SVAMA Morning Forum Series and Tibetan numbers

Last week, I gave a presentation on Improving Marketing ROI Through Web Analytics for the Silicon Valley chapter of the American Marketing Association. It was a great group of people and a lively discussion. My presentation centered mainly on building a story around web analytics, and specifically bringing the story of the customer lifecycle to life through the integration of analytics throughout the cycle.

One of the things I got to do, since this was more of a personal viewpoint presentation, was use this slide:

Tibetan has different symbols for numbers, which came as a surprise to me since every other language I’ve encountered uses the same number symbols, including Japanese and Mandarin. Perhaps they *have* their own, but on signs and in printed materials, I’ve seen the ones I’m used to. A few of the Tibetan symbols are similar to ours, but that can be misleading: the one that looks like a 4 is actually a 5, for example.

Anyway, somewhere along the line of presenting scorecards to clients, I realized that when we numbers people look at spreadsheets, we immediately see patterns, key changes, etc. jumping out at us–but it’s just not that way for most people. For the uninitiated, it looks like the above–a jumble of crap and some words that are easy to gloss over. Anyway, I used this slide to demonstrate that, then switched back to the usual numbers and text and went on to talk about monetization. I think it made the point, and got people to engage a bit more with the following slide (with legible data) than they might have otherwise.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *