John Battelle’s recent post as well as an email from a friend turned me to Tynt. John goes into a bunch of detail that I won’t repeat here, but essentially what Tynt does is tracks what people are copying and pasting from your site’s content while also adding an attribution link to your site when they do so.
This is a great idea. It’s a little bit shocking nobody has thought of this until now, but it’s a very useful tool for publishers in a few different ways:
- Generate more links and traffic to your site – Every time any of your content is pasted into email or a blog post Tynt’s code adds a link to the page the content was copied from. This will help drive users back to the original content, as well as potentially help search engine ranking if those attribution links make it onto web pages.
- See what type of content is being copied – Tynt provides analytics that shows you what content is being shared and how much traffic it is driving. This can be useful to learn what type of content you should create more of, and what types of people are sharing it so you can see if you’re getting engagement from key audiences.
- Generate revenue from searches – Tynt recognizes short pieces of copied text as likely searches, and intercepts the search going to one of the major engines and then plans to share the revenue from searches that result in ad clicks with the publishers. I’m not sure this is fully scaled yet, but it looks like a potential revenue stream for larger publishers that could be worthwhile.
That being said, I think Tynt would be more powerful built into a pre-existing analytics service. Having to go to another place to check out your “copy and paste” stats separate from the rest of your analytics is a pain. Additionally, having to place another code snippet on your page is not ideal either, it’d be much easier if this was part of an analytics package that already existed today. Maybe this makes Tynt an acquisition target down the road by either a larger analytic company or one of the search engines who wants to serve search results on Tynt copy and paste search queries. Interesting stuff.