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SEMPO Atlanta Event: The Future of Web Analytics

by: on | Prominent Placement

Several members of the PPI team attended the SEMPO Atlanta event, “The Future of Web Analytics”. Three speakers provided great insights on analytics to the packed house at the Google office in Atlanta. SEMPO members join us via webcast from Chicago, New York, and Santa Monica. Provided all the opportunities for a huge technology fail, the evening went remarkably well. Also, it was great to meet SEMPO Global president, Chris Boggs. I’ve always been impressed by the amount of support our local chapter receives. Speakers were:

  • Enrique Munoz Torres, Senior Product Manager for Google Analytics (GA) Premium
  • Evan La Pointe of Search Discovery
  • Matt Crenshaw from Discovery Communications
SEMPO Atlanta, Enrique Munoz Torres, Evan LaPointe, Matt Crenshaw
Enrique Munoz Torres gave us the rundown on GA Premium. This was the first time the product had been discussed before such a large group in public. He made it clear that this product:
  • Wasn’t created to make Google Analytics suck (or because GA sucks)
  • Was specifically designed for enterprise use.
Four things make GA Premium different than GA:
  • Processing power
  • Advanced analysis tools
  • Dedicate support
  • Service level agreement guarantees for service and uptime (99.9% on collection; 99% reporting; 98% data freshness)
Okay, that was expected. But the big thing everyone was waiting for (at least I was) was the price tag: $150k annual agreement. While it sounds pretty steep (especially to those of us who’ve enjoyed free analytics for the past several years), it’s likely in line with competing products depending on how those competing products have been customized. While there are lots of things that make GA Premium different and more robust than GA, one of the things that jumped out is there’s still a 2-4 hour data latency issue (this has been a thorn with GA all along). Enrique mentioned that executives need to make decisions quickly and GA Premium fits the bill in that respect. Maybe I’m missing something here. Yahoo Web Analytics doesn’t have this problem. I’m a little stumped why Google does. Evan’s LaPointe’s talk on tag management was very interesting. His whole point was about not spending so much time on tagging, i.e. adding tags to page code to track specific actions. Using a tag management system (like his own Satellite) allows better tracking, helps users get back to more important work, and allows users to deploy new tags in minutes rather than weeks. This all made a lot of sense for tracking specific events/actions across a wide range of pages. Matt Crenshaw of Discovery Communications made several great points on using analytics data to drive better results within the organization:
  • We’re getting better data, however
  • The communication around the data has to improve in order to improve results
  • People who understand the data need to be put into a leadership position so they can help implement changes around the data
  • Teams should be built around data points so things get done (a la Google +)
Thanks to Matt for communicating how data is virtually worthless unless you do act on it! There's more here on Twitter: #SEMPOwa

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