DAA Philadelphia Symposium

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The Next Generation of Analytics Optimization

October 18, 2012

Symposium: 12:30pm – 5:30pm
Networking Reception: 5:30pm – 6:30pm
Ritz Carlton
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

(Members $10, Non-Members $50)

Come meet and learn from some of the top digital analytics practitioners in the US at the second annual Philadelphia DAA Symposium. The symposium is a half-day seminar investigating the next generation of digital analytics optimization techniques and technology. Attendees will walk away with insights into emerging technologies and non-traditional digital measurement solutions, tips on developing digital analytics talent, and world-class measurement and optimization techniques.

Hear from industry leaders:

  • David Millrod, Managing Partner, Insight Rocket
  • Gary Angel, President and CTO, Semphonic
  • Peter Fader, Wharton Customer Analytics Initiative Co-Director and Professor of Marketing
  • Steve Meyer, Sr. Director of Data Science, Comcast
  • JJ Oliver, Business Intelligence Analyst, Comcast Converged Products
  • Len O’Neal, Director, Digital Product & Audience Development, Philly.com
  • Brian Cosgrove, Vice President, Web Analytics & Engineering, TPG Direct
  • Jim Davis, Director, Web & Customer Analytics, Urban Outfitters
  • Heather Aeder, Group Director of Analytics, TrueAction
  • Daniel Laws, President and CEO, DaBrian Marketing Group
  • Alex Gochtovtt, Principal, Marketing Management & Analysis, Cognizant
  • Rebecca Campany, Director of Online Communications, Office of Communications, Brookings Institution

Registration for DAA members is at the discounted price of $10, while non-members can register for $50. This is a great time to join the Association and avail yourself of this and many other opportunities that the DAA brings your way.

Cancellation Policy

No refunds will be given after October 1, 2012.


Time Speaker Abstract
12:30 - 1:00pm Registration and Sponsor Showcase
1:00 - 1:10pm Welcome
Heather Aeder, Group Director of Analytics, TrueAction
1:10 - 1:30pm Intro by Joel Tuisl, Director of Sales, Telium
Speaker: Joseph Brown, Director of Web Analytics & Reporting, for Lincoln Financial Group
Opening Remarks:
Using Tag Management to Control your Data

One of the benefits of an enterprise tag management system is the ability to be in control of online data flow. This includes which data points you send to which online vendors, as well as how what format or syntax you use to send that data. This came in very handy for Lincoln Financial Group (LFG), which discovered it could use tag management to control the flow of data to vendors and even block unwanted data from being exposed to third-parties. Joseph Brown, Director of Web Analytics for Lincoln Financial, will provide a 10-minute overview of how tag management helped him manage this important issue.

1:30 – 1:35pm DAA Remarks
Peter Fader, WCAI Co-Director & Professor of Marketing, Wharton Customer Analytics Initiative
1:35 – 2:20pm Bandits Paradise: The Next Generation of Test-and-Learn Marketing
Peter Fader, WCAI Co-Director & Professor of Marketing, Wharton Customer Analytics Initiative

Testing the effectiveness of marketing activities via experimentation has long been a hallmark of direct marketers, but now almost every kind of marketer has “joined the party”. Changes in the digital environment have led to the proliferation of marketing experiments, such as A/B and multivariate tests, but they are now run on a much more frequent basis and for an ever-wider array of marketing decisions. Virtually every outbound marketing activity (e.g., sending emails, serving display ads, customizing websites, recommending products) can be framed as adaptive experiments to “test and learn” on a continuous basis.

But as these tests evolve from standalone projects to being deeply integrated into a firm’s day-to-day operations (and culture), it is more important than ever to ensure that testing is done in a profitable manner. It is no longer acceptable to merely “test and learn” with the hope of making greater profits in the future; today’s digital marketers must “earn while they learn.” That is the focus on this session: we demonstrate that running tests on a relatively naïve basis (e.g., manipulating only one feature at a time or picking the “winner” too early) can leave money on the table or might be unnecessarily risky. Managers need to be more cognizant of the “exploration-exploitation” dilemma between the desire to continue testing to benefit in the future (explore) versus the desire to quickly leverage initial results and select actions that seem to be performing well (exploit).

In order to resolve this tension, we focus on the application and further development of the so-called “multi-armed bandit” paradigm as an optimal framework to perform adaptive testing in a profitable manner. We have carefully reviewed and synthesized the relevant literature from a variety of domains (e.g., computer science, operations research, clinical trials, and of course, marketing) and have developed new algorithms and operational procedures that represent the best of all worlds. We discuss how various aspects of the managerial problem (e.g., decision context, data sparseness) can affect the relative performance of different methods. For instance, three of the relevant issues are: (1) How rare is the event of interest? (2) How small are the effect sizes differentiating the actions? and (3) How big is the batch of simultaneous allocations that are made for each decision period?

The results from this integrative research were obtained from a variety of rich, realistic simulations, as well as a number of large-scale live field experiments (with a multi-channel retailer and a major retail bank) aimed at increasing advertising effectiveness. While we continue testing and learning in our research program, we discuss our observations to date ,as well as specific tactics and strategies to help managers perform adaptive testing activities more profitably than ever.

2:20 – 2:40pm Steve Meyer, Sr. Director of Data Science, Comcast Bending Pachinko Pegs: Using Predictions to Affect Outcomes

Using information to predict & influence outcomes is nothing new in business. Previously information was sparse and so there was a lot of uncertainty in making predictions. Now there is more information than ever—and new technologies are making it possible for companies to harness this flood of information. But are the predictions better?

This presentation will examine how prediction differs from data mining, review perils & pitfalls encountered when forging into the prediction space, and how your approach to analytics may fundamentally change as a result. Comcast’s experience in predicting movie performance will be used as a case study.

2:40 – 3:00pm Alex Gochtovtt, Principal, Marketing Management & Analytics, Cognizant Using Big Data: Tools and Techniques for Value Attribution

Leading indicators continue to point to the increasing adoption of digital channel, especially social and mobile. With this growth, marketers need to leverage new data management techniques to explore, visualize and generate insights from big data (high volume, high velocity, high variety). Web logs, cookie level data and social media sources can provide great insight when “fused” appropriately. This session will explore basic techniques to setup and execute this type of analysis.

3:00 – 3:35pm Networking Break & Exhibitor Showcase
3:35 – 4:15pm Panel: Developing Digital Analytics Talent

Moderator: Aaron Maass, Managing Director, MaassMedia

  • JJ Oliver, Business Intelligence Analyst, Comcast
  • Len O’Neal, Director, Digital Product & Audience Development, Philly.com
  • Brian Cosgrove, VP, Web Analytics & Engineering, TPG Direct
  • Jim Davis, Director, Web & Customer Analytics, Urban Outfitters
4:15 – 4:35pm Gary Angel, President & CTO, Semphonic The Taming of the Shrew – the Marriage of Web Analytics and Statistical Analytics
4:35 – 4:55pm Rebecca Campany, Director of Online Communications, Brookings Institution The Role of Analytics at a Public Policy Organization – Combining Data and Narrative to Help Slice Through Idea Pollution

“Every employee is a member of the marketing department” became a popular catchphrase as the service economy emerged. Today, we live in a world of customer engagement with seemingly infinite touch points that ignore sensible operating hours. Information travels faster than the speed of light and distance is irrelevant. And yes, every employee is still part of the marketing department. It all adds up to boundless opportunities… and a lot of idea pollution.

The Brookings Institution is widely considered one of the more influential think tanks in the world. Founded in 1916, over the years Brookings has contributed to the creation of the Marshall Plan, the United Nations and the Congressional Budget Office. Today Brookings is home to approximately 250 scholars who work on more than 200 topics.

The institution itself has no point of view and no agenda. The scholars represent diverse points of view and set their own research agendas. Their work is respected and widely quoted. Still, in this cacophonous, opinion-saturated brave new world, getting their work to the right audiences at the right time presents new challenges.

4:55 – 5:15pm David Millrod, Managing Partner, Insight Rocket The Next Gen Analyst: Optimizing the Lives of Digital Analysts

The types of data we work with constantly evolve, but unchanging is the need for digital analysts to make sense of it all and communicate their findings. Unfortunately, everyone says that good digital analysts are difficult to recruit, train, and retain. Common analyst frustrations will be presented, along with how a division of NBC Sports increases their productivity and happiness.

5:15 – 5:20pm DAA Philly Chapter
Daniel Laws, President & CEO, DaBrian Marketing Group, LLC
5:20 – 5:30pm Closing Remarks
Heather Aeder, Group Director of Analytics, TrueAction
5:30 – 6:30pm Networking Reception & Exhibit Showcase

Thank you to our Sponsors

One Star

Comcast Insight Rocket tealium


Anametrix comScore eclerx semphonic webtrends


MAASSMEDIA E-Marketing Analytics