HOW WEB ANALYTICS CAN LEAD TO A CAREER IN DATA SCIENCE

Harriet Coleman our consultant managing the role
Posting date: 9/5/2019 2:19 PM
The Web Analytics world is evolving. What used to require an understanding of Google Analytics, some tag management and visualisation for presentation purposes has grown into something much more. Whereas Web Analysts may have once been lone players in a Marketing team, they’re now expected to sit as part of, and feed into, an enterprise’s Insight team. 

This exposure to more comprehensive forms of Data Analysis has led many Web Analysts to explore what the next step in their career could be. Namely, should they move into a Data Science position? For those who are looking to make this move, here are some considerations:

Technicalities and Technologies 


Digital Analytics are not excluded from the debate over what it means to be a Data Scientist, especially given that some with a Data Scientist job title may in fact be Web Analysts, and vice versa. Many Web Analysts are now working with a number of Data Science tools, including SQL, Python, and R. By using these alongside Google or Adobe Analytics, they are able to form a comprehensive view of the customer, using different types of Data, in different forms, from different sources. However, there remains a gap between the use of these tools and actually working within Data Science. 

The most logical leap for a Web Analyst to make is to a Customer Insight or Digital Insight role. This type of role would still involve the analysis of online Data, but would likely be paired with building models, Predictive Analysis, reviewing customer LTV and creating a picture of customer online, offline and post-purchase behaviour to enable better targeting and retargeting. However, the knowledge gap between Web Analytics and Data Science may be more significant than one would anticipate. 

Your Current Position 


As a Web Analyst, you may well sit within a larger Data, Digital or Customer/Marketing Analytics department. Your exposure to these experts is one of the best assets you have available. Use the environment you are in to learn, upskill and gain hands-on experience. Knowledge of the necessary tools and languages is unlikely to be enough to lead to a move into Data Science and by getting hands-on commercial experience, you drastically increase your chances of success. 

If you are able to expand on the tech that you have already used, take advantage of this. Even if this is just in a consulting capacity, your ability to demonstrate a real-world application of your knowledge makes you significantly more appealing as a candidate. Plus, your knowledge of, and approach to, Web Analytics may actually work to your advantage when it comes to assessing Data quality. Consultancies and agencies often provide the best training opportunities and are more likely to allow you the opportunities to hone new skills. If you are fortunate enough to work in an environment like this, make the most of it.

Attitude Is Everything


It may sound like a cliché, but Hiring Managers are on the lookout for people that they know will benefit their business and attitude plays a huge part in this. Do not underestimate the importance that is placed on cultural fit during an interview process. 

Whether you are looking to make a move internally or externally, you should demonstrate your intrigue and willingness to learn. If you already have a strong record of progression within your current career, this will benefit you moving forward. When it comes to preparing, take time to dive into the world of Data Science, attend events and meet-ups, and continue to widen your remit. If you don’t have exposure to Data Science at work then you will also need to be learning SQL, Python and R at home to ensure you have a firm understanding of all the relevant technologies. 

Whatever role you are looking for, the worst thing you can do is not apply. One of the most common mistakes we see is analysts not applying to an opportunity because they would need to develop in some areas once in the role. If you are able to demonstrate the above attributes many enterprises, particularly agencies and consultancies, may still be willing to take you on. And, if you’re not looking to make a move, don’t panic; Web Analytics skillsets remain highly sought-after and valuable.

Whether you’re looking for a new career in Data Science or your next role in Web Analytics, we may have a job for you.

Take a look at our latest opportunities or get in touch with one of our expert consultants to find out more.  

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National Storytelling Week: Telling A Story Through Data

A story is a lot more than just words on a page. It’s a combination of interesting language, images, colour and, perhaps most importantly, a brilliant narrator.  This is no different in Data Analytics. Like any story, the beginning of any data report starts out as numbers and figures on a page which, let’s face it, isn’t the most interesting read. To ensure the data reaches its full potential and entices an engaged audience, a good Data Analyst will wind and weave them into a compelling story.  So, how might you go about doing this? Know your audience How your story is crafted will be completely dependent on who will be reading it. It’s important to consider your audience’s age, knowledge and expertise. For example, if you were reporting to a junior team, the information given will be simplified, and specific language and jargon should be broken down to include explanations, making the data accessible. The story may also be a lot longer than usual to ensure all areas of information are covered, with room for questions if need be. This is crucial if you want your data, and your story, to benefit the learning and development of the team as well as to encourage their interest and curiosity in the topic.  On the other hand, if you were telling your data story to a group of expert professionals, the explanations will be a lot more top line and the story much pithier and succinct. The depth should instead lie in the narrative of how the data impacts them and their company, providing solutions to problems or providing compelling ideas for innovation and change.  Choose an engaging narrative Undoubtedly, your data will have thrown up all sorts of storylines, from the mundane to the thrilling. When you’re creating your presentation or report, if the data is relevant, opt to design your story around the most exciting dataset. Your aim is to keep your audience engaged and wanting to know more, not to bore them with too many, or figures that are not relevant or provide further guidance.  Be creative No matter how electrifying your data may be, there's only so much information an individual can take in. Your story needs visuals to bring what you are reporting on to life. Typography, font and font size, colour, images, graphs and tables are all valuable assets to include to help stimulate your audience’s imagination.  Of course, in this day and age, these visuals don’t have to be limited to static pictures either. Don’t be afraid to play around with movement and interactivity to get your audience involved and engaged. That being said, it’s important to find a good balance of static and interactive. Be an appealing narrator If you’re having to present your data, you’ve got an extra challenge on your plate. Your story is only as good as you are. No matter how visually fantastic your report is, or how apt it is for your audience, if you are bored, unengaged and uninterested by the information you are presenting, you will pass all these feelings onto your audience.  Not only is it important you know the story you’re telling inside out, but you should be excited by the data you are presenting. Don’t be afraid to inject personality into your data, make it characteristic and make it feel human. If you are passionate about your data and your story, then your audience will be too.  Data doesn’t just have to be statistics on a page. It can be thrilling, it can be colourful, it can be loud, and it can be enticing. You, as a Data Analyst, are that brilliant narrator.  If you're looking to take the next step in your career or build out your Data & Analytics, we may be able to help. Take a look at our latest opportunities or get in touch with one of our expert consultants to find out more. 

How Are Digital Marketing Analysts Disrupting Traditional Marketing Functions?

In the age of disruption, the traditional marketing function of organisations across the globe is changing. No longer tied to traditional product-based marketing models and removed from siloed ways of working, digital marketing analysts are changing perceptions of marketing. Successive waves of disruption, from remote working and the shift to cloud-based operations, to developments and advancements in automation, mean that digital analysts are being kept on their toes. In fact, recent research has indicated that worldwide IT spending is set to reach $3.9 trillion in 2021 as digital projects get back on track. Digital Marketing Analysts therefore play a critical role in how organisations adapt their marketing strategies to encompass the use of data and digital to enhance their offer. Through monitoring online marketing trends, analysing statistics and developing campaign reports, these professionals also prepare and share this strategy with colleagues and clients. Here are a few ways in which this is happening. Utilising more and more data Analysing data is one of the most important functions a Digital Marketing Analyst should focus on. We’re all familiar with the value of Big Data to a firm’s operating procedures and applying this to how marketing is completed should have no less value. Looking at complex data sets that can’t be processed through traditional methods, utilising past data and insight to inform future campaigns and channelling this through Cloud systems such as Google Analytics has never been more useful to a marketing team, regardless of size or industry. Targeting a bigger audience Finding, targeting and growing your audience is likely to be a goal set for marketing teams across the globe. Digital marketing functions provide huge scope in reaching a greater number of consumers than just through traditional means alone. Omnichannel marketing, for example, is becoming a key part of a Digital Marketing Analyst’s core role, and campaigns using 3 or more channels are known to have a 90 per cent higher retention rate than single-channel efforts. What needs to be kept in focus though, is that despite the innovation rippling through marketing functions, these audiences still demand personal attention. In fact, 68 per cent are likely to spend more with a brand that treats them like an individual, whatever the channel. Supporting smaller businesses to scale Quite often in big companies digital and marketing functions are operated separately but in smaller businesses traditional marketers are just expected to know about digital methods too, when perhaps their skillset lies elsewhere. As a result, a skills gap can start to open up. Digital Marketing Analysts can come into small business (even on a consultancy or contract basis) to support SMEs to scale and grow their digital campaigns. Interestingly, 76 per cent of small businesses believe their digital marketing efforts are effective, so building on this is crucial. What remains apparent is, with such a high demand for digital transformation across the business community, it is crucial that business leaders can both recruit and retain the best individuals out there to really ensure their marketing function is best placed to maximise all the incredible opportunities and tools available to them. If you're looking for your next Data & Analytics role or are seeking the best candidates on the market, we may be able to help. Take a look at our latest opportunities or get in touch with one of our expert consultants to find out more.

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