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Thursday, 13 September 2007

Montreal's September WaW wrapup

I'll do just a quick recap as it's getting late and I've been mostly "unplugged" for the last 36 hours. If you were there, feel free to add your grain of salt!

Should have been there

Twenty people from Montreal's Web Analytics community met last night, some new faces, some old timers, and always a couple of people who misses THE most important get together of the web analytics community in Quebec! And the way it's going, the discussion is much broader than web analytics: web strategies, emarketing, design, etc. I now have 128 people on the invitation list, so 20 out of 128 isn't so bad, but I'm sure this will expand radically in the coming months.

About half of the group was composed of web analytics practitioners while the other half were consultants in the analytics, SEO/SEM and design field. The mix of people was also interesting, ranging from web analytics practitioners to SEO/PPC specialists to managers. At some point, I glimpsed two conversations at once, corporate managers discussing fishing gears and scheduling a trip on the left side, and other people challenging themselves to see who would be able to increase their ranking the most on Google on the right side! Hmmm...

Who said web analytics was hard?

We started with a presentation of a couple of slides from Peterson's RAMP presentation (we lacked time to present everything, but the idea was also to sparkle discussion, which it did!). RAMP stands for Resources, Analysis, Multivariate Testing and Process. While all agreed that "web analytics is hard". Without denying the great contributions and the wisdom of M.Peterson, the discussion took an interesting turn, with some points of view that challenged the de facto "guruness" level of what is put forth in Peterson presentation ("guruness", for lack of a better term, qualifies what comes from a Guru's mouth).

Is it worth it?

Another interesting discussion turned around the web analytics maturity level of companies. While "internal" web analytics practitioners strive to convince their boss of the critical value of web analytics, consultants basically take the stance that if a client doesn't engage in web analytics, it's probably not a client you want anyway. With the current lack of resources, the strategy might make sense! Those who don't recognize the need to "compete on analytics" are eventually condemned to die.

Gossip

I took a few minutes to talk about what's going on in the our web analytics community:
  • WaW: Mark your calendars for the next Web Analytics Wednesday: October 17th, in Montreal. Send in your suggestions for a good restaurant!
  • Omniture Training in Montréal! Following the success of the first Omniture Café held in Montréal a couple of months ago, I was able to work out a very interesting proposal with Omniture. I'll post more about this very soon, but if you are an Omniture client or offering consulting, book your agenda for October 15,16,17!
  • Jobs! There's some great openings in Montreal: Coradiant is looking for a product manager, Canoe is looking for a data analyst and Acquisio is looking to extend it's team.
  • WASP: (I had to do a quick plug for my Web Analytics Solution Profiler!) I explained what the tool does and talked about the upcoming release, which is actually ready... but I need to find some time to package it and update the web site. So look for it soon!
  • eMetrics Marketing Optimization Summit, Washington D.C.: If you are in the field, you MUST attend eMetrics at least once.
  • WebCom Montreal, November 14th: Simon Rivard from Canoe, Jacques Warren and myself will be holding a panel on web analytics.
I might have missed something! Let me know if I did!
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