Why digital product analysis have to change with the times: Interview
Thanks to the power of technology, many modern problems can be approached with the phrase: “There’s an app for that!” Need a cab? Something to wear? A bite to eat? There’s an app, a website, an internet-based service that can solve your problems and make life just that little easier. Today, there are probably a dozen or more instances of similar technology that are just as capable.
This wasn’t always the case. We recently spoke with Julio Bermudez (VP of APAC and Latin America) of Amplitude, the Digital Optimization System. It is the industry’s first and only system which connects product and services directly to business outcomes — and optimizes the business value of digital investments.
During our conversation, the past came up a few times — for the purposes of context rather than nostalgia. We talked about the early days of apps, especially those that were US-grown and then exported to Asia. The model was, Bermudez said, “You took a Western company, supplemented it with ad dollars, acquired customers at all costs, and it didn’t matter as such [because it got] acquired or found some way to have an exit for the investors. The focus wasn’t necessarily on good experiences. And so, when you look at the apps, the user experiences were really cluttered, but they were the only game in town.”
The phrase customer experience is a relatively recent one, and it refers to the nebulous quality users have with your brand as a whole. It’s what differentiates products today. As Julio puts it, “Now building a digital product is actually easier than ever. You can sit on top of AWS, you can outsource almost every single aspect of building a product, like we want it to be. [With] engineers outsourced by the hour, we can get literally the entire thing, soup to nuts.”
If indicators of today’s digital product successes are derived in ways that are as outdated as those early apps, company investments in apps or their internet portfolio comprise wasted dollars, he said.
Julio calls those measurements “traditional metrics,” giving an example that everyone will be familiar with: “You know, Spotify’s focus isn’t around the fact that you sign up for the free trial. They’d like to think about whether or not you’ll want to pay for the next three years. But if I’m somebody who was using the old way of thinking, the old digital marketing way, it’s like: ‘Oh, I only care about that free trial — sign up! In fact, my job is paid that way, my boss looks at me and judges me [on that basis]. The entire system was designed to reward those traditional metrics, or sometimes things that are lagging indicators, instead of looking at things that are leading indicators of more longer-term success.”
Amplitude, the Digital Optimization System, takes a different approach, he explains. The sales funnel is dead, long live data science modeling and analytics of real-life, real-user behaviors:
“[With Amplitude], you’re actually running sophisticated data science models on correlation. So, you can actually see correlation to this one behavior that’s positive, but it’s correlated also to these five other behaviors that are negative. And we actually expose that to you; we have an area of our product where we allow you to see the collection of behaviors that develop into […] a persona. You can think of that as like a segment of users or a cohort of users, which usually people would just only think of as demographics. You can understand what are the positive behaviors that people are exhibiting.”
That approach to digital products is more holistic than those of yesteryear and will resonate with companies and end-users alike. After all, most interactions we have now tend to be immediately comparable to others that are just a click or tap away. That situation’s evolution has been unprecedentedly fast, thanks to the Coronavirus epidemic and its consequences.
Julio quoted Andrew Yang, one-time US Democratic presidential hopeful, a personal hero of his, who stated that the Coronavirus has caused “ten years’ change in ten weeks.”
With that in mind, are Amplitude’s analytic engine and methods now more pertinent? Julio told us that, “The increasing number of digital interactions in everyone’s lives means that improving digital products leads to an improvement in quality of life for every user. That’s why Amplitude is important”.
Building on its #1 rated digital product analytics suite, the company has recently introduced the industry’s first Digital Optimization System, to manage, measure and optimize the business value of digital product innovation. The Amplitude Digital Optimization System unifies the data, analytics, and infrastructure required to deeply understand customer behavior in the digital product, predict which features and actions lead to business outcomes, and adapt each experience in real time to maximize its business impact.
To learn more, you can log into a demo environment right now.