Avinash Kaushik from Google and Market Motive: Get on the train or get run over. Relevant metrics are changing dramatically and are an essential part of your online strategy. RSS as the key blog metric, because this is the ultimate permission marketing environment where you push content out to your readers.
Jim Sterne: Web and search metrics are changing the game from reporting to analysis to promotions to “hearts and minds” marketing.
Mathew Baily had the most entertaining yet relevant presentation I’ve seen in some time – probably not as helpful as case studies but brilliant! Analytics and Star Trek: 1.0 analytics endless cycle of mundane reporting. This runs you down. You want 2.0 analytics! Star trek death conversion rate? = 14% mortality, mostly among red shirted actors. Need more context which is where story-driven analytics comes in to answer the detailed questions. Ask questions – best human tool.
Measuring Success in a 2.0 World
How do you know if you’ve been successful with search engines and your website in general? You can check your “rank” at search engines for particular keywords, analyze log files to see the actual terms people used to reach your website, or make the ultimate jump and “close the loop” by measuring sales conversions and ROI. This panel explores both classic and cutting-edge techniques to measure success, what statistics you should really care about, ways to be more strategically focused, and how to drive increased revenue for your business.
The SES San Jose search conference hosts dozens of providers of internet business services who exhibit on two of the conferences four days. Google, Yahoo, Microsoft are all here as are many search optimization firm, search analytics appications, and even some consumer focused websites.
With 6000 attendees, Search Engine Strategies in San Jose California remains the world’s largest search marketing conference, bringing search marketing experts and marketing teams from all over the globe.
I’m finding out the breakdown of attendance tomorrrow, as some of the 6000 are only here with exhibit hall passes which do admit to the keynotes but not the regular sessions.
This picture is from this morning’s session on the Asian and South American search markets.
Lee Siegel is about to speak here at SES San Jose. He’s the author of “Against the Machine” and a senior editor at The New Republic, and a noted critic of the new media, primarily because he feels anonymity is a threat to intelligent, enlightened conversation.
Although I’m sympathetic to Lee’s points about how abusive the online world can be, and how foolish it is to consider as sacred the hate speech and the junk banter that passes as conversation, he’s missing two key features of the new conversational media that effectively sweep away much of the significance of his legitimate concerns.
First, the high tolerance for abusive and threatening language has become something of a new standard, especially for younger commenters. I don’t like it either, but for many writers this does not reflect the type of threat it would under other circumstances. It is not appropriate to apply old interpretations of this language to the modern usage.
Second is that focusing on the defects of blogging and new media distracts us from the profound and positive changes in communication – changes that represent the early stages of truly democratic and massively participatory conversations.
I don’t think Siegel is so much *wrong* as he is making fairly insignificant points about the new media. I’d certainly agree that there is a danger whenever people are stifled. For me the outrageous online treatment of Kathy Sierra, a noted blogger,is the exception that proves the rule. These cases are very few, and in a broad sense are eclipsed by the thousands of new voices coming online *every day*.
So, is there value in paying attention to these problems? Sure. Should this drive our understanding and appreciation of the most profound transformation in human communication history?
SES San Jose is reporting record attendance at this year’s conference. I’m hoping to track down the numbers which are not listed in the press release, and here at day 1 there don’t seem to be as many folks as last year. However I think the format changes may have changed the traffic flow such that we’ll see the big numbers tomorrow and Wednesday.
SES offers free admission to exhibits for those who pre-register. This does not give people access to session content but it’s still an OK introduction to the big show, and perhaps most importantly gets you a ticket to the Google Dance, which many see as the highlight of the year in search and internet marketing.
Although it’s fun to attend conferences like SES you can learn an enormous amount reading the many folks who are live blogging the sessions here in San Jose. If you read this and I haven’t added your blog please do so in the comment section.
Last year they had “Candy Bars” where you could fill a bag with all sorts of great candy. I brought one home for my daughter who now dreams of going to a Google party.
The Google Dance has been going on for several years as part of the SES Conference series. Held at the Googleplex the party features a huge buffet, food, wine, and beer stations all over the Google commons. For those who can’t separate work from leisure (which would be most tech folks), there are demonstrations of new technologies from Google and a “meet the engineers” face to face talk that is always very enjoyable.
Greg over at Search Engine Watch (which is SES’s blog and forum), has a tidy summary of sessions at the conference here. Although he’s tagged sessions with ‘advanced’ or novice content in my experience at conferences like SES you never really know if the content is “advanced” or not. Generally I find the speaker is more important than the topic, and top SEO folks like Dave Naylor, Aaron Wall, Greg Boser, and several others – regardless of the session and preferably at the bar – are going to give you better insights into search algorithm mechanics than official company representatives are allowed to do.
In terms of internet search the really big and influential conference is – without a doubt – SES San Jose.
WebmasterWorld Pubcon and the new SMX Conference series by Danny Sullivan (who more than anybody was the architect of the SES empire) offer similar content, SES remains the key conference venue for search marketing professionals.
I’ll be live blogging the conference and I’ll even try to get a few real time pix out from Tuesday night’s Google Party hosted at the GooglePlex. In many ways the “Google Dance” is the highlight of the search year, when Google hosts conference attendees (including folks who just sign up for free exhibit passes), as well as tons of Google employees. The food is great and it’s hard to beat free beer, ice cream, sno cones, and candy but the real highlight is chatting with Google search engineers who with a few exceptions like the amazing Matt Cutts, … don’t seem to get out much.