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Interview With Web Analyst Scott Baldwin
By Anil Batra
My Interview with Analysts series is back again.
Here is my interview with Scott Baldwin.
What is your current position and the name of the company you work for?
My job title is Manager, Web Services at North Shore Credit Union (www.nscu.com). We're one of Canada's fastest growing credit unions.
How long have you been working in this field?
I have been working in Web Analytics for over an year now. Unlike many of those you've interviewed, Web analytics is not my only job role and accounts for about 20% of my time. At work I wear many hats including web, usability, SEO/SEM, Internet marketing, project management and much more. I'm trying to make web analytics a larger focus but we don't have the people or budget to enable me to move over full-time.
Tell me about your work and education prior to this job.
I have a degree in Music (I'm a drummer). Most of my formal marketing and web analytics training as has been on as needed basis. Over the years I've taken courses in design, usability and whatever the job demanded. I'm now working towards an integrated marketing certificate at UBC in hopes of being a bit more formal with my education and long-term career plans.
How did web analytics fall into your job responsibility?
About a year ago I approached my manager and asked to change up my job role to include web analytics. As an organization we're very data driven in our decisions around marketing and I felt that web analytics was a good fit with much of the segmentation we do. I also wanted to shift from making site changes based on "gut" to more data driven decisions. My boss has been very supportive and it's help differentiate us from many of our credit union competitors.
Before NSCU I taught web production at the Vancouver Film School; worked at Inovera Solutions (a Credit Union eCommerce joint venture) where I was Product Manager, Design; as well as stints at Citizens Bank of Canada, Vancity, Blue Zone Entertainment in publishing and as a full-time musician.
What are your responsibilities now as far as web analytics goes?
I oversee all our web analytics work and work with internal departments to provide them with information as needed. That might involve one-time reporting or ongoing. Since the web is more immediate the feedback we can provide on things is faster than most of our offline analysis.
Describe your typical work day.
No day is "typical" for me. I wear such a generalist hat that I can get pulled in all kinds of directions. From an analytics perspective I do try to set aside at least a couple hours each day to look at the data and discover something about our customers use of the site that we can use to make improvements. I have some ad-hoc reports I run as needed or weekly (that are built using HBX's Report Builder Excel plug-in) which help me keep an eye on site performance issues (broken pages, internal site search), content issues as well as monthly reporting to see where we are with our conversion, campaigns, SEO/SEM and content effectiveness.
Have you done any web analytics courses?
Yes, I have done two of the UBC web analytics courses and will be starting my third course shortly. I've really enjoyed the courses. The first course was an overlap of much of what I already knew -- I could have probably audited it. The second on website optimization was fantastic and really challenged me. I've found them to be very helpful in clarifying my self-learning done to date.
What skills/education are helping you in your current job?
The UBC courses, some recent Excel courses (to become more proficient), and webinars/online training with our vendor WebSideStory when I can. Getting in touch with people in the industry has also been of great help. Robbin from LunaMetrics (who I approached this year to help out), Avinash Kaushik, people locally, Eric's Yahoo group and many in the blogosphere have been of great help.
Continue reading this article.
Anil work at ZAAZ and has over 10 years of experience in Consulting, Business Intelligence, Web Analytics, Online Advertising and Behavioral Targeting. Prior to joining ZAAZ he was working at Revenue Science, leader in Behavioral Targeting. He worked with Revenue Science since it was called digiMine, a web analytics vendor. He has worked with several fortune 500 companies such as Microsoft, Starbucks, T-Mobile, Business Objects, Dowjones, ESPN. Anil holds a B. Tech in Electronics and Communication Engineering from India and an MBA from University of Washington, Seattle.