Becoming a Digital Data Analyst

Shared by our very own Data Analyst Issac!

So here I am, reaching out to you all to tell you more about working in the wonderful world of Data Analytics, what can I tell you? Maybe I start with who I am? Well my name is Isaac, I graduated from NTU earlier this year in January to be exact, with a bachelor degree in mathematical sciences majoring in statistics.

Since you are here reading this, chances are you are interested in becoming a business analyst, a data analyst or a data scientist? Maybe you were drawn into the field by the exciting developments in artificial intelligence. Or maybe you were inspired by how multi-billion dollar companies like Google, Netflix, Amazon, are tapping into big data to solve some of the world’s most difficult problems? Pretty cool eh?

For myself, it was the marriage of my two favorite subjects: statistics and programming. Armed with my portfolio of data science projects from school and an internship, as well as technical knowledge, I set off on my job search but alas, of course, it was never going to be that simple. The same job posting from two companies can have vastly different requirements. It was difficult to justify my worth in a field dominated by postgraduate students and industry veterans, where do we start?!

After months and months of rejections, which can take a toll on one’s confidence but this did not deter me my passion for this industry was further ignited when I heard back from a small but mighty company called Sparkline and so began my journey into digital analytics as an intern. As part of my on-boarding process, I embarked on a pre-designed learning plan for my first 3 months during which I soaked up as much information, read as much as I could and I opened my mind to LEARN – this is the best advice I can give in terms of the mindset to adopt and honestly, it has helped me ramp up much faster than I had anticipated.

So cycling back a step, why this industry I hear you ask? Why a career as a Digital Data Analyst? Well let’s look at it another way, I am sure we can all bear witness to our increasing digitalized world: from online shopping to booking flight tickets, to online banking. The other day I read an inspiring piece on an independent fishmonger who is now selling his wet market produce online, the internet has democratized the sales and marketing process for millions, enterprise and individuals! However, only a fraction of these companies have digital analytics implementation in place, and this does not even include many other small and medium-sized enterprises who are planning to go digital.

As such, these companies find it hard to measure their performance and drive sales through marketing campaigns. Information on digital analytics is scarce and buried beneath cryptic technical guides. Adopting Digital Analytics and building skills in this area, can help business flourish by making better business decisions along with utilizing their marketing spend more effectively, I am hugely excited by enabling businesses to do this, that is why this is the role I have chosen, the path I am taking and the skills I am developing here at Sparkline.

Despite having no prior experience,through on-boarding plans, training opportunities and on the job learning with my awesome team it wasn’t long before I was wrangling through data from an E-commerce website to discover what medium their users were coming from, which part of the shopping process had the highest drop-off, and making recommendations to the client.

In conclusion, while predicting the potential churn of your existing customers, recognizing handwritten digits and predicting housing prices from a toy data-set are certainly impressive feats, it is difficult to prove your worth to potential employers. Digital analytics is a powerful and highly practical skill that I sincerely believe you should add to your repertoire. I am grateful to Sparkline for introducing me to digital analytics and giving me the opportunity to be here today as a full-fledged data analyst.

I hope that my ‘speech’ has sparked your interest in digital analytics. Whether you are taking training courses with Sparkline’s Training Business or navigating your way through the labyrinth of YouTube, Coursera and Udemy videos, we would like to welcome you to the incredible world of digital analytics, enjoy the ride!

Why Google BigQuery? – Insights from a Sparkline Digital Marketing Analyst

My role as a Data Analyst at Sparkline is to look at business problems and challenges presented to us or perhaps detected by us through our consultative approach. We then work through the data provided and form insights and recommendations to support our clients to cut through the noise and make sense of their customer data. Ok so that’s the ‘elevator pitch’ done now let’s explore more about how we, as Analysts are able to do what we do through utilizing the Technology available to us….
As Consultants we are often asked our views on some of the endless options of Marketing and Analytics Technology out there in the market and one we are being asked a lot more recently is ‘ Why Google BigQuery?’
In our team here at Sparkline, Google Big Query is integral to the way in which we analyse our data sets and allows us to efficiently and effectively deliver our analysis and data visualization projects.
Let’s explore a little further and allow me to provide my opinion and insights in more detail as only an Analyst should!
Google BigQuery is designed to be server-less, scalable and flexible. As technology improves, the vast amount of data which companies and institutions collect has become increasingly inefficient for existing infrastructure to keep up. The Cloud Infrastructure has been adopted by many, to better cope with storage, performance and the costs associated with them.
BigQuery is a great tool for data storage, computationally intensive queries and a powerful foundation for AI/Machine Learning offering the following:
· Real-time Analytics:
BigQuery high-speed streaming insertion API provides real-time analytics. BigQuery allows you to analyze what’s happening now by making your latest business data immediately available for analysis.

· Server-less Scalability:
BigQuery server-less technology and its unique pricing model, provides unparalleled performance with flexible infrastructure having the ability to call upon additional resources only when needed and paying only when its used.

· Secured Availability:

BigQuery automatically grants durable, replicated storage and high availability even in cases of extreme technical failure. Backed with the Cloud Identity and Access Management security feature for managing user access and data encryption.

· Seamless Integration:
BigQuery forms the data warehousing backbone for modern business intelligence solutions and enables seamless data integration, transformation, analysis, visualization, reporting, machine learning and AI with tools from Google Suite.

It is certainly true that digital data analysis becoming a hugely significant skill to have within any business but the talent gap is still extremely wide and with such a myriad of pieces of Marketing Tech out there, it becomes increasingly difficult for businesses to navigate.
Choosing the right MarTech tool to fit your business can be a crucial way to ensure a more efficient and effective approach to Data Analysis and Management. Thus enabling business to understand their customers and their digital journey in a clearer fashion, making the data actionable! Awesome!
So in conclusion and in my humble opinion, by helping businesses understand their customers, operational efficiency, and more, Cloud Computing will only become increasingly relevant and knowledge of the most effective tools out there, far more valuable than ever before!

By Jervis Chionh – Data Analyst @ Sparkline


Sparkline helps insurance meta search engine GoBear nail data analytics from launch date


Data-driven from the very beginning

Having worked in previous online ventures, CEO Andre Hesselink was aware of the importance of data analytics to the growth of the GoBear business. He wanted to ensure a sound analytics architecture was in place before GoBear was launched. However, greater customization of their analytics capabilities was necessary to give his team insights into how to create a positive online experience for customers while capturing unique customer insights to insurance companies partnered with GoBear.

To achieve the level of customization required, GoBear tasked Sparkline, a certified Google Analytics Partner, to implement Google Analytics as the central analytics platform to provide a greater understanding of customer behaviour and preference.

Data at GoBear’s fingertips

Sparkline’s hands-on advice on web analytics infrastructure meant that GoBear could roll out their website fully confident of its data infrastructure and analytics capabilities from day one.

Sparkline went on to create an executive visualisations, leveraging Google Sheets, Google Analytics Core Reporting API, and Google BigQuery, to allow key data to be shared across the organisation instantly.

This customised dashboard freed up at least 20% of their analysts’ time, allowing them to focus on acting on the data rather than extracting it.

About GoBear

Headquartered in Singapore, GoBear is an insurance search engine that allows users to browse for car, travel, health and home insurance products via price and usage.

To learn more, visit

At a Glance

– Ensure Google Analytics was customized and properly implemented based on their business goals to capture the most effective site data

– Gain a greater understanding of customer behavior and preferences via data analytics

– Implement Google Analytics as the central analytics platform

-Create a customized dashboard to analyze customer behaviour as they navigate through the site

– Custom implementation of Google Analytics achieved within project timelines

-Executive-level dashboard visualizing key data points to enable management teams to quicker and more relevant decision making

KASKUS Doubles CTR and Triples CPM With DoubleClick for Publishers and Google Analytics 360


With so many users, KASKUS recently faced a growing challenge: how to serve its users ads relevant to their age, gender, and interests. “As KASKUS is the leading digital community and social commerce platform, our vision is to drive data-driven monetization by making our first-party audience data actionable,” said Ronny W. Sugiadha, chief marketing officer for KASKUS. “We want to give advertisers ways to perform better on our sites and increase the effectiveness of our impression-based ads.”

With guidance from Sparkline, the KASKUS team began using their own audience data to serve the most relevant ads.

Set up Analytics 360 to collect valuable first-party data using custom dimensions.

Ran a segmentation analysis of their Analytics 360 data to understand how on-site users interacted with mobile-focused forums.

One segment looked especially valuable: users actively searching for and discussing mobile phone brands and features for future purchase. Analytics 360 has segmentation capabilities that let KASKUS create an audience it called Mobile Intenders.

Used the Analytics 360 Audience Sharing feature with DFP to share the Mobile Intenders segment with DFP Audience and DoubleClick Ad Exchange.

This new Mobile Intenders audience was soon in high demand by advertisers. Available on DFP Audience, it can be targeted by programmatic advertisers, particularly by handset brands that want to win the attention of users intending to buy a mobile phone.

How well did the new segment work compared to its old open-auction inventory? ”

“Using the Analytics 360 Audience Segment sharing feature in DFP and AdX, we doubled our CTR and saw a 3.3X CPM uplift on this audience-targeted AdX inventory,” Ronny Sugiadha reported. “We are looking forward to even more positive impact moving forward.”


KASKUS—the largest Indonesian community including social commerce— With more than nine million registered members that make up more than 20,000 communities, KASKUS provides online forum for discussion and platform for buying-selling transactions. KASKUS now can be accessed through its website, mobile web, and mobile applications.

To learn more, visit

At a Glance

Serve KASKUS user’s ads relevant to their age, gender, and interests to create better user engagement and higher-quality traffic for advertisers.

-Paired custom dimensions and KASKUS first-party data from mobile-focused forums
Used Google Analytics 360

-Audience Sharing to bring the new Mobile Intenders segment to DoubleClick For Publisher (DFP) and Ad Exchange (AdX), where advertisers can bid directly on it

-2X click-through rate (CTR) uplift
-3.3X CPM uplift

Standard Chartered Bank implemented new analytics tools across nearly all markets in a 3-month period

Challenge: Internally named ‘Project Dire Straits’, Standard Chartered Bank (SCB) embarked on a project to switch their analytics platform to Google Analytics. The project impacted 60 web properties used by consumers, investor relations and online banking in 40 countries as well as cross-location staff from several departments. To deliver a project of this size and scale would normally take 6-9 months. SCB brought in analytics experts Sparkline and set a project timeline of 3 months.

Aim: Sparkline developed a customised code in Google Tag Manager to ease cross-market implementation, then fully rolled out Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager functionality. Most importantly, data quality was maintained throughout the migration allowing SCB to acquire accurate new data sets through demographic reporting and attribution modelling. Sparkline delivered training for SCB staff based in APAC, Africa and the Middle East.

End Result: Sparkline’s agility ensured the 3 main project components; migration, implementation and training were delivered within 3 months without data quality disruption. This success has allowed SCB to deliver improvements to their online banking and product offerings almost immediately and maintain reporting consistency across multiple teams and countries.

About Standard Chartered Bank

An international bank present in 70 countries, with a focus on Asia, Africa and the Middle East.

To learn more, visit

At a Glance

– Switch analytics platform to Google Analytics

– Implement the change to over 60 web properties across 40 countries

– Train globally located staff

– Maintain data quality

– Project timeline of 3 months

– Develop custom codes within Google Tag Manager

– Roll out Google Analytics

– Migration, implementation and internal training delivered within timelines

– Data quality maintained

– Ongoing relationship established

Sparkline Helps Reebonz achieve +50% ROAS uplift with Google Analytics 360


Fashion savvy consumers across APAC , looking for the latest range of luxury products turn to Reebonz for their online shopping needs. Founded in 2009 the company currently attracts hundreds of thousands unique monthly users a month looking to buy and sell luxury products.

With users having the option to engage both on web and mobile, Reebonz faced the challenge to understand what role each platform had in the purchase cycle.

Gaining a Single View of the Customer
Reebonz turned to Sparkline, their Digital Analytics Consultants, to understand how they could gain better clarity across devices and where to invest their ad dollars for maximum impact. Sparkline recommended using Google Analytics 360 to implement a single view of a customer across devices. They also worked closely with the Reebonz team to incorporate app & web tracking on a single property via User ID.

Upon set up, the analysts at Sparkline investigated the data and found that when mobile web is part of path to purchase, conversions improved dramatically by up to 2.8x.

Armed with this knowledge, Reebonz implemented a robust marketing approach which increased cross device conversions 2x and had an overall +50% Return On Ad Spend on search advertising.

About Reebonz

Reebonz is a trusted online platform for buying and selling the widest range of luxury products.

To learn more, visit

At a Glance

– To understand shifting individual user behaviour across platforms and apply this to advertising spend.

– Implement Google Analytics to ensure after users login successfully, their user ID is tracked to GA allowing for segmentation and analysis for logged in users (“members”) across devices.


-55.4% increase in ROAS in SEM

-20% increase in transactions in SEM

-The solution and analysis methodology is now replicated across all Reebonz markets

“Users have multiple ways of engaging with Reebonz to sell and buy products. Understanding how best to target users working across devices, by adjusting our advertising is an important step in Reebonz’ marketing strategy . By working with Sparkline and Google we were able to understand this shift and act on it. With over 50% ROAS uplift on search, we are extremely happy with the results.”

– Ben Han, Co -founder,