All posts by William Bakhos

30+ of the Top Digital and Search Agencies in South Africa

One thing that struck me the most after launching JimmyData was the global diversity of digital agencies. My expectation was that I would see agencies and webmasters from countries like the US, Canada, Australia and UK dominate our user base. What surprised me was certain regions around the world that had a stronger than expected search presence.

South Africa was one country that really stood out for me so I decided to do a bit of research into the market and see what agencies rule the roost in the market. We did this by looking through the Google partner search networking and finding those that had the most rounded certifications, number of certifications and were also premier Google Partners.

So we came up with this list of the top 30.. here we go!

1. FGX Studios has been around for 15 years and is a full service agency. They have a heavy focus on design and development however have expertise across search, display, social, mobile, cro and anything else you want to throw at them.

2. SearchKings can help any business get to the top of Google search results and is run by a team of Google certified online marketing experts. The company specialisations are display advertising, mobile advertising, and search advertising.

3. NetAge has almost 20 years of experience in what they do and in the digital world, thats as long as you are going to get!. They offer their clients help in full service online marketing and concentrate on online branding, strategy development, lead generation, conversion optimism, and retention marketing. The company specialisations are display advertising, mobile advertising, and search advertising.

4. Meira Puterman is run by an individual who has more than 15 years of experience in the area (another long time to be in digital!). She works in front-end web development, quality assurance, analytics and insight, training, project management, Adwords, and SEO. She can go very far in helping any online business find success, and the company specialisation is search advertising.

5. Lifetime Media founded by Jacqui and Bruce Engelbrecht, Lifetime media can cover the areas of both your brand as well as your digital execution. It’s rare that the 2 fall under the same roof even among ‘full service agencies’ so I would look at Lifetime media as an end to end offering and a team that will guide you through the journey from the beginning. Their website is highly engaging and no doubt, they practice what they preach.

6. Crystal Media are again a full service agency based in Westville South Africa. Websites, Design, EDM (E-Marketing), Social or Search, Crystal Media has you covered. Their client base and portfolio is quite impressive and took forever to scroll down so the experience is definitely there in abundance.

7. Reprise Media refers to itself as a digital experience agency using a methodology of ‘Paid, Owned, Earned and Analytics. This methodology incorporates a complete 360 degree was to look at digital from strategy through to execution and analysis.

8. Cavalry Media can be found at http://www.hellocavalry.com/. It is based in Johannesburg, South Africa and is an integrated digital marketing agency that has quite a bit to offer potential clients. The company specialisations are mobile advertising and search advertising.

9. Starbright IT have employees who have a great deal of talent in fields such as network infrastructure management, digital marketing, and creative and developmental services. They work with companies on all sorts of ideas, whether they are large scale or small scale. The company specialisations are display advertising, mobile advertising, and search advertising.

10. CloudCity (Pty) Ltd works with clients all over South Africa, particularly small businesses. It specialises in implementing sales conversion strategies. There are cloud based productivity applications to enhance efficiency of clients and help automate different business procedures, ultimately bringing the business more success. There are also innovative and wonderful lead generation products that will help bring interested customers to any of their clients.

11. iLEAD focus a great deal on leads and lead generation strategies. They are a certified Google partner and offer clients experts in search engine marketing, YouTube, and content generation. All of the abilities that are offered here combined can serve any client well and help them a great deal in getting the online exposure that they want for their brands and businesses.

12. Profit Rocket are based in Cape Town and are a R.O.I. focused Adwords agency. They are driven by data and have worked with some of the most respected and largest advertising agencies around the globe. This company has been a Google certified partner since 2009 and offers potential clients the chance to try out what they have to offer free of charge.

13. B Online can be found at http://www.bonline.co.za. It focuses a great deal on web design and online marketing and provides a comprehensive set of online services to its clients. They see the Internet as an array of opportunities and make sure to give their clients the best service possible, as they see their clients as a reflection of their own brand and feel that their clients’ success reflects their own. As such, they are committed to giving high quality service. They have a team of experts that is made up of young, fresh talent. They want to stay at the forefront of their industry and care a great deal about the work that they do. The company specialisation is mobile advertising.

14. Metis Online can be found at http://www.metisonline.co.za. They are based in Cape Town. They target both local and global businesses and are determined to provide the best service possible to any business, regardless of where they are located or what language is spoken. They boast a variety of clever services, such as advertising on Google and advanced AdWords support, just to name a couple. The company specialisations are mobile advertising and search advertising.

15. Fusspot Publishing have established themselves well within the industry, with a variety of clients in many different industries. They have a great track record in terms of Google AdWords superior quality campaign setup, as well as optimization and management services. They have many different areas of focus, such as advanced AdWords support, advertising on Google, mobile and video advertisements, online marketing plans, and enhanced websites. Their company specializations are mobile advertising and search advertising.

16. CopperTable offers a variety of consulting services in regards to various issues that may be faced by their clients. They use their expertise in technology, strategy, data, and marketing to figure out the best ways to deal with the external and internal issues that their clients have to deal with on a regular basis. They use all the information provided and come up with effective approaches when it comes to optimising processes, utilising data, enhancing marketing, and providing the appropriate technology education in situations where it is necessary. They often focus on online marketing plans, advertising on Google, and advanced AdWords support.

17. iMod Digital can help clients with all sorts of digital marketing needs, but its main focus is search engine optimisation. They have more than a decade of experience in this area, as well as many happy clients that they have worked with. They have managed to establish a strong reputation in Cape Town. They expanded nationally in 2011 and a few years later expanded internationally. There are two sides to this particular business. One of them focuses on the design and development of websites, and the other focuses on digital marketing, specifically SEO and PPC. The company has qualified professionals in search advertising.

18. Interexcel Digital Marketing can be found at http://www.iedm.co.za. This company understands that all of its clients want excellent results. In order to help their clients achieve these results, they have a comprehensive online marketing team, with members who have different abilities that can address all of their clients’ needs. Every component of their team has some notable ability that will be able to help a client company achieve tangible positive results with what they have online.The company has qualified professionals in search advertising.

19. FocusOnline is based in Cape Town and focuses on inbound e-marketing for both domestic and international companies that are in the tourism and travel industry. Put together, the talent at this company has more than 60 years of experience. The team understands how important online marketing can be for this type of company and is also passionate about tourism and travel. They understand the industry and know just how to drive targeted customers to their clients’ sites using social media strategies and digital marketing. They know just how to increased booking in conversion numbers, as well as average rates to generate profit for their clients.

20. Commcentrix can be found at http://www.commcentrix.com. This company is a full-service digital agency. It addresses all of the online requirements of its clients in order to ensure the best digital success possible. They provide all sorts of services, including website design and development, as well as online marketing. The online marketing work they do encompasses all sorts of components, including online campaign strategies, both emails, PPC marketing, AdWords, and SEO, among others.

21. World Wide Creative can be found at http://www.wwc.co.za. This company is based in Cape Town and Johannesburg, as well as the United Kingdom. They are a full-service digital marketing agency and the founders of the Heavy Chef education initiative. They have multiple areas of focus, including digital education, digital media, search, multi-platform developments, and digital strategy. They have a track record in helping clients with advanced AdWords support, mobile and video ads, online marketing plans, enhanced websites, and advertising on Google, among other things.

22. Page Panther (Pty) works with clients that have all sorts of different purposes, whether they are trying to completely revamp their online marketing campaign or whether they have a good campaign that they just want to optimise a little bit. They can give their clients the advice that they need in order to make their marketing strategy as strong as possible. They are willing to work well together with clients in order to take advantage of everything that the web has to offer in order to give the business as much as success as possible and maximise the return of investment on internet marketing. They have helped clients with enhanced web sites, online marketing plans, mobile and video ads, and advertising on Google, among other things.

23. Punk Media has a cool url at http://punk.digital and is a division of the punk company and a long-term Google partner. Punk Media is the premium media targeting and buying branch of the King James Group. They specialise in many different types of help with advertising that they can give their clients, including effective targeting audience research, refining AdWords, Google tag manager analytics, YouTube, display, search, in-depth insights and actionable reporting, UX and optimisation, consulting and lecturing, and social media marketing and management training. Some of their focus areas are advanced AdWords support, enhanced web sites, online marketing plans, advertising on Google, and mobile and video ads. The company has qualified professionals in display advertising, mobile advertising, and search advertising.

24. COZA Marketing can be found at http://www.cozamarketing.co.za. this company has been specializing in Google AdWords management for nearly a decade, since the year 2007. They are determined to make sure that all of their clients reach returns of investments that are satisfying to the businesses themselves, and they are confident that they can help their clients, considering the Google AdWords is the most effective advertising medium that is now available. They have the focus areas of advanced AdWords support, enhanced websites, mobile and video ads, online marketing plans, and advertising on Google.The company has qualified professionals in search advertising.

25. MJ Media Internet Marketing can be found at http://www.mjmedia.co.za. This company has the focus areas of advertising on Google, online marketing plans, mobile and video ads, enhanced website, Advanced AdWords support, and others. It is a Durban-based internet marketing agency that specializes in paid and organic search marketing. They have more than 17 years of experience in international online marketing, and they are determined to deliver the highest quality search engine marketing assistance possible to all of their clients.The company has qualified professionals in mobile advertising.

26. Online Marketing Guys prides itself on its ability to help its clients own, market, and grow their businesses. They use all of the power that the internet has to offer, as well as platforms and tools that are available, in order to generate marketing solutions. Using everything they have at their disposal, they generate leads and traffic and convert the leads and traffic to income for their clients with profitable returns of investment. They are based in Cape Town and have the company specialisation of mobile advertising.

27. iProspect South Africa can be found at http://www.iprospect.co.za. This company is a leading digital marketing agency that works with companies around the globe. Many of the most successful brands in the world have received help from this company in maximising their returns of investment through online marketing. The company can assist with natural search engine optimisation, online display advertising management, reputation management, page search advertising management, web analytics and attribution modeling, global search engine marketing, and other similar services.

28. Digital Marketing Management can be found at http://www.dmm.co.za. This company is based in Sandton. They do not hold their clients to long-term contracts, and they offer them a performance-based alternative. Because the digital landscape is constantly changing, digital marketing management is always evolving as well. This company has a talented and passionate team of developers, strategists, social media specialists, designers, and other individuals who know exactly what they are doing when it comes to helping businesses grow with digital marketing. Mark Taitz, the CEO, has been in the marketing industry for 25 years and has been responsible for the creation of some of the largest brands and internet portals of South Africa. The company specialisation is search advertising.

29. iClinic  is a full service digital marketing agency that utilises a content centered marketing approach. They have a great deal of experience in managing FMCG clients that are located throughout Africa, Europe, and the Middle East. They have the specific focus of helping clients in the health and fitness industry. They work with both clients who need to establish an online presence and those who need to improve their online presence. They pride themselves on doing excellent work that satisfies their clients. The company specialisation is display advertising.

30. Traffic Brand is a specialist digital advertising agency that focuses on directing targeted traffic to their clients’ websites. They use their vast knowledge of advertising platforms such as social media sites andGoogle in order to originate and optimise digital campaigns that will help their clients achieve the visibility that they want in order to meet their sales and marketing objectives. They are a results-driven agency and have been assisting clients of all sizes for seven years. The company specialisations are search advertising, display advertising, and mobile advertising.

31. Pretoria based Rethink Markeing have a great website and qualifications to boot. Experience over CRO, Social, PPC, Mobile, Design and more make this agency a one shop stop when looking for an agency for your business in South Africa. Unlike most agencies they have a ‘Specials’ section! This is the first time I have seen this on a agency site in a while and to be honest, its quite refreshing!

32. Top Click Media (Pty) Ltd. is a certified Google partner and focuses on marketing using YouTube, Google Search marketing, and the Google Display Network. The company specialisations are mobile advertising and search advertising.

33. NMP (SA) is based in Johannesburg and Cape Town and was founded on partner-agency, large brand, and enterprise clients. The production and management teams have a great deal of expertise when it comes to technology services and digital marketing. They work in all sorts of areas, including web design and development, content development, Augmented Reality (AR), search marketing, Google’s DoubleClick, analytics, SEO, eCommerce and social media marketing, strategic services, and more. This company is also a part of the incuBeta Group of digital companies, meaning that it has access to all of the best expertise in terms of technology deployment and best-practice learnings. This company is partnered with the Imvula Education Empowerment Fund (BBBEE Level 4) and focuses on the development of local talent, as well as quality work and campaign delivery. The company specialisation is search advertising.

Weekly or Monthly Reporting? What is the optimum frequency?

At JimmyData our goal is to save you time on digital campaign reporting so you can focus on other things in your business. When I say ‘other things’ I mean things such as getting more business, running better optimised campaigns or even sleeping more. However we save you time then we all win right?

So let’s say we save you time on your reporting, does that mean you should report more? Less? The same? Should you be reporting weekly, monthly or quarterly? Is there even a right answer?

I would say no, there isn’t a right answer but there is a solution that would suit a certain type of business and a certain type of client.

Let’s look at the 2 main reporting frequencies, weekly and monthly and the pros and cons for each of these.

Weekly reporting

Looking at the numbers within JimmyData, weekly reporting is not as common as I had initially thought. Of all the users that use JimmyData for digital reporting, monthly is by far more popular compared to weekly reports.

How much more popular? Try 88% are Monthly and the rest scattered around weekly and daily.

What are the advantages of reporting weekly?

Contact – I would say the biggest benefit of reporting weekly is the communication factor with the client. One of the main reason our agency continues to grow is that we maintain extremely high levels of communication with our clients. These clients love our service and rave about it to other business owners who then come to us as referrals and this process repeats.

Part of this high ‘service mentality’ is engrained in our culture however another part is that for most of our clients we report weekly.

What does reporting weekly have anything to do with it? Well, its really simple actually; reporting weekly forces us to keep the communication high and clients like that. In fact no.. they love it. We have had the occasional client call us and ask for reporting to be monthly but this is very rare.

You need to remember that as an agency, we provide a service. Our role is to serve our clients as well as we can and like it or not, this is the key to running a great business in this field. We can’t exactly claim having superior products when we are tapping into the same inventory as our competitors can we?

If you don’t believe me, try not speaking to the client in 3 months and see what happens. Regardless of how hard you work on that campaign and how good a job you do, the relationship will suffer. Communication is king.

Accountability – if you practice reporting weekly you can ensure your accountability stays high. You can spot issues quickly and weekly reporting keeps you and your team on your toes across all aspects of the campaign and reduces the tendency for procrastination.

Opportunities – frequent communication can open up opportunities to grow that client and offer them other services that could improve their business. We found that for clients where we report weekly they tend to expand into our full suite of services as not only are we spotting opportunities but we are being attentive and yes, again, clients like this. Do you know another reason why it opens opportunities?…

Differentiation – Reporting weekly is a great differentiator when a company is comparing your company with that of another agency. In most cases that new client you just started working with was being given monthly reports.

Then you come along and give them additional attention and started to report weekly. How has their experience changed? Put yourself on the other side; if you trusted your hard earned money with someone who you spoke to monthly and then spent that money with someone else who spoke to you weekly how would you feel? In terms of value which one do you think takes the cake?

In the commoditised world of search and digital marketing, agencies are fighting ferociously over new business. New companies are popping up all the time and pursuing business by dropping their margins and competing solely on price.

Setting yourself apart and focusing on your service instead of the product enables you to retain and gain clients and at the same time not compromise on your margins. Remember people don’t buy products, they buy the experience. Provide and sell the experience and you won’t have to fight about the product.

Bargaining and revenue – this might sound confusing but what has bargaining and revenue got to do with the frequency of reporting? To me it’s one of the largest bargaining tool we have as a business when pitching for work.

Think about it. Reporting weekly takes up more time and as an agency, we charge for time so naturally we charge more to report weekly. If the client is happy with that then great!

If not then that gives us room to move immediately and so the fun begins. If they are not happy with costs, instead of giving them discounts, we simply change the frequency of reporting.  We can shave hours off a retainer by changing reporting frequency from weekly to monthly. Most of the time this is the part where we seal the deal with the client as the costings start making sense for them and at the same time we are not eating into our margins. Win-Win.

What are the disadvantages of reporting weekly?

Time and Money – If you have not factored in weekly reporting into your retainer or pricing structure then I guarantee you it is what will bring you unstuck. Weekly reporting is a time sucker (hence one of the reasons Jimmy is invaluable to our business!)

Data integrity – Depending on the size of the account and the size of the data sets that you are working with, weekly reporting may not provide insights that are statistically relevant. What you will find is that the data will fluctuate week on week, meaning one week you’ll have a jovial client who is singing your praises and the next week they want your head. Sometimes monthly reporting is actually the most effective way to report and providing weekly insights will lead to you chasing your tail with very little direction if you don’t view the bigger picture.

Another factor you need to consider is that weekly reporting may not factor in the nuances of a particular industry. Industries with a long lead cycles or require multi-channel touch points won’t provide the insights you need over one week. Impression based attribution will also fluctuate heavily when looked at over small periods and anyone running DoubleClick will know this all to well.

Monthly reporting

Monthly reporting is by far the most popular frequency of reporting. Running a reporting platform makes this extremely obvious and something I really didn’t expect when I started the JimmyData journey.

Our website and usage numbers spike at the beginning of the month… every single month. The middle part of the month and creeping up towards the end of month is our slow period and there is very little movement mid week, or any part of the week.

Lets take a deeper look and the pros and cons for monthly reporting.

What are the advantages of reporting monthly?

Cost – time is money and reporting takes time. To mitigate it’s costly effect, reporting monthly means less time and less of a strain on our resources.

This is especially the case for smaller agencies where they are resource stretched and having to replicate the reporting process several times a month can be too much of a strain.

Time Allocation – Since time is not being spent on reporting, time is better allocated across other areas of managing a campaign. One of the reasons we decided to create a tool to do our reporting was so that we could spend more time optimising campaigns as opposed to mundane reporting tasks.

Bigger data sets – Bigger data sets can often give you a much better idea of how a campaign is performing. When you report weekly it does not factor in nuances that different periods in a month provide.

In our own JimmyData software example, if we only reported monthly on any of our marketing then we would effectively have 1 super duper week (beginning of the month) which we will think is a target benchmark. Then we would realistically not be able to hit benchmarks in any other week of the month! Simply reporting weekly would not provide us with nuances of our market.

Trend Identification – As you have bigger data sets you can use these data sets to get a much better idea around trends. Analysing day of the week or hour of the day is much more accurate when it’s analysed over a significant period of time. Monthly reports provide a good idea of trends that you can use to better optimise your campaign.

What are the disadvantages of reporting monthly?

Communication – lack of communication can hurt relationships with clients and sometimes the only time we get to properly interact with those paying the bills is when we report to them.

An an digital agency serving clients, we provide a service to them of value which isn’t simply running a search campaign or Facebook campaign. As mention before, it’s a service. What client’s are buying is our insight, our feedback, our suggestions, our care.. not clicks to a page. The more we do ‘our job’ the stronger the relationship and our job comes to the forefront when we report, not when we pump traffic to a site.

Campaign management – Lets face it. When we get caught up in the day to day we tend to focus on things that require our most attention. With most small to medium agencies structures, there is often something that needs to be forgone in order to do a particular task. ie Hold an internal meeting or call a new potential client? Send out a final proposal or send off a regular client’s report?

You can see where I am going here. This deviation from things that matter becomes exacerbated when you report monthly. As humans we put things off and focus on either what is easier or what will give the fastest gratification. Working on a client that you have worked with for 12 months is neither easy nor does it provide fast gratification. This means there is a high tendency that these tasks start to fall down the list of things to do.

When you report monthly it allows for easy an easy ‘put off’, also known as procrastination. And here is the kicker; before you know it, its not only reporting you are putting off, it will soon become the management of the campaigns. Reporting weekly keeps you dedicated to the mundane and the ‘put off’ has less catastrophic effects.

Committing to a weekly reporting structure reduces the risk of complacency and generally leads to better managed campaigns. Setting self-imposed deadlines are not effective to get things done and do not contribute to improving procrastination.

However when we put down hard deadlines and they were authority deadlines procrastination behaviour changes.

One effective (and incredibly actionable) strategy is to set hard, spaced out deadlines with your boss; prior research suggests that evenly spaced deadlines leads to the highest level of on-time completion and quality.

Delivering work to paying and demanding clients on a weekly basis allows us to mitigate the effects of procrastination. It allows us to stay on top of campaigns on regular and evenly spaced deadlines which leads to quality work and great customer service.

What’s the solution

So what do we do now? Is there a conclusion to all of this and what should I learn from it? Here are a few takeways that could help you make up your mind:

  1. Report more, communicate more, retain more (Weekly reporting)
  2. Keep procrastination at bay (weekly reporting)
  3. Bargaining power (weekly)
  4. Time restraints (favours monthly)
  5. Trend identification (monthly)
  6. Data integrity and insight (monthly)

Take what you will from this post however we invested heavily in creating a tool like Jimmy (and continue to do so) so we could do our job better with greater efficiency regardless of what frequency we commit to. The importance of reporting cannot be understated and sometimes it’s more than just a progress report, its a client management strategy.

 

 

Top 12 Analytics Blogs Every Digital Advertiser Must Read

Ah analytics… the lifeblood of every digital business and the backbone of the JimmyData software. Analytics is how we learn from the past in order to better prepare for the future.

I am a firm believer in the need to constantly advance your knowledge and test yourself. One of our core values here at JimmyData and the agency is ‘expansion’. We aim to expand our knowledge in all areas and be inquisitive.

So what are the best Analytics blogs that we go to keep up to date and build our knowledge library?

I have put together 12 blogs we routinely read and why. Here we go:

1. Google Analytic Solutions (aka the official Google Analytics blog)

It makes sense that the most powerful search engine with one of the most powerful analytic platforms has a pretty good blog. By combining relevant interests and current events, this blog platform presents some revolutions into the cutting edge technology of Google Analytics. It’s Google – enough said.

Similar to the AdWords blog it’s naturally very biased towards Google products and is a little thin on in-depth technical analysis. However what it does utilise, unlike that of the AdWords blog, is that of guest posting from Analytics experts (Google Analytics partners) which can be seen as a little self serving but I think mixes up the content nicely.

2. Moz

Specializing in search engine optimization (SEO) and inbound marketing topics, Moz has made a good name for themselves and chances are you have heard of them already. If you havn’t then after finishing this blog post (and then signing up to Jimmy for a free trial hehe) you should head on over.

Moz is all about SEO but did you know they have a great analytics section that is absolutely worth the read? This platform features various authors that have a lot to say about understanding and utilizing analytics to your advantage.

It’s not surprizing when you really think about it however. Moz is a community of data deprived marketers filled with a world of encryption and hit with every cloak over transparent information possible. If any sector of the digital marketing world were to hack analytics into pieces its the SEO community. Top SEO’s generally have pretty epic analytics skills so naturally, we see that on the Moz blog. Keep it coming!

3. Optimize Smart

Not the prettiest blog in the world but 260,000 monthly readers know something; Himanshu Sharma knows his stuff and that is an understatement of all understatements.

For technical Analytics advices, tutorials, training, resources and the whole kitchen sink, Himanshu is your man. When I’m stuck with something technical I inevitably end up on this website time and time again.

The only downfall is that it is very (very) technical. Not for the faint hearted, the data queazy and certainly not for those who don’t want to put their thinking caps on.

It’s good ol hard core analytics the way we like it. For us analytical marketers, this is the holy grail for technical analytics, how to’s and omg what has gone wrong.

4. Luna Metics

How these guys continually come up with great content on a regular basis I have no idea. Constant content that is of great value time after time leaves me impressed. Hey I just wrote a ‘top blogs’ post so I’m tipping my hat to you guys.

Luna Metrics is like Himanshu’s blog put into laymen’s terms which works for a lot of the digital marketing community. I do like the technical side of things but sometimes I want a silver platter and that is Luna Metrics.

5. Adobe’s Digital Marketing Blog

Adobe’s team of marketers have done a good job creating and curating content in several digital marketing categories, including analytics. With its visually appealing imagery, this is an appealing blog site to read. Being one of the industry leaders, Adobe is not afraid to ‘go there’ with it’s articles and takes a bold approach when discussing analytics. However, it’s not just about looks and big talk, Adobe authors do a great job with content that proves just how powerful analytics can be for an organization.

My only gripe here is that I’m not the biggest fan of the Adobe analytics platform. We need to understand it as it is still quite prominant among enterprise size clients What I like about the blog is that it’s not as product centric as the Google Analytics blogs and does provide useful content for all marketers, whether or not they are using the platform. A great overall blog that is updated often with great content.

6. Tatvic

Tatvic is a Google Analytics certified partner and premium analytics reseller that provides excellent how to’s and Analytics technical posts on their blog.

Topics are relevant and engaging – especially for those of us who love the mathematics behind analytics.

I wish they would update more as their blog is a great resources for those interested in learning more and digging deeper in analytics.

7. Annielytics

The blog of Annie Cushing, this blog takes the approach that puts analytics in layman’s terms. This is not to say that the blog platform isn’t interesting – on the contrary, Annie works to make, “data sexy.”

What I like about this blog the most is that it utilizes best practices in presenting data about analytics through videos, articles, imagery, infographics and other content. It is a take on analytics and communication technology that comes from a different perspective.

8. Loves Data

You know that individual who’s eyes light up when they start talking about analytics? Are you that person? Benjamin Mangold is and the analytics world is better for it. I also have a feeling that there are a lot of his kind working at Loves Data as their passion for all things analytics shines through the blog articles.

It is a clean and sophisticated template that looks at subjects such as Facebook Pixels, marketing campaigns, digitally-savvy websites, Google Analytics, etc. The authors present a perspective that is fun, fresh while keeping to relevant topics and diving into analytics. This blog does a good job at engaging with the end-user if you are looking for an outlet for the analytics geek within you.

Loves data knows their stuff and are often utilised by Google to do their Google Analytics training which is pretty impressive.

9. Hubspot

I personally love the fun, hardworking approach to digital marketing that Hubspot takes as a whole. The fact that this organization has a beer tap and ping-pong table at their headquarters tells it all. Inbound marketing is about attracting people to you, right?

Their blog platform features two major catagories – marketing and sales. When you go to the marketing side you might have to do some sorting through if you are looking specifically at analytics. However, the Hubspot marketing blog has a dedicated team that has proven to be a thought leader in the inbound marketing field.

10. Koozai

If learning about SEO, PPC, content and social media marketing sounds like something right up your alley, Koozai digital marketing blog might be exactly what you need.  This United Kingdom based company is progressive in its review of digital marketing even though they are fairly new to the space. Presenting topics such as virtual reality, PPC, and of course analytics, Koozal is making its leadership known across the pond and around the world.

 

11. Predictive Analytics World

Ok we get it… this is perhaps not the most visually appealing blog you will have laid your eyes on. In fact, it’s tough to look at for too long but the content is second to none.

If you like variety and appreciate internationally diverse perspectives, this will be a great read. Set up as a question and answer format, these articles ask different industry leaders from around the world their opinion and experience with analytics. I love question and answer formats as it can give you a variety of responses based on different though processes and opinions.

I would recommend this source if you are attracted to the more academic approach or style or reading. Some corporate giants grace the web pages here. It is nice to hear it directly from the source. Then in your next meeting you can name drop away like you are best buds.

12. KissMetrics

Topics on testing and understanding analytics are a common theme throughout this platform. However, kissmetrics goes a step further in explaining how analytics can be used to scale and grow your organization.

What I love about KissMetrics is that it takes analytics and moves it forward. It puts people behind the data and was built and founded by the one and only Neil Patel.

Think of Kissmetrics and its blog as taking Analytics and putting a business behind it as opposed to being just data. How do you use the data? What does it mean for your business?

Conclusion

Your time is a precious commodity, but you are in charge of how you spend it. Somedays it can feel like a losing battle when trying to grasp the technology, but don’t be discouraged. Help is out there and content is out there to move you along.

This is the thing about digital marketing. We have built an industry primarily around the sharing of feedback and insight, not by formal education systems. Blogs and forums have been the driving force of digital marketing from the outset and continues to feed us the knowledge we need to move forward.

Let us know what blogs you read for analytics. Do you have a favorite?

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