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April 7 , 2009

eMetrics stresses value of education
Event logs increase in workshop attendees

By Amy Bostock, Editor
Planning a conference in the current economic climate was “tentative to say the least”, according to Andrea Hadley, conference director for the eMetrics Marketing Optimization Summit Toronto held last week.

Despite her reservations, the event was a really good success, with numbers coming in at about the same as last year.

“In January and February we were actually about 25 per cent ahead of last year’s numbers,” says Hadley. “It slowed down in March but we still had good numbers.”

The biggest growth this year was in the number of people attending the educational workshops at the Summit.

“We found that people are much more willing to invest in education during difficult economic times to ensure that they are well positioned for change,” she says.

According to Hadley, you really can’t go wrong with education and although eMetrics has been expanding their workshops over the last couple of years, she expects even more growth in this segment of the conference in future years.

“What people are saying is that they want training rather than just information,” explains Hadley, “so we’re going to strive to give them an even deeper level of content.”

Hadley says that although she feels that conference goers want more advanced training, rather than introductory sessions, more research has to be done to make sure that the Canadian market is really ready for that level of workshop.

One of the areas that is garnering increased attention in the analytics world is predictive analytics – working with data using formulas in order to predict behaviour.

Web analytics in Canada will continue evolving “the only way it can”, according to Hadley, which means when companies commit to taking it more seriously.

“ Canada is still abit behind the U.S. when it comes to investing in analytics,” she says. “And although interest is growing, there also needs to be an increased investment in people, education and tools in order for it to be effective.”

The tools alone, she says, don’t offer the solution.

“The tool is not the answer, it’s how you use the tool that gives it value.”

Many companies, she claims, are willing to use the free analytics tools available but don’t follow up by maintaining and/or updating their sites so that the right things are being tracked the right way.

“Doing things this way puts compnaies in danger of making bad business decisions based on incorrect data,” warns Hadley.

For more details about the eMetrics Marketing Optimization Summit Toronto visit www.eMetrics.org/Toronto

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