1-day Online Event


2018 Higher Ed Analytics Conference

  • Do you think it’s time to get better with digital analytics in higher education?
  • Are you in charge of making sense of all the analytics data for your unit?
  • Have you ever lost yourself in Google Analytics reports, dashboards and, oh, the possibilities?

Entirely focused on analytics in higher education, the 2018 Higher Ed Analytics Conference (the 6th edition!) will take place on February 14, 2018.

This online conference will feature a dozen of 10-minute sessions presented by higher ed professionals working in institutions just like yours — with real analytics solutions to real higher ed problems.

This conference is THE annual event for higher ed analytics professionals and digital teams interested in data-driven decisions to help advance their school.

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Register Now
  •  Feb 14, 2018
  •   11AM - 2:30PM ET
  •  Register by Dec 31, 2017
  •  Registration fee: 500 $400

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2018 Higher Ed Analytics Conference Program

This online conference, offers 12 focused sessions of 10 minutes each and a general session Q&A at the end.

How to configure the new visibility tracking tag in Google Tag Manager
Aaron Baker, Digital Analytics Lead – Harvard University

Still using event tracking hacks to measure engagement with your web content or online forms? Meet Google Tag Manager’s new built-in “visibility tag” and rejoice! In this session, Aaron Baker will show you how you can track whether a certain element was shown in a given pageview. You’ll also learn how to configure this new tag in GTM and how the resulting data looks like in Google Analytics.

How to use Google Tag Manager to personalize your website
Kris Hardy, Director of Web and Digital Marketing – Messiah College

Do you wish you could personalize your website content for specific audience groups, but don’t have the budget for an expensive personalization engine? In this session, Kris Hardy will explain how he used Google Tag Manager to incorporate some personalized content in Messiah College’s newly redesigned homepage. You’ll learn more about the approach you can use to implement some basic personalization for your graduate and undergraduate audiences with the help of GTM.

Engaging stakeholders with analytics
Tatjana Salcedo, Web Strategist – University of Vermont

Collaboration with many academic units is required to plan the analytics strategy at most institutions. From one academic department to the other, primary goals often differ, so it’s never an easy task. In this session, Tatjana Salcedo will explain how she conducted a “collaboration campaign” in the name of measurement at her university. You’ll learn more about the process she developed to get more leadership buy-in and engagement, define goals and develop ongoing analytics strategies across multiple units to focus efforts on web marketing that works.

De-mystifying the Facebook data export: A how-to on gaining meaningful and actionable insights
Jessica Stutt, Integrated Marketing Manager – University of New Brunswick

Facebook’s data export provides a lot of useful information you can’t find on the Insights platform. But the multiple columns of the data export look intimidating and their analysis can be quite daunting. In this session, Jessica Stutt will help you to identify key information to gain insights into your post and follower data. You will also learn some quick tips on visualizations to help you share the story behind your data with colleagues and stakeholders.

Simplifying Social Media Analytics with… Excel (Yep, with Excel!)
Erin Supinka, Assistant Director of Digital Engagement – Dartmouth College

Collecting data is one thing, but analyzing it is an entirely different beast. With so much data made available by social media platforms, how do you sift through it all to find the useful and actionable chunks? In this session, Erin Supinka will walk you through the social media analytics process she created at Dartmouth… with just Excel—saving time and money (small teams and budgets rejoice). You’ll learn useful tricks and tips to simplify your own analytics process.

Finding opportunities to increase conversions with Google Analytics
Mandee Englert, Digital Marketing Analyst – Penn State University

Since you don’t have time to test all the marketing tactics at your disposal, focus is a key to success for higher ed digital marketers. In this session, Mandee Englert will show you how she unleashed the power of data-driven focus by optimizing the campus visit registration process at Penn State University. You’ll also get tips and tricks to identify what you can do to drive high-quality prospects and growth by analyzing your data to find big growth opportunities.

Better data through a unified tagging process
Bryan Wolf, Marketing Applications Producer – Indiana University Bloomington

You can’t measure what you don’t track. And you can rarely track what you don’t tag.
Consistent tagging is one of the top analytics roadblocks in higher education. With 9 units, more than 10 websites, multiple social media channels, more than 20 million email messages and 2 CRMs, the Office of Enrollment Management (OEM) at Indiana University Bloomington couldn’t afford to ignore the issue. In this session, Bryan Wolf will share the new, more collaborative approach the team used to make consistent tagging a reality. You’ll see how this has helped eliminate data silos between units and modernize marketing analytics efforts for all units involved.

Data storytelling: bringing data to life (on a budget and a time crunch)
Victoria O’Malley, Director of Marketing and Communications – University of Denver, University College

Numbers alone never lead to actions. By providing context, data storytelling helps unveil meaning behind data points. In this session, Victoria O’Malley will outline ways to bring your data to life with a data analysis process that works for you – even with limited time and budget. You’ll learn how to choose the right visualization, understand your audience, and find stories in your data to support decision makers at your institution.

Lessons learned measuring the impact of a brand awareness ad campaign
Shelly Adams, Digital Marketing Analyst – University of Dayton

Branding gets a lot of attention from leaders and a good chunk of marketing budget in higher education. While branding can be seen as an exercise in institutional vanity, it doesn’t mean brand awareness ad campaign should only be measured with vanity metrics. In this session, Shelly Adams will show you how to go beyond ad impressions and clicks to measure brand awareness. You’ll learn how to provide a more complete picture of university brand health by
measuring organic traffic, on-site engagement, returning visitors, and custom metrics.

From (snail) mail to metrics, measuring the impact of print pieces
Holly Sherburne, Director of Digital and Social Media – Bowdoin College

Print marketing is not dead in higher ed marketing: colleges are still sending plenty of snail mail. But, print doesn’t mean it can’t be measured. In this session, Holly Sherburne will share a case study on measuring the impact of Admissions postcards. From campaign tagging and vanity URLs to landing pages, KPIs, and Google Analytics goals, you’ll learn the necessary planning — and collaboration required — before you mail your next print piece to measure its impact. You’ll also see how you can make the results come to life and monitor them in real-time using Google Data Studio.

Website testing made easy with Google Optimize
Laura Turner, Interactive Multimedia Manager – Lehigh University

Has A/B testing always intimidated you because you didn’t know where to start? Google Optimize makes it easy to set up and run A/B tests on your website in minutes. In this step-by-step session, Laura Turner will show you how you can test multiple versions of your web page without touching code, target tests to different groups of people visiting your site, and view the test results integrated with your Google Analytics data. You’ll learn how to use Google Optimize to quickly set up tests on your website and see how small changes can have a big impact on your website goal conversions.

S.E.Ohhh! Tips for measuring organic search engine performance
Joshua Dodson, Director of Research and Integrated Marketing – VisionPoint Marketing

How do you measure the effectiveness of your Search Engine Optimization (SEO) efforts on your website traffic? In this session, Joshua Dodson will explain an effective approach to measure the impact on your SEO work. You’ll learn more about several tools that can help you get a handle on your site’s search engine performance.

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Higher Education Analytics Conference Faculty

Aaron Baker, Digital Analytics Lead - Harvard University

Aaron is a 15-year veteran in Higher Education, with experience in Admissions, Academic Affairs, Information Technology, and Marketing Communications. He started building website for Arkansas Tech University as an undergraduate and later spent a dozen years at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock in various web-related capacities.

As the Digital Analytics Lead for Harvard University Public Affairs and Communications, Aaron is now dedicated to measuring the impact of the nation’s oldest university by aligning strategic goals to a wide range of websites, email newsletters, and social properties. His work experience in the digital product lifecycle from content strategy and user experience to web development and production gives him unique insight into what metrics matter most to senior leaders.

Aaron is a faculty member at Higher Ed Experts where he teaches web analytics for higher ed.
He holds a Master of Arts degree in Technical Writing and a Graduate Certificate in Data Science from UALR. Aaron has also taught upper-level technical writing and information technology college courses.

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Kris Hardy, Director of Web and Digital Marketing - Messiah College

Kris Hardy is passionate about making the web a better place for prospective students and their families during the college search process.

Hardy currently serves as the Director of Web and Digital Marketing at Messiah College and works part-time at Ruffalo Noel-Levitz as an Associate Consultant. He specializes in user experience, information architecture and web analytics.

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Tatjana Salcedo, Web Strategist-University of Vermont

Tatjana Salcedo has worked at the University of Vermont’s central Web Team for over 17 years. Her duties include reviewing and optimizing web content, web development and her favorite topic, analyzing web traffic data.

Know on campus as the institution’s top analytics ninja, Tatjana has worked diligently to incorporate traffic from many decentralized web sites and platforms into a single master Google analytics account while simultaneously maintaining the ability for departments to have their own individual analytics accounts and relevant data.

She works closely with departments to interpret analytics data using the results to improve the overall effectiveness of the university’s web presence. She is also a graduate of Higher Ed Experts’ professional certificate program in Web Analytics.

Prior to joining the Web Team at the University of Vermont, Tatjana worked at several other academic institutions including Williams College, Lewis and Clark College, and Harvard University. She has undergraduate degrees in Music and Russian and a graduate degree in History.

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Jessica Stutt, Integrated Marketing Manager - UNB

Jessica Stutt is the Integrated Marketing Manager at the University of New Brunswick. She is an experienced marketing professional with a background in marketing analytics and measurement. She has significant experience in collecting and analyzing data from a variety of marketing sources and converting raw data into meaningful, comprehensive reports.

Before joining the Marketing Office at the University of New Brunswick, Jessica worked in marketing at Salesforce Radian6, a social media monitoring platform. Jessica holds a BA and MBA from the UNB as well as a Master of Urban Studies from Simon Fraser University.

She is a faculty member at Higher Ed Experts and teaches social media and digital analytics. She is also a graduate of Higher Ed Experts’ Social Media Measurement and Advanced Web Analytics professional certificate programs

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Erin Supinka, Assistant Director of Digital Engagement - Dartmouth College

Erin is the assistant director of digital engagement at Dartmouth College where she leads the institution’s social media strategy.

She loves using data to figure out the best ways to connect and engage with her audiences. Erin is a graduate of Higher Ed Experts’ professional 4-week online certificate in social media measurement for higher ed.

She currently lives in New Hampshire with her fiancé, dogs, and bearded dragon. You can find her on Twitter and Instagram at @erinsupinka.

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Mandee Englert, Digital Marketing Analyst - Penn State University

Mandee is the Digital Marketing Analyst on the Strategic Communications Marketing Team for Penn State University. She leads efforts to drive core insights from data to suggest, create, and execute optimizations that will drive fundamental improvements to the site experiences. She often consults campuses & colleges within Penn State using digital goals specific to that unit, and user feedback as a starting point for building a growth plan, monitoring/reporting suggested tactics and recommending further optimizations based on data collected from growth marketing efforts.

Mandee has developed a diverse skill set with a degree in graphic design, held positions as a front-end web developer/UX designer and has a passion for web optimization/analytics which has led her to her current position at Penn State University.

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Bryan Wolf, Marketing Applications Producer - Indiana University Bloomington

Bryan Wolf is the Marketing Applications Producer on the Strategic Communications and Marketing (SCOM) team within IU Bloomington’s Office of Enrollment Management (OEM). He is a functional lead on the CRM implementation team and manages email communications and marketing efforts for OEM.

Prior to joining the SCOM team, Bryan worked as Assistant Director and Website Manager in the Office of Admissions, where he had the opportunity to be not only a marketer, but also a counselor and recruiter working directly with prospective students.

Bryan possesses a diverse background in graphics, programming, and website administration. When he isn’t working, Bryan enjoys spending time with his three puppies (two of which are human), hiking, and listening to live music.

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Victoria O’Malley, Director of Marketing and Communications - University of Denver, University College

Victoria O’Malley is the Director of Marketing and Communications at the University of Denver’s college of professional and continuing studies, University College.

She is a data-driven communicator who provides direction in strategic communications, branding, and marketing for both traditional and digital efforts. Victoria also works as a consultant, helping non-profit and corporate clients shape their brand through digital storytelling.

She teaches social media strategy, web analytics, media, and communication courses at the University of Denver, Johnson & Wales University, the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, the Enrichment Program, and the Center for Professional Development at DU.

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Shelly Adams, Digital Marketing Analyst - University of Dayton

Shelly is the digital marketing analyst at the University of Dayton, with expertise in turning a random bit of numbers into useful insights for her team. She helps everyone from designer to director get a sense of what is working and what is not, and digs deeper to find the intent behind the action. This involves the daily use of Google AdWords, Analytics and Data Studio as well as Facebook and Twitter Analytics.

Her work spans the university’s multichannel presence, helping deliver insights that grow the University of Dayton’s reputation as a top-tier Catholic institution in the United States.

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Holly Sherburne, Director of Digital and Social Media – Bowdoin College

Holly originally joined Bowdoin in 2004 as the first college webmaster. She left in 2006 to start her own business, returning again in 2010 to formalize and grow the social media program. Now the director of digital and social media, Holly and her team work with departments and programs college-wide to facilitate the integration and adoption of digital media and technology to achieve a more connected, engaged, and informed Bowdoin community. Goal-setting, strategy, and analytics are a daily part of the job as is training and education. At the end of the day, it’s about people, not technology!

Holly gets the most satisfaction out of helping people look at information in new ways, asking questions, and finding unexpected insights to drive change. She received her master’s degree in Environmental Health Science from Oregon State University and is an alumna of Higher Ed Experts Social Media Measurement and Web Analytics courses and has earned her Google Analytics Qualification. She is a member of the Digital Analytics Association, American Marketing Association, and CASE.

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Laura Turner, Interactive Multimedia Manager - Lehigh University

Laura Turner is the Interactive Multimedia Manager in Communications and Public Affairs at Lehigh University. With over ten years of higher ed web analytics experience, she helps her team use data to make informed decisions to improve the Lehigh website.

Laura is a member of the Digital Analytics Association and has earned the Google Analytics Individual Qualification.

She has completed the Web Analytics for Higher Ed and Predictive Web Analytics for Higher Ed courses from Higher Ed Experts.

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Joshua Dodson, Director of Research and Integrated Marketing - VisionPoint Marketing

Joshua Dodson knows higher ed. As a university’s director of digital marketing, an AVP of digital marketing, a web analytics strategist, a co-founder and chief innovation officer of a higher ed marketing firm, and as a professor, Joshua has helped countless universities modernize their enrollment and marketing programs. His expertise with digital marketing, analytics and SEO for higher education has made him a sought-after speaker. To date, he has delivered more than 20 presentations, keynotes, and workshops at national higher ed marketing conferences. He also taught more than 500+ students as a faculty member at Higher Ed Experts from 2011 to 2017.

As the Director of Research and Integrated Marketing at VisionPoint, Joshua brings his uncanny ability to design strategy, execute tactically and measure ROI to our clients. Before joining VisionPoint, he led digital marketing efforts at Bentley University, Southern New Hampshire University, Eastern Kentucky University, and Lincoln Memorial University. He’s also served higher ed from the agency side in roles with Stamats and Converge. His experience both inside the university and working with them from the outside gives him a unique perspective that clients find invaluable.

When he is not serving his clients at VisionPoint, Joshua can be found playing guitar and having fun exploring Raleigh with his wife and their three kids.

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Should I attend the Higher Education Analytics Conference?

This conference is recommended for teams including:

What is included in my Conference registration fee?

The fee is for a single computer/audio connection with an unlimited number of attendees watching the live online event.

It includes the following:

  1. 1 connection to the live event scheduled over 3 hours on February 14, 2018 – the audio is done via voice over IP or teleconference
  2. A 1-year unlimited access to the recordings of the sessions on-demand through a link that we will provide to you.
  3. All session materials (slides handouts in PDF)

If the conference cannot be held (due to unforseen events) on its scheduled date, it will be rescheduled on its rain date: February 21, 2018.

2017 Higher Ed Analytics Conference Program

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Digital Analytics in Higher Education: Checked? Really?
Karine Joly, Executive Director – Higher Ed Experts

When it comes to digital measurement in higher education, are we there yet? Have you really checked web, email or social media analytics off your to-do list? In this session, Karine Joly will share the ideal analytics road map for digital analytics in higher education. You will learn what you should have in place, what you still need to work on and how to get there.

No Longer Treading Water
Joshua Dodson, Director of Digital Marketing – Bentley University

For those who have learned the basic skills of Google Analytics, it can sometimes feel like we are repeating similar analyses or looking at the same reports. If you want to go deeper into your analysis, some tools can help. In this session, Joshua Dodson will share some tips for advanced techniques such as forecasting and intervention analysis.

Analytics not Vanity-lytics: Connecting analytics with real-world results
Sara Kisseberth, Web Content Manager – Bluffton University

Social media isn’t the only channel to rely on vanity metrics for “performance measurement” in higher education. After years of analyzing web stats in a vacuum – with no connection to what the numbers really mean in “real world” actions – admissions and PR at Bluffton have finally began to collaborate to track what matters. In this session, Sara Kisseberth will share a case study on how this collaboration enabled her school to track and measure “real world” actions. If you’re still reporting on page views or sessions, you’ll also learn how to get this process started at your school.

What You’re Missing: Using Analytics to Find Admissions Content Gaps
Jens Larson, Manager of Student Communication Strategies – Eastern Washington University

Analytics can tell you a lot about what’s happening on your website, and it can tell you a lot about what’s not happening, too. In this session you’ll discover analytics strategies that help you identify content gaps in your admissions content. You’ll also learn how to determine if you’ve filled those gaps with the new content you’ve created. And yep: these strategies work for non-admissions content, too.

Content Analytics: Beyond the imperfect time-on-page metric with scroll tracking
Aaron Baker, Digital Analytics Lead – Harvard University

In the world of public affairs and newsroom analytics, you don’t have many concrete conversion goals to track. In this session, Aaron Baker will tell us how he went beyond the best out-of-the-box metric (bounce rate and the tricky average time-on-page) to help measure engagement on news stories. You’ll learn why tracking how far a user scrolls in a given page or story proved to be a great engagement metric and how it also improved the quality and reliability of those other out-of-the-box metrics.

Measuring session duration in… dollars
Alan Etkin, Senior Analyst – British Columbia Institute of Technology

Higher ed marketing campaigns are painfully difficult to evaluate, especially when promoting programs. Long lead times to conversion frequently surpass Google Analytics’ ability to connect campaigns with submitted applications. In this session, Alan Etkin will explain how BCIT monetized session duration as an additional metric for measuring campaign performance. You will see how to calculate the value of session duration based on goal values, and find out what monetized session duration can help you learn about your audience.

Go commando: Drop the GUI and use the GA API
Ed Garabedian, Manager of Digital Analytics – Johnson & Wales University

Do you manage multiple GA accounts for your school website(s), because… it’s complicated? In this tutorial, Ed Garabedian will show you how you can pull all your data together into a report using Google Analytics API, Google Sheets and a free add-on. You’ll find out where to get the plugin, how to configure it as well as more practical tips to develop your report configuration.

Data Visualization Road Map: How to choose the right visualization for your data.
Bryan Fendley, Director of Instructional Technology and Web Services – University of Arkansas at Monticello

When it comes to presenting data, the wrong visualization can destroy your message. It can be challenging to choose the right element (pie, histogram, etc.) to best present your data. In this session, Bryan Fendley will show you when and how to use the most common visualizations to help you better report analytics data and share insights.

Using Google Data Studio to Create Interactive Dashboards with Actionable Data
Laura Turner, Interactive Multimedia Manager – Lehigh University

Google Data Studio allows you to transform your data into dynamic dashboards with easy to read charts and graphs that you can share with anyone. If you already use Google Analytics dashboards, you’ll be amazed by the new possibilities offered by Data Studio. In this tutorial, Laura will show you the basics to get you started with this game changer tool. You’ll also see how much of an impact this tool can have on communicating analytics data and insights in an understandable, clear and engaging way.

Maps and legends – finding and visualising our online influencers
Robert Perry, Head of Research – Pickle Jar Communications

How do you identify the real social media influencers of your target audience? Using data, of course! In this session, Robert Perry will explain how he developed a data-driven approach to identifying online influencers for a London-based university. You’ll get some practical tips to replicate this approach at your school to differentiate the real influencers from the wannabes on social media.

Measuring Success on Facebook
Michelle Leslie, Interactive Marketing Specialist – Chapman University

Like it or hate it, Facebook is still a major social media platform in higher education. You spend time crafting the perfect social media content, but are you investing enough time measuring their performance? In this session, Michelle Leslie will tell you where to find analytics data, how to interpret the metrics and how they can help you optimize your content strategy on Facebook.

Snapchat Analytics: Measuring Snapchat Success to Inform Strategy
Colin McGinnis, Graduate Research Assistant – University of Nebraska–Lincoln

Think Snapchat is difficult to use? Wait, until you try to measure the success of your stories and other snaps. In this session, Colin McGinnis will go over how to use the limited metrics provided in Snapchat to develop an analysis strategy to help measure performance and inform decisions on content delivery. You’ll get practical tips about what data to pull and how to analyze it.

2016 Conference Recordings

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Web Acrobatics in Higher Ed
Joshua Dodson, Director of SEO – Southern New Hampshire University

Imagine, with a number in hand, the web acrobat shoots above the onlookers, hoping to reach his mark. He has data and desire, but how does he balance it all to get the most out of it?
In this session, Joshua Dodson will discuss the key components of a balanced measurement and improvement strategy. You will learn how all these elements should work together to give you a full picture of what happened, what the results were, and what you should do next.

Higher Ed Web Analytics Project: Data and Insights on Higher Ed Websites
Karine Joly, Executive Director – Higher Ed Experts

From October 2014 to September 2015, Karine Joly conducted a 1-year project on higher ed websites in the US, the UK, Canada, Australia and France. She published monthly benchmarking reports using Google Analytics benchmarking reports for Universities & Colleges websites. In this session, Karine will share – for the first time – data and insights, gained from this 1-year benchmarking project, on web traffic to higher ed websites.

Tips, Tricks, and Bribes: Getting Departments Onboard with Analytics
Bryan Fendley, Director of Campus Web Services – University of Arkansas at Monticello

Getting institutional buy-in for your analytics program may be harder than you think. Everybody says they want to be data-driven, but many in higher education still fail to get the “Analytics” message across. In this session, Bryan Fendley will show you how to turn data skeptics into data believers on your campus. You’ll learn some good tips and useful tricks to help you get all your units onboard with analytics.

Get More Actionable Data, Faster with Google Tag Manager (GTM)
Tatjana Salcedo, Web Strategist – University of Vermont

Google Tag Manager has made it easier to implement Google Analytics on higher ed websites. It has also helped make content and design decisions on a daily basis by facilitating the measurement and analysis of all kinds of additional website interactions (file downloads, jQuery interactions, YouTube videos, etc.). In this session, Tatjana Salcedo will cover how to implement the latest version of GTM (v. 2.0) at the institution-wide level while preserving departmental GA accounts. You will also learn how to implement tags to collect the data that matters to your team.

Top 10 Google Analytics Questions (and their Answers) From Your Campus Community
Avalee Harlton, Service Coordinator & Web Content Designer/Editor – York University

Big university or small college, if you monitor your website’s analytics, you inevitably get questions about what’s getting tracked, how content is doing, and how to do things more easily. In this session , Avalee Harlton will share the top 10 questions — and their answers – you get when your job is to help your campus colleagues gain insights on their web content performance.

Email Activity or Email Achievement: What Are You Really Measuring?
Jens Larson, Manager of Student Communication Strategies – Eastern Washington University

Less than 20% of higher ed enrollment emails use cross channel analytics. So, what matters in email reporting? In this session, Jens Larson will dive into the key email metrics you need to track. You’ll get useful tips pertaining to your email system, your Google Analytics account, and your handy statistical calculators.

Brand Breaker or Brand Maker?
Alan Etkin, Senior Analyst – British Columbia Institute of Technology

How can you use Google Analytics to measure the impact of web projects that don’t immediately align with your standard marketing initiatives? At BCIT, Alan Etkin compared the conversion rate from the visitors of an unconventional brand-focused micro site with the CR of non-visitors. In this session, Alan will share details about this approach and tell you how you can apply the same techniques at your school.

EXTRA from 2015 edition: How to Show the Financial Value of Your Website Conversions
Alan Etkin, Senior Systems Analyst – Web Analytics – BCIT

What’s the contribution of your website to the bottom line of your institution? To answer this (hopefully!) million dollar question, you need to put a dollar value on each of your key conversion events – everything from contact forms submitted to program applications paid. In this session, Alan Etkin will share the steps he took to identify the value of each site conversion. You’ll get details about the process, lessons learned and examples of the resulting reports demonstrating the real value of a web conversion for the institution.

Data Is Queen: Quantifying Relationships, Influence, and Engagement To Inform Your Strategy
Chase Baker, Social & Digital Media Coordinator – Colorado State University

Numbers don’t lie, but proper analysis and context are needed to understand your strategy’s success. Investing time and energy into monthly analytics reports isn’t easy, but it’s worth it. In this session, Chase Baker will discuss top Key Performance Indicators for social media. You will also learn how this data is presented in custom visual reports.

Measuring the Unmeasurable: Snapchat Analytics 101
Lindsay Nyquist, Director of Digital Communications – Fort Lewis College

Snapchat – the new kid on the social media block – is a tough platform to measure. But with 50% of its users in the 13-17-year-old age group, it’s clear that it’s a great place for colleges and universities to infiltrate. In this session, Lindsay Nyquist will share the best ways to measure Snapchat to determine its value for your institution. You will learn more about metrics, tools and best practices for SnapChat measurement.

(Almost) Everything You Need to Know About Measuring Social Media ROI
Robert Bochnak, Assistant Director, Alumni Marketing and Communications – Harvard Business School

Social media Return on Investment (ROI) is difficult–but not impossible–to prove. In this session, Robert Bochnak will share how the Harvard Business School’s Alumni Office collects and reports on social media ROI by tracking and “scoring” alumni interactions on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram and measuring calls to action. You’ll find out how this data is reported in a variety of ways.

From Social Media Listening to Social Media ROI with CRM Tracking
Adam Coulter, Social Media Marketing Specialist – Curry College

In 2013 social media had an integral part – proven by data – in helping to enroll the incoming class. Moving beyond correlation and complex channel attribution models, Adam Coulter tagged and tracked prospects to measure the impact of his work. In this case study, he will show you how this simple but strategic process helped him measure social media return on investment at his school.

Combining Facebook Ad Insights and Web Analytics to Measure Success
Dr. Liz Gross, Social Media and Market Research Strategist – Great Lakes Educational Loan Services, Inc.

Facebook ads, particularly when combined with sophisticated targeting, can be a great way to reach your audience. In this session, Dr. Liz Gross will show you how to set up a Facebook advertising campaign so its results can be tracked. You will learn how to use both Facebook Ad Insights and web analytics to measure success in relation to your key objectives—not just reach, clicks, and likes.

2015 Conference Recordings

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Beyond Numbers: The role of storytelling in effective analytics reporting
Stephanie Leishman, Social Media Strategist – MIT

Good analytics work doesn’t stop at numbers — and sometimes, it doesn’t always start there either. In this session, Stephanie Leishman will discuss why qualitative analysis is essential and will demonstrate the role of qualitative reporting for integrated media campaigns, emergency communications, and more. You will get some great pointers to use storytelling techniques to make your analytics reporting more effective.

One Google Analytics Account to Rule Them All: How to move to a centralized account
Avalee Harlton, Web Content Designer/Editor – York University

Got dozens (hundreds?) of Google Analytics accounts originally set up by decentralized units? It’s time to consolidate to get the big picture and track your website visitors throughout your institutional website. In this case study, Avalee Harlton will explain how York University recently moved to a single university-wide account. You’ll learn how you can do it at your school with practical recommendations to consolidate your Google Analytics accounts at your institution.

How Google Analytics can help you focus your energies — and strategy
Matt Hames, Manager of Media Communications – Colgate University

Want to help your stakeholders make decisions on real data? Meet your new friend: Google Analytics SEO Queries Report. In this session, Matt Hames will explain the data you’ll find in this report. You will also learn why and how you can use this report to help make the case for your integrated digital strategy.

When Google Analytics meets your Calendar: What on earth happened at 6pm?
Shannan Palma, Senior Online Producer – Emory University

When you track analytics on a quarterly or annual basis, it can be difficult to figure out what caused a particular spike in traffic on a specific day. In this case study, Shannan Palma will show how Emory University tracks significant events throughout the year (admission cycle, conferences, and even snow days) and correlates those dates with analytics data. You’ll learn how you can do the same to tell coherent stories in your reports and to guide future decisions about content and the organization of information on your website.

Lessons learned from analyzing an academic program marketing campaign
Erik Hagen, Director of Web Communications – California Lutheran University

California Lutheran University rolled out a major marketing campaign for its Bachelor’s Degree for Professionals program in Summer 2014, incorporating both digital and offline media. In this case study, Erik Hagen will share the process used for planning and measuring relevant data to find out what worked and what didn’t. Through this example, you will learn how to analyze campaign results and to break down the performance of each channel using advanced segments, multi-channel funnel analysis and A/B testing.

Measuring the Performance of Academic Program Sites and Pages
Tatjana Salcedo, Web Strategist – University of Vermont

One of the biggest selling points of an academic institution is its academic programs. In this session, Tatjana Salcedo will explore methods to measure programs pages accounting for prospective student interest, potential for program growth, and institutional enrollment goals. You’ll gain insight on how to approach improving these important pages and measure your efforts going forward.

How Google Analytics Can Help You Assess Your Social Media Program
Liz Gross, Social Media & Market Research Strategist – Great Lakes ELS

If you’re assessing the success of your social media program using only Facebook Insights or Twitter Analytics, you’re missing important data points. In this session, Liz Gross will show how you can use segments in Google Analytics to gather information about the behavior of your website visitors referred by Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other social media sites.

Silo-Busting Using the Google Analytics Social Report
Vanessa Theoharis, Integrated Marketing Manager – Babson College

The Google Analytics Social Report can do more than simply capture traffic from social networks to your college website. In this session, Vanessa Theoharis will explain how this report can spark discussions about social media, but also content strategy, audience analysis, and education. You’ll learn how Babson College has integrated data from the Social Report into the school’s dashboards, thus giving social media a place at the analytics table.

Social Media Scorecard: A Single Overarching Metric for Social Media
Ted Hattemer, AVP Interactive Communications – The Ohio State University

Ohio State’s Board of Trustees asked University Communications to report, on a monthly basis, a single metric that would track and show progress on the university’s use of social media. This seemingly simple request blew open the lid on how difficult it is to compare retweets to Facebook comments, how traffic pushed to social media compares with traffic driven to owned properties from social media posts. This presentation will share a process Ohio State has established for the monthly tracking and reporting of a single metric for measurement.

Using Digital Analytics to Help Secure Project Funding
Todd Gregory, Digital Analyst – Penn State University

How do you make the case for the digital initiatives that should be implemented at your school? In this session, Todd Gregory will show you how to prove the true value of your proposals by leveraging digital analytics and some basic business modeling techniques. You’ll also learn about one specific framework for value and ROI modeling he used at Penn State to build a case for additional funding.

How to Show the Financial Value of Your Website Conversions
Alan Etkin, Senior Systems Analyst – Web Analytics – BCIT

What’s the contribution of your website to the bottom line of your institution? To answer this (hopefully!) million dollar question, you need to put a dollar value on each of your key conversion events – everything from contact forms submitted to program applications paid. In this session, Alan Etkin will share the steps he took to identify the value of each site conversion. You’ll get details about the process, lessons learned and examples of the resulting reports demonstrating the real value of a web conversion for the institution.

Showing Impact by Predicting What Could Have Happened: This was the Result of That Campaign… Really!
Joshua Dodson, Digital Marketing Strategy and Optimization Manager – EKU

Getting the metrics is not the hard part. Knowing what caused the results can be more challenging. By using intervention analysis, it is possible to see the overall impact of a campaign or initiative. In this session, Joshua Dodson will show how you can use Google Analytics data to perform an intervention analysis to determine campaign impact. He’ll also explain why this kind of analysis can be used to make positive changes within higher education marketing and enrollment. You’ll learn this technique to improve your analysis and add value to your institution.

2014 Conference Recordings

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Before You Measure: How to Identify the Right KPIs for Your Unit or School (10-min session)
Stephanie Hatch Leishman, Social Media and Email Marketing Specialist – MIT

Stephanie LeishmanNot sure what you should measure? Don’t count on your analytics tool – or crystal ball – to tell you. In this session, Stephanie Hatch Leishman will explain why only *you* can define your key metrics (or key performance indicators as there are also called). She will take you for a quick back-to-basics: before reporting, before measurement, all the way back to strategy: priorities, audiences, and metrics selection. Starting right can change how you change what you measure and how your report. This will be the bird’s eye view of how to think strategically and how to define metrics that are uniquely important to your unit or your school.

Cross Domain Tracking 101: How to Get the Full Story across Your Web Ecosystem (10-min session)
Philippe Taza, Web Analyst – Higher Education Marketing

ptazaHigher ed institutions often have very complicated web ecosystems that include multiple domains, subdomains, microsites and 3rd party applications that students must navigate across to find the information they seek. Without cross domain tracking a visitor’s path from source (ie Facebook campaign) to final destination (ie registration page) is often broken by leaps across these related but separate domains. In this session, Philippe Taza will explain how cross domain tracking works, provides examples of cross domain tracking code, and highlights the benefits of cross domain tracking data at work in Google Analytics reports.

Why & How to Switch to Google Tag Manager(10-min session)
C. Daniel Chase, Lead Web Administrator – The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga

cdanielchaseAre you still tracking your campaigns the old way? Google Tag Manager (GTM) is the new method for ‘tagging’ pages for tracking general analytics as well as more advanced tracking that previously required marking up the tracked page very specifically. GTM allows you to replace a lot of previously embedded code with one for GTM, and then manage all tracking externally. Once the GTM code is in place, you will be even able to track those elusive items like PDF downloads! In this session, C. Daniel Chase will explain Why you should use GTM, and what your need to get it up & running for basic analytics.

Optimize Landing Web Pages with Google Analytics Content Experiments (10-min session)
Tatjana Salcedo, Web Strategist – University of Vermont

Tatjana SalcedoWouldn’t it be nice to take the guesswork out of web page optimization by comparing the performance of up to five different versions of a web page? That’s exactly what Google Analytics Content Experiments allow you to do by testing content, design and interactive features with a random sampling of your site visitors. By comparing goal conversion rates on each page, you can rapidly and effectively optimize your landing pages using data driven decisions. In this session, Tatjana Salcedo will take you through the steps necessary to set up and run an experiment in Google Analytics so you can get started and optimize your landing pages.

Lessons Learned Using Analytics to Drive Web Usability Testing Efforts(10-min session)
Rachel Johnson,Web Content Developer – Case Western Reserve University

rjohnsonDo you think analytics data is where the puck stops? Not always. It can also be what can get you buy-in for web usability tests — and ultimately better websites. You meet with a department to discuss their web analytics and how to improve their content strategy. You show and interpret the numbers, you make recommendations, and then comes the big question: “How do we know what our users are thinking?” In this session, Rachel Johnson will share lessons learned from her experience using analytics to start the web usability talk with clients at her institution.


Using Dashboards to Get to Know International Visitors
(10-min session)
Michelle Tarby, Director of Web Services – Le Moyne College

Michelle TarbyWho doesn’t want to attract international students now? To support a new campus efforts to increase international recruitment, Le Moyne College needed to find answers to some fundamental questions: are recruiting initiatives with external partners driving traffic? What countries are reached? Do these visitors connect with the school? What information are they interested in? In this case study, Michelle will explain how she used the power of dashboards to answer these questions and will walk you through how to create the dashboards, the advantages of using segments vs. filters and see the information you can use on your campus.

Picture your Twitter Data! How to use Netlytic for Text and Network Analysis (10-min session)
Adrian J.Ebsary Online Community Manager – University of Ottawa

Adrian ebsaryHow do you make sense of the Twitter data for your school account? You make it more visual! Despite the increasing availability of Twitter data, there are still relatively few tools for digital marketers to visualize and interpret this data. Netlytic, a free web application developed by Prof. Anatoliy Gruzd’s Social Media Lab out of Dalhousie University, offers an easy-to-use interface that guides would-be data scientists through the process of creating their own visualizations in minutes. In this session, Adrian Ebsary will walk you through how to transform spreadsheets of Twitter conversations into coloured reply networks or showcase popular keywords in a timeline format.

When Data Doesn’t Mean Numbers: Content Analysis to Bring Help and Happiness to Your Audiences (10-min session)
Tim Nekritz, Director of Web Communication – SUNY Oswego

tnekritzNot a number person? It doesn’t mean you can’t based your decisions on data – qualitative data is also part of the analytics approach. At SUNY Oswego, one newer and successful venture is content analysis — tracking and measuring user content — and even interacting with it to discover the kinds of social media and web content that can bring help or happiness to our audiences. In this session, Tim Nekritz will share an interesting case study on how to use content analysis. From having student creators posting videos or blog entries addressing questions and popular topics to extensive use of Tweetdeck and Webstagram to stay on the pulse of current and prospective students, qualitative and quantitative content analysis can bring you closer to your audience. You will see how it can result in user-generated content you can leverage to meet strategic goals.

How to make sure your stakeholders see what they need in Google Analytics(10-min session)
Alan Etkin – BCIT

Alan EtkinWhat do you do when you have keen but untrained university staff asking for access to Google Analytics? Once you’ve logged in, it’s easy to get lost in the reports, even when you know what you’re looking for. But, when you don’t, it’s downright intimidating, especially for complex sites. In this session, Alan will share a useful model for creating views populated with custom dashboards, reports and segments for specific work units. This approach will help focus staff efforts, and reduce the time you spend guiding them though the reports.

Making Your Data Matter – Really: How to Present Analytics Data to Upper Management (10-min session)
Colleen Clark, Marketing Analyst – Ithaca College

Colleen ClarkAre you still trying to persuade upper management to make data-driven decisions? Does your boss still ignore your great reports and beautiful dashboards? In this session, Colleen Clark will explain how higher education analysts can present (yep, a presentation is the secret weapon!) data in a digestible yet actionable format to senior management. You’ll understand the different types of best practices to use with upper management and which data sets will make the greatest impact. You’ll also learn how you can best put the pieces together even when your story takes an unexpected turn.

How to Make the Case to Hire a Web Analytics Staff Member (10-min session)
Shelby Thayer, Director, Web Strategy and CRM – Penn State – Outreach and Online Education

sthayerMeasuring the effectiveness of marketing campaigns and optimizing your website presence is becoming more and more important. Depending on your needs, a full-time web analyst is becoming a necessity. Find out some tips on selling the idea of a web analyst and attributes to look for in your new hire.

Not Your Regular Google Analytics: Level Up in Your Analysis (20-min session)
Joshua Dodson, SEO & Web Analyst – Eastern Kentucky University

Joshua DodsonYou’ve covered the basics. You know all about Bounce Rate and Goal Conversions, but want to go deeper. In this session, Joshua Dodson will discuss some new tactics to help you reach the next level in your data analysis. You learn about advanced demographics, content calendar planning with data, and predictive analysis with time series data from Google Analytics.

2013 Conference Recordings

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Harnessing the Power of Google Analytics Goals (10-min session)
Seth Meranda, User-Experience Architect – University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Can’t do much with Google Analytics without setting up goals, right? As the most important feature in Google Analytics, they provide immediate context to clickstream metrics. In this session, Seth will help you go back to the (very important) basics. You will explore the importance of goals, when to use each type and review examples of reporting enhancements from goal tracking.

Tracking Online and Offline Marketing Efforts: Setting Your Integrated Tracking Management Plan (20-min session)
Colleen Clark, Marketing Analyst – Ithaca College

Imagine (or remember?) you’ve been asked to provide insights to drive decision making for all online and offline channels. Where do you start? In this presentation, Colleen will explain you the importance of tracking every marketing effort around all medium channels including print, banner, social, and search engine. She will show you how an integrated tracking management plan can make a difference to streamline the communications process across all higher ed clients. You will review how to properly implement tagging, note the main issues you may encounter and the types of engagement metrics you should evaluate.

Analytics Case Study: Homepage Automated Click Event Tracking in Google Analytics (10-min session)
John Mills

In November 2012, Emory added automated, categorized click-event tracking for Google Analytics as part of a ground-up rebuild of its main university web site launched. John will explain how this was implemented, the results in Google Analytics and how they are used.

Extending Your Reach with Customized Dashboards (20-min session)
Alan Etkin, Senior Systems Analyst – Web Analytics – BCIT

You’ve definitely heard about Google Analytics reports, but customized dashboards might be one of the best kept secrets of web analytics professionals. Google Analytics dashboards are perfect for keeping key perfomance indicators (KPIs) top of mind. You can customize them for specific departments or functions, and you can even automate their delivery. In this presentation, Alan will share an advanced strategy – and specific configuration tips – for making the most of Google Analytics dashboards.

Actionable Analytics with Email: 1 project to get you started (10-min session)
Tatjana Salcedo, Web Strategist – University of Vermont

With so much data it’s often difficult to know where to start your analysis and generate meaningful and actionable reports. In this presentation, Tatjana will detail one basic but useful Analytics project to get you off and started gathering data. You’ll learn what you can do to make improvements in your institution’s email marketing efforts.

Infiltrating Social Media Influence Metrics: Badly in Need of Better Benchmarking (10-min session)
Adrian Ebsary, Online Community Specialist – University of Ottawa

How do you justify all the work done on social media? Choosing the right metric to quantify return on investment is challenging with social media. While a number of big name companies such as Klout and PeerIndex offer comprehensive dashboards with content analysis tools for multiple social networking sites, their score algorithms lack transparency. Adrian will examine some social media metrics that provide unique takes on online influence. He will share concrete examples and the strategies for benchmarking effectiveness in online communities used at his school.

Anayltics Success Story: Data-Driven Redesign (10-min session)
Mardy Wilson, Web Content Strategist – Maricopa Community Colleges

Analytics can help you make data-driven decisions, but what if you’re not the person making final decisions? In this presentation, Mardy will share her analytics success story featuring the reports created for management in an effort to show the traffic generated to the site through search engine optimization and the usefulness of the site based on event tracking after a redesign. She will explain how analytics demonstrated the importance of the website in her school’s paper reduction campaign and its role in meeting students needs by offering direct email contact to all instructors.

How Analytics Solved my Information Architecture Headache (10-min session)
Michelle Tarby, Director of Web Services – Le Moyne College

We’ve all gotten that call asking for one more call-out button on an existing landing page. The client’s eyes tend to glaze over when the dreaded words “information architecture” or “user experience” are uttered. In this presentation, Michelle will show you how she used Google Analytics to inform changes to her college’s admission landing page. You’ll see how visitor flow to under-performing areas has improved as a result of these changes.

What’s Missing in Your Web Content? Site Search Analytics 101 (10-min session)
Amy Pizzolatto, Multimedia Content Specialist – The University of Chicago

Before embarking on a recent homepage redesign project, the University of Chicago studied its Site Search Analytics to understand what content users were searching for once they came to uchicago.edu. Amy looked for prominent patterns—and gaps. In this presentation, she will share a practical example of how to make a site search inventory and group findings into categories to recommend new web pages and navigation changes. Amy will also show you how to set up Site Search Analytics on your Google Analytics account and gives you useful tips to get started.

Sleuthing with Analytics: Using Analytics to Help Pinpoint Challenges (10-min session)
Rebecca Bernstein, Digital Strategist – University at Buffalo

We often think of analytics as a “how did we do/how are we doing” process losing the opportunity to use analytics to help us identify lost opportunities – things we did not even have on our radar screen. In this presentation, Rebecca will guide you through a “sleuthing” case study. She willl give you a peek at how she used analytics up front to inform the strategic approach to developing the UB International Admissions site and to influencing changes in UB’s top level website. You’ll see a concrete example how to pin point opportunities to better leverage the traffic you already have.

Meet the Analytics Profiler: Profiling Your Actual Audience (20-min session)
Joshua Dodson, SEO & Web Analyst – Eastern Kentucky University

Who is your audience when you work for a higher ed institution? We all use similar labels for them: propspective or current students, alums, parents or donors. But, really who are the people who visit your institution website? In this presentation, our Higher Ed Analytics Prof, Joshua Dodson, will show you how to become an Analytics Profiler – not to catch serial killers, but to understand who your actual web visitors are. He will explore how to utilize a combination of Google Analytics data as well as other external tools to profile your actual audience and make sure your website addresses their needs.

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Want to attend the Higher Education Analytics Conference?

  •  Feb 14, 2018
  •   11AM - 2:30PM ET
  •  Register by Dec 31, 2017
  •  Registration fee: 500 $400
  •   Only 24 seats left
  •  Rain date: Feb 21, 2018
Register Now

Got a question or a comment?

2 Responses

  1. Eric Olsen says:

    Wow. Really exciting. But 11 speakers in 3.5 hours? Are we talking TED-talk style high-level brevity, rather than practical – “here’s how to set up off- and on-campus IP segmentation” walkthroughs?

    • Karine Joly says:

      Giving the traditional 45-minute length you see at conferences will have resulted in a 8-hour long event. For an online event, this would have been just impossible to retain people’s attention that long on… analytics 🙂

      You’ll have combo, but this will be very practical. Shorter focused presentations require a bit more prep work, but the speakers are up to the challenge 🙂 As usual for Higher Ed Experts events, they do full rehearsals and they receive a great deal of help or coaching if they need it 🙂 Most sessions will be 10-minute long with a few going up to 20 minutes. So, yes, it will be fast-paced, but full of good stuff.