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The question on many people’s minds when it comes to big data analytics is, “How can this make me money?” And that was the same question on many audience members’ minds at the Digital Analytics Association (DAA) Los Angeles Symposium earlier this month. I spoke on a panel titled “From Data to Dollars” at the Symposium addressing this question, along with DAA President John Lovett and HauteLook Chief Technology Officer Kevin Diamond. The panel, moderated by Fractal Sciences President Richard Sussman, discussed the challenging topic of how to utilize raw digital analytics to increase ROI and provide actionable insights. Although the process can seem quite daunting to a marketer, it doesn’t have to be. I saw many audience members’ eyes light up as I explained how they can turn their data into dollars by putting their data to work.

Sussman asked two questions in particular that stood out to me. The first was about the chicken-or-the-egg conundrum of whether advertisers should base their creative efforts on existing analytics data, or execute a campaign and then determine what worked and what didn’t. It’s not an easy question to answer. Even analytics can’t predict the future 100 percent of the time when it comes to deciding a creative strategy and what worked well once might not work again. On the flip side, though, basing a campaign’s strategy on cold, hard data instead of a gut feeling helps to prevent wasted time and money on a dud advertising effort.
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It was the very last minute before two hundred and fifty people were to enter the conference room overlooking the river in Hamburg on April 4, 2014. I quickly gathered Matthias Bettag, Timm Peters and Holger Tempel for an emergency session. I needed to know what we were going to call the newest chapter of the DAA and the slides needed to be updated schnell!!

"We've already discussed this," said Matthias, wondering if jet lag had gotten the better of me. "It does not linguistically work to call it a Chapter. It's 'DAA Germany'."

"Yes, I know, but I've put it in my PowerPoint as 'DAA Deutschland' and I need to provide the example of how to pronounce it for branding purposes. Is it 'Dee  Ay Ay Deutschland' or should I tell them it's 'Day Ahh Ahh Deutschland'?" using my very best German accent.
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[Reposted from my blog, Bullish Data.]

Shortly after rumors surfaced last week in the Atlanta business press, IBM announced today that they are acquiring Silverpop, a leading provider of cloud-based email and marketing automation services.

The acquisition scene in the marketing technology field has kept a pretty brisk pace, and it’s been a favorite parlor game to guess where firms like Silverpop, Marketo or HubSpot might wind up. Well, now we know - while terms haven’t been released, public reports indicate

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Many are familiar with the tower-building game, Jenga®. It largely consists of extracting blocks from a 3x3 tower to build an increasingly taller tower. The loser is the one that knocks it down with their attempt to remove a block.

Starting in digital analytics is much like the beginning of a Jenga® game. The typical approach is to start scanning, tapping the ends of blocks, applying light pressure to differentiate the blocks that give from the blocks that stick. You start building a mental map of the blocks that can be easily extracted versus the ones that will surely result in the tower’s demise. You then go through a process of removing the next loosest block to place at the top of the tower.

How is this like digital analytics? When you enter a new organization or begin a new analytics program, you will have to go through this same scanning process with every aspect of your analytics practice: data, measures, people, politics, etc. To advance your practice and mature, you will need to find the soft spots: the KPI’s that matter the most to the business; the insights that drive results; the people that “get it” and take advantage of the value that you and your growing team can provide.

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(Reposted from my blog, BullishData.)

Fifty years ago, the notion that it would be possible – let alone cost-competitive – to produce enormous quantities of consumer goods in far-flung corners of the globe, ship them thousands of miles, in bulk, to their eventual consumers and then sell them at razor-thin margins would have been rightly laughable. “Globalization” is the term we’ve adopted to describe this system today, but that hugely simplified term obscures the incredibly intricate and interlocking systems of manufacturing, shipping, trade and infrastructure that developed over decades to bring us to today, when I can walk into any Target or Wal-Mart in the land and interact with supply chains touching almost every country in the world. (More after the jump...)

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Sometimes your are confronted to situations where you look at your pretty dashboard of the week and everything stops, it's not so pretty anymore, red doesn't suit you... WHY so much decrease and red ! What's wrong with my website, why is this "metric-that-I-will-not-mention" so damned high...


Literally, you want to go back to sleep (at least I do) or slap someone with your dashboard - true story, I am quoting someone who actually told me that ! So, before you hit the PANIC button and scare the hell out of you HIPPO (Highest Paid Person in the Office or Boss or Client) ; take those 3 advices into consideration.

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At the recent DAA Los Angeles Symposium, I spoke on a best practices roundtable about how to move analytics beyond mere reporting and put data to work to make a meaningful, positive change in your business. One of the recommendations the panel made was to understand the key business question. For if you don’t know the business problem you’re trying to solve, it can steer you away from the results you really want to achieve.

So how do you go about identifying the right business problem to solve? It starts with understanding of the bottom-line goals of your business, and identifying the actionable changes, or levers, that will affect those goals. While this may seem like a daunting task, identifying a business problem worth solving can be broken down into three manageable steps:

Step 1: Interview key stakeholders to identify key metrics.
Start by identifying and interviewing key stakeholders from the sales, marketing, product and executive teams to understand what their priorities are and how their performance is measured. For instance, the CMO may only care about the number of leads flowing through the sales channel, but the CFO is interested in the profitability of sales. Aligning multiple stakeholder perspectives will help to ensure you’re addressing your highest-priority business problems.
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(I'm re-posting this from my own blog,

At IBM, we talk about mobile technology a lot. Between the launch of 
MobileFirst two years ago, or the long-established 

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Last month at the Los Angeles DAA Symposium I got the opportunity to speak about the Multi-Platform majority and how we as individuals have changed our media consumption patterns dramatically over the last few years. Chances are you’re reading this post on a mobile device. Or maybe you’re visiting this blog via your PC. Perhaps you started reading the post on one device, and then finished reading it on another. We are all consuming content in a different way given that many of us have phones attached to our hands at all times (bad, I know!).

However, you’re not alone. The multi-platform majority has arrived, and is here to stay. In the U.S., 54 percent of internet users now access content on more than one device, and that number continues to grow. Of course, this isn’t surprising. The past half-decade has been defined by platform proliferation, beginning with the 2007 introduction of the Apple iPhone, which ushered in the era of the media-centric smartphone. Apple’s 2010 launch of the iPad similarly marked the beginning of the tablet era, and as competitors introduced their own smartphone and tablet offerings, mass markets for these devices were established. Today, more than 140 million Americans own smartphones and nearly 70 million own tablets.

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Reposted from

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Tips! Getting customers through your website’s metaphorical doors is a tough mission! But keeping those visitors engaged once they’re on your site is an even tougher challenge. How do you leap these hurdles and create a site that customers both enjoy visiting and want to keep coming back to? This is a question all marketers and web analysts would LOVE to know the answer to. Unfortunately, it isn’t something that is easily determined with a one-size-fits-all answer.

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Here’s my conundrum.  I vividly – vividly – remember smilies becoming more popular and beginning to be used more commonly in email in Ireland.  I remember thinking of people who used them as being incapable of mastering language well enough to convey an intended emotion without throwing in a selection of punctuation marks.  I remember thinking of people that used them in work emails as unprofessional.  Oh how I sneered at the : -) and the :*

Then along came emoticons.  Even worse!  Now the silly collection of punctuation marks was often replaced by a cutsey little picture of the emotion in question.  People were writing things like “I’m happy 

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In many organizations digital analytics tends to be a heads-down effort, where we implement reporting, analyze data, and become engrossed in the details of analytics. While these activities are critical to the success of any digital analytics program, too much of a good thing can be a detriment to both an individual and an organization. By stepping outside the walls of your office and empowering your staff to do so as well, a world of learning opportunities becomes available.

Recently, I attended the DAA Symposium in Los Angeles, where I had the opportunity to meet with a number of vendors, practitioners, and new entrants to the field of digital analytics. The one thing that every attendee at the Symposium had in common was that each was there to learn. Learning about what others in the digital analytics industry are doing, learning what best practices are exploding onto the scene, and learning about which new technologies will make the digital data we collect and analyze more accessible and meaningful to our businesses.

If there’s one thing that I’ve learned through my years of consulting and practicing digital analytics, it’s that a “Learning Agenda” can help you to focus your efforts. While most will agree that learning is a top priority, few take the time to define exactly what it is they wish to learn, and how they plan to acquire that knowledge. You can become more efficient in your learning pursuits by simply taking the time to jot down a few things that you’d like to learn and identifying resources that can help you accomplish your goal. Learning can take many different forms, so organizing a list into categories may be a good place to start. For example, maybe you’d like to learn some basic principles about digital analytics so that you can effectively communicate to peers about what analytics can do for your business. Or, perhaps you want to learn how to utilize a specific digital analytics tool so that you can become more proficient at your job or expand your skillset. Maybe you’re grappling with a specific business analytics problem, and you want to learn how others in the field have solved it. You may even want to take your learning to a higher level by enrolling in a postgraduate degree program. Whatever, your learning pursuit, by taking the time to document what you’re trying to achieve you can transform a desire into a tangible activity.  
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Reposted from

Oh how I rub my grubby little paws together when this time of year rolls around.  ’Tis upon us again, my friends, the annual Awards for Excellence

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It’s a slippery slope when the government starts to regulate the internet… I think it would be better for private industry to come up with solutions to piracy issues rather than the government.   Judging from the xxx domain extension debacle, (Opinion: XXX domains an obvious failure) I think any well-meaning regulation will only cause more harm than good.

Once Big Brother starts to enforce rules on the internet, they will start to tax the internet which will throw a big wet blanket on any creativity and user ability.  
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I always thought I would be able figure out each new generation that entered the US work force.  Starting with Gen X and each new tech savvy group that followed, I looked at the "newbies" as they became part of America's next great era:  the Information Age.   I marveled at how easy these folks embraced technology and were unafraid to innovate, create jobs and really contribute to the US economy.   I have to admit, however, I am a bit worried about this new generation called the Millennials.  
I've had some recent experience interviewing Millennials  that made me wonder.  Some were really polished and understood the importance of making a great first impression.  However, a majority have squandered their opportunity with reckless abandon.  
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I am very humbled and honored to be nominated for the 2014 DAA Rising Star award among so many talented digital analysts:

Voting Process:
The entire DAA membership will have the opportunity to vote on the nominees to determine the finalists in each category. The five finalists in each category as well as the recipient will be announced live at the Annual DAA Awards for Excellence Gala held on March 18th in San Francisco in conjunction with the eMetrics Summit

My information as submitted by the nominator:

Allaedin Ezzedin is my Digital Analytics superhero.  He's an industry veteran with more than 7 years of experience, currently managing a global team of analytics implementation specialists for the Digital Analytics powerhouse, E-Nor Inc.  Allaedin has led the successful deployment of analytics solutions for organizations ranging from Fortune 25 to data-driven start-ups.  He is always the first to jump onto a data challenge and look at it from every angle, examining every crevice, twisting and turning it making sure the perspective is legitimate, then squeezing, juicing, and extracting the most insight out of the data as possible.  From his passion for the latest tools; his innovative ideas in code, strategies; his definitions of efficient best-practices and implementation; communication of data into clear tangible reports; and translation of metrics into insights and goals for executives and marketers - any interaction with Allaedin will have you seeing his visions and dreams of bridging the gap between business requirements and technical capabilities.  Allaedin tirelessly aids the marketing community get the most out of their Digital Analytics experience, actively participating in industry conferences, beta testing new features and functionality for the latest tools, and communicating customer feedback for future enhancements.  His blog posts and theories are widely read and known amongst avid Analytics ninjas.  As if that's not enough, he is the founder of, a tool I use frequently.  CampaignAlyzer is a web-based application that acts as a central repository platform where organizations can store their marketing campaign values in one database. Marketing agencies and digital marketers across organizations now have the ability to collaborate in tagging various online and offline campaigns, and ensure consistency in their marketing campaign tagging.  I hope you will consider him for the rising star, only cause a "digital analytics rising sun" isn't an available option. 
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My responsibility as Chairman of the Digital Analytics Association is Industry Cheerleader. While other, more capable people have shouldered the tasks of President, Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary and Board Members at Large, I've been the flag waver, the parade leader and the Champion of the Cause.

It's a role I cherish.

But I haven't done any cheering yet in 2014 and it's time. So let me lead you in a rousing reprise of that high-school classic, as an instruction manual to start the New Year:

            Lean to the Left
            Lean to the Right
            Stand Up
            Sit Down
            Fight, Fight, Fight!

Lean to the Left

Given the people, process, technology trinity, start 2014 with a hard look at the tech and the processes you have in place. What are you not using that can be discontinued? What are you underutilizing that can be put to better use? What are you missing as an organization that is really holding you back?
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I can see from my end that mobile usage is about 10% of total traffic. Is there an industry standard on the mobile usage? Specially on the financial companies.

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I’ve never done this before, but today I want to gush about an analytics service I recently signed up for: Lead Forensics, based on a true story that happened yesterday. But let me set this up the right way.

I think of Analytics as a long con…in the most empathic sense of the term, since I don’t just drink the kool-aid, I prepare it! But people like me spend their careers trying to convince our coworkers that problems can be avoided and opportunities seized by monitoring website behavior. But it’s hard to prove the benefits right away; you have to invest in the right equipment, sow the seeds of data capture in a careful manner across your site, establish some benchmarks and then create the right sorts of dashboards and tests to make the most of it. And no matter what, there will always be doubters that refuse to accept what the data says, especially when it shows that their idea was a real stinker (I’m looking at you, Pato!).

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If you watch basketball, then you already know that Blake griffin is infamous for his highflying dunks and alley-oops. His popularity & skills have been growing tremendously since he joined the clippers in 2009. His jumping ability and continuous improvement earned him “Western Conference Player of the year” for 2013.

Watching his dunk videos and clipper games inspired me to create this HTML5 website, which is highly dynamic and offers users a new interactive way of viewing his amazing dunk videos. Watch Blake Griffin’s top dunks here. I made sure the website contained video tracking as well as general engagement metrics to understand how users are interacting with the “canvas” and specific videos. Google Analytics and event trackers were implemented.

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