Understanding Web Site Visitors

Understanding who your site visitors are is one of the most critical steps in optimizing your online presence. Too often, companies focus exclusively on marketing or overall site performance, without taking the time to understand the types of people they are trying to interact with.

5 Leadership Lessons from Imploding Teams


Every company goes through rough patches. Recently at Dell I watched teams implode because of low morale or just dissolve into thin air through attrition. From my observations, I learned some valuable lessons about leadership in times of adversity.

In no particular order, here are five things I learned that a leader can do to guide their team safely through choppy seas.

Measure Social Media without Looking Like a Dummy

Social media is a critical business tool, but measuring success is a tricky proposition. How do you know that it's working? More followers? More shares? Retweets? Revenue? 

It is possible to measure the effectiveness of social media by looking at how it helps your customers make decisions. This customer-centric view of social media will give you a better understanding of when and how to use it.

How to Prioritize Analysis

Prioritizing analysis can be messy and political. When multiple teams clamor for limited analysts, the decision of what work will and won't be done usually doesn't leave anybody happy. After trying different approaches to take the politics out of prioritization, I realized that we were approaching the problem backward. We started with the assumption that as a support group the analytics team has to be reactive. The solution is for the analytics team to be proactive in setting the agenda for analysis.

Using Web Analytics to Create a Content Strategy

Understanding how and why customers make decisions is the fundamental quest of digital analytics—and the most elusive. We often get so focused on how to optimize a piece of the website that we lose sight of how that fits into the bigger picture. Yet if we understand how customers make decisions about our company we will know how to help them.

These four steps have helped me in multiple situations to create a customer-centric content strategy. Armed with this kind of framework you can stop playing with window dressing and instead address the fundamental questions about how to interact with customers.

Big Data Presents New Risks

Considering all that big data can accomplish for a company, there has to be a catch, right? Big data offers new opportunities, but it presents new risks, and it makes some current risks even bigger. They can be avoided, but only if we are aware of them upfront.

Big Data and Company Goals vs. Customer Needs

Web analysts frequently gripe that they are ignored and that their stakeholders ask them to do things that add no value. Big data just might provide a solution to that complaint. This is because big data, by its nature, puts company goals in the proper context of customer needs.