Se ha alcanzado la excelencia como líder cuando la gente lo sigue a uno a todas partes, aunque sólo sea por curiosidad.

Hace un año, en febrero de 2008, decidí abrir este blog. Mi idea era (y sigue siendo) el plasmar aquí todo lo que me rondaba por la cabeza sobre la analítica web, lo que iba aprendiendo, lo que iba estudiando y poder tener recopilado en un solo sitio aquello que me iba llamando la atención. Además de todo eso, me he dado cuenta de que el tener un blog que actualizar 2 veces por semana (más o menos), me obliga a pensar, a investigar, a hacerme preguntas, que me ayudan a crecer en mi trabajo... y por lo tanto me está aportando mucho más de lo que imaginaba en un principio.

De hecho estoy muy contenta con el resultado de la votación que hubo en el blog de Pere Rovira sobre los mejores blogs de analítica web en 2008, porque éste ha sido de los más votados. Para mí ha sido toda una sorpresa y me anima a seguir adelante.

Y lo más importante, tener un blog me ha dado la oportunidad de conocer a mucha gente interesante, a muchos compañeros de profesión que hacen que no me sienta sola o aislada o friki, je je, Y ahora muchos ellos son amigos, espero que por mucho tiempo.

No puedo pensar en un mejor regalo de aniversario que el que me ha dado mi ídolo, me ha concedido una entrevista que para mí es especial, me gustaría agradecerle públicamente su tiempo y su simpatía.

No la traduzco porque creo que se entiende bastante bien. Espero que la disfruteis como la he disfrutado yo :)

Entrevista a Avinash Kaushik

1. When you were a little boy… what did you want to be when you grow up?

First Gemma let me congratulate you on making it to your first year anniversary. I am absolutely thrilled for you. Your passion for the field is clear and you’ve brought a sense of excitement to the Spanish web analytics space. Gracias!

Ok on with the interview…..

I wanted to be a Pilot for the Indian Air Force. That is my earliest memory. I think it was partly a fascination with flying, fast : ), and also a sense of doing good.

But life had other plans. I am happy at all the coincidences that lead me to do what I do now. I feel incredibly lucky.

Somewhere though that childhood yearning remains and I hope one of these days to learn how to fly.

I wish I knew how to fly to be able to teach you something!

2. With an average of 4 lectures a week in different countries… do you think you can continue at this pace for a long time?

I don’t think it is four lectures a week. : ) But yes, a lot of presentations and lectures and teaching around the world.

I feel blessed that I have the privilege of doing what I absolutely love doing. So few people get that chance. I love teaching, I love changing people’s mind, I love in a very minor way helping make the web better across so many sites.

That fuels my passion and the drive I have to, as they say here in the US, “get the word out”.

Over the last year I think I have learned to balance things a lot better. Be away from home just a few days a month, maybe just a couple long trips, do more things on the US west coast, and make trips as short as I can.

Of course it is not just Presentations. I have a job at Google. I am also the co-founder of Market Motive, which is so thrilling (and a bunch of work!). I am also on the board of advisors for three important companies. I have to care and feed the blog, and yes other writing and…. Now life’s getting really complex and busy! : )

Can I do it for a long time? I think for as long as my wife supports me and as long as I feel passionate about what I do (for me it is not about making money, if it were it would feel like work).

3. What is in your opinion more difficult, to become an Analysis Ninja or to convince a Hippo that can take decisions based on data?

This is in some senses is like the chicken and egg problem.

If you are an Analysis Ninja, and I mean really Analysis Ninja (data analysis + business savvy + communication skills) then it is easy to convince Hippo’s. You have insights and not just reports/data to influence Hippo’s.

But the truth is that today convincing Hippo’s remains the biggest challenge.

That’s because the reality is that a very small fraction of Web Analysts around the world are truly business and marketing savvy and can internalize strategic objectives of a business and then take the Web Analytics 2.0 approach to find *relevant* insights. Then you are simply giving data (even if a lot) and Hippo’s don’t care.

That’s ok. We are in a emerging field, everything changes every day, there is barely a decent amount of education out there. This will change with time. We will have a lot more Web Analysis Ninjas.

4. What are the skills that you think are basic to becoming a web analyst?

Basic Web Analyst:
Experience in one or two tools, knowing how to press buttons to get various reports, create funnels, set up goals, understand concepts like using pan session metrics etc.
Bonus points for expressing curiosity and initiative.

Analysis Ninja:
Least important: Your sophistication with using Omniture or WebTrends or Google Analytics.
Most important: Business savvy, an experience as a Web Marketer, prior analytical experience (of any kind, Financial, Retail, Business Intelligence etc), and a fundamental mental agility and flexibility (this last is key).
Bonus points in my book for any experience with qualitative analysis and competitive intelligence.
Super bonus points if the person has a active blog and/or twitter profile and/or flickr photostream etc. It shows me you understand where the web is going.

Does this help?

helps? it's the ninja's Bible!!! I loved the super bonus points :)

5. Segmenting and Testing are the new basis of the analysis web of the future?

Let’s rephrase: “Segmenting and Testing are the basis of web analysis now and will be in the future.” : )

As concepts segmentation and testing have been around in the world of analytics and decision making for a very long time. Traditional direct marketing in the US, for example, are the most sophisticated in both of these methodologies.

Both these methodologies are not really new in our field, but we have a long way to go before we truly become sophisticated in how we apply them.

Oh and as long as there is analysis, in any fiend, there will be segmentation and testing. Combine that with a understanding of the business and customers (even if some) then you are on your way to magnificent success.

6. Which one has been in your opinion your best post in 2008?

My blog exists to have a conversation, to teach something, so this is one of the top posts of the year (because it had 169 comments):

Google Analytics Releases Advanced Segmentation: Now Be A Ninja!

From a purely personal perspective I love writing posts that reframe the conversation, or tackle something really hard (and make it simple to understand). By that measure I personally enjoyed these two:

Context Is King Baby! Go Get Your Own.

Tracking Offline Conversions: Hope, Seven Best Practices, Bonus Tips

Which one was your favorite?

Apart from those 3 you mentioned, I would like to add the Action Dashboard, an alternative to crappy dashboards. It was very helpful at the time :) but I enjoyed every one of the posts you write!

7. A catch phrase of yours in twitter “my twitter strategy: provide site sized info snacks & yummy useful, what’s yours?”… do you think twitter is helping you any on spreading your ideas?

I was a Twitter skeptic, I was not sure that people really wanted to know I was standing in line at the supermarket.

But my friend @SocialJulio encouraged me to do it. My strategy with every medium is to figure out how I can uniquely add value. That lead to the “info snack” strategy. Use Twitter to share something uniquely interesting that would be satisfying (yummy).

It has certainly helped me increase my “friends” (today I have 2,776 followers) and magnify some of my ideas.

Today, you have 3,444 followers... you rock!

8. On the blog you define yourself as a provocateour, not as controversial. I like this provocative touch, you know you are my idol… do you have one? Who?

I do have one person who is both a inspiration for me as well as a “provocateur” as well as a teacher: Seth Godin.

Seth makes the complex simple. He teaches the fundamentals of Marketing with this own unique pithy yet incisive approach. His own success to me is such a delightful case study.

[I have to admit that I am not sure I deserve to be an “idol”. You are so generous and I am grateful for that. But I am so far far far away from even remotely being an “idol”.]

You do deserve to be called an idol. No discussion here :)

9. Are you writing a new book about web analytics? When will we have the Spanish version of your first book?

My publisher has been asking me that first question as well. I think Wiley was surprised with the success of the first book so now they want the second! : )

It is a lot of work to write a book but I hope to write another one.

Web Analytics: An Hour A Day has been translated from English into Portuguese, Korean, Chinese, Russian and Japanese. Spanish is spoken a lot more than some of those languages! I have to hound Wiley to find a Spanish publisher. Especially since so many of my good friends like you and Jaume and Pere are based in Spain!!

Thanks for the opportunity to this (long) interview Gemma. I hope your readers will find it to be of value. I wish you all the very best for Year Two.

I'm sure they will. Thanks for everything, Avinash, sorry for the longiness :)

Estoy en éxtasis :)