Sunday, October 26, 2008

eMetrics was Buzzing

I’m jetting home from the 2008 eMetrics Marketing Optimization Conference held in DC and can’t help but feel jazzed about the enthusiasm, energy and optimism on display over the past week. Jim Sterne, the emcee of the event, kicked things off by sharing a bit of where we’ve been and where it’s possible to go with analytics, optimization and all things digital. He successfully infused some highly contagious energy into the conference, which set the tenor for things to come.

We heard from Eric Peterson about Tom Davenport’s successes with Competing on Analytics, or as Eric interjected, competing on Web analytics. Analytics with a capital “A” (old school analytics as in BI and other disciplines) has demonstrated that businesses using data are indeed highly effective. Those that interject capital “W” for Web analytics into their organizations are truly competing for success by embracing the digital revolution. Real world examples were delivered in the Keynotes from James Robinson of the New York Times, whose director of marketing insisted that Web analytics become ingrained within the DNA of their organization. James shared some great examples of how the Web data resolved some of their traditional print challenges by anticipating precisely how many papers to print on any given news day. From their online traffic metrics, they could discern demand and thereby print enough papers to satisfy demand, while minimizing waste and not overprinting. Joe Megibow from delivered one of the most entertaining presentations and truly demonstrated their ability to compete with Web analytics. Their VOC technology is tightly integrated with analytics enabling them to identify problems and resolve issues with their online interface. He also shed light on the benefits of loyalty and described’s success with rewards and what it takes to really get consumers engaged.

Vendors at eMetrics also delivered some compelling and newsworthy presentations. Matt Langie from Omniture encouraged the audience to “let your cell phones ring” and emphasized the impact that mobile will have on the marketplace. Their image tags are capturing mobile data as quickly as it accrues and providing insight to organizations delivering on the rapidly burgeoning devices. Alex Yoder, WebTrends newly appointed CEO shared his vision of an “open” analytics solution that provides the ability to share data across the enterprise and leverage business intelligence tools for greater insight. Yet, the most notable announcement was delivered by Avinash, Google Analytics bonafide evangelist. In true Avinash style, he enthusiastically informed the room of Google’s newest upgrade. I quipped a full write up of the GA upgrade in my post Google Analytics and the Chocolate Factory.

Amid all the presentations and announcements, I found the true vibe of this event resonating in the hallways, lunch tables and of course, the infamous eMetrics lobby bar. Nearly everyone I spoke with shared stories of optimism and enthusiasm for Web analytics and the possibilities therein. In my presentation, I asked the audience if anyone else was having a good time and the answer was a resounding yes. I’m encouraged by the momentum surrounding Web analytics and adjacent technologies and believe that we’re genuinely on the precipice of greatness. Certainly the big thinkers, practitioners and attendees of eMetrics agreed. I applaud Jim Sterne and his capable team for delivering on yet another educational and inspirational eMetrics conference.

No comments: