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Content Analytics – Piece of Cake?

Content Analytics – Piece of Cake?

When we speak with prospective clients, we get asked a lot about the difference between Parse.ly and traditional web analytics tools like Google Analytics and Adobe. Why do we need Parse.ly if we have GA? Can’t we do this already? What makes Parse.ly so special?

Historically, content teams had no other option than to rely on traditional web analytics tools to get visibility into their audience’s behavior with their content, so we understand where these questions come from. The issue that we hear from so many of the people we work with though, is that traditional web analytics tools aren’t designed for content teams. And for any product you use, the reason that it was built really really matters. 

What makes Parse.ly special aren’t just the features and functionality – it goes all the way to the core of what our product is trying to solve. Unlike GA and Adobe, Parse.ly Analytics was built specifically with the needs and challenges of content teams in mind. It’s a content analytics solution. Content is in our DNA. 

If you’re trying to do content analytics with a traditional web analytics or BI tool, here’s an analogy to explain why you might not be getting the results you’re hoping for. 

The Chocolate Pecan Flourless Cake

Imagine you’ve got a craving for a chocolate pecan flourless cake – an oddly specific craving, but you need it and it has to be perfect. You have a list of the necessary ingredients, a recipe for a generic cake, and a $100 gift card to a fancy restaurant that serves this exact cake. There are three ways you can go about satisfying your craving.

Maybe you’ve been binge watching The Great British Bakeoff and you’re itching to try out the baking thing in real life. If you love a challenge and you’re feeling creative, you could try and freestyle the cake yourself, looking only at the list of ingredients. It sounds like a fun project, but realistically it’s going to take a lot of trial and error. You have to go buy all of the ingredients and take the time to figure out how to use and combine them appropriately. More likely than not, the cake is going to come out looking pretty rough.

You could also attempt baking the cake yourself looking at the generic recipe. If you try to adapt the recipe to the specific cake you’re making you might end up with something that more closely resembles what you’ve been craving. The problem, though, is that it takes you all day, your kitchen is a mess, and it’s a far cry from the perfect chocolate pecan flourless cake you wanted, more like a grocery store cake with pecans and chocolate on top.

Or you could use the gift card and just go to the fancy restaurant to have a professional chef make the cake for you. Much less effort and it’s baked to perfection. If you ask me, this is the best way to satisfy your craving.

Choosing the Right Content Analytics

The chocolate pecan flourless cake here represents content analytics, and the three ways of getting the cake represent the ways you can go about using content analytics. You know that content matters for your organization and you know that if you get the right insights around your content it can help drive your business forward, so you need to choose the best content analytics solutions for your team.

If you try using BI tools to do content analytics, you’re freestyling the cake. You have the ingredients – your data, but you have to figure out how to organize, visualize, and report on it yourself. It could take years to create a solution for your content team that is actually helpful and worth the effort and resources.

If you try using GA or Adobe to do content analytics, you’re working off a generic recipe trying to make a specific type of cake. The issue with traditional web analytics tools comes back to what I mentioned earlier –  the reason a product is built really really matters. There’s a way to make them work for content analytics, but they’re designed for things like ecommerce and product analytics. You’d need to build the content analytics functionality yourself, which not everyone can do.

If you’re looking for the best content analytics, you have two real choices. You can try to build it yourself with a BI tool, which will require tons of resources, time, and expertise, or you can use Parse.ly. Just like with the cake, the best way to get what you need is to go to the experts in the field. 

Parse.ly has the recipe for content analytics, and we have the team and expertise to execute it perfectly. We’ve been working with content teams across hundreds of companies and in just about every vertical for over 10 years, and continue to expand our solution to solve the most challenging problems they face. Talk with one of our product specialists about the specifics on why Parse.ly is the perfect analytics solution for content teams and how we can help you with your content strategy goals.