If you’re in the analytics space, then you’ve probably heard about the release of Google Tag Manager (GTM). You’ve probably also read blog posts and press releases on why GTM isn’t right for you or your clients’ businesses. First and foremost, you may have heard that GTM isn’t an enterprise level solution, and after testing out the tool, I have to agree that GTM does have limitations. But that’s OK. Given the limitations, I still believe GTM is one of the greatest steps forward that Google could take. Here’s why:
Like most everything in the search engine marketing space, the value is in the long tail.
With Google launching so many stand-alone products, we often lose sight of how Google earns its revenue. For tag management vendors it’s a lot simpler, and is mainly about account signups, implementations and account usage levels. But for Google, it’s still all about the ads.
For the enterprise level tag management vendors to grow their client base and revenue, they have two main options: steal their competitors’ clients or grow the number of new clients.
Google also has two main options for growing its client base and revenue: to increase the number of advertisers and to increase the amount each advertiser spends. Luckily for Google, it has an entire industry that is focused on both, and a much larger audience to sell their services to. With a target market that includes any organization looking to market their business, the audience and growth potential for Google is huge, but not so much for vendors that mainly sell to enterprise level organizations.
This makes Google available to create and optimize products that support the adoption and increased use of its ad services, which happens to be where GTM comes in. The purpose of GTM isn’t to add another line item to Google’s balance sheet; it’s to give the non-enterprise level clients the ability to more easily manage their tracking codes, not just those that can afford an enterprise level solution. And through my experience, the ability to tie results back to strategy and tactics is paramount to getting client buy-in for increasing budgets or re-allocating budgets from other, less successful advertising mediums.
So while Google Tag Manager may have a few drawbacks now, I’m more than optimistic that it will evolve to become an industry leading resource that is used across the majority of websites. To be honest, the conversation reminds me a lot about another Google product you may have heard of that had its own detractors back in 2005, Google Analytics.