There are all sorts of exciting things going on at Semphonic as 2012 begins - but none more exciting or important to us than our broad initiative to create a significant European Digital Measurement and Web analytics practice for Semphonic. We kicked off the New Year by hiring Matthias Bettag to head a new, Berlin office. At the same time, we're rolling out a whole spate of European-focused tool and Agency partnerships. To top it all off, we're adding a Berlin-based version of the X Change Web analytics Conference in 2012.
It's part of a large plan to address what we see as an opportunity to dramatically advance the state of large-enterprise digital measurement in one of the biggest and most important markets of the world.
Let me start with Matthias. I'm going to have Matthias blog here in the next week or so to introduce himself and talk through our practice vision for the EU. For the last few years, he's been leading the digital measurement at Bayer - creating a global analytics practice. With nearly a decade in Web analytics, his combination of digital expertise, large-scale enterprise experience, and broad business and marketing background make him a perfect practice lead.
Matthias is one of the leading Web practitioner's in Europe, an active Web Analytics Association (WAA) member, a WAA Certified Web Analyst and has been the WAA Country Manager for Germany since February 2010. He's also co-spokesman of the WAA EU SIG in order to strengthen the WAA in Europe.
He's that combination of hands-on, knowledgeable practitioner AND experienced, business-savvy digital marketer that defines Semphonic's practice. Like so many European's, he is fluent in French, German, and English.
Hiring Matthias to build a Berlin based office is the just the first step in a larger expansion. We support a number of our multi-national clients in the EU and felt that the time was right to build a serious presence on the ground. But our goal is not simply to replicate what we do in the United States.
Instead, we've decided to distill our very best practice experience in the U.S. into a single, all-encompassing digital measurement program. Our goal in the EU is to deliver large-scale, transformative digital measurement programs to top European enterprises. A program designed to move a large enterprise from low or middle-ground in analytics to best-in-class over a 12-24 month period. It includes significant local, on-the-ground consulting combined with Semphonic's unique practice IP (Intellectual Property) and a distillation of all our best thinking on digital measurement honed with top U.S. brands.
I think leading-edge companies in the EU are ready to make that jump and our experience in the U.S. suggests that a comprehensive, large-scale effort is just about the only way to build a successful program.
At the same time, we're creating a network of partnerships at both the tool and Agency level to facilitate that program. We already have robust partnerships with some of the key tool vendors: Omniture and Webtrends, of course, Comscore's Digital Analytix, and Google with GA (not to mention ecosystem partners like Tealeaf). But we're also working to support some of the key tools that have carved out significant country and regional shares in the EU including AT Internet and Webtrekk.
In addition, we're creating a network of country partners to help provide on-the-ground support for our analytics program. For large-scale programs, on-site, in-language, local experts are absolutely essential. Building a sophisticated digital measurement program is just too large to manage or support remotely. So our strategy is predicated on leavening the best local resources with our methodologies and key people to create a digital measurement program that combines the most sophisticated practice techniques and experience with the on-site, committed support necessary to really drive a program forward.
Finally, I'm really excited to announce that we're planning on having an EU-focused X-Change this year in Berlin on May 30th-31st. X Change's unique experience has helped define the Semphonic brand in the United States. It's a perfect reflection of our practice and ideals: it's focused on high-end enterprise digital measurement and it's a unique intellectual experience devoid of empty sales presentations, relentless self-promotion, or mindless fluff. It's a Conference dedicated to real practitioners that I think could only have come from real practitioners.
At X Change, every participant is a peer. It's a Conference that draws no distinctions between speakers and participants, between vendors and attendees. It's a chance to gather in a truly collegial environment and learn from each other. And, of course, it's famous too for the care we take in selecting fantastic venues and creating an experience that is as rewarding as it is intellectually stimulating. Berlin offers many such choices and is, itself, one of the most interesting cities in the world. I can hardly wait!
These are, obviously, challenging economic times. In Europe even more, perhaps, than here in the States. But the growth of digital measurement has not slowed nor have the measurement imperatives behind digital. To be exceptional at digital you need to be world-class at digital measurement. At Semphonic, we've crafted a practice focused on the real-world application of digital customer analytics. From creating a robust measurement infrastructure, to integration with data warehousing, to driving personalized customer marketing, Semphonic's practice is unique. We have better techniques, better methods, better experience, and better strategies. For our European program, we've taken this practice experience and wrapped it into a complete and transformative program targeted toward the small set of enterprise's truly committed to analytics excellence.
If that feels like you, drop me a line and let's talk!