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Trackable RSS

RSS feeds are great as a spam-free tool for publishers to distribute information. However, the biggest problem is that, unlike Web hits, statistics on who's reading the feeds aren't available. There's no tracking features apparent in RSS.

A couple of firms are trying to change this:

A couple of marketing firms, IMN and RSSads, recently debuted what they claim to be trackable RSS feeds that go along with their services. How does it work? IMN president Kathleen Goodwin told ClickZ, "We've encoded all the links -- usually with an RSS feed you get a subject of an article and a link. Every link provided is a unique trackable link. When you open up the feed we know it. Every time you refresh the feed we count it. And when you click to read a particular article we register that." Apparently, RSSads take a different approach, by embedding a transparent GIF in the feed. It will be interesting to see customer reviews on how accurate or useful these statistics really are.
I can see this, if this works, as the major stumbling point for adoptions by other major media outlets, especially now that ads are appearing in RSS.

Posted by Jake on 03/03/04 @ 02:17 PM
Posted in Geekdom | Permalink



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