Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Wiseri: how I found my new job

Today I start my new job and I’m very excited about that. To celebrate, I gave my blog a new lay-out.


I’ve been working in an on-line agency specialized in e-commerce and now I make the jump of working again client-side, taking care of an e-commerce website. Of course, I’ll miss working with some great professionals and learning different businesses and different solutions, but 2011 will be the e-commerce year for Spain and I’m glad to be a part of it.

I’m very proud that I found my new job on twitter. In 2009 I found my job using LinkedIn, and I thought that was so cool. I know, LinkedIn is about networking and job-offers, but it was still nice that a social network site helped me get a job.

Now, in 2011, it’s twitter that got me a job: I started following @currofile a couple of months ago when somebody I follow retweeted an offer from @currofile.
Currofile is Marina Zaliznyak, who started connecting online/mobile/digital professionals with companies looking to fill an IT position. It started as a nice one-person mission of Marina, connecting jobseekers and companies, and soon it turned into Wiseri, a company dedicated to searching jobs for IT jobseekers and finding qualified candidates for companies looking to hire.

The things I most like from @wiseri

You deal with real people. And very nice people, I must say.
When dealing with Wiseri, you receive a direct and very personal approach. They understand your situation and won’t push you to go for something that you’re not comfortable with.

They have good positions, and they stick to what they know.
In the small period of time wiseri have announced a vast amount of jobs: from technical profiles to marketing and from interships to senior management.
Luckily they don’t accept just any recruitment process. For instance, I’ve done some interviews for the ‘big’ recruitment firms in the past and it was quite strange that for an e-business position I had to explain the recruiter how you have to work search engines. This won’t happen with @wiseri: they know the business, so they know if their might be a good match between job and candidate.

They will tell you when you are perfect for a job and when you‘re not.
@wiseri will help you find a job, but they’ll also tell when a job is a bit out of your league. At least they told me. A couple of times.

Wiseri know how to use twitter, which means: engagement and transparency.
It’s really nice to see these people do what they do: they use twitter in a very genuine way to connect with people. They’re not afraid to tweet about offers which aren’t theirs, they give advice on your CV, and they talk straight up. It’s all very transparent and it’s nice to feel that these people like to do what they do.
They’re also very good at doing their own marketing: for somebody looking to change jobs, there is no better publicity than when you see a recruitment agency tweeting ‘We’ve fixed another interview for a happy candidate’.


I’m very grateful for @wiseri for helping me with this new opportunity. Today, as it is my first day on the new job, they can tweet: ‘Happy candidate starts first day on new job thanks to @wiseri’. 

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Addthis Analytics: New Features 2011

AddThis just launched a couple of new features for their Analytics.

What is AddThis?
AddThis is one of those services that can be implemented on your site or blog which publish your page or site in social networking sites. These services (there are various providers and they tend to be free), invite you to ‘Share This Page’ and when you click on the logos of your favourite social networking site, the page is published on your wall in Facebook or as a tweet on twitter, so your friends can see what pages you are reading, what you like,...

Analytics for AddThis
Recently I compared the data and analytics provided by AddThis with some other services. AddThis has a very good analytics section on their page, in which you can see how many times people share your pages on different social media platforms, how much traffic this sharing brought back, what content was mostly shared,...

New Features
Just before Christmas, AddThis launched some new features for their analytics section, which are pretty cool, I must say.



The improvements are based on 2 characteristics of this service:

1. AddThis is used on various sites. This means that AddThis has the power to cross-track shares and visits of people on different sites: for instance, if I share content from a Sports site using AddThis and afterwards I share content from a Music site using AddThis, AddThis knows that I’m the same person who shares (and hence most likely ‘like’) both topics of Sports and Music. Considerations about privacy aside (maybe we don’t like/want AddThis to know all this about us), all this represents great Insights for website owners who use AddThis: visitors who share the content of my site – what other content do they like/share?

2. AddThis is an external provider. This means that if you use it on your site, you need to implement a little code on your site, which is external. By doing this, you actually give access to AddThis to obtain data of your site. AddThis can track how many people come to your site, how they got to your site, what they do on the site… This is all very valuable information, and you when you implement AddThis, you give this information to an external party for free. So it might just be good that AddThis uses this information to give value back to the websites who give free data to them.

Important parenthesis:
Other services, like ShareThis, also have these characteristics and are also able to cross-track visitors who share on different sites, and they can also track all the analytics of your page. ShareThis already started in the summer of 2010 to use both ways to give cross-track and competative data to the users. I discussed this information in this post.

Back to AddThis:
In my opinion, the 2 most important new features are the following:
Audience:
AddThis uses the information it has from shares via AddThis on other sites to report on the Audience's interests: what the people who come to your site ‘also like’. So you can see if ‘Sharers’ of your content also like Sports, or Music.
It's important to note that if you have very few shares or your visitors don't share much on sites which use AddThis, maybe you won't have enough data to get something usefull from this. 

Searches & Referrers: AddThis starts using the information of where the visitors who share content of your site come from. It gives 2 reports: First the 'Searches', which represents the keywords people use in search engines to come to your site and which visits resulted in shares of your pages. Second there is the  Referrers report, which represent the sites people visited before coming to your site and sharing a page.



Of course, it would be massive to see these Searches & Referrers crossed also with the click-backs, not only with the Shares: what searches resulted in people sharing and did those shares also resulted in people coming back to your site? This might be a something useful for a future launch.

More new features of AddThis Analytics
There are some other new features which are also pretty cool:
First AddThis introduces a metric called ‘Influencers’: AddThis used to report on the visitors who came to your site and shared content, and those visitors who came back after somebody shared content. Now there is a new metric, which is the number of the sharers who actually drive traffic back.



Then there is the new metric ‘Lift’: it represents the percentage of visits that the shares drive back: for instance, 100 Shares which bring back 20 visits represent 20% of Lift (=20/100).

AddThis also includes mentions and comments on Twitter and Facebook. This is a form of Social Monitoring, which is not new. Though it is nice that it comes integrated in another Analytics platform, so you have both the ‘Social Bookmarking’ data from AddThis and the Social Monitoring in 1 application.

Another improvement is the Countries report, which shows in which country your content is shared and click-backed. Before these new features, AddThis only showed continents, which wasn’t a particularly enlightening way of representing where people were sharing your content.

Feedback

When launching all these new features, AddThis asked about feedback. First of all, I'd like to say AddThis has done a great job with these new features. Some comments:

My first comment would be an obvious one: it would be nice if all these features were integrated in Google Analytics and other Web Analytics tools. I know this is not easy and will take time, but still.

Second, ShareThis has a competitive feature, where it compares how many people share content on your site with how many people share on similar sites. Such a report is very actionable: it gives a great idea whether you can improve shares or not. So it would be great if AddThis also worked on this.


Third: it would be nice to start include ‘Site goals’ in the analytics of AddThis. I've discussed this before when comparing the Analytics of various sharing providers, and I don’t think it can be that difficult to develop an integrated method (with some kind of pixel or tracking which can be implemented in the ThankYou – pages) to see what all this sharing and clicking-back helps with achieving the goals for your site.

Related post:

To see all the features, you can watch this video of AddThis:

Friday, 7 January 2011

My Tag Cloud of SEO in 2010

In 2010 I managed to write some posts which found an audience in Search Engines.
I've done a little Tag-Cloud using Wordl to see what Searches drove more traffic to my blog: it looks like the audience that found me was looking for information on tracking shares in Facebook using AddThis, ShareThis and AddToAny.


Wednesday, 5 January 2011

My letter to the Three Kings

In Spain little (and not so little) children get their presents from the Three Wise Men on January 6th and not from Santa or Saint Nicholas. In order to get their preferred gift, they need to write a letter, telling the Three Kings that they’ve been good last year and then they list their most wanted gifts.

Here’s my letter and request for gifts.

Queridos Reyes Magos // Dear Three Wise Men.


I think I’ve been a good on-line marketing and analytics boy this past year for the following reasons:

I’ve segmented, targeted and tested, reported and optimized. Reporting, analyzing, providing Insights and putting all this in improvements has been great this year. We did a couple of A/B tests, started to measuring the opinion of our visitors. We dug deep into the data and based our decisions on these data. I’ve also very much enjoyed the ‘urgency’ that comes with working for e-commerce sites.

Dear Wise Men, please give me this year the same challenges and tools to use data to improve customer satisfaction and revenue. Let’s improve and let’s convert!

I’ve been trying new tools this past year: Unica Netinsight (my own reporting tool: creating reports and defining variables), Google Analytics (always improving), WebCEO, 4Q (Voice of Customer, hurrah!), AddThis and ShareThis (great new analytics tools, both of them), MouseTrace (let’s keep an eye on them).

Dear Wise Men, please give me new tool, new ideas how to use them and new developments from the providers of the tools to test, to use and to help with improving. High on my list are Optimizer and Crazy Egg.

I’ve read books and blogs in 2010.
The best post was, without any doubt the Anchoring Effect from You Are Not So Smart. About how our mind uses anchors (like ‘original prize’) guide us to estimate prices or numbers. Greatly written, very well explained, mindblowing.

I’ve also enjoyed a couple of books, like the classic The Long Tail by Chris Anderson.

Also The Stranger’s Long Neck by Gerry McGovern was very interesting, making a defence of and presenting a method on improving Task Management.

Dear Kings, please give me new posts all-day, every-day to read and read and time to read it all. I mostly need time to read Web Analytics 2.0 and Cult of Analytics.

The past year I’ve also been a good boy, since I’ve written in my blog. I even got some kind of small audience, and even the search engines are giving me some traffic to some popular posts.

Please Wise Men, give me time and inspiration for this year to write interesting posts which are useful for my readers. I especially want time for a series of posts on Web Analytics and statistics. The idea is there, I just need the time. I might even want to squeeze a White Paper out of that idea.

I must say that I dedicated a lot of time to my passion, the Internet. Please Wise Men, don’t stop giving me more Internet, more to explore, more new stuff to start using like my foto-blog on tumbr. A good start for enjoying Internet in all it’s glory was the new job I found via twitter. I got that in advance, thank you Wise Men!

On a more personal note, I’ve been dedicated in using and updating the pretty cool Runkeeper to keep up with running and working out. Please Wise Men, let me keep using Runkeeper to get rid of those 5 kilos.

Please, Three Wise Men!! Pretty please??

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

A very quick look back on 2010.

1. The Internet is mine! We owns it!
2010 news year’s hangover had just gone away, and we already had to deal with the funniest moment of the year: the speech of the CEO of Telefonica, the biggest Internet Provider in Spain. Really sorry that it’s in Spanish, but it’s too funny to leave it out.
The argument of this CEO is that his company Telefonica, as Internet Provider, ‘owns’ the Internet and since they do everything (infrastructure, customer care, after-sales, billing,…) companies like Google (who just have algorithms and don’t do anything) should start paying fees to Telefonica (and AT&T) for the use of their networks. In February he assured that Internet companies would start paying such fees in 2010; since this didn’t happen, maybe it’s a sigh that he doesn’t really get it.


2. Science Investigates Usability
It was nice to see this summer (thanks to the great blog of TalleresSEO) that Scientific Investigation investigates the Internet and at Usability.

A study was published that gave a new look at the eye-tracking (where people look at on an internet page) of search result pages.

The study is pretty amazing, since it segments different search behaviour: it separates search results for people who search for information, search for navegation or search for transactional reasons. Of course, the behaviour is different for each segment (people who search for transactional reasons do look at the AdWords on the right hand side). Hurray for Segmentation!


The fact that science studies this is amazing: they’re the specialists in investigation, in methodology, in designing experiments, in doing statistical analysis. Such a pity then that there seems to be a mayor methodological error in this paper: Marcos & Gonz├ílez-Caro conclude that people search for information or search to navigate, don’t look very much to the Paid Results, and they note that ‘this might be because in some cases of our experiment there weren’t any Paid Results‘… Now how can you conclude that somebody doesn’t look at something, if it’s not even there in many cases? It’s a bit too obvious that they don’t look, right? I’m not a scientist, but I would say that you have to contemplate 2 cases: How people behave when there are Paid Results and how people behave when there aren’t. Putting data together of people who hade a result page with paid results and others without them and then concluding that people don’t look at them, seems like a mistake to me.


You can download the whole study here. Sorry, again in Spanish, though with abstract in English.

3. Google Instant Launch
Methodological mistake or not, the results of the study discussed above were soon out of date, since Google decided to update the result pages. It Launched Google Instant: the Search results were automatically updating while you type, changing the way we use Google’s Search Engines. It came as a pretty big boom, but even the week later, it felt like something so natural, so useful and natural that it was instantly a Google classis. Later they launched Google Preview, with the same effect: like you can’t remember that it once wasn’t there.

The launch of Instant was also very Google and very beautiful: 2 doodle (modified logos of Google on the Search page) showed what Google was up to: it could change his page while you interacted with your mouse and with the Search Box. 






4. Second funniest moment of 2010

Hell yeah: why did anybody bother with developing web pages since 1997, when you see how perfectly this site is designed. 



5. Facebook gets real
Facebook has been a while with us, and for a lot of people it has just become a part of our lives, just like email has been for a long time: you have it, you use it, no big thing. We use FB to send messages, chat with friends and upload some pics. But Facebook might just become a real player in Internet in 2011, starting to use the power it has to innovate so many things. I realised that when I read this article from Blind Five Year Old on ‘Organic Search’ results in Facebook.

In short:
  • Facebook has already an equal number of daily searches as Google. They’re mostly searches for friends or groups, but the potential is there.
  • We use Facebook a lot, so using the search bar within Facebook might be easier then going to another page to search.
  • Facebook has these ‘Like’ buttons on a lot of pages. These are very good indications of what you or your friends like, and gives FB a nice tool to index pages using these ‘Like’ buttons in a social way. If a lot of people like a page, it might be good result in searches.
  • Facebook already puts search results of external sites for its searches, so it will be a case of developing and Google Search might have (at last) a real competitor.


It is often said that Google might not really understand Social, but Facebook might as well understand Search. And Google still gets a very large part of it’s income from search.

The whole article (pretty techy, actually):

Happy New Year!