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Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

Tealium Employee

AMA has closed. Thank you for all the questions! 

Welcome to my first Ask Me Anything (AMA) on the Tealium Learning Community.

 

In the meantime, please feel free to start asking your questions today. Click the "Reply" button above to begin. Suggested topics include:

 

  • What can we expect from Tealium in 2018?
  • How can I get the most out of my Tealium products?
  • What's the fastest way I can educate my teams on how to use Tealium?
  • How do I maximize the value of my Tealium platform investment?

 

AMA-Photo-Mike-Holding-Sign.png  

Thank you.

53 REPLIES 53

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

Tealium Expert
Tealium Expert

Hi Mike Anderson,

 

My questions prepared for this Ask Me Anything (AMA), revolves around future development of Tealium iQ.
Having experience with Google Tag Manager, Ensighten Manage and Tealium iQ, I keep an eye on the development of all three products, and of course have an opinion on the matter.

Question #1: What will the future bring for Tealium iQ?
I know this is a very open question.
The reason for me asking, is because I hear and see stuff about the further development of the Universal Data Hub, but not about Tealium iQ as a stand-alone product.

As other TMS vendors create more and more features, the iQ development mainly seem to revolve around tag updates, plus product improvements and fixes, of course being very important areas.
As an example from another vendor, within the last couple of weeks, Google has introduced built-in functionality for easier setup of scroll- and YouTube tracking through their TMS.
New features like that would be very nice to have in Tealium as well, for instance as pre-made extensions.

I still feel that iQ has big advantages for use by the enterprise customer segment, but looking at what is happening with a product like Google Tag Manager, I don't clearly see similar development done for iQ.

Question #2: Will you, at some point, develop an iQ Management API?
By Management API I mean an API, which you can use for doing stuff like bulk-actions in Tealium iQ.

Examples of use:
- a script for creation of new profile(s) with pre-made, and setup, tags, variables and extensions
- a script, which makes it possible to copy content from one profile to another
- script based auto-generation of setup documentation for a selected profile or account


I have previously saved a lot of time using APIs like this, while working with Google Tag Manager, mainly for copying things from one profile to another, and auto-generation of documentation.

Question #3: Would you consider developing a more automatic way of exporting and importing entire iQ profile setups?
This would be a nice functionality to have, for instance for making local file backups, or better yet, in Git repositories.
I know it is possible to add an extra manual environment, or download versions manually, to get the files for backup purposes.
But a more automatic way of doing this, would be so much nicer :-)

Question #4: Would you consider opening a community “extension library” for iQ?
Fellow TLC member @mitchellt suggested the idea, and in my opinion, that would be a terrific way to help promote community sharing, while at the same time help a lot of users make use of extension functionality, they else wouldn’t be able to.

The best community extensions could then also help suggest, what Tealium developers could/should add, as part of the built-in iQ extension suite.

Question #5: Are there any larger UI updates planned for iQ?
I know that design, to some degree, is a matter of taste.
But it would for instance be nice, if it was possible to take more advantage of available screen size, if iQ is used on bigger screens, like 1080p (Full HD) and larger, now that screen-sizes are getting quite big.
A general overhaul of UI, would in my opinion, not hurt either ;-)


Thank you very much.


Best Regards,
Peter Meyer

Best Regards
Peter

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

Tealium Expert
Tealium Expert

I won't be able to join the AMA on tuesday, so I hope it is ok, that I convey my question here anyway.

Best regards,
Peter

Best Regards
Peter

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

kathleen_jo
Employee Emeritus
kathleen_jo

Great stuff, @pmeyerdk, and YES, it is awesome that you are adding your questions now! Sorry we'll miss you on Tuesday! 

 

Anybody else have any other questions? We look forward to your replies.

Remember to give me a kudo if you like my post! Accepting my post as a solution is even better! Also remember that search is your friend.

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

loldenburg
Silver Contributor
Silver Contributor loldenburg

Thanks for offering this opportunity.
My questions:

1. Same as @pmeyerdk: What is the long-term plan for Tealium iQ? It is still a usable tool and the Data Layer mapping works more efficient than in any other TMS imho, but it has lost its edge imho in many aspects that other TMS offer nowadays. Link Delay for more accurate click tracking just being one of them.

2. Dynamic Data Layer Management (aka "Hosted Data Layer"): Is this a feature that is being prioritized in any form? We have had really big troubles getting it going (account managers and support know all about it), and it still is not at a point where we can recommend others to try their hands on it. We want to know if we can bet on Tealium to enhance and improve DDLM as it would be one of the few features that gave it an advantage over

3. Better integration with Automated Testing Tools like ObservePoint? Tealium and ObservePoint are cooperating. It would be cool to have some Tealium-related OP features that would allow easier Automated Testing in OP.

4. Any chance that Data Layer Enrichment via Audience Stream will work even faster?

5. What about the improvement of Array Handling in Audience Stream generally and more specifically, connectors? Array seem to be a problem in so many areas of Audience Stream, however Arrays are the most common form of transmitting product data in an ecommerce shop.
As an example, right now, the connectors we use (ExactTarget) don't allow us to make visitor profile exports for typical e-commerce use cases like "user had 3 different product in cart". ExactTarget in this case expects one line per product per user (so 3 lines). The Connector however can only send one row per user (=> only one product), which makes it impossible to cover multiple-products-per-user cases which are so abundant in E-Commerce.
So this severely limits our follow-up campaign potential (like user had product a, b, c in basket but did not buy => send follow-up mail with exactly these three products in it (right now we can send only one of the products))

 

6. Tealium in other languages. Right now, Tealium iQ, the Tealium.com website, and Audience Stream are theoretically available in German and other languages. Tealium even forces you into these other languages when your browser language is German for example. But the German experience is just horrible, with loads of misleading and wrongly translated terms, imho even unusable, because Tealium (I wonder who even came up with such an idea?) chose to do a machine translation... Is this ever going to be fixed? Because I cannot believe that anyone uses e.g. the German version on purpose.

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

kathleen_jo
Employee Emeritus
kathleen_jo

Thank you @loldenburg for the questions! Who else wants to ask @mike_anderson anything?

Remember to give me a kudo if you like my post! Accepting my post as a solution is even better! Also remember that search is your friend.

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

Tealium Employee

loldenburg wrote:


2. Dynamic Data Layer Management (aka "Hosted Data Layer"): Is this a feature that is being prioritized in any form? We have had really big troubles getting it going (account managers and support know all about it), and it still is not at a point where we can recommend others to try their hands on it. We want to know if we can bet on Tealium to enhance and improve DDLM as it would be one of the few features that gave it an advantage over


@loldenburg

I would love to better understand this and I’ve asked your account manager to reach out to you as a follow up. We have very large customers that are using the heck out of this feature and there’s a multi-brand retailer that is doing some really cool things where the data layer items are code blocks and we're downloading dynamic code blocks at a per page level. One customer is using it to load ad pixels on the page which they need to change 10k pixels every week. From the other customers I'm hearing nothing but good things so a little surprised about the issues.

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

loldenburg
Silver Contributor
Silver Contributor loldenburg

@mike_anderson wrote:

"@loldenburg

I would love to better understand this and I’ve asked your account manager to reach out to you as a follow up. We have very large customers that are using the heck out of this feature and there’s a multi-brand retailer that is doing some really cool things where the data layer items are code blocks and we're downloading dynamic code blocks at a per page level. One customer is using it to load ad pixels on the page which they need to change 10k pixels every week. From the other customers I'm hearing nothing but good things so a little surprised about the issues."

 

=> Well I have escalated our severe issues with DDLM to several account managers and account managers have contacted me, I have written extensive lists to support more than one time with the description of the problems (which are major and make any sensible implementation for a true ecommerce site impossible), and it seems like you have never heard of that.

But since nothing changed, I decided to write it out in this article which funnily came out just this afternoon so I don't have to repeat myself over and over again: https://www.webanalyticsworld.net/2017/11/testing-tealiums-dynamic-data-layer-management-product-dat...

In short, it took us about a year to get it going, getting it going vastly complicated our Tealium iQ logic, and since having it on the site we have had numerous data losses because of the change this feature brings to the Extension logic in Tealium iQ. Lastly, it is not suited for very general e-commerce use cases (product data) where you have more than just one product on a page (e.g. a cart filled with 3 products).

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

Tealium Employee

loldenburg wrote:


3. Better integration with Automated Testing Tools like ObservePoint? Tealium and ObservePoint are cooperating. It would be cool to have some Tealium-related OP features that would allow easier Automated Testing in OP.


@loldenburg

Event Specifications inside of our UDH will help you with validating each event in real time. Today this is a no charge feature that's in Early Access. You create a spec for each event and we monitor it for correctness. Today you could add a querystring parameter or cookie when an agent does automated testing and create data feeds when either of these are present so the data is filtered down.

 

Using the Live Events screen you can view this data while the test is going, but with EventStream, EventStore or EventDB you can manage how you want to use the test data either ingesting it in real time, pulling it in batch or visualizing through a tool like Tableau.

 

Moving forward we'd like to allow for the creation of Event Feeds off of a data quality score.

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

loldenburg
Silver Contributor
Silver Contributor loldenburg
"validating each event in real time." I don't know if that's true, as the UDH (Audience Stream interface "Live Data" section at least) shows only a sample of the real live data.
"You create a spec for each event and we monitor it for correctness. " => Maybe I don't know what you are referring you? The "Verify Data Layer" feature maybe? We tested that, it was far off from what we can do with a true QA tool (not to talk it down, I know it is free). Moreover, to use EventStream is not "free", it requires signing a big contract first...

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

Tealium Employee

Event Specs are a new version of Live Events which is available in early access, @loldenburg. The real-time chart is not a sample, it's everything, but you can only drill into the event details of a sample of data. But the goal is to inspect invalid events, fix them and start fixing new ones.

 

Eventually we will have the ability to create an Event Feed off of low quality data, and pull this down using EventStore or EventDB.

 

Ask your AM or DM to give you a sneak peek at Event Specs.

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

Tealium Employee

loldenburg wrote:


4. Any chance that Data Layer Enrichment via Audience Stream will work even faster?


@loldenburg

Unfortunately the DLE response takes some finite time. We are always focused on performance, so we're always working on this, however because data is globally collected, sometimes we have to search the closest data center for a visitor record then broadcast to the other data centers on a cache miss, and that just takes time.

 

However, what I tell people about DLE is unless you're using a lot of critical Omnichannel data, then the data stored from the DLE response is in LocalStorage and up-to-date at the start of the visit. In most cases (unless you're using Omnichannel), the data you have in LocalStorage is completely relevant. If you're using Omnichannel, and you loaded data about a visitor between VisitA and VisitB, then you will have to wait that extra couple hundred ms for the Omnichannel data, but all the other data is already on the page.

 

The question you should ask is when will LocalStorage be part of the Data Layer configuration screen in iQ? The answer is, hopefully, soon...this has been on our list for a while and just needs to get prioritized

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

loldenburg
Silver Contributor
Silver Contributor loldenburg
Ok, thx, but please note that localStorage is not ideal in many cases, especially when you have a lot of Safari users in private mode (about 5-10% of our users block localStorage: https://www.webanalyticsworld.net/2017/09/localstorage-vs-cookies-for-analytics-implementations.html ) - other browser producers may change their privacy mode settings as well in the future. This makes localStorage not an ideal solution for really critical data that you would really like to have for everyone.
"at the start of the visit. " => For us it takes usually 3 pageviews from the moment a user sets his Visitor ID and the moment the enrichments (Visitor Attributes) are downloaded from Audience Stream.

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

Tealium Employee

Agreed, @loldenburg, localStorage is not ideal because of private mode, but we always want to respect the end user.

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

Tealium Employee

loldenburg wrote:


5. What about the improvement of Array Handling in Audience Stream generally and more specifically, connectors? Array seem to be a problem in so many areas of Audience Stream, however Arrays are the most common form of transmitting product data in an ecommerce shop.
As an example, right now, the connectors we use (ExactTarget) don't allow us to make visitor profile exports for typical e-commerce use cases like "user had 3 different product in cart". ExactTarget in this case expects one line per product per user (so 3 lines). The Connector however can only send one row per user (=> only one product), which makes it impossible to cover multiple-products-per-user cases which are so abundant in E-Commerce.
So this severely limits our follow-up campaign potential (like user had product a, b, c in basket but did not buy => send follow-up mail with exactly these three products in it (right now we can send only one of the products))

 


@loldenburg

The "Array of Strings" and "Array of Numbers" attributes are already in development. Targeting a Q1 2018 release after the holiday shopping code freeze.

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

Tealium Employee

loldenburg wrote:

 

6. Tealium in other languages. Right now, Tealium iQ, the Tealium.com website, and Audience Stream are theoretically available in German and other languages. Tealium even forces you into these other languages when your browser language is German for example. But the German experience is just horrible, with loads of misleading and wrongly translated terms, imho even unusable, because Tealium (I wonder who even came up with such an idea?) chose to do a machine translation... Is this ever going to be fixed? Because I cannot believe that anyone uses e.g. the German version on purpose.


@loldenburg

I've heard about the forcing languages just recently. We'll get that fixed.

 

The translation quality is interesting. We use a service called Smartling that handles all our translation and the idea is they do machine translation for the changes and then have an actual translator do the translation. Once the translation is done we replace the machine translation for the actual one. I've had my German employees review the UI to quality check and haven't had anything bubbled up to me, but we'll look into this.

 

Realistically you should only see the machine translation version for changed/new items in the UI and you should only see them for a couple weeks.

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

Tealium Employee

@pmeyerdk wrote:

Hi Mike Anderson,

 

My questions prepared for this Ask Me Anything (AMA), revolves around future development of Tealium iQ.
Having experience with Google Tag Manager, Ensighten Manage and Tealium iQ, I keep an eye on the development of all three products, and of course have an opinion on the matter.

Question #1: What will the future bring for Tealium iQ?
I know this is a very open question.
The reason for me asking, is because I hear and see stuff about the further development of the Universal Data Hub, but not about Tealium iQ as a stand-alone product.

As other TMS vendors create more and more features, the iQ development mainly seem to revolve around tag updates, plus product improvements and fixes, of course being very important areas.
As an example from another vendor, within the last couple of weeks, Google has introduced built-in functionality for easier setup of scroll- and YouTube tracking through their TMS.
New features like that would be very nice to have in Tealium as well, for instance as pre-made extensions.

I still feel that iQ has big advantages for use by the enterprise customer segment, but looking at what is happening with a product like Google Tag Manager, I don't clearly see similar development done for iQ.



@pmeyerdk

If we look at Tealium iQ more holistically, I think the future will be less around managing JavaScript and more about directing data to destinations.

 

EventStream allows you to send data from your digital properties to Tealium and leverage our cloud-based delivery infrastructure.  This can help remove tags from web pages and help you manage non-web data all in one place.  There are a lot of performance benefits by removing pixels from the page and tag management is really more than just adding tags, it’s removing them too.

 

EventStore is also key in giving you access to your data collected via tags.  It allows vendors just to pick up event-level data rather than collect it.

 

EventStream and EventStore are key to our Tealium iQ tag management strategy.

 

In the Tealium iQ user interface itself, we’ve also been introducing some great new features based on customer feedback.  We improved user concurrency, merging of profiles, some neat enhancements like draft mode for JavaScript code extensions and publish targets for extensions, so we're definitely not done yet!

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

Tealium Employee

@pmeyerdk wrote:

 

Question #2: Will you, at some point, develop an iQ Management API?
By Management API I mean an API, which you can use for doing stuff like bulk-actions in Tealium iQ.

Examples of use:
- a script for creation of new profile(s) with pre-made, and setup, tags, variables and extensions
- a script, which makes it possible to copy content from one profile to another
- script based auto-generation of setup documentation for a selected profile or account


I have previously saved a lot of time using APIs like this, while working with Google Tag Manager, mainly for copying things from one profile to another, and auto-generation of documentation.


@pmeyerdk

We've already started on the API front with the Hosted Data Layer API. I have some design discussions scheduled for the week after Thanksgiving to talk about some other API functionality. Based on customer requests the first will be a "Trickle Publish" API that allows for API publishing of profiles that inherit Libraries.

 

A script for pre-built profiles sounds good, but you can copy a profile. My guidance here would be to create a profile called "Template", create the things you want (data layer, tags, load rules, variables, etc) then when you want to create a new profile, you just "Copy" a profile and choose "Template" as the source. Your TiQ components that were in the "Template" profile will all be created in the new profile.

 

To your point, rather than creating a full blown API for 100% of TMS functionality, I could see a "Create Profile" as an early supported API call that allows you to create a blank profile, or to create a copy. I think this would achieve your use case and would be easier to do from our side much faster.

 

For copying content from one profile to another, I completely agree and have wanted "Copy, Stash and Paste" functionality for a while. I don't think it would be much to develop, but everything we do is driven on customer priority, so if we haven't built it yet, customers haven't asked for it.

 

We're evaluating a "Product Ideas" forum to allow customers to vote on product requests.

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

Tealium Employee

@pmeyerdk wrote:

 

Question #3: Would you consider developing a more automatic way of exporting and importing entire iQ profile setups?
This would be a nice functionality to have, for instance for making local file backups, or better yet, in Git repositories.
I know it is possible to add an extra manual environment, or download versions manually, to get the files for backup purposes.
But a more automatic way of doing this, would be so much nicer :-)


@pmeyerdk

I'm totally up for this idea...I'll add it to our product ideas.

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

Tealium Employee

pmeyerdk wrote:

 

Question #4: Would you consider opening a community “extension library” for iQ?
Fellow TLC member @mitchellt suggested the idea, and in my opinion, that would be a terrific way to help promote community sharing, while at the same time help a lot of users make use of extension functionality, they else wouldn’t be able to.

The best community extensions could then also help suggest, what Tealium developers could/should add, as part of the built-in iQ extension suite.



@pmeyerdk @mitchellt
We've been looking at various "Build Your Own" capabilities for a long time. This includes tags, extensions, data layer bundles, CMS plugins, EventStream connectors and AudienceStream connectors. Long term it's guaranteed we will have this. What if we had a "Submit your best Extension every month" competition with prizes, etc where the voting was done by the community?

The extensions need to be vetted and validated for functionality, but I can get my team working on a BYOE process and make it available.

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

Tealium Employee

pmeyerdk wrote:

 

Question #5: Are there any larger UI updates planned for iQ?
I know that design, to some degree, is a matter of taste.
But it would for instance be nice, if it was possible to take more advantage of available screen size, if iQ is used on bigger screens, like 1080p (Full HD) and larger, now that screen-sizes are getting quite big.
A general overhaul of UI, would in my opinion, not hurt either ;-)


@pmeyerdk

Yes, and we've already done some. We've revamped the concurrency notifications to make them profile level and not version level so "Save As" as a best practice is still useful. We are also just starting on a revamp of the "Merge" capability to work at the profile level too.

 

We've already planned to update our UI dev framework to the latest version and are looking at what sort of facelift capabilities we can add in the short run.

 

We're also adding in a "Draft Mode" for the JS Code extension so you can work on code edits and not have to worry about someone else publishing out incomplete code. You'll be able to have multiple drafts and target to Dev or QA. Once you're happy with your testing, simply promote the draft to production. From there it's easy to see this being backed by GIT at some point.

 

Publish targets for Extensions is on the list as well so you can control where your extensions are published.

 

Longer term, the UI definitely needs a revamp and we're well aware of this and plan on making this a reality as soon as we can.

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

Tealium Expert
Tealium Expert

Hey @mike_anderson

 

I love the Tealium tool set, and lately we have been playing around with the connectors in Audience Stream trying to find a perfect fit for our needs. 

 

Most of the time, we can make what need work. If we can't find an existing solution, we can always use a webhook to figure it out. 

 

However, I would love to see some sort of Market Place where companies and developers could build their own Connectors in Audience Stream and offer those to other clients. I'm sure we are not the only clients who face the some hurdles, and we would love to benefit from other companies who have already figured out a solution. 

 

Have you ever toyed with the idea of creating something like SalesForce AppCenter for the DataHub? 

 

Jer

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

Tealium Employee

@JerTippets wrote:

Hey @mike_anderson

 

I love the Tealium tool set, and lately we have been playing around with the connectors in Audience Stream trying to find a perfect fit for our needs. 

 

Most of the time, we can make what need work. If we can't find an existing solution, we can always use a webhook to figure it out. 

 

However, I would love to see some sort of Market Place where companies and developers could build their own Connectors in Audience Stream and offer those to other clients. I'm sure we are not the only clients who face the some hurdles, and we would love to benefit from other companies who have already figured out a solution. 

 

Have you ever toyed with the idea of creating something like SalesForce AppCenter for the DataHub? 

 

Jer


@JerTippets

Yes, I definitely want this and will spearhead it.

 

I also want power users like you to see our "Webhook Configurator" tool. We use it internally to rapidly create custom webhooks for our platform and turn them into formal connectors in the marketplace. Let's follow up because I'd like to get this into your hands.

 

I totally agree that an ability to share connectors is a huge positive.

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

Prolet
Rookie Contributor
Prolet

We just started with Tealium and we are finding that current permissions and locking capabilities are not enough for our use cases. As GDPR is coming in fast, we are trying to ensure that the platform is setup with more controls around who can do certain things in the platform. Are there plans on enhancing capabilities so companies with more users and complex permissions have better control over the platform?

 

Features we would like to see:

  1. Ability to specify environment permissions on per user and profile level
    • Right now vendors are assigned on account level. We would like to be able to assign vendors on profile level, while still abiding by the account level functionality
    • Why: We want to limit certain users to only have access to deploy certain tags. And no, tags do not work, because tags are on an individual tag level which means that as a marketer I can still deploy an analytics tag because the account provides it.We should not allow a marketer to deploy analytics tags and this is currently possible in the platform
  2. Vendor permission on profile/user/user group level
    • Right now if a person has permissions to deploy to one profile to prod they can deploy any profile they have access to , which does not work for a couple of reasons:
      • We have PCI compliant profiles that need to go through special review with our PCI compliance team. Only approved individuals should be able to deploy to prod for this profile
      • We do not want to centralize deployment as we will have too many stakeholders and systems, and we want to enable marketers to deploy their own tags
  3. Limit what data layer elements are used on user/user group level
    • We need to ensure that personal data is not sent to vendors outside of the ones allowed. To ensure this we need to be able to limit which elements are used by users. Right now you can only limit editing the data layer with labels but that does not prevent people from sending data to vendors
  4. Limit extensions that can be used on user/user group level

And yes I just copied and pasted what I sent to Tealium as a question as well, but would love to hear feedback from Mike. I would also love to hear feedback from other platform users and understand if we are the only ones struggling with this

 

Thanks,

Prolet

Hi my name is Mike Anderson, Founder & CTO of Tealium, ask me anything!

kathleen_jo
Employee Emeritus
kathleen_jo

Great questions @Prolet and @JerTippets! Thank you! Who else has questions?

Remember to give me a kudo if you like my post! Accepting my post as a solution is even better! Also remember that search is your friend.