Making Sense of Web Analytics

The Indiana Office of Tourism Development recently hosted the 2012 New Media Workshop with a session called Making Sense of Web Analytics. Jeremy Williams presented an overview of web analytics in general (specifically focusing on Google Analytics). With the help of our friends at 12 Stars Media, we filmed the presentation and have embedded the video below.

Thanks to everyone who attended the workshop, we hope it was beneficial and that you walked away with a better understanding of how to use Google Analytics (and web analytics in general) to help you understand how visitors use your site and how you might make modifications to improve your conversion rates and how visitors use your website.

About the session:

One of the biggest advantages of online marketing (as opposed to traditional print, radio and tv) is that everything done online can be tracked and attributed to specific ad campaigns. The challenge facing most tourism marketers today is that too few organizations are accurately tracking the visitors on their website and how their visitors are finding their website.

During this presentation, the attendees learned some basic things they should be tracking on their websites. They also learned some tips and tricks for tagging advertising links as well as any links they sent out through social media channels like Facebook and Twitter so they could more accurately gauge the value received from different advertising opportunities and social channels.

Attendees learned about some basic stats they should be tracking on a regular basis as well as some more in-depth stats that provided them with a deeper knowledge of how their visitors are using their websites.

If you can’t see the presentation above, click here to view it on Prezi.

If you can’t see the video above, click here to view on YouTube.

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Social Media for Customer Retention – a Brief Scotty’s @Brewhouse Case Study

Scotty's Brewhouse

For the past few weeks, Scotty’s Brewhouse, a local restaurant chain (I hate using the word “chain” to refer to a place like Scotty’s, but there are 5 locations, so I’m sticking with chain) has been running the Scotty’s Burger Bracket Challenge. In short, the contest allowed people to submit new burger recipes that would then be voted on in a bracket-style until the top burger was chosen. For the final two burgers, the Fit to Be Thai’d Burger and the Confused Buffalo Burger (read about them here), Scotty’s has been serving both burgers at their restaurants and the winning burger will be the one with the most orders as of Sunday, April 1 at 10:00 PM EDT. The winning burger will then become a permanent addition to the menu at Scotty’s Brewhouse.

Owner Scott Wise is no stranger to customer service or social media – in fact, I interviewed Scott a couple years ago to talk with him about his fantastic use of social media in the restaurant industry. I’ve always been impressed with Scott’s grasp of social media and how important it is for customer service today. I actually mention Scott as an example of how to use social media for customer service whenever I present to organizations.

Since Scott knows what he’s doing by using social media for great customer service I shouldn’t be surprised by what he did today, but it’s a great case study in customer retention:

I’ve been craving one of the final two burgers for a few days now and I sent out at tweet around lunchtime asking if anyone wanted to join me at Scotty’s Brewhouse downtown for lunch. A few friends replied and we went back and forth talking about @brewhouse for a few minutes, but weren’t able to find a time that worked for everyone so we scratched it.

A couple hours later, we were all mentioned in a tweet by Scott thanking us for talking about the restaurant and offering us all $10 gift certificates to use at the restaurant (see screenshot below for some of the conversation and resulting tweet from Scott):

Conversation about @Brewhouse results in $10 Gift Certificate

Wow! We were all just talking about Scotty’s Brewhouse and we didn’t even end up eating there today, but Scott still recognized us by gifting all five of us a $10 gift certificate to spend at the restaurant.If you look at face value of the gift cards, Scott is now out $50 by giving us these cards, but think of what our potential lifetime spending will be at his restaurant. Does this free $10 gift card make me want to go back to eat at Scotty’s again? You bet. Spend more than the face value of the gift card? Probably. Would this blog post have even been written if he hadn’t rewarded his customers?

The simple act of rewarding customers for their loyalty (or, in this case, just for talking about the restaurant) ensures an even more fervent fanbase for his restaurant. Scott will see that $50 investment returned many times over because he was listening to his customers.

Thank you Scott for your tremendous generosity.

Here’s a video I put together with the help of 12 Stars Media. Erik Deckers and I went to Scotty’s last week to try out the two burgers remaining in the 2012 Scotty’s Burger Bracket Challenge.

Subscribers, Fans and Followers: Mobile Dependence Day

ExactTarget - Subscribers, Fans and Followers ResearchI just got an email today that ExactTarget just released another report in their fantastic Subscribers, Fans and Followers research series. Their ninth report is entitled Mobile Dependence Day and goes into depth about our collective dependence on our smartphones and other mobile devices. (You can see my previous reviews of the SFF research series if you want. I covered report #7 Social Mytbhusting here.) While I was reading the most recent report, I realized that I hadn’t blogged about the previous report: The Social Breakup, so this post consists of reviews of the two most recent reports as part of the Subscribers, Fans and Followers research. If you’re interested in downloading the reports for yourself, check out ET’s Subscribers, Fans and Followers page for the full reports.

Report No. 8: The Social Breakup

The eighth report in the Subscribers, Fans and Followers series focuses on the “social breakup” – how and why consumers “break up” with brands and stop following them via Facebook, Twitter and email. You might be surprised at how much similarity there is across all channels. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Email
    • 67% of subscribers hit the unsubscribe button to end the email relationship rather than just deleting (17%), reporting as spam (8%), ignoring (6%) or setting up a filter to auto-archive the message(2%)
    • Top 3 reasons people unsubscribed from emails:
      • Too many emails from the company
      • Repetitive or boring content over time
      • Email overload – too many emails in general, cleaning out the clutter
  • Facebook
    • When fans no longer want information from a brand they previously “liked”, 43% of them go to the brand’s page and click “unlike, 38% click the “X” in their newsfeed to remove them from the wall and 19% just ignore the posts.
    • Top 3 reasons people “unliked” a brand on Facebook:
      • Too many posts – too much frequency can overwhelm users walls
      • Repetitive or boring content over time
      • They only “liked” the brand because of a promotion, discount or deal offered to fans, and “unliked” once they got what they wanted.
  • Twitter
    • Nearly half of consumers who created a Twitter account no longer use it with 52% saying they found Twitter to be pointless, 38% saying it became boring and 23% thinking that Twitter was too chaotic.
    • Top 3 reasons people stopped following a brand on Twitter:
      • Repetitive or boring content over time
      • Tweet stream became overloaded with marketing posts, wanted to clean up
      • Too many posts – too much frequency can overwhelm users tweet streams

Notice the striking similarity between why people unsubscribe, unlike and unfollow brands? While there are different strategies to employ for brand to get the most out of email, Facebook and Twitter, online consumers – across the board – seem to all be saying the same thing when it comes to ending their relationship with a brand’s digital initiatives: don’t talk too much and keep the content interesting.

Report No. 9: Mobile Dependence Day

The ninth report in the Subscribers, Fans and Followers series really focuses on our increasing dependence on our smartphones and other mobile devices. Even within the past year, the share of US consumers with smartphones (as opposed to feature phones) has grown dramatically. Here are some of the high points about what it means for interactive marketers:

  • 89% of US consumers 15+ own a cell phone. 41% of those have smartphones
    • Android: 33%
    • iPhone: 25%
    • Blackberry: 19%
    • Other: 23%
  • Smartphone’s Big 5 (the five most frequently used functions on today’s smartphones):
    • Phone Calls
    • Texting
    • Email
    • Internet
    • Facebook
  • How important is the smartphone to people who own and use one? Here is the percentage of people who would (if forced to choose) rather keep their smartphone than the following items:
    • Game Console: 72%
    • Dishwasher: 46%
    • Laptop: 40%
    • Microwave: 34%
    • Refrigerator: 13%
    • Car: 8%

The rest of the report gives recommendations of ways you can integrate your marketing efforts across all three communications channels and is definitely worth a read.

Have you looked through ExactTarget’s Subscribers, Fans and Followers series? What do you think about their findings?

Four On Friday: Social Media Recap

Check out these articles to see what you may have missed this week:

1: Facebook Introduces One-Time Passwords Via Text | PC Magazine

Social Mediarology thinks: For as much flak as Facebook has received lately for their lack concern for users’ privacy, this is yet another step in the right direction. Facebook also recently released the ability to log out of other locations remotely and this One-Time Password feature is just another way Facebook really is looking out for their members. If you’ve ever felt nervous about logging into Facebook on a public computer, this is a great way to check in on Facebook without the worry.

2: Klout Now Measures Your Influence on Facebook | Mashable

Social Mediarology thinks: Klout’s influence score has become one of few widely-recognized and respected Twitter influence scores on the web today. You’ll find Klout’s scores baked into Twitter clients like HootSuite. Klout’s foray into Facebook is interesting because while finding a definitive influence score for Twitter or Facebook is nearly impossible, it seems much more difficult to do so for Facebook, where there are many more variables to take into account that for Twitter.

3: Skype 5.0 Busts Out of Beta, Integrates Facebook Friends | Engadget

Social Mediarology thinks: There have been rumors for a few weeks about the integration of Skype and Facebook and half of the equation is now solved. With the 5.0 release of Skype, Windows users can log into Skype and bring all their Facebook friends with them. Then next step will be Facebook pulling Skype into their own chat application to create Skype-enabled text, audio and video chatting. While many businesses are starting to use Skype more and more, their integration with Facebook will bring more users to Skype.

4: URL Shortener Bit.ly Now Generates QR Codes | Mashable

Social Mediarology thinks: QR codes are gaining popularity with the advent of mobile apps that can easily scan this new style of barcode. Foursquare even allows users to scan a QR code that will check them in to a location. While QR codes are still in their infancy, they are becoming more common and Bit.ly has done themselves a great service by making QR code creation so simple (just append .qr to the end of a Bit.ly URL and they’ll display your QR code. Take a picture of the one above using a QR code scanning app on your mobile phone and it’ll redirect you to SocialMediarology.com.

Subscribers, Fans and Followers: Facebook and the Collaborative Future

ExactTarget - Subscribers, Fans and Followers ResearchTwo more parts in ExactTarget’s Subscribers, Fans and Followers research series have been released since I wrote my last post on the first four parts of the series. The two most recent parts focus on Facebook X-Factors and the Collaborative Future. ExactTarget has done a fantastic job of putting these research reports together and they’ve really dug into consumers motivations when it comes to how and why they interact with technology. If you haven’t ready my summary of the first four reports, click here to read about them. If you’re interested in downloading the reports for yourself, check out ET’s Subscribers, Fans and Followers page for the full reports.

Also, if you’re attending ExactTarget’s Connections 2010 Conference on September 14-16, drop by the Lead Nurturing and Lead Scoring session on Wedensday (9/15) at 9:45am – I’ll be speaking about how we’ve worked with Right On Interactive to nurture and score leads through the Visit Indiana Foursquare/Leaf Cam promotion.

Lead Nurturing and Lead Scoring | Exact Target Connections 2010 Conference (Day 2)

Report No. 5: Facebook X-Factors

The fifth report in the Subscribers, Fans and Followers series focuses on Facebook. After detailed reports of Email and Twitter users, how do Facebook users stack up? Do they want to interact with companies or do they want to keep Facebook purely personal and clear of marketing speak? Here are some of the highlights:

  • The top four things that motivate users to follow a business are:
    • To receive discounts or promotions
    • To show my support of the company to others
    • To get a freebie (free samples, coupon) – very similar to #1
    • To stay informed about the company’s activities
  • 70% of consumers who ‘liked’ a brand or company on Facebook didn’t feel they’d given the company permission to market to them (maybe Troy Thompson is on to something with his thoughts about comparing Facebook Likes to bumper stickers).
  • Far and away, consumers use Facebook to reconnect with friends and maintain current friendships as opposed to maintaining and cultivating professional relationships.

So Facebook is used primarily for connecting with friends and less so for connecting with businesses. And consumers that do connect with businesses are really looking for a good deal. How can you leverage those opportunities to bring success to your company’s Facebook page?

Report No. 6: The Collaborative Future

The sixth report in the Subscribers, Fans and Followers series really focuses on ingetrating email, Facebook and Twitter – keeping in mind the strengths and weaknesses of each medium. Here are a few insights gleaned from the sixth report:

  • Email is more likely to drive increased purchase intent among the largest group of consumers.
  • Facebook is the least effective channel to drive increased purchase behavior.
  • Twitter is actually the channel that is most likely to drive increased purchases and recommendations after a consumer follows a brand.

The rest of the report gives recommendations of ways you can integrate your marketing efforts across all three communications channels and is definitely worth a read.

Have you looked through ExactTarget’s Subscribers, Fans and Followers series? What do you think about their findings?

Blog Indiana 2010 Recap

Blog Indiana 2010

I spent Friday at Blog Indiana, a great social media and blogging conference  based in Indianapolis. It was a great chance to run into some social media and tourism people from Indianapolis and a chance to finally put a face to some names I’ve gotten to know through social media.

Day 1 Highlights:

Thanks to Noah Coffey (@NoahWesley) and Sean Plew (@HoosierPlew) as well as all the other presenters for putting on a great conference this year.