Gini Dietrich

Analytics Resources and Data for Communications Pros

By: Gini Dietrich | October 13, 2014 | 
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Analytics ResourcesBy Gini Dietrich

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote a post about the skills every communications professional must acquire.

In it, I describe why we must get good with numbers.

Get good with numbers. We no longer have to rely on media impressions and advertising equivalencies to prove our worth. We’ve always been an expense—and typically one of the first to get cut in a down economy. But today we have the huge opportunity to become an investment…if we can get good with numbers. I know, I know. You went into PR because you’re not good at math. Get over it. Figure it out. Take some classes. Learn how to use Google analytics. Figure out what kinds of data are available to you and use them to your advantage. Prove your worth and you’ll always climb up the corporate ladder or  have clients pounding on your door.

This isn’t calculus. It isn’t statistics. It isn’t geometry (my nemesis). It’s analyzing data so we understand how to tweak—or completely overhaul—our communications programs.

When I tweeted the blog post, Suzi Carragher asked if there are some analytics resources to help.

Get Good with Numbers

Yes! There are!

I asked her to be patient and I would write a blog post about it. So thank you, Suzi, for the idea and for being patient.

Data and Analytics Resources for Communications Professionals

There are lots of resources available—some really in-depth and others in more bite-sized pieces.

I’ve listed them below in order from light to heavy (just like a wine list).

  1. Orbit Media blog. There are 14 analytics resources in the Orbit Media blog. Learn everything from how to measure the success of your content marketing to how to track campaigns in Google Analytics.
  2. The Moz blog. Of course the Moz blog is full of all sorts of goodies for communicating on the web, but about once a month, they provide a really in-depth analytics piece. If you do any content marketing, I recommend subscribing to—and reading—it all. But, if you don’t care about anything else, definitely read for the analytics pieces.
  3. Avinash Kaushik’s blog. A digital marketing evangelist for Google, Avinash Kaushik is probably the foremost expert on analytics resources. He IS an analytics resource. Though it tends to be really heady, if you focus, you’ll get lots of really great information. A lot of what we do for our clients at Arment Dietrich has come from my digging and reading and customizing what I’ve read here.
  4. Matt Cutts’s blog. Though Matt Cutts—a former Google employee—is taking a sabbatical right now, the analytics resources in this blog is excellent. You’ll get as much about Google and the way they work, as well as how to dig into your analytics.
  5. Content Chemistry. The handbook by Andy Crestodina is probably the easiest book on analytics resources (and SEO) I’ve come across. It’s written like Andy talks (and presents, if you’ve had the pleasure of attending one of his webinars here…and we have him back in January) and it’s not so heady you can’t understand it.
  6. Web Analytics: An Hour a Day. You literally have to spend an hour a day with this analytics resource, but it is very well worth your time. If you block out a meeting with yourself every day, you’ll get through it in just a couple of weeks.
  7. Google YouTube Channel. You can get pretty much every analytics resource on the Google channel. They break it down for agencies, AdWords, 101 level, and more.
  8. Analytics Academy. Google offers an academy that you can take at your own pace. You do need to devote a few hour chunk for each course, though.
  9. Udemy. An online university, there are all sorts of analytics resources here. You can learn how to get started, how to analyze the data, what really matters (hint: It’s not averages), and how to create actionable insights.
  10. Coursera. One of my most favorite places to learn is Coursera. Not only do they have great analytics resources, you can learn pretty much anything from really smart professors. As for purposes for this blog post, check out Data Analysis, Web Intelligence and Big Data, and Statistics and Data Analysis.

So there you have it. Ten really great analytics resources for you to learn, design, and customize the data your website (or your client’s websites) already offers.

Have fun with it (because it really is fun!)!

About Gini Dietrich


Gini Dietrich is the founder and CEO of Arment Dietrich, an integrated marketing communications firm. She is the author of Spin Sucks, co-author of Marketing in the Round, and co-host of Inside PR. She also is the lead blogger at Spin Sucks and is the founder of Spin Sucks Pro. Join the Spin Sucks   community!

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