      Launching a microsite is essentially starting over. Not only did we have to design and develop a new site from scratch, but we also had to build an audience for the site.  In addition to the start up effort, now we had another property that needed ongoing content.  While our corporate blog is a great vehicle for the generation of interest in our company we don’t see a greater value than our corporate blog or webtrends.com.

      We invested large amounts of time and resources into designing, building and maintaining a microsite that ended up, ironically, teaching us a lot about how not to do a marketing campaign – mainly, that no matter how great the idea and how elegant the execution, isolating the campaign from your other web assets puts a strain on a small marketing team.

      Next Steps for The Open Campaign
      Never underestimate the importance of context. Using a microsite means starting over in terms of building an audience. You lose the de facto traffic, the current lead volume, brand recognition and customer trust that you’ve already established through your existing web assets. When factored into the resources required to maintain multiple web properties, it generally isn’t worth the investment to separate an effort from the rest of your marketing channels this way. Especially when you have the opportunity to energize a specific property with a new campaign idea.

      That said, there are certain situations where microsites can be effective, namely for events. Case in point, we built a microsite for Engage 2010, our annual customer conference, and it’s working beautifully. The difference is that with events, you need to build an audience from scratch. Chances are that you’ll draw this audience from your larger marketing base, but when it comes to attendees, you are always starting at zero. You also need to manage large amounts of information in a single, accessible place. In this scenario, creating a microsite can make a lot of sense.

      So we’ve learned something, and true to our word, in iterative fashion, we are using that knowledge to get better. Rather than maintain a separate microsite, we’re integrating the Open Campaign content into the corporate blog first and into webtrends.com second. The “behind the scenes” sharing will continue – in context this time. We’ll also continue to work with our partners in the Open Campaign to bring their technologies and our integrations into our core web assets and continue share our experiences with you.

      What have your experiences been with microsites? Have you found them to be worth your effort?

      Easy RSS Tracking

      posted by Webtrends Analytics 5:08 PM
      Monday, April 5, 2010

      Guest Post from Curtis Smith

      curtis-pic This post is about the different types of data tracking software for web sites and how to tell your web site is being tracked. It was written by Curtis Smith, Webtrends’ Technical Account Manager. Curtis spends his day assisting Webtrends customers manage the health and flow of their web site analytics data.

      RSS allows a wide variety of applications to access a list of links. It is often used to provide information on frequently updated content such as articles, white papers, and news. This can be an important connection to your customers.

      RSS pages are in a very simple format: text with no javascript, graphics, or other rich media we have become used to. RSS is so simple it can strike fear in the hearts of advanced analysts using SDC tags. The fancy tools of custom javascript tracking and GIF tags don’t work on the page! Complicating the issue is many RSS readers do not pass referring information. So you can’t reliably tell by referrer the amount of site traffic that is generated by your RSS feed. You can’t see user actions and you can’t see where they are coming from!

      You can implement server side tagging. This is doing tagging script on the server, having it send the tracking information instead of on-page code. But then you might have to talk to one of those IT hardware people (scary in itself). It may be you don’t have access to the servers or resources to do server side implementation.

      There is an easy method of tracking traffic from your RSS feed if the links go to content on your site. You can pass a parameter that tells the destination page that this traffic comes from the RSS feed. The tracking then takes place on your main site. The limitation is the regular page on your site needs to support SDC javascript tags. This method does not work if the RSS link is to a PDF or other file download or to a page not on your site.

      Implementing the code:

      There are two parameters that support RSS traffic reporting.

      WT.rss_f=FeedName This parameter identifies the RSS feed.

      WT.rss_a=ArticleName This parameter identifies the RSS article.

      This is optional if you have the article name from the destination page.

      You add these parameters with appropriate values to the link on the RSS page:

      rss_1

      Note, this is an example of how simple the RSS format is. You don’t have the <a href#&.com&^%@$#target=#@ /a> in HTML. It just says “link” and you put in the link.

      The parameters can be used in one of the built-in reports such as RSS Feed Usage.

      rss_2

      Or you can develop custom reports. By looking for pages that have the parameter(s) we know which views/visits came from the RSS feed. We can sort and link them how we want. For example a common report is comparing how many people read the article from the RSS vs other methods (search, direct, referred from other site). This lets you focus efforts on the most effective channel and make improvements to other channels. For the more adventurous measure how your RSS articles attributes to revenue or success events.

      As an alternative here’s a quick trick done with a different report. They just used a campaign ID with their RSS links.

      rss_3

      Then the RSS traffic drops right into your regular campaign tracking reports.

      There now. That wasn’t too scary was it?

      5 questions with Eric Peterson on hiring John Lovett

      posted by Webtrends Analytics 5:08 PM
      Monday, April 5, 2010

      Web Analytics Demystified announced yesterday that former Forrester Analyst, John Lovett, is joining the team. I had the chance to catch up with Web Analytics Demystified founder, Eric Peterson, to ask him a few questions about what this new move means.

      About Eric Peterson

      eric
      Eric Peterson (@erictpeterson)is a web analytics consultant and founder of Web Analytics Demystified. He is the author of a book by the same name Web Analytics Demystified as well as Web Site Measurement Hacks. Eric is also the creator of Twitalyzer (@Twitalyzer), a popular Twitter measurement tool.

      First, congrats on attracting top talent like John Lovett.

      Thanks Justin. Given that John could have gone more or less anywhere he wanted within the sector after working for a great brand like Forrester I am honored that he’d choose Web Analytics Demystified. During our conversations, and you can read this in his “Hello World” blog post on our site, it became clear to me that John recognized the value that Aurelie and I have built at Web Analytics Demystified and that there were great synergies between our collective view of how this market should and will evolve.

      What does access to John mean for your clients? New capabilities, more bandwidth, both, more?

      Great question. First off, all existing Web Analytics Demystified retainer clients now have access to both John and Aurelie’s expertise. My view is that our primary differentiator is our depth of experience, especially regarding the truly strategic use of this technology, and clearly giving clients access to John and Aurelie’s expertise will create immediate and tangible value.

      Longer term, having John on the team does allow Web Analytics Demystified to be more places at once here in the U.S. I have had to turn down way too many great speaking and consulting opportunities simply because I have a family and am somewhat protective about my time. John has a young family as well, but between the three of us you will see a much larger presence at public events around the world starting in 2010.

      What is in store the near term future of Web Analytics Demystified? 5 year outlook? More growth, big plans, more?

      Our goals are very simple: To work with the best technology firms and end-user businesses working to power true competitive differentiation through the use of digitally collected data. When I quit my job at Visual Sciences it was because I saw a huge opportunity to provide strategic guidance to the best companies in the world. It turns out I under-estimated the opportunity pretty significantly and so by adding Rock Stars like John and Aurelie Web Analytics Demystified is able to better execute against the opportunity that exists today, much less the one that I believe will emerge in 2010 and beyond.

      There is a trend of analyst firm talent going to work for consulting firms like yours. Gartner just acquired AMR. You’ve been through the Jupiter acquisition. Is the analyst business model in trouble?

      No. Companies like Forrester and Gartner are stronger than ever in my opinion, primarily because when belts are tight every manager wants as much validation about their investments as possible. I love working in compliment with the analyst firms because our business is the next logical step after you get their advice. Bill Gassman is a great resource for our entire community, as is Suresh Vittal, Megan Burns, and I don’t doubt whoever Forrester gets to replace John.

      Top tech blogs like Read Write Web and GigaOm are now offering reports much like traditional analyst firms. Does WAD have any plans to provide such reports?

      None that I’m prepared to discuss.

      Coming back to analytics, what does your team see as the major trends for this industry over the next 5 years?

      Well, I don’t know if you read it but I just published a white paper with SAS called “The Coming Revolution in Web Analytics“. In the paper I speculate that over the next handful of years our industry is going to have to become more comfortable with the “analytics” portion of our name and start to leverage more powerful analytics applications that don’t just help users visualize data but actually model, forecast, and predict future outcomes.

      Not to beat a dead horse but for the most part what Webtrends and your competitors provide today are tools for data visualization and reporting, not true analysis. You can learn a lot from using your tools, especially when an experienced operator is at the helm, but as soon as we start to ask questions about “what if” and the statistical validity of some of the data we’re using we either A) end up working in Excel or B) end up stuck.

      And don’t get me wrong, I recognize that business intelligence as it currently exists in many companies is a broken process. But my impression of the market is that if we don’t get senior management’s attention pretty quickly we’re going to be relegated to the sidelines (especially the for fee solutions like Webtrends in light of Google and Yahoo’s continued efforts to improve their applications.)

      On this point an outsider to our community recently said “hey, you guys all suck” (he of course used like 80,000 words to say that, but I digress.) I don’t think we suck — I think that web analytics and the vendors, consultants, and especially practitioners are totally awesome, wonderful, and amazing people — but we clearly need to do more to demonstrate the value that the use of web analytics (sic) tools provide within the Enterprise.

      Did I mention that if you’re stuck figuring out how to make this all happen you can give John Lovett at Web Analytics Demystified a call? LOL! Thanks for the great questions Justin.

      Our Congrats to John!

      john John Lovett is a well respected analyst, especially by us. He is a change agent for web analytics, testing and optimization technologies. He joins Web Analytics Demystified as a newly minted partner. You can read about his excitement joining the team in his inaugural post Let the Wild Rumpus Start.

      Watch This Space: Brand New Look for the Webtrends Blog

      posted by Webtrends Analytics 5:08 PM
      Monday, April 5, 2010

      Webtrends new blog!

      We are totally super-crazy-excited to announce a major reorganization and design update of our corporate blog!

      In the spirit of the Webtrends Manifesto, where we vow to help others look beyond numbers in their quest to understand the relationship between data and people, we’ve made searching for information here an intuitive, painless process. We want this place to become where you always go to when you’re looking for new ways to make sense of analytics data. Our stellar design team got to work scheming and dreaming about the best way to use this space to meet our goals with the biggest possible splash.

      The new blog design is a clean, user-friendly space with a simplified navigation. We’ve stream-lined content by narrowing down the types of information you’ll find here into three main topics: Best Practices, Industry News, and Inside Webtrends. Each topic has its own page, and all sub-categories of all topics are now available in the right sidebar for your leisurely perusing. Now you’re always just a few clicks away from seeing every post on any topic!

      We matched our corporate blog with aesthetics found at Webtrends.com and added a fancy new interactive carousel to highlight important posts. You can also see post popularity rankings and subscribe to feeds for each main topic. And, of course, all of Webtrends’ social media web site accounts are present and accounted for.

      We think you’ll find the new-and-improved blog a useful resource for all things analytics-related. However, please keep in mind that we plan to keep tweaking the arrangement of content and implement new features until we get it perfect.

      So, what do you think of Webtrends’ pretty, reorganized corporate blog? Are we headed in the right direction? Help us stay on track to achieve our goals by sharing your thoughts and suggestions in the comments below. Thanks, and remember to watch this space!

      Wrap up report for our Max ad “Should cyclists pay a road tax?”

      posted by Webtrends Analytics 5:08 PM
      Monday, April 5, 2010

      Findings

      After much anticipation, we are pleased to release our final report on the conversation that ensued from the release of our ad on the Max light rail train asking, “Should cyclists pay a road tax?”

      More education about how roads are funded is needed

      No one seems to really know how roads are funded in Oregon. As we wrote in our report, “the amount of misinformation shared throughout this campaign was staggering.” That misinformation and lack of understanding took the debate to bizarre and unproductive places.

      As is often the case online, people spent a great deal of time debating wrong facts, which leads to heated and unproductive conversation. Accurate and well-distributed data would at least focus that debate.

      Today, we still can’t say for certain how roads are funded in Oregon. There is a national statistic from the Federal Highway Administration, but it includes sales tax as a funding source, which doesn’t exist in Oregon. Claims from participants in the conversation suggest the funding picture for Oregon is quite different, but we have not been able to validate that claim. In a discussion with Scott Bricker (former head of the Bicycle Transportation Alliance), he suggested less than 20 people how road funding really works in Oregon. Despite investing a lot of time researching it, we still cannot say we’re among those 20 people.

      Secondly, we know for certain that roads are funded through taxes, whether property, gas, or other taxes. None of us pay the same amount for these taxes. The underlying motivation to understand contribution is really about fair allocation of funding for infrastructure. That brings us to our second finding, which is the real crux of the issue.

      More explanation of how bike infrastructure benefits all road users

      There are a few schools of thought here. A very small group feels like separate infrastructure for bikes is the wrong way to go. Most people feel like dedicated infrastructure for bikes is the solution, but they don’t all agree on who pays for it or who receives the benefits from it. Our conclusion is that more explanation of how bike infrastructure benefits all road users would help.

      All of the discussion about funding sources is an attempt to argue for equal contribution for equal usage, which is an attempt to make things “fair.” But, explicit usage is not the only way roads provide us with value. Roads enable the transportation of people and things. Sometimes those things are on trucks headed to the store where we will buy them later. Sometimes roads enable an ambulance to reach us, or the police to stop a crime in progress. We use the roads to get to work, visit friends and family, and to get to the places we want to go. When Oregon thinks about the taxes we pay for roads, the real concern should be focused on if we’re getting the maximum return on our investment.

      This is where arguments about decreased congestion from increased bike usage get their power. This is how safety and accessibility start to matter more to us than who paid for what.

      There are amazing debates the public could have about congestion, safety, accessibility, and more but only if people have good data. So, in addition to funding sources, we need more data about allocation and usage as well as effective distribution of that data.

      Too many people riding bikes ride dangerously

      Speaking of safety; much of the conversation was distracted from tangents about people riding bikes dangerously. There was significant push back about the danger of motor vehicles. To me, the safety concerns of mixed-use roads are not trivial. Vehicles that have drastically different weight, inertia, and protection using the same space is a recipe for disaster. If the safety of that ecosystem is dependent upon high attention from users, that makes less sense than designing the spaces to be fool-proof to begin with. Inherently safer road designs would mitigate this debate.

      Where do we go from here

      Tolerance
      The most important thing we can all do is to be considerate of each other. Since this discussion covers money, safety, identity, and more, tempers can flare. If someone is making a direct attack, it’s hard to turn the other cheek. Here are some ways we can avoid adding to the tension:

      • Don’t get angry if people don’t know where road funding comes from. Remember, throughout this discussion no one provided reliable data about the funding of Oregon roads.
      • Don’t assume that because you heard some guy once talk about roads and taxes at a cocktail party that he was an expert. That’s true for what you read on blogs too (including this one).
      • Education is not evenly distributed; so don’t be surprised to find ignorance. Also remember that your information might be wrong, so don’t wield it as though it is undisputed fact.
      • Be kind to your fellow road users. We are all entitled to the road and just trying to live our lives.

      Unhappy Hour
      Someone on the Shift List suggested bringing people together in a town hall fashion and talking through the issues. When people are talking anonymously over the Internet, it’s easy to dismiss or marginalize other people. In person, however, we could talk through our questions and concerns to arrive at some much needed consensus.

      Doing the right thing
      If this had been a survey for a Webtrends client, this is what we would advise our client to do:

      • Find the correct answers to road funding in Oregon to put the debate to rest.
      • Frame the conversation to be about return on investment, not pay for usage. As long as we are talking about explicit road usage in exchange for equal contribution; no one wins. We get value out of the roads from not directly using them, so let’s ask what is the optimal configuration of the roads to provide everyone with the most value.
      • Encourage road user accountability. This means we’ll need to talk about things like: extending insurance to bikes, equal law enforcement for moving violations, establishing vehicular homicide laws to crack down on lethal driving, etc. There is a lot to discuss there, but just having the discussion will do a lot to improve the relations between vehicle operators who feel other vehicles are operating dangerously.

      Would you ask the same question if you could do it over?

      download If we had the opportunity, we would have asked the same question. The information we gathered was extremely informative and that was the point of our exercise. If we would have asked a question like, “Are we getting the maximum return on our investment in road infrastructure?” not only would we have had much less response, but it wouldn’t have reached the same people. We saw a disconnect, and this process was one that got to the bottom of the disconnect in order to make a recommendation for how to address it. We feel very good about our recommendations. Download our report to read more about our recommendations.

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