Guest Post: Measuring Your Audience, Why a Standard for DMOs Makes Sense
Today, a guest post on the Travel 2.0 blog from our colleague Chris Adams at Miles Media. As many of you read yesterday, Chris was involved with the white paper / post ‘Monitor, Measure and Manage – Best Practices in Web Analytics for DMOs’ and has advanced that work into a larger recommendation for standardization.
In days when DMOs are seeking to validate the public dollars invested in their budgets and champion the importance of tourism to their local and state economies, reporting has become more critical than ever. Because the Web is one of the dominant marketing and communication channels for most destinations, tracking Web sites’ online activity and audiences is a critical part of ROI reporting. However, this reporting can be complex–difficult to validate, benchmark or communicate to stakeholders–because of the lack of consistency and validation in the market. The range of web analytics tools, different technologies that collect these metrics and a bewildering range of terms (e.g., “visits,” “unique visits,” “visitors,” “user sessions”) undermine the credibility of our numbers and make “apples to apples” comparisons across the travel industry nearly impossible.
Industries such as TV, film, radio, movies, airlines, groceries and more benefit from a standardized approach to reporting. So could DMOs. We propose adopting a standard for DMOs to track and report on their online audience which will offer a simple, independent and accurate number (XXX “people” viewed your Web site). Options exist that are low in cost, or free, and are very simple to implement. They would enhance and not replace a DMO’s existing web analytics reporting (whether Google Analytics, Omniture, WebTrends etc). Information is power, and a standardized way to track audience measurement will benefit the entire DMO industry.
Please download the attached White Paper on a standardized audience measurement solution for DMOs. This details the options, recommends one possible solution and suggests next steps. We welcome your feedback, comment and ideas in achieving this objective. It would benefit everyone in the DMO industry.
Chris Adams. Miles Media.
So, what do you think? Do you like the idea of a measurement standard? Does it make sense for CVBs / DMOs? What about Quantcast, are you currently using it?
As always, we are open for debate, let us know in the comments section.