End of March 2007, I attended my first eMetrics summit in London. This was also my first contact with the Web Analytics Association (also known as the WAA) in real life. One month later, I joined the association.
One year later, I did not hesitate one second to renew my membership. Today, I am pleased and honoured to announce that I’m taking over the role of WAA Country Manager for Belgium. Hurrah! :-)
But what is the Web Analytics Association?
In short the Web Analytics Association (WAA) “unites and fosters the interests of industry practitioners, vendors, consultants and educators who use, sell, install, implement, consult, teach or train in the field of web analytics” (from the WAA Website).
More precisely the Web Analytics Association goals are:
- Gather and disseminate knowledge on Web Analytics through publications (WAA website, white papers, newsletter, WAA blog…), events (Webcats, eMetrics summit…) and networking
- Promote the value of Web Analytics discipline and create a common language through standardized terms, definitions and best practices for the entire industry
- Develop and implement training and certification programs. Training programs include the 100% online Award of Achievements in Web Analytics offered through the University of British Columbia (Canada). An official certification program is under development and should be launched in 2009.
- Unite web analytic professionals, consultants, and end-users to promote our common interests worldwide.
While the WAA is a US-based association, it regroups Web Analytics professionals from all around the globe. Even few ones from little Belgium (but not enough :-)). It was founded and it is lead by Web Analytics leaders, influencers and practioners such as Jim Sterne, Neil Mason, Dennis R. Mortensen, Bryan Eisenberg to name few. For more details on the WAA, have a look at the WAA Website.
“Ok, but why me – little Belgian working in Web Analytics – should I join the WAA?”
Why joining the WAA?
Because as an individual, it costs only 199 USD (that's around 160 EUR) per year and you can get a lot for such small amount of money. Here is my personal top 3:
- Networking opportunities: get in contact with other peers from all over the world, get in touch with the world’s best Web Analytics professionals (really!).
- Continuing education: The WAA proposes regular Webcasts on great topics like Web Analytics industry trends, career advices, Web 2.0 measurements… It also proposes a monthly newsletter, articles and even a WAA blog where members can posts without having to run their own blog.
- Discounts to conferences & industry events: The WAA organizes among the best Web Analytics conferences – the eMetrics summits - in North America and in Europe. It also sponsors many other events. as a WAA member, you get a 15% discount on registration for any eMetrics summit (equals more than the WAA membership fee :-))
But there is much more than that - you can get the complete list of benefits here. All in all, 160 EUR is not a big deal - if you do not feel like paying the membership with your own money, it should be fairly easy to have your company pay it for you.
What are you doing on Wednesday?
The WAA also encourages the organization of free WAA events like the Web Analytics Wednesdays (WAW). WAW’s are cool, casual & informal events where you can meet peers, from your own country and share experience, tricks & tips. It also a great way to realize that “no you are not a lonely Analytics geek”.
So far, two WAW’s have been held in Belgium (one in 2007 and one in 2008). I hope they will be more in the coming year. Well, as WAA Country Manager, that is one of my objectives.
The role of the Country Manager
Like any role within the Web Analytics Association, the country manager role is a "volunteer" role (i.e. you do it for free because you want to :-)). But what are exactly the duties of a WAA Country Manager? In short, the role consists in:
- Acting as the person of contact for all WAA members and prospects.
- Growing Member Base of the WAA through personal initatives and discussions.
- Collecting Feedback of WAA members about the association in general and how it can improve.
- Organising 1-2 events such as the Web Analytics Wednesdays.
Some challenging tasks awaits me but I really think we can build a Web Analytics community in Belgium - even a small one. At least I will try. First "actions" will come soon.
Contact me & stay tune for more!
In the meantime, if you are working in the Web Analytics field in Belgium and if you have any question about the Web Analytics Associations or related topics, do not hesitate to contact me (email me at michaelnotte dot yahoo.fr or connect via LinkedIn). I’m your man!
Do not hesitate to subscribe to my blog as there will be more announcements soon. Stay tune!