Adding Twitter Search to Google Analytics

As Twitter increasingly becomes a tool that people use to find information it is really critical for companies to know how people are finding their sites on Twitter. Doing so will allow them to incorporate that learning into future marketing efforts on Twitter as well as other sources (e.g. Google etc).

Since Google Analytics does not yet recognize Twitter search as a search engine like WebTrends or Ominiture does, I will show you how you can do it easily with one line of code.

However, keep in mind this solution only works when the search originates on Twitter (i.e. 3rd party tools like TweetDeck, those will not be captured in this solution (nor will it, I believe, be captured in WebTrends’ solution). Use this information to understand general search keywords being searched on Twitter but do not get caught up in actual number of visits that your Twitter efforts are driving.

So how do you capture searches conducted in Twitter?

GA provides a few functions to allow you to add your own search engines to the list of search engines that are already tracked by GA.

_addOrganic(newOrganicEngine, newOrganicKeyword)

You simply call this function right after var pageTracker = _gat._getTracker(“UA-XXXXXX-X”); This functions to track any custom search engine.

Twitter uses “q” as the querystring that contains the keyword. So in this case our search engine is and newOrganicKeyword is the value in query string q

So you code will look like

var pageTracker = _gat._getTracker(“UA-XXXXXX-X”);
pageTracker._addOrganic(“”, “q”)

(Note: pageTracker._addOrganic(“twitter”, “q”) will also work)

What will the reports look like in Google Analytics?

Note: For some reason I cannot get Twitter search to show up as Twitter in Google Analytics Search Engines report, it shows up as “search”(Maybe it’s a bug in GA? If anybody can provide pointer that will be a great help). However, for now this works fine as long as you know what “search” means in your search engine report. I am playing with filters and if I get that resolved I will post the fix or if you know the fix please email me.

Search Engines Report will show the following:

Drilling down to keywords will show the keywords on Twitter Search.

Looks like Twitter Search brings me repeat visits and more engaged traffic.

Originally Posted at : Adding Twitter Search to Google Analytics – Web Analytics, Behavioral Targeting and Optimization by Anil Batra in Feb. 2009

Secrets of Successful From Names and Subject Lines

Silverpop published a whitepaper with with some best practices for the “From” name and “Subject Line” in your email communication. This article is a must read if email marketing is part of your job.  Here are some highlights from the whitepaper

From Name

When choosing a “From” name, there are two key attributes

  1. Selecting a name that’s easily recognizable.
  2. Con­sistency—using the same name to increase recipient familiarity with your brand and build a relationship.

An effective “From” name:

  • Becomes the “face” of your company or brand
  • Serves as a trigger to open your messages
  • Stands out in the sea of subject-line sameness
  • Helps readers find your message if it gets routed to the junk folder
  • Differentiates individual message streams such as promotional versus transactional
  • Is what the recipient uses to sort or search messages

Do’s and Don’ts of “From” Name Usage

  1. Do pick the most logical, rec­ognized brand that would make sense to subscribers and that they would most likely expect to see in their inboxes.
  2. Don’t change “From” names repeatedly. Once you choose a name, stick with it.
  3. Do use different “From” names to differentiate among newsletter brands or email streams. How­ever, incorporate a common style, such as the brand or company name, to promote continuity. As an example, bmibaby, the UK air­line, uses multiple “From” names, each of which clearly signals a different kind of message stream:
    • “bmibaby” is the “From” name on promotional messages.
    • “bmibaby Customer Contact Centre” is the “From” name on flight-related triggered messages, such as pre-flight checklists.
  4. Don’t use a long “From” name—keep it as short as possible, while still conveying your brand correctly.
  5. Do test a few “From” names (over a few sends to increase confidence in the results) if you’re starting a new email program or if you have a strategic reason to change your “From” name and are unsure of the best new option.

Subject Lines

  1. Consider including a product, sub-brand or newsletter name early in the subject line when you use the same “From” name for multiple message streams.
  2. Use subject lines of short, medium or long length but make sure to include key information within the first 40 to 50 characters.
  3. Be creative. Use personality and humor when appropriate, but make sure humor is consistent with your brand.
  4. Never trick or mislead in an effort to inflate open rates. Subject lines that overpromise or deceive will ultimately destroy trust with recipients, damaging your brand and driving customers away.
  5. Highlight the primary offer of the message. Generic content approaches, like “Wednesday’s Deal of the Day,” or “Top Headlines for Thursday August 26,” will have minimal impact on engagement unless you make them more relevant to the email’s specific content.
  6. Use a sense of urgency—dates, deadlines and a sense of scarcity to help motivate recipients to take action.
  7. Personalize with targeted content based on prefer­ences, demographics and behavior, e.g. “Price alert: Cheap deals from Atlanta going fast” or “Lindsay, Details on Your Upcoming Hotel Stay.”
  8. Avoid subject lines that are generic/boring (“From the desk of John Smith, Editor – June 19, 2011,” “September’s White Paper of the Month) or spammy/vague (“Making History”).
  9. Generally avoid all caps, exclamation points and overly aggressive subject lines that might get flagged as spam.
  10. Test, test, test—sometimes breaking the rules can pay off.
  11. Be contextual and timely. Leverage topics in the news, cultural events and customer lifecycle stages for creativity—but be careful that you don’t offend segments of your subscriber base.
  12. Use conversion rate to measure subject line effectiveness. The purpose of a subject line goes beyond opens and is key to setting recipients up to take the action you want them to take.

Getting Started with Web Analytics

This is a beginner guide to getting started with Web Analytics.

The easiest way to get start with web analytics and start tracking your own site or blog is to use Google Analytics.
You will need:

  • A Google Account – to sign up for Google Analytics
  • Access to your sites code to add a small JavaScript code to all the pages.

Sign into with your Google Account and follow the instructions on the screen.

Finally you will get to a page that will give a JavaScript code that you will need to copy and paste on the source code of all the pages on your site. If you site has a common header or footer file then just stick the code in that file. If you do not have a common header or footer then you will have to copy this code on every page.


After 24-48 hours you should start to see the data in your reports. You can access your reports by going to

Techniques for Maximizing Retail Email – Webinar

March 22,  11 am PT

Featuring: Michael Weston, GM and Senior VP of EMEA, Lyris, Inc.
Duration: One hour
Cost: Free to register/attend!

Online retail sales grew 15% during the 2010 blockbuster holiday season. Smart retail marketers will ride this wave through 2011 by leveraging proven retail email strategies as well as cutting-edge techniques to help reach and influence their customers where they live work and play – across a range of channels, locations, devices and more.

Spend an invaluable hour with Lyris GM and Senior VP of EMEA Michael Weston, who will demonstrate how to maximize your core fundamentals and get ahead with the latest retail email marketing trends. Discover and learn:

  • Leading email marketing tactics of the top 75+ online retailers from the Lyris Retail Email Audit
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3 Roles in Web Analytics

Despite slow economy many companies are hiring web analysts. A quick search on, a site that powers the Web Analytics job board on my blog, shows that there are currently 2,007 open positions and, another job sites shows over 4800 open positions. That is a huge number.

However, many job seekers I have talked to feel frustrated because most of the jobs have a laundry list of requirements and they don’t feel that they are a right fit for most of these open positions. A lot of “Web Analytics” job openings ask for many of the following:

  • Experience in online marketing
  • Experience in Web Analytics
  • Experience in – Google analytics, Omniture, Webtrends, Coremetrics etc.
  • Experience in implementing Omniture, Google Analytics, WebTrends etc.
  • Experience in A/B and Multivariate testing
  • Experience in Search engine optimization
  • Experience in search engine marketing
  • Experience with SQL
  • Experience in email marketing
  • Experience in Social media

The mismatch in what a company really needs and what they are asking in the job requirements is a cause of frustration on both ends. The issue really stems from lack of understanding of what web analytics is and what role a web analyst need to play in the organization.

Most of the companies looking for a “web analysts” are in one of the following three stages of web analytics staffing

  1. They don’t have any tool but they realize the need and are looking for someone who can help them with “web analytics”.
  2. They just installed Google Analytics or were sold one of the other paid tool but are not getting much value from their web analytics tool. They need an analyst to help them do “web analytics”.
  3. They already have a web analytics tool installed and have a web analytics team. Since the company is now using web analytics to made business decision they need to hire one or more analysts to support the growing demand.

Companies falling in the third stage know what they are doing and usually narrow down the requirements. They are usually clear on what kind of person they are looking for.

Companies who fall in stage 1 and 2 above are the ones who are usually not clear on the role of a “web analyst” and hence create this laundry list of skills. Hiring manger looks at few job openings posted by other to get an idea of what a “web analyst’ should do. She then includes all the buzzwords and sends the requirements to HR or the recruiting company. HR screens the resume and if the keywords shown above do not appear on the resume the resume is rejected. As a result, companies loose several good candidates while candidates loose many good job opportunities.

3 Roles in Web Analytics

If you are a hiring manager, you need to understand and thoroughly evaluate your need before opening the job req. This will help you remove the noise from requirements and find the best candidate for the job. To make your job easier I have categories web analytics work into 3 job roles.

  1. Implementation Specialist/Engineer

    If you are looking to implement a web analytics tool then you will need an Implementation Engineer. Implementation Engineer is usually the one who manages implementation of the web analytics tool and/or maintains ongoing implementation changes. This is a technical role. For this role you will need a person who has experience in implementation of the web analytics tool of you choice (Note: Tool Selection is a complex process and you should hire a 3rd party consulting company to help you with it if you have not already selected the tool). An implementation engineer generally takes the business requirements and converts them into technical requirements for the web development team to implement the code on the pages. Implementation Engineer works closely with “Web Analyst” (described below) web development and QA to ensure that correct data is collected. The right candidate for this role understands how internet technologies work. She needs to have a good grasp of JavaScript (most of the web analytics implementations require JavaScript tagging). She might also need to understand how to integrate various data sources together. For many companies, once the tool is implemented there might not be a daily need to make changes to the tool so it might make more sense to outsource this function to a web analytics vendor, agency building/maintaining your site or a web analytics consulting company instead of hiring a fulltime person.

  2. Reporting Analyst

    Are you doing web reporting or web analytics). If you are looking for someone to pull the data from your web analytics tools or other reporting application then you need to hire a reporting analysts. A lot of the companies confuse “web reporting” with “web analytics”(See my blog post titled Reporting analysts usually understands the interface of the various tools and can pull the data that is required by other stakeholder. A reporting analyst might need to have SQL skills to pull the data from databases. Some organizations might need a person who can make pretty scorecard and charts. For this role, it is good to have a person who has experience with the tools of your choice but don’t make it a deal breaker. If the candidate has worked on any of the web analytics tools then she can usually get trained in other web analytics tools. Determine what other tools do you have and what skills might be required to pull the data from all these tools, that you might need for you reporting and then write the job requirements.

  3. Web Analyst

    This is more of a business role and truly a web analyst’s role. This is a person who can make sense of the web data and drive insights to impact the bottom line. She will provide business requirements to the Implementation Engineer to work on and will use reporting analyst to get the data for analysis. Web analysts are inquisitive and analytical, they question the data to come up with the story that the data is telling. Web Analyst has the ability to understand and analyze various data pieces such as competitive, qualitative, web analytics, social media, financial etc and drive business changes. Web Analyst should also be able to run A/B and Multivariate tests to improve website performance. Depending on the size of your organization and A Web Analysts will not be afraid to stand in front of executives to explain and defend their findings. If you are looking to get actionable recommendation and drive business changes based on web analytics data then you need a Web Analyst.

Hope this will help you in properly wording your job requirements and avoid the frustration of not filling the positio

Read more: 3 Roles in Web Analytics – Web Analytics, Behavioral Targeting and Optimization by Anil Batra

Winning with Better Landing Pages – Top 5 Secrets to Lifting Conversions Webinar

Date: Wed, Mar 23, 2011
Time: 12:00 PM CDT
Duration: 45 minutes

95% or more of the traffic you worked so hard to drive to your landing page is probably bouncing right off again… wasted. However, with a few simple changes to copy, layout, call-to-action, web form, and submit button, you can gain 20-60% more conversions from the same amount of traffic.Anne Holland, publisher of the addictive A/B testing Case Studies site,, and Jon Miller, VP of Marketing at Marketo share real-life examples of marketers who increased conversions with basic landing page tests and changes.

Speakers:Anne Holland, Publisher,

Jon Miller, VP of Marketing, Marketo

Anna Carbonara, Moderator, American Marketing Association


Register at

Skills Required for a Web Analyst – Part II

This is the second part in the two part series of “Skills required for a Web Analyst“. You can read the first part at

Here are some of the responses from :

“To me, the Web needs three ingredients: clear business objectives, a communication strategy and the technology to support them. The best web analyst would be savvy and top of the line in all three… which is probably impossible to find. But everyone can rate himself on a virtual scale and see where they stand and where they want to be.”
Stephane Hamel, Web Analytics freelancer and creator of WASP tool

Curiosity and enthusiasm. I know these aren’t skills so much as innate qualities, but I believe if you can go a long way as a web analyst with curiosity and enthusiasm. If you are genuinely interested in what you’re doing, it shows.”
June Dershewitz, Vice President Semphonic

“Analysts work at various levels — the most fundamental level requires some understanding of basic statistics, such as linear regression, seasonality, and simple trend forecasting, combined with an understanding of how the web “works.” In other words, what do we know about browsing behavior, combined with cookie deletion probabilities, web server caching, and other artifacts of the web experience, to put our data into a reasonable context, from which we can draw useful conclusions?

Beyond that basic level, though, is an understanding of organizational politics, and some fluency in “managing your message” so that the analysis you’ve worked hard at creating actually influences managers in making better decisions. Otherwise, you’re just creating “doorstop reports,” that don’t help your organization, and don’t really justify your efforts.”
WDave Rhee, Analytics Country Manager, Germany, OX2 / LBi Group

“I think 2 of the biggest skills required to be a web analyst is to be able combine technical skills along with business/marketing skills in order to understand your customer’s goals and provide value to them. Secondly you have to be passionate about what you do, if you don’t like what you’re doing you will not give 100% effort.”
Manoj Jasra, Director of Technology at Enquiro

Evaluating Success in Social Commerce Webinar by Webtrends

Social commerce is heating up!

Analysts predict that commerce from Facebook stores will hit $30 billion by 2015.

How are retail stores currently performing on Facebook? What data exists on successful social commerce strategies?

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During webinar we’ll explore:

* Fundamentals of driving value with fans, including social commerce and fan nurture campaigns

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Presented By:

John Underwood, Chief Operating Officer, Adgregate Markets

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via Evaluating Success in Social Commerce.

3 Gaps In Your Ad Data: You Don’t Know What You Don’t Know

Thursday, March 17, 2011 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM EDT

Systems like Omniture, Doubleclick, and Atlas offer detailed analytics on media performance. But – despite the extensiveness of their reporting – what aren’t they telling you?

This webinar will reveal truths about your advertising that you can only gain by using a panel-based measurement. We’ll identify the gaps in the data made available in the most popular advertising systems and show how Compete’s suite of media measurement solutions can bring new insights to your advertising campaigns.

Space is limited!

Register for the webinar now!

You will learn:

• How to get a more accurate picture of basic media measures like reach without using cookies.
• How to get a true advertising ROI by measuring across multiple sites.
• How to track outside your reached audience to decrease wasted advertising spend.

via GoToWebinar : Webinars Made Easy. Award-Winning Web Casting & Online Seminar Hosting Software.

Skills Required for a Web Analyst – Part I

Web Analytics is one of the hottest career fields and it is becoming very hard to find experienced web analyst. One way to counter this shortage is to hire the people with the skills them could eventually make them a great Web Analysts and then train them in the Web Analytics.

So what are the skills that you should look for when hiring people who don’t have years of Web Analytics experience? This was one of the questions I asked when I interviewed a few of Web Analytics professionals (Note: these interviews were conducted about 3 years ago but the answers are still relevant). In this 2 part series I have compiled their responses, which should help you in understand what skills you should look for when hiring a web analyst. If you are trying to enter or switch to the field of Web Analytics then this should give you an idea of what skills you need.

Here are some of the responses:

I believe that an ideal Web Analyst should poses blend of Business and Technical skills. He should be articulate and understand the online business quickly.
Trinadh Rao, Country Manager Web Analytics Association, India Web Analytics Manager at Franklin Templeton

A great deal of tenacity and, being sharp enough to make the connection between right and left brain items.
Daniel Shields, Web Analyst at

In my opinion a web analyst needs to understand the data and site dynamics of their particular website. Should have decent technical knowledge, good customer focus and attention to details. Should intuitively pick insight from an otherwise burgeoning deluge of data.
Jaisiri Chetty, Asst. Manager (Insight),

In terms of education any advanced course in statistics should work as a passport to Web Analyst job. He/She should be genuinely good at collating different industry information.
Apurba Sen, Product Manager at India Ltd

A sense of abstract thinking and Art (seeing the whole picture at once) is important for Web Analytics work.

I think what a lot of companies are asking for has nothing much to do with what is needed to be truly effective. In order to be effective as a Web Analyst you don’t usually need a degree in statistics or be trained as a rocket scientist (yet that is what all the job descriptions I’ve seen ask for – like a big long laundry list) you need the ability to understand what some one needs to measure, what the goals are, and a technical mastery to the tools, the web analytics platforms being used. The least important thing is to know the tools beforehand – because anyone can learn them fairly quickly who is not brain dead (yet this is precisely what most interviewers ask for first – knowledge of the tools)

The most important thing, in any job, is being effective in the job you’ll be hired for –being trusted, that you can deliver what say you can deliver on…and a lot of that is based on trust, on conveying confidence, conveying authority. The technical part is more like the icing the cake, as far as I’m concerned. I go for rapport, gut feeling, intuitive knowledge and visualization of what my clients want and need, and even what they don’t know to ask for, but which they still need…I try to give them…and this is not just at IBM, but all my work is done like this.

You know you’re effective when you’re allowed to work on the “big problems” in your organization. It’s a feedback loop. You need to get trust of higher ups so they’ll let you get the relevant experience that actually makes you valuable in the marketplace (so that you can “move up”). The paradox is, believing in your self first, is necessary in order to get any kind of trust and buy in so that you’ll be allowed to work on the big stuff.

You also need people to like you – and for some people, that’s easier to achieve than others. I won’t say that people that are disliked are not effective – they can be also, but they’re probably miserable and less effective than if they were liked.

But none of these skills is actually what is asked of you in an interview – yet some interviewers will make note of them, nonetheless and the one’s that do are the one’s to work for.
Marshall Sponder, Blogger at

More to come in part II.

Original Post: Skills required for a Web Analyst – Part I – Web Analytics, Behavioral Targeting and Optimization by Anil Batra