As the Voxmedya team, we continue our interview series with the leaders of the digital marketing industry with Berkan Bağcı, the founder of ommetrics. Bağcı, who has made a name for himself with his success stories in Milliyet Emlak, his blog writings in Analyticsturkey and Optdcom Analytics Director, crowned his 10-year experience with establishing his own company ommetrics.
Having embraced the concept of Growth, Berkan Bağcı made important contributions to the sector for many years and made special statements to Voxmedya.
🏂 Touch&Go 🏂
# Who is Berkan Bağcı? How would you describe yourself?
# How did you step into the sector? Why Analytics? Are there any names that you inspire when you specialize on this side?
# When we do some research about you, we see that you have accomplished many important works in important brands. You also have a few other venture adventures. Could you tell us a little bit about these experiences in your professional life?
# Do you have any memories that you can never forget in your professional life? Could you share it with us, if any?
# Could you tell us a little bit about the establishment adventure of Ommetrics and what kind of services you provide within Ommetrics?
# Machine learning that comes into our lives, mobile priority indexing and as expected, artificial intelligence, augmented reality, internet of things, etc. What do you think about the future of Analytics with the more common use of technologies? How should data analysts optimize themselves?
# What do you think about the importance of coding in digital marketing as a person who has seen digital marketing extensively and is intimately engaged with Google Tag Manager?
# What advice would you give to juniors who have just stepped into the industry and digital marketing enthusiasts working in the sector? Can you answer them by giving examples of the resources you use in your personal development?
Voxmedya: First of all, thank you for accepting our interview offer. The fact that this interview coincided with the establishment of your company also excited us. As an Analytics guru who tries to share your experiences on every occasion, we will ask you questions that we think are important for our inspiration.
Berkan Bağcı: Thank you for giving this nice opportunity. Voxmedya is going on a beautiful road and I follow it with love. Yes, as you said, it was exactly set up. ommetrics is yet a baby but a mature baby 🙂 I also raise this baby with pleasure. I like to share the experiences I have gained because I have adopted the promise of “giving back what I earned from the industry to the industry”. I learned it alone, just like those with more industry experience than me. I spent a lot of time learning and studying these things. Sharing what I know contributes to both me and people. It’s really good to say something you know.
Voxmedya: Who is Berkan Bağcı? How would you describe yourself?
Berkan Bağcı: I was born in 1988 in Adana – Ceyhan. Thanks to the origin of my family and the environment I live in, I had the chance to grow by seeing different cultures. I think I am very lucky in this regard. This affects my view of life very much, and I can say that I feel its impact sociologically. I think I can describe myself as someone who loves learning, producing, and working. Producing and trying to produce something is one of the things that makes me happy. The number of days I have taken my computer off my back for 12-13 years is very few. This seems to me not to be a burden, but rather not to see it as a burden. Apart from these, I think that I can define myself as a detailer. In fact, it seems to be a little bit of perfectionism. I am trying to speak and write Turkish well.
Voxmedya: How did you step into the sector? Why Analytics? Are there any names that you inspire when you specialize on this side?
Berkan Bağcı: I think I won the school and department he wanted at the university, but after I entered university, I realized that it was not important. I was passing the lessons somehow, but I could have gotten a lot more from some lessons and teachers. This made me happy. Of course, I did not have the chance to leave the university as in these famous foreign stories because I had a reality like compulsory military service in front of me 🙂
One of the milestones of my story is that I don’t actually come to university. I was one of the lucky kids who could be interested in computers and the internet during primary and high school, but unfortunately, there was no one around me to guide me. I learned how to solve it by trying what I learned. I even made a website on my site 🙂
My interest in the internet has changed since I came to university. I started to learn the answers to questions such as how to make a website and what is HTML. I started producing content at that time, but these didn’t usually go beyond personal blog posts. Then I was responsible for the digital work of the student club we established at the university and the digital work of an important event at the faculty. In this period, freelance jobs were coming to small lice.
The initiative for the sector started as an intern at the agency of an institution where we organize a university event. After that, I started working on an opportunity site in the group purchasing industry, one of the most popular jobs of that time. We tried many actions in digital marketing here, which was a nice experience for me. Then I had different work experience with private shopping sites. After that, I had the chance to do my own job with a name that supported me back then. We worked together for 2.5 years and I had the chance to realize our e-commerce initiative during this period (bambudukkani.com). Here I had the opportunity to easily try and implement SEO, AdWords, Analytics, Email marketing, and all other digital marketing processes. This period was also the beginning of a small agency serving SMEs, but I did not continue later. I also had the experience of managing an e-commerce site thanks to bambudukkani.com and this has added a lot to me in the future. I was very worried about purchasing and customer satisfaction.
After this initiative experience, I worked with Deniz Utku in Teknokrasi. I can say that I have the most pleasant working environment of Teknokrasi. For example, one of the names I inspire is Deniz Utku. His views on marketing, the internet, and digital are quite different and impressive.
“Why Analytics?” The answer to the question is, “It actually happened spontaneously.” I can say that I should learn many branches of digital marketing at the same time. Of course, every area of digital marketing is the sea. I wanted to continue my calm, mo ıre valuable, more enjoyable, and more “cool” working life from these areas. Analytics maybe carry less value and priority in Turkey, but this is the happiest thing for me. When I was an Analytics expert, I was not inspired by anyone, but I can count Deniz Utku and İbrahim Öztürkcan as my inspirations in terms of perspective. Showing different approaches to events always yields results, and I could see this in both names. Mustafa Kemal Atatürk came first among the people I inspired. In particular, “The person who loves his homeland the most and does his job best.” don’t forget this guide word. Before founded ommetrics, I also visited Anıtkabir. Although it was a random visit, such a situation made me very happy. I had the opportunity to remember that I was progressing and trying to progress in his light.
Voxmedya: When we do some research about you, we see that you have accomplished many important works in important brands. You also have a few other venture adventures. Could you tell us a little bit about these experiences in your professional life?
Berkan Bağcı: When I started to work as a digital marketing manager at Milliyet Gayrimenkul within Demirören Holding, I saw that the Analytics structure here was in a very bad condition. At that time, I was in a newly established team and as the whole team, we started rearranging everything. We have rebuilt the entire AdWords and Analytics structure and created a new hierarchy logic on the SEO side. I can say that we are successful in all three areas. We have achieved very advanced results especially in the field of Analytics and reporting. Dear Arda Mendeş, milliyet.com is in the same group at the time. With him, Turkey’s third-biggest nationality website with Google Analytics was our chance to create the Google Tag Manager hierarchy. Thanks to this setup we made, we made a nice budget optimization.
What I can really call “my corporate” is actually bambudukkani.com. At that time, bamboo kitchen products were not so popular and it was a bold step for us. It was an initiative that made bad sales, increased offline sales, and remained profitable, especially thanks to SEO and AdWords visibility. I left this attempt while transferring to Teknokrasi. The other website passed by trial. I am not saying these as venture work. We had partnerships and many of them failed.
Voxmedya: Do you have any memories that you can never forget in your professional life? Could you share it with us, if any?
Berkan Bağcı: Actually, the general problem of the sector is “How does this person work here?” I had a lot of questions and I have unforgettable memories with these people. “What is the landing page?” I also saw digital marketing managers asking. In general, I believe that we are in an industry where everything is more exaggerated than anything else, and everything that happens in such an industry is usually like soap bubbles. I would like to take a more positive look and interpret this question. I realized that whatever project you do with people whose purpose is not to save the day, who have a goal and enjoy going to that goal, adds a lot to you at the end of the day. Whether the result is successful or unsuccessful, a valuable result emerges.
Besides, there is a nice case that I live with Google, which is about Google Analytics. While in Milliyet Emlak, we were switching AMP and tried not to make mistakes on the measurement side. Indeed, we were successful. It was a good transition and everything was in line with the guidelines. We found a difference in our mobile direct traffic after the transition and started to investigate this. The result when we researched was a bit scary because when users coming to AMP pages organically from iOS devices switched to another page within the site, direct appeared as a new source of traffic. This was only happening on iOS devices and we reported the situation to Google. Afterward, the technical administrators at Google told us that they found that there was no problem with the google.com domain, but that they found this happening in the domain names like google.com and thanked us for reporting the situation. 3 days after they announced that it would be updated as soon as possible, the update was released and they thanked again. I was also happy that I was instrumental in updating the Google Analytics product, but it was also a surprise that this problem has not been detected for so long 🙂
Voxmedya: Could you tell us a little bit about the establishment adventure of Ommetrics and what kind of services you provide within Ommetrics?
Berkan Bağcı: ommetrics was originally established as a blog in 2016 and what I wanted to do in the first place was that the articles I wrote on analyticsturkey.com were included in this blog in English. Afterward, I decided that ommetrics should now be a company, thanks to the direction of the requests that came to me and the updating of my dreams according to the conditions. After the road I went to be finalized in my own mind, I officially established the company on June 1, 2018, but I was able to announce the company in March 2019.
ommetrics is a growth partner based on metrics. So what does this mean? ommetrics offers services that can add material value directly or indirectly to the company it serves. It provides these services as “consultancy” under 4 main headings: Measurement, conversion optimization, data management, and data marketing. As you can guess, there is Analytics consultancy in the measurement. This mainly includes Google Analytics, Google Tag Manager, and Google Data Studio. Of course, in some companies, we are also progressing with other vehicles. Conversion optimization includes the service of improving the most important KPIs of companies with the right methods and without sacrificing user experience. Data management and data marketing also include services where companies that do not have any purchasing action can benefit from their own data and generate income. The most important service here is that DMP editing can be made and implemented, and other tools can also be used in this logic.
The most pleasing thing for me on behalf of ommetrics is that we enjoy working with all our customers we serve. I said in time, “If I have a company one day”. I hope it always goes on because the efficiency of this situation creates is really great and insatiable!
Voxmedya: Machine learning that comes into our lives, mobile priority indexing and as expected, artificial intelligence, augmented reality, internet of things, etc. What do you think about the future of Analytics with the more common use of technologies? How should data analysts optimize themselves?
Berkan Bağcı: I give very rare training. There are many reasons for this, but this is another topic. What I especially emphasize in the training is that people who are new to the sector never see themselves as an operator. In other words, if you are just someone who runs Facebook or Google Ads advertising operations and you do not develop yourself in any other subject, you will probably be unemployed 4-5 years from now. The same goes for Analytics experts and analysts. “What?” The answer to the question is now the tools themselves. When you connect Slack and Google Analytics and you see the bot, “What is the change of the conversion rate of the sessions consisting of google / organic source in the last 7 days compared to the previous 7 days?” You can ask the question very easily and get the answer. You can even ask these and many other questions about the bot and ask for a presentation in return. So is this really valuable here? The numbers show the facts, but what does changing the numbers and why do they change? If we want them to make sense, we will need to get to know the component that creates these numbers, namely the human, besides the numbers. To assume that the user experience is not just that button, this article is just here; Knowing the instantaneous feelings and emotional changes, accumulation, dreams of the user, and the wishes that he has not yet discovered in himself will take the people doing this job a step further. Yes, innovations such as artificial intelligence, machine learning will affect a certain audience in terms of business, but instead of seeing them as competitors, developing new strategies and developing new models will add extra value to the people working in this sector.
Voxmedya: What do you think about the importance of coding in digital marketing as a person who has seen digital marketing extensively and is intimately engaged with Google Tag Manager?
Berkan Bağcı: Digital marketing is not a sector that can be successful when one subject is mastered. In fact, many other sectors are also like this. I am a mechanical engineering graduate and I know to read with ‘kumpas’. Even if I did mechanical engineering, I would not need to read ‘kumpas’, perhaps because of my title of “engineer”. However, some things have to be known to understand the basics and logic of the work. This is how coding is. It is very valuable for digital marketers to know the logic of how a building is formed, to know the technology of the building, to predict how problems may occur while that structure is being formed, to predict how long a business will occur and to establish the right communication with the people who realize it. You will also speed up your work in a world where you meet your simple needs.
Voxmedya: Finally, what advice would you give to juniors who have just stepped into the industry and digital marketing enthusiasts working in the sector? Can you answer them by giving examples of the resources you use in your personal development?
Berkan Bağcı: I am 31 years old and I am sure that I can learn something from everyone at this time of my life. You can learn something from a child, an intern, someone you meet in a cafe, or a taxi driver, and this can be very valuable to you. It can be very valuable not only for your business but also for your own personal development. Therefore, if I make a recommendation, it will be a constant learning situation.
Juniors who have just stepped into the sector can already follow many local or foreign websites, blogs, or people. For this, I wrote an article, let’s direct it there, it will be easier. https://medium.com/@berkan/dijital-pazarlamada-takip-edilmesi-gerekenler-90a938bfa46
As I mentioned above, we need to know and understand the human being, which is an important component for us. We can do this by talking to people and knowing their needs and dreams. It is necessary to understand, interpret, and analyze the history, culture, and values of humanity, war reasons, dreams, and goals.
What am I benefiting from? In fact, the basic summary of what I mentioned above is the philosophy of “valuing everything in your life and around and trying to learn new things”. The source I use is human and life.
Apart from that, I think there is something more valuable than they are books too. I would recommend reading the “Truth and Heritage of the Centuries” set of Server Tanilli to better understand humanity. Besides, I can recommend Tony Hsieh’s “Distribute Happiness” and “Erase Beginning” books by Basecamp founders Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson.
The original of this interview was published in Turkish in June 2019 in Voxmedya.com.