Friday, May 9, 2008

eMetrics appreciation

Back from a fantastic trip in San Francisco for eMetrics. Catching up on emails and work. But I thought I should share my impressions while things are fresh in my mind.

Ok, I must admit I might be biased... as I presented on the Industry Insight day and was moderating one of the track on Tuesday.

BUT... It was an amazingly productive conference.

Way back then...

Some years ago (well... many years ago... I'm getting old!), each Internet World conference brought something new to the forefront of the industry. Remember "push technology", VRML, the early days of streaming? Without any coordination, "the industry" was moving in a direction. Although we can now laugh at some of those concepts, they nevertheless changed the face of the industry and how we use the web today.

The same pattern is happening at eMetrics. Without any preliminary coordination, there are some things setting the path for the future.

Testing & beyond

I noticed this year eMetrics was a lot about the value of "testing". Bringing the "testing" culture and the right tools to do it in order to optimize and achieve success. Contrary to most other field of expertise, the Web allows us to deploy quickly and continually improve. You don't want to do that with your car, your house or the space shuttle... but with the web it's how it should be. Most companies don't understand that and still impose strict project cycles, those who understand are not only demonstrating huge benefits.

From IT, to marketing, to business

The other outcome, highlighted during the Industry Insight afternoon round table and in Thomas Davenport's great keynote is the transition from web analytics to business analytics. Just like the web, web analytics started in IT, then marketing found out about it and took control. We are there now. But winning businesses understand the value of the web and have optimized some of their most important business processes around it. We are maturing to a level where we won't only talk about using web analytics for marketing optimization, but we will be talking about analytics for business processes optimization and strategic level changes.

Being a tutor of both web analytics and business process analysis classes, it's obvious to me there are very strong benefits in leveraging analytics to optimize business processes.

What will be this fall highlight? Next year?

Industry Insight

Jim Sterne told me the experience of the Industry Insight was very positive and will be renewed this fall in Washington: leading experts sharing their view of the current and future state of the industry. I will be there to bring some hard core data about the vendor market shares and exchange with fellow analysts.