An Interview with Barry Parshall, SVP of Product Management for iJento

About: Barry Parshall is the SVP of Product Management for iJento, an emerging multichannel customer intelligence vendor.  Barry has over 25 years of experience in the business intelligence, digital marketing and web analytics industries.  Prior to iJento he was in charge of product strategy for Webtrends for 8 years and more recently he worked at Adobe on their flagship Omniture solutions.

1.    After working with Webtrends and Omniture, 2 of the top global digital measurement brands, what made you decide to move to iJento?

I was attracted by the team of really talented people, the core technology assets and with the opportunity to apply those assets towards what I perceive as unaddressed challenges in online and multichannel customer intelligence.  For years organizations have been collecting every hit from every visitor through their web analytics solution yet typically only receiving aggregated reports in return.  The detail visitor data represents a treasure trove of information about consumer behaviors and interests that as an industry we’re barely leveraging.  Furthermore if you try to utilize it, assuming it’s available to you at all, you’ll often find the data is often only available via flat files, leaving it up to you to transform it into a useable and scalable data model.   What attracted me to iJento is that we have a solution that takes your existing web analytics data and loads it into a robust and scalable SQL Server database with a fully published data model.  This allows analysts to leverage the business intelligence solutions they’ve been using for years to address problems like campaign attribution modeling, cross-channel audience segmentation and other analysis problems that haven’t yet been properly addressed.

2.    The customer / digital measurement space feels like it is getting a bit crowded with products and services.  Where does iJento fit into the current ecosystem?

I suppose the best way to describe where iJento fits is in the intersection between web analytics and business intelligence.  Modern web analytics solutions do a fantastic job of providing the operational reporting needs of a digital marketing organization.  But the data stores employed by these solutions are often proprietary, locked beyond firewalls or otherwise inaccessible by standard BI tools.  Meanwhile most enterprise organizations have a thriving BI practice that could solve any number of online or multichannel analysis problems if only they had practical access to the detail online data.  So essentially you can think of iJento as bringing these two worlds together, by leverage both your existing web analytics and BI investments to bring your detailed (i.e. pre-aggregated) online consumer data into your corporate data warehouse or BI systems.

3.    What is the perfect iJento client?  In other words, who is most likely to choose your products and services over the universe of alternatives?

There are several characteristics.  First, the customer will already be skilled in web analytics and business intelligence, as iJento is too sophisticated for novice users.  Second, the customer will have probably hit some sort of functional barrier with their existing web analytics solution, typically involving the use of detailed visitor-level data.  And third, the customer is committed to data-driven decision-making processes.  Simply put, we’re a serious solution for organizations that are serious about customer intelligence.

4.    I know that your team is looking for sales talent right now.  What is the right profile for a successful iJento sales leader?

Picking up from the previous question, our clients need a serious solution to complex problems, so we’re not here to sell a one-size-fits-all box.  An ideal sales leader at iJento needs to appreciate the challenges around online and multichannel analytics and provide a consultative approach to applying our solutions.  She/he must also understand that the relationship does not end with the sale.  Our philosophy is founded on significant long-term value and building a partnership with our clients to ensure that they get the very best out of their investment.  Our sales people get excited when our customers receiving meaningful ROI from our solutions, just as much as when they land the deal.

5.    Salespeople that have a proven track record of success in digital measurement or customer analytics are very much in demand at the moment.  What would motivate someone to choose iJento as a career opportunity?

We have a very rare combination of assets.  We have the energy and personality of a start-up, but have a global presence with a significant existing revenue stream from some top-name clients, and extremely mature and robust technology.  We’re in a mature market, but at the same time have a green-field opportunity to solve the unaddressed needs of thousands of enterprise companies.  So in that sense I believe we offer a substantial upside for proven sales executives with minimal risk compared to most companies our size.  As I see it, opportunities like this maybe happen once in a career.

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