IMC: Keynote Address by Eric T. Peterson

Techvibes is hanging out at the Internet Marketing Conference today in Vancouver.

The Keynote Address was “Competing on Web Analytics” by Eric T. Peterson, Web Analytics Demystified.

Lars and Eric

In 2007, in the bestselling Competing on Analytics: The New Science of Winning, Tom Davenport and Jeanne Harris described how great organizations like Harrah’s and Netflix used analytics to create a sustainable, competitive advantage.

Eric T. Peterson of Web Analytics Demystified, and author of a book by the same name, extended Tom and Jeanne’s work to demonstrate how companies like Google, Amazon.com, Capital One and John Deere are using web analytics to create this sustainable and competitive advantage.

His presentation, Competing on Web Analytics, established the common problems that organizations face, in particular professing a love for data but not making good decisions based on that data, and outlined the best ways to approach analytics to capitalize on the opportunities represented in the data. I’ll summarize some key points below.

Key Actions to Improve Your Ability to Compete:

1. Do not believe that web analytics is easy.

Eric made a great point about how organizations buy-in to this idea that the data is easy to get, therefore, understanding the data must be easy. He challenged the audience to do better. Analytics is not just about generating reports. It’s about getting the right people, looking at the right data, at the the right time.

2. Do not assume anything.

Do not assume that the people collecting the data understand the business needs behind why they are asked to collect said data. And do not assume that the people requesting the data understand what they are reading in the reports.

3. Do take the time to define and implement fundamental web analytics business processes.

Eric’s website offers some whitepapers and checklists of what processes organizations need to implement and the type of people who can best perform the tasks required throughout the process.

4. Do leverage the processes you define on an ongoing basis.

Eric suggests creating a matrix of needs and capabilities, then conducting a gap analysis and following up with a plan of action that lets you fill the gaps efficiently. He also warns that if you don’t continue to follow your processes, then the system breaks. You do not want to be revisiting data to determine if it is clean or accurate. Your processes need to be followed 100% of the time.

The closing quote is worth noting:

If it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing analytically.