This case study was a real pleasure to create, probably because I regard this client so highly. And while I definitely recommend reading the entire article (it’s around 10 minutes), I also understand time is a factor.
So if you’re in a hurry, go check out the section "Why Was Metrics Watch the Solution?" If you’re shopping around for metric report software, that will likely be the most valuable section to read today.
Otherwise, I hope you enjoy this post as much as I enjoyed writing it. 😉
Today I had the pleasure of speaking with one of my favorite clients, Apostolos Tsiter (aka, Apu). He’s the project manager of a popular German web trading site, onvista.
Onvista works with stock exchanges all over the world, though their team of roughly 40 people is mostly based in Cologne, Germany. When I asked him to explain what the company does, I knew I was going to be in a bit over my head.
Here’s what he told me:
"So if you have any type of asset that can be traded on the market, then we have all the information. That would include things like prices, where it’s being sold and bought, and…Well, it’s a bit like Bloomberg if you want an example in the U.S. region.
The website is our core business to interact with the user. We actually finance ourselves with the products we give to our users so… that’s like… real-time prices for assets. And a very big portion [of our revenue] is from business to business (B2B) with other banks. They actually position their products (their financial constructs) within our webpage.
We build them quite sophisticated logics such as when someone will see the data, who we will show it to, and what will happen afterward. This is where Metrics Watch comes in."
Now, to be totally honest. I wasn’t entirely sure what all this meant. I love metrics in all forms, but the stock market is far from my wheelhouse. Here’s what I did know to be 100% the case:
- Apu works as the project manager for a website that provides real-time data on the stock market
- They work with both individuals and banks
- They need to get specific pieces of data to the right clients at the right time, and this data has real financial consequences
- Metrics Watch helps them accomplish that last goal
As you’ll see, throughout the conversation, a recurring theme kept popping up:
Metrics Watch is helping onvista create custom reports without any fluff
But, for now, let’s take a look at what onvista typically needs to include in their marketing reports.
Reporting for onvista varies from client to client. That means that no two reports are ever the same. When I asked if there were any common threads between clients and the data included in his reports, Apu shared:
"Just to give you an example. We have a page where I have all the stock information for Tesla or Apple. On the site, there’s a little box that says, "Ok, these are the top three derivatives of JP Morgan on Apple."
If my client wants to participate on an upward or downward price movement of this stock, they can do it by derivatives. This is a financial product that has the biggest margin for the banks. So these companies are keen on having as many users as possible interested in their products.
We market them quite well because they want to know, out of all those stocks, how many people clicked on a product of theirs.
The clients need a list of which assets were trending at a high click rate and which product in each group we had clicks for.
That means we have a lot of derivative groups, and for each group we have a table. Then they can see, "Ok, with my knockout derivative, I had X amount of clicks on Apple, Y amount of clicks on Tesla, and Z amount of clicks on whatever else… and they get the top 10 list of every asset category we have."
At this point, if you’re totally lost, don’t worry...so was I.
Working with data is something I am (obviously) passionate about. However, like I said before, the world of Wall Street is as foreign to me as life on Mars. So let me break this down into terms that anyone can understand.
onvista tracks the movements of different assets on the stock market. Their clients make critically important financial decisions and business strategies based on these movements.
Apu’s clients need daily reports of how many users are interested in which of these stock market assets so they can make the smartest decisions possible. Based on these reports, banks might place new products to meet the reported demand as soon as the next business day. Again, lots of money is at stake here (and time is definitely of the essence), so these reports need to be both targeted and concise.
Apu has been using Metrics Watch for the past 2 years or so. Initially, they had a rudimental reporting strategy. And it was very tailored for their B2B customers.
Then they switched to Google Analytics, which was OK. But they didn’t want their customers to see all of their company’s data. So they would have to export certain pieces of information, organize it in a way that didn’t "look like hell," and the entire process was just becoming a nightmare.
Then, at some point, they used Data Studio. They created a nice dashboard and let their customers pull data from there. The problem was that their clients’ marketing departments wanted little chunks of information sent to them so they could get the information they needed from their phones.
In other words, Apu’s clients didn’t want to search for the information themselves. Like all paying customers, they wanted to be spoon-fed exactly what they needed.
As Apu told me, "Our clients needed very fast information about all the proceedings of the last day directly to their email. Because this is the format in which they operate. They don’t use apps or other stuff or even a web browser where they can see a dashboard. They wanted email which they already knew how to operate."
The bottom line was that onvista needs to send their clients personalized reports over email. No other platform would allow them to easily do that. At least not in the way onvista wanted.
In fact, I was happily surprised to learn that Metrics Watch was far from the first solution Apu tried. Here’s what he said when I asked if he’d tried other software before Metrics Watch:
"Oh, I think something like, 20? We spent two weeks just to narrow it down to four companies: Klipfolio, AppDirect, DataPine, and Metrics Watch."
Without mentioning the specific name of the company, Apu let me know that the others were either too cumbersome to use, had too many bells and whistles he didn’t need, or simply didn’t do what he needed it to.
Why Was Metrics Watch the Solution?
When it came down to it, Apu settled on Metrics Watch. When I asked him why, these were the following qualities that led him to that decision:
- The ability to schedule daily reports for clients
- The ability to push reports via email (which was crucial)
- The fact that the report wasn’t a PDF or an attachment (but was actually in the email content itself)
- It’s easy to use but still goes deep into the analytics
- Metrics Watch has all the metrics from Google Analytics but also supports custom dimensions and filters
It turns out, most of the other tools Apu had tried simply didn’t meet that criteria. When asked to clarify, here’s what he told me:
"To be precise, it was the combination of being able to filter custom dimensions and other filters as well. The support of custom dimensions through the ranks was very thin [among the competition].
Metrics Watch was quite easy to use for the functionality that it offers. It offers a deep Google Analytics functionality but is still drag and drop, clicky-clicky, and everything is in place."
Side Note: I’ve often heard the phrase "drag and drop," but this was the first time I’ve ever heard the phrase "clicky-clicky" to describe ease of use. And I absolutely love that phrase now. 😍
At the end of the day, it seemed as if Metrics Watch struck the exact balance that Apu was looking for. A totally customizable and thorough marketing metrics report that could be sent (and read) via email. It would include the information the clients needed on a daily basis–no more and no less.
And just like a parent listening to people talk about how cute their baby is, I was definitely loving this part of the conversation. However, I have two really important standards for myself and my business:
- Being totally upfront and honest about Metrics Watch’s capabilities
- Constantly improving any weaknesses to make the best software possible
That’s why I posed a very dangerous question…
I imagine it was difficult for Apu to answer this. Not because Metrics Watch is perfect, but because it’s rare that you have the chance to tell the creator of a product exactly what you don’t like about it.
Nonetheless, he gave me some really helpful–yet respectful–feedback.
Right now, Apu needs to pull very specific data for his clients. For that, he uses a combination of personalized filters. In many cases, however, he’ll use 3-4 custom filters for a single report. For another report, he’ll use the same 3-4 custom filters plus (or minus) another filter.
In those cases, he would love the ability to duplicate a widget and add or subtract a single filter instead of building each of them from scratch. As he said:
"Most of my widgets are just, you know, filter on to this, filter on to that… so it’s a combination of 4 filters, and three of those are always the same. And I need like 12 of them. So I need to be able to duplicate a widget, go into one, and switch one filter."
I was totally blown away by this response in the best of ways. Now, I’m happy to announce that I’ll be adding this feature before the summer rolls around. When it’s out, you can thank Apu for the inspiration!
His other critique of Metrics Watch was something he’d mentioned other clients may care about, though it wasn’t particularly pressing for him. It has to do with the simple design of the email reports.
"The overall design is not very… I don’t know. It doesn’t go overboard with the design. Maybe improve the interface? But I wouldn’t know what to expect more from a tool that actually does what it is supposed to do."
And he’s 100% right. Fortunately (and Apu didn’t know this at the time of the call), you can totally customize the design of your marketing reports right now.
If you go into your account under Business Settings, you can change the colors of the report to match your brand. Plus, you can take all Metrics Watch branding off the reports, so everything is coming from YOU and your company.
I’ll be totally transparent. The customization isn’t 100% where I want it yet, as this is a brand new feature. But I’ve made a really good start, and I’m excited to see Metrics Watch be one step closer to total brand personalization.
I couldn’t think of a better ending for this case study than using Apu’s own words:
"With Metrics Watch, the clients only see numbers as they have requested them. They all see the numbers they need to see. There’s no text, no ‘blah, blah,’ none of the ‘this is what we have done’ stuff. Only information, plain and simple.
The customers are very happy with the solution. They get the information they want, it’s readable, they can check it on their mobile phone… at the moment, there’s nothing [the clients] want more."
I feel so proud to be able to serve customers like Apu. When I first built Metrics Watch, this is exactly how I’d hope all my clients would feel. They could rest assured knowing they’d have a simple, in-depth marketing report that gives them everything they need without a bunch of nonsense thrown into the mix.
Thank you so much, Apu, for taking the time to sit down and chat with me!
And if you’re still reading, what are you waiting for? Book a demo. I’d be happy to give you a tour of Metrics Watch and show you why it’s as awesome as Apu says it is!
Or dive in headfirst by starting your free 14-day trial today!
What JP does really well has this constant, constant lookout for their customers. You just feel like, "Ok, everything I have as a problem" gets treated as such. You don’t get the idea that it’s just getting lost in a ticket somewhere. You get the feeling that he understands the problem and will get to it. At the time I came to Metrics Watch, JP didn’t support filtering by custom dimensions, either. He did it on-demand, in the same 24 hours. From the get-go, it was very close support and was one of the things that made our business connection so strong.