Advanced Tagging from the Footer

Tagging is not always easy especially when trying to cultivate meaningful data. Depending on the website technology or supplemental service you are employing, it can be quite a challenge to go beyond adding your basic analytics tag. However, this should not stop you from pursuing your initial tracking requirements.
One of our clients utilizes the Ning ( service to create an online community. Ning is the leading online platform to create social experiences that inspire action and enables people to create custom–branded, social networks. Essentially, people are invited in to the network. Once they have an account set up, they can invite others to join the community and engage in several activities, including: 
  • Creating, sharing, rating, and commenting on audio and video
  • Initiating, replying, following, and sharing a discussion topic
  • Adding an app
  • Starting, commenting, and RSVP’ing to an event
  • Publishing a blog post
  • Forming and joining a group
The business requirements would obviously involve tracking some or all of the above listed actions. Here in lies the challenge; Ning allows you to add a custom footer to each page but does not permit you to edit any of the other page elements. Therefore, if you want to edit a button to track clicks with the onClick attribute, you are out of luck. Or are you?
The short answer is, “No.” Being able to add custom code in the footer still allows for tons of coding flexibility. JavaScript is capable of reaching out to the other page elements and perform cool operations like modifying a button’s onClick attribute, scraping zip codes from a cookie, and launching custom page tag parameters when certain query parameters are present in the URL. Moreover, with the aid of JavaScript libraries like the YUI Library (, a lot of complex operations can be easily accomplished.
Another amazing thing about adding custom code to the footer is that the code can be contained and referenced in a single .js file. This will obviously prevent a complex implementation from being openly perceived in the page’s source code. There comes a point though when the implementation gets very complicated and that testing becomes a nightmare. This is when you need to evaluate whether it is more efficient to continue stacking code on top of this single .js file or employ a much more robust solution.
Enter the tag management solution. Stratigent’s strategic partner, Ensighten (, works wonders when it comes to complex tagging implementations (including those involving multiple tags), and has built-in error handling capabilities to prevent you from pushing erroneous code. Furthermore, it allows you to take the reins of coding from a single interface. Depending on how complex your tagging situation is, Ensighten may be worth a look.
If you have any questions regarding my recent Ning project, Ensighten, or feedback about this post, feel free to send us an email at
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