Since I am always thinking about web analytics and whatnot (its a disease really), I was wondering how in the future someone is going to figure out how to measure activity off of other sites that ultimately determine success on your site. In this case I am not speaking of campaigns or banner ads, but rather someone learning about your product somewhere and checking it out somewhere else.
Example: I am an avid reader of Pitchfork. Great writings on indie music, and usually a great place for me to find out about new bands. I don’t always like what they think is decent, but it at least makes me aware of the existence of these acts that usually aren’t on the radio or tv. Then again I haven’t listed to the radio in 4 years anyway. So say I am on Pitchfork and read an article on the Decemberists new record. Then I go to iTunes or eMusic and check it out an buy it.
So if I am iTunes or eMusic how can I attribute my sale in some manner to the learning on Pitchfork? Because wouldn’t you want to know that reading on that site ultimately made you aware of the new record by the Decemberists, and that the favorable review peaked your interest enough to check it out?
But how do we correlate those 2 events? Wouldn’t we have to adapt to a ‘master’ tag of some sorts that followed you everywhere? I know this is obviously possible for things you pay for with campaigns, but how do you tap into the recommenders on the web found in blogs, forums, and indie sites? Cuz this would be valuable information in how you go about promoting certain types of things, but yet I feel there is a big blind spot associated with it. So in your metrics it looks like you get ‘organic’ traffic, but really it was cultivated elsewhere. I want to know how much is being cultivated.