EMetrics Summit

Here’s my high-level coverage on the EMetrics Summit. I’ll be adding to it each day.

May 6

Took in two of the WAA Training Day sessions. In the morning session, Stéphane Hamel presented the Web Analytics for Site Optimization course. I recently finished this course and enjoyed his presentation. I would like to have heard more about the persuasive process side of things, so I’ll have to hunt down Brian Eisenberg at the conference to pick his brain on a couple items. The afternoon session, Braden Hoeppner spoke to the process of creating an analytics business culture — one of my three outcomes — and an excellent overview of a course I’m taking in June. For the novices, the ever-talented Vicky Brock (from Inverness, Scotland) lead the Intro to Web Analytics session.

May 7

Jim Sterne‘s morning keynote was entertaining as always and insightful. Jason Burby (Zaaz) gave a good presentation on the various monetization models they have used to help sell the need for investment in web analytics by linking it back to the numbers that business people/decision makers/cheque writers need to say ‘Yes’. Some good and varying examples. After the presentation they handed out some super-cool monetization wheels. BTW: Jason and Shane have a new book coming out shortly. I would have loved to have seen Lou Rosenfled’s session on search analytics, but couldn’t be everywhere. Thankfully the slides were available.

The blogger lunch with Rene, Eric, Robbin, Avanish, Ian, Anil, and Chris and others was a blast. Some ideas were bounced around about creating and tagging some blog content and potentially migrating over some Yahoo group content to create a knowledge base for people starting out in analytics. Eric are we doing this?

Eric P’s guru presentation of his recent web analytics survey confirmed that you need a defined web analytics process to get the value out of the tools as well as retain the analysts doing the work. At the end he announced that he was leaving Visual Sciences and starting his own firm. Yeah!

May 8

Seth Romanow and Chris Worland from Microsoft gave a solid presentation outlining how Microsoft uses customer profiles and anonymous visitor data to deliver targeted web content — what they’re calling a “personamous” model. Google launched v2 of their web analytics tool to many sounds of ‘wow’. The interface is stunning and reminded me a lot of MeasureMap (Jeff Veen’s other web project) but with all the bells and whistles many of us have been seeking from a reporting perspective. Can’t wait to start mucking with it. The big players must be concerned. Their interfaces are beginning to look lame against the quickly evolving GA.

Jennifer Veesenmeyer from Evantage Consulting and Pimp My Reports had lots to add about building engaging web analytics reports and later lead a panel with Juice Analytics’ Chris Gemignani (pron: Jim + Yanni), CNET’s Erik Kokkonen and Ameriprise Financial’s Kristen Findley. Both provided a ton of value.

In the afternoon, resident guru Avanish covered off the need for competitive research then Joseph Carrabis blew us all away with his insights into website usage and his optimization of the EMetrics Summit site. The day ended with the WAW (held this time on Tuesday) event which later moved off-site.

May 9

The guru breakfast with Eric, Avanish and Brian Eisenberg was interesting. Some good questions. The stream with Dylan Lewis from Intuit (his blog is now back up and running) gave some solid advice about optimizing your success as an analyst. In particular what stood out was that I need to do a better job of being visible in this analytics role I’m slowly eeking out; that you need to be OK with mistakes and celebrate them; continuous learning (which I try to do) is critical as is the need to scrutinize your successes, not just your failures. Dylan would be a fantastic evangelist for Intuit, you can hear the excitement in what he does for a living.

Had a great lunch with some other bloggers: Justin from EpikOne, Oliver Schiffers from United Internet Media, June Li from ClickInsight, as well as a few others interested in learning more about blogging.

Brian Eisenberg‘s presentation on his book Waiting For Your Cat to Bark is up nextNice recap of the concepts from his two books (what one of my friends refers to as my ‘bibles’). Brian always makes things seem so simple, which I love.

WebSideStory made their big announcement &8212; WebSideStory now Visual Sciences, the release of Visual Sciences v.5 and the HBX Visual Workstation tool. Too bad no one on their design team is paying attention to the metrics — the LEARN MORE button on their homepage promotion, doesn’t work. Fixed now.

Clearly with all these vendors making their big announcements, they place importance in this community hearing about it first. Took in Braden Hoeppner’s presentation on usability and web analytics. Solid summary and some take-aways for people who have never done testing, plus cool resources like HallwayTesting.com


  • Jim has created a fantastic conference. Everyone should be going to this.
  • Now’s the time to get involved. Volunteer with the WAA. Tell others to join.
  • There are some really fantastic people in this industry. I’ve met a ton of people down here that are passionate, willing to share their ideas and help move this industry forward. Especially impressive is that even the ‘gurus’ are accessible and interested in talking. Something you don’t see elsewhere.
  • Jobs are everywhere, web analytics is growing and it’s exciting to be on the cusp of an industry/sector/discipline.