“Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.”
Today, we speak to the delectable Rachael Gerson. Ask her to do supercalifragalisticexpialidcious next time you see her. Tell her I sent you.
Tell us all about Ms Rachael Gerson.
I am a total internet/technology addict, but I’m also a voracious reader, often with 4-6 books going simultaneously. A better question than “did you read ___” is to ask me if I finished it, since the books I really enjoy get finished quickly and the ones I find useless may be doomed to hang out on the pending list for months.
I live in a Philly suburb with my husband, and adorable dog, Cooper. By the way, Coop is the only dog I’ve ever seen who loves flossing, brushes his own teeth, and can climb a ladder. When I’m not hanging out with him, I work at SEER Interactive, an internet marketing firm in Philadelphia specializing in SEO, paid search, and analytics. If there’s any time left over, I help out in the Google Analytics forums and have written for a couple sites, but time’s been a little short lately!
You were a finalist for the (deep breath) Web Analytics Association Awards for Excellence 2012 Web Analytics Rising Star Award. I’ve forgotten the question now. Do you have any special tricks?
LOL! Being nominated (and a finalist) for the award was such an awesome honor.
To answer your question, yes. It’s a little hard to explain, though. If you give me any word, I’ll give you the letters instantly in alphabetical order while de-duplicating the letters, so I won’t sit here saying “eeee.” For example, the word “de-duplicating” would be acdegilnptu. Please don’t ask me to do supercalifragilisticexpialidocious. Everyone asks that, it gets old.
I love puzzles and patterns. My dad has actually said for years that I see patterns others would miss or that I find ways to create them out of random bits of information that seem like they shouldn’t be strung together. He thinks that’s part of where my “trick” comes from.
You’re involved in the Analysis Exchange. Be honest, you’re just trying to plump up your résumé, right? Volunteering to mentor people is a bit flufflybubbles.
No, I thought it would be fun! Part of SEER’s core is that we give back to the community. Between the Analysis Exchange and the Google Analytics Forum, I’ve tried to find ways to support people who are just starting out. I do other volunteer activities that aren’t related to analytics, too, like working with Laurel House, a domestic violence shelter in Montgomery County. We’ve been preparing for the annual gala for the past eight months. If anyone’s in the Philly area on June 9th, please come out!
Who is your superhero-sans-cape in the web analytics community and why?
I’m having a lot of trouble picking just one. I will say I was completely awestruck to get to spend time at eMetrics with people I consider to be the Justice League of the analytics community. I got to sit next to Joe Megibow at the Gala, spent time chatting with Jim Sterne, had dinner with Stéphane Hamel, etc. If Avinash had been there, my Justice League would have been complete.
You’re a bit lovely. How do you stay positive in an ever-changing landscape like digital analytics? Don’t you ever feel just a little stabby-stabby?
I very rarely feel stabby-stabby. I love that our industry changes all the time. I would get bored if it didn’t. There’s always something new to learn, some new concept to master. I think other people in digital analytics are completely fascinating. I’ve read every post from the Silly Series, because I always want to learn how everyone else got into this industry. Seriously, when we were kids and people asked what we wanted to be when we grew up, this industry didn’t exist, yet here we all are. I especially adore the troublemakers - they keep me entertained and informed on twitter.
How many stats would a tweet-tweet tweet if a tweet-tweet could tweet stats?
Duh, 42. Wait, what?
What is your wish for the remainder of 2012?
It’s more an internal thing. I have a little reminder over my desk now: “Done is better than perfect.” I get so caught up in the details, trying to get every single thing nailed down. I’m trying to focus instead on actually getting something done. Then I can always obsess over the minutiae after.
How would you explain what you do to people who have never purchased something online (completely theoretical I know)?
I’d rather use that time to take them shopping on Amazon.
What digital analytics book/blog/resource do you find the most useful and actionable day to day?
If we’re looking at day to day resource, Twitter. I have columns set up in Hootsuite to follow some of my favorite analytics people and other columns to follow hashtags, like #measure, #googleanalytics, and #ganalytics, so I can do a quick scan of my setup to get the latest and biggest news. I also have Summify connected to Twitter, so I get emails several times daily with the top stories being discussed by the people I follow. End result – if there’s a good post or groundbreaking news, I know it quickly.
Who would play you in a movie about you in a movie playing a girl who was playing you in a movie?
Larisa Oleynik. (Think “Alex Mack.”)