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15 Years Later: What Hath DAA Wrought?

By Jim Sterne posted 02-26-2019 05:42 PM


I really can’t believe it has been 15 years since the founding of  DAA.  From its conception at the eMetrics Summit in 2004, (now called the Marketing Analytics Summit), we have created a vibrant analytics organization of more than 5,000 professionals. I’m honored to have been a part of the founding and rapid growth of  DAA. It has me, in this DAA’s 15th anniversary year, asking “What hath DAA wrought?”

It's fair to say that DAA members invented the digital analytics industry. We were - and still are - inventing it. Today, we are the center of the universe of data analytics knowledge, training, professional development and networking. As this industry continues to get more complex, there are more types of data every time we turn around, and more sophisticated tools every day of the week. That's where DAA’s professional network is so important. Anybody who hits a roadblock can reach out and say, "I'm dealing with a situation. Has anybody come across that before? Does anybody have any recommendations or suggestions?"

Learn more about DAA Membership

DAA is the place where experienced digital analysts gather, train and share. If you're new to analytics, then the DAA is the resource for knowledge, validation and certification. If you're looking to recruit, if you're looking to increase the capabilities in your company, if you're looking to learn how others are managing the growth of analytics in their area, DAA is an amazing resource for education and content.

Culture, Community or Both?
We have developed a strong sense of community in DAA over the last 15 years. But I’ve wondered if “community” is the right word for what all DAA members share. “Culture” might be more appropriate. 

The Culture of the industry we created is to help each other.  It started out at the conferences almost two decades ago. The conversation moved to the blogosphere; somebody would write an article and people would comment. Then Twitter came along and the conversations grew. Now, Measure.Slack lets you reach out and find people who are facing the same problem you have - that weird combination of sophistication of the data, sophistication of the tool, complexity of the business environment, and too many permutations of variables that you need to be able to reach out into the world and say, "Oh my God, has anybody seen this configuration before? What do I do?" With the Culture DAA has helped create, you’ll get an answer.

That feeling of support and empathy and desire to help each other is a central part of how this industry got started and is embodied in DAA.

Two DAA Game Changers for the Industry
DAA has made a number of significant contributions to the industry over the last 15 years and I’d like to highlight two of them. First, the Certified Web Analyst Certification was unique and special. It was an important stake in the ground for the industry and DAA. 

Another unique contribution to the industry was the Digital Analyst Competency Framework. It identifies what a digital analyst does for a living; what skills are required to do those tasks and what knowledge is needed to do those tasks. It is a framework that spells out how you grow your capabilities as you mature as a digital analyst. From that, we were able to create job descriptions and do salary surveys. The Competency Framework is really a groundbreaking benchmark for what we do for a living that had never been attempted before.

So what hath DAA wrought over the last 15 years? Our members have helped create and define the digital analytics industry and profession. Most importantly, DAA embedded in the profession a culture that emphasizes community, knowledge-sharing, support and a true desire to help one another. I’m proud to a member of both the digital analytics profession and DAA.

We invite you to learn more about DAA Membership and hope you join us!




03-14-2019 01:14 PM

This organization has truly helped me hone my skills to make me a better practitioner. I am super excited to be a part of the 15th year of DAA.

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