The first couple of sessions were essentially case studies, followed by some more in depth techie sessions later in the afternoon. Still suffering from sleepless nights after the 11 hour flight, the 2 hour discussion on new developments and uses of code weren't easy!
Dan Siroker opened the day with an incredibly interesting talk on his experiences working at Google, then for Barak Obama's presidential campaign and more recently for a start up educational site www.carrotsticks.com. It was incredible to hear how Obama raised $500mn through online means - compared to John McCain's $150mn OVERALL. Dan illustrated the very basic GWO tests that led to significant increase in conversion: The multivariate testing of buttons and images resulted in a combination of a family image and a "learn more" call to action that gave a 40% conversion uplift. Extended over the remainder of the campaign period, this equated to an extra c. $150mn. Proof, if needed, that GWO can significantly increase ROI.
Following a few more case studies, the techie sessions were incredibly insightful and contained advanced previews of the new possibilities to come (unfortunately many of these are embargoed and can only be shared as they roll out over the coming months). All in all, it certainly reassured everyone present that GWO is progressing and along with Google Analytics will continue to be a very powerful conversion tool. The next two days will focus on Google Analytics, which we expect to be even more valuable.