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Prema Srinivasan, Content Strategist at Velir, sat down with Adam Ribaudo and Evan Crean, to discuss why a solid analytics strategy is key to effective digital marketing. Adam and Evan shared their thoughts on the role of analytics in helping clients use their websites to achieve their business goals.

In this episode, you will learn:

  • Why it’s important to look at analytics before starting a redesign. (1:43)
  • The process we use to set up analytics tracking on clients’ websites that ties back to their business goals. (2:00)
  • The most exciting areas in analytics right now. (3:49)
"The value of a robust analytics program is that you can make better decisions. We make sure that we can spot issues or anomalies or things that we see that clients might be interested in."
Adam Ribaudo Director of Analytics, Velir

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Video Transcript (Edited for Clarity)

Prema Srinivasan: Hi everyone. Welcome to another episode of Public Interface by Velir! My name is Prema Srinivasan and joining me today are Adam Ribaudo and Evan Crean. Adam is the Director of Analytics at Velir and helps ensure that Velir’s clients are able to measure the success of their digital properties. Evan is an analytics analyst and helps clients set up tracking that ties back to their business goals. Today we're going to be discussing why a solid analytics strategy is key to effective digital marketing. Before we jump in make sure to subscribe so you don't miss out on future discussions.

[Public Interface Intro]

Velir Presents

Public Interface

Analytics in Action

Prema: Adam, Evan, thank you both for joining me today.

Adam Ribaudo and Evan Crean: Thanks for having us.

Prema: To start off can you tell us why clients should care about analytics?

Adam: The value of a robust analytics program is that you can make better decisions. It's as simple as that. You can still make decisions without analytics or data but imagine how much better the outcome of those decisions will be if it's rooted in reality—rooted in data. And it hasn't been too much of a challenge recently at least, to convince clients of the value of analytics in the abstract. I think it just gets more challenging when there's a major project on the horizon. There's a lot of moving parts—design, development, content migration—where does analytics fit into that and what's the value while we're discussing all these other aspects of the website that are a bit more visible or visceral.

Prema: What would you say are some of the reasons that clients should consider analytics before starting a redesign?

Adam: We try to ask clients, what are the reports that you're gonna really care about a year after the launch? What are you gonna want to look back on and see and compare? Because we need to be thinking about that right now.

Prema: What's your process for implementing analytics on a client's website?

Evan: The first thing we start with is what we call a “Measurement Plan,” and what we'll do is we'll have a workshop with our client, and we'll find out their business goals. We’ll translate those into digital goals, and based on those digital goals, we'll come up with key performance indicators and really measure success both on the website and as a whole.

Adam: The next key deliverable that we would produce is called a “Learning Agenda,” and this is an inventory of all the questions that our clients have about their users and the website. Then we come up with tactical actions that we can take through data collection, tagging, A/B testing, and analytics reporting in order to answer those questions. We’re there looking at analytics not just to answer those questions that we inventory but we're trying to keep our heads up and make sure that we're spotting either issues or anomalies or things that we see that clients might be interested in. So we surface those in either monthly reports or ad-hoc meetings with the client to make sure that they know we're engaged and we're looking at this stuff with them. And we want to make sure that we're progressing their analytics program.

Prema: What are some common questions clients ask you about analytics?

Evan: A lot of questions that I get from clients are generally around analytics platforms themselves—what reports they can use to find the information that they need, where in the analytics platform is the information? A lot of the other questions that I get from clients are around different types of platforms that they want to integrate with analytics so let's say a client has the CRM that they want to integrate with the analytics—they would come to us and we can help them connect the two systems and make sure that they're talking and trading information correctly so when the client needs to make decisions they're a lot more informed and they have a lot better data to do so.

Prema: This question is for both of you. What would you say is the most exciting thing in analytics right now?

Adam: For me personally it's the privacy space and the changes to recent privacy law but also how vendors are responding to those laws and to consumer demands around privacy. It may seem a bit counterintuitive because I work with marketers day-in and day-out and a lot of these laws or changes make it a little bit harder for them to do their jobs. But I think in the long run I think this is a positive thing for consumers and also for marketers I would say it's really evening the playing field. I think there are a lot of bad actors out there who have been exploiting features and browsers and other technologies to track users who clearly did not want to be tracked. By the vendors stepping up and providing more privacy controls, they're removing the effects of those bad actors and making an even competitive playing field for all marketers.

Evan: I'm personally most interested in artificial intelligence and how that's impacting analytics and will in the future. A lot of people who use Google Analytics will notice there's a feature now where you can type plain spoken questions in and ask Google Analytics questions to surface information and that's just a small example, but I'm really interested to see how artificial intelligence can be used to learn from data and to provide information to our clients.

Prema: That's really insightful! Thank you so much for taking time to speak with me today!

Evan: Thanks for having us.

Adam: Yeah, thanks.

Prema: That wraps up another episode of Public Interface. Thank you for watching. Join us next time as we continue to explore other exciting topics from our work here at Velir. In the meantime, follow us on Twitter (@Velir), subscribe to our YouTube channel, and visit us online at See you next time!

[Outro Music and Closing Credits]

Hosted By: Prema Srinivasan
Special Guests: Evan Crean and Adam Ribaudo
Produced By: Velir
Directed By: Mark Stiles

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