4 Replies Latest reply on Sep 28, 2010 4:38 AM by Ted Hopton

    When and how do you start the analytics process?

    Bart.Schutte

      Ted,

       

      Your presentation at JW was very compelling.  But as I watched, I tried to map back to my situation and understand how I was going to do all of this with my limited resources, and when.

       

      We are about deploy our global Jive site, but will have a very soft (no communication) launch.  We expect to be 5000 users by the end of the year.  I have one funcitonal person on my team responsible for this launch and managing the community of community managers, and he is only part time on this (60%).

       

      We will turn on the Jive analytics capture from the start so that we will start getting numbers right away.  We will not get the analytics module from the start but intend to analyse the date with our own BI tools (at least initially).  But we probably wont have time to start working on this until Jan-March 2011 time frame.  After that, I suspec that I'll  be able to have that persoen spend 1-2 days / month doing analytics for all of the other community managers (unless of course I socialize this and get volunteers from the field).

       

      What path do you recommend for companies to get to the level of maturity that UBM is at today?

        • Re: When and how do you start the analytics process?
          Ted Hopton

          Glad you found the Actionable Analytics presentation valuable, Bart.

           

          You pose a difficult question. I have to say I don't feel qualified to answer it, as the only path I know is the one my company is on. And I don't have an analyst on my team (besides me, and I'm not an expert with BI tools and being an analyst isn't really in my job description).

           

          I do think the sooner you start analyzing the data, the better. Your time-frame sounds good to me, considering that trade-offs must be made. The start-up phase of a new community is not indicative of the future steady state in so many ways. No doubt you would learn a tremendous amount by diving into the analytics from the start, but it would be unwise to assume that early activity levels, for example, will be sustained.

           

          So, I guess the path I would recommend is to beg, borrow and steal analytics resources as soon as you can so that you can demonstrate the value of analytics to growing engagement in your community. As that proof accumulates, use it to make the case for obtaining more analytics resources, ideally as members of your team.

           

          That's pretty much the path I am on...

            • Re: When and how do you start the analytics process?

              My instinct is to start with simple measurements right away. As Ted can probably attest, the Jive datamart is powerful but can't be learned overnight. Your needs for more complex analytics will evolve over time. However, having the ability to pull real numbers about what is happening in your burgeoning community will prove invaluable within weeks of your launch. And gathering the simple metrics which demonstrate the value of your community will help you build your case for more resources in the future!

                • Re: When and how do you start the analytics process?
                  tmaurer

                  But as Ted pointed out, remember that not everything you experience at the beginning will be sustainable. Also, make sure you make note of external drivers (email pushes to gain traction, shut-off dates of other systems, dates when significant content seeding or migration occurs, software integrations or upgrades) so that you attribute any increases to proper triggers. They may or may not be duplicatable, and having stats will help you discover what works consistently.

                   

                  Having more than one person who can review to interpret results can be helpful as well. Help see the forest for the trees.

                  • Re: When and how do you start the analytics process?
                    Ted Hopton

                    Karl makes a good point that I'd like to emphasize and echo: your understanding of the data/reports will evolve over time, so the sooner you get started learning about it, the better. It will take time, even if you have a true BI pro on the case, because you have to comprehend both how to pull the data and what it means for your community's development.