Mind the doors, please. Mind the closing doors!


This is an amazing story about an incredibly boring individual — Or is it the other way around?

It brings us back to September 2012. I had just completed a chapter of my life that consisted of being constantly divided between finishing my degree in Computers Engineering and working on the overwhelming passion of making music (see my stuff). I didn’t exactly enjoy the former but I couldn’t make a living of the latter. It’s not that I didn’t like programming — I always did and I’ve always been pretty good at it. It’s just that I can’t see my life as numbers and calculations, so I tend to look at computer programming and music in the same way: I love creating things in my mind and then bringing them to life.

When I graduated, I decided that I should live abroad for a while and enrich my academic background a little further. The location seemed pretty obvious: I’d been to London before a few times and I fell in love with the city and the atmosphere (not so much with the weather), so that was my immediate choice. I completed a Masters degree in Web Development (with Distinction and with the faculty’s award for best masters project, which I’m legally obliged by my mom to state in public as often as possible) and the experience was amazing. It allowed me to specialise in a more creative area within computing and that made me feel good again about my education choices. I finally knew exactly what I wanted to do.

It was time to go back to Portugal, which I had learn to miss.

Back in sunny Portugal for a couple of weeks I started to realise that going back home right after the masters wasn’t really getting the most out of the whole UK experience, so I decided to start looking for jobs in London. It was my first time looking for a job which meant that I had no expectations whatsoever. I had a couple of Skype interviews — yes, I was wearing my pyjamas on my first ever job interview — and a couple of days later I had a job offer. This was the start of a crazy couple of weeks that led to me going back to London and staying on a tiny hotel room with no windows while going to a couple more interviews, refusing the initial job offer on the last minute and accepting a role at Monocle instead.

Almost 9 months later I handed in my resignation letter — I was offered something better and more exciting somewhere else. Portugal? Not just yet. There’s not a day that goes by without me thinking about Portugal and how much I want to go back, but it’s still not the time. There’s still room for me to grow here as a professional and maybe there’s still room for Portugal to stabilise a bit more. I don’t know when that will happen, but whenever I book my final flight to OPO I don’t want to book a return.

Eduardo Bouças, Web Developer, London

This post is a part of a series of guest articles entitled “a country of emigrants and a world of stories“. You can find the whole series here.

On metrics for social media at EDIT

EDIT - escola de design e tecnologia

Your day can change pretty fast in Lisbon. One minute I was sitting down at a coffee shop, talking with Pedro Garcia through Facebook, the other I was writing down some thoughts on social media metrics and reports to share with his class at EDIT.

Not surprisingly, some of what I wrote down came from what I learned with James and Sabrina at Webnographer, other bits from the reporting models I built at Fullsix.

The one I feel works best uses Output, Outtake and Outcome.

Output will refer to everything we are able to produce and publish, it is also a map of where we are putting our social media efforts.

Outtake on the other hand will be the first step we get from that output. It can be interactions on each social media channel, clicks or visits to the website. Metrics we fit into this category will be a half-way step towards the communication goals and business objectives.

Outcomes should be clear indicators that our strategy is working or failing.

There are of course other ways to look at our efforts, such as AIDA or a conversion funnel.

One of the questions that came up was which source we should use for the reports. Either each channel’s own export or a more industrial solution like Buffer or Social Bakers. Exporting raw data directly from the source will no doubt be safer. Take buffer for example, one disclaimer on their analytics is that there may be discrepancies on linkedin data because of the way it un-shortens links.

And for an end-analysis, the client should provide data for business goals. At Fullsix, some brands went as far as running survey studies to get a perspective of the effect their social media strategy was having on an offline context.

“Social Media is always changing” is repeated every so often, and even if we don’t agree with it, it is important to keep some things in mind when the landscape changes and we need to adapt reports.

  • Make sure everyone can understand and replicate the data
  • Always link communication objectives to business goals
  • Prefer metrics that show actual behavior (a pageview is not really a reflected act, but sharing a piece of content is)
  • Avoid compound metrics

This is by no means a comprehensive list, but after such a great time talking with Pedro and his class I couldn’t just let it die there. Feel free to add to it or correct in the comments!

Going Back to School


This time I can’t skip classes.

The school where I graduated invited me to be part of a Post-Graduate course on Strategic Communication. Specifically, I am going to teach about Reputation and Crisis Management.

It’s a nice switch of pace, it means going back to the old blog and the old books, dust them off and see how much I can use and how much needs to be updated.

And my feeling from it, is that the school also evolved a great deal. In the past most of my teachers were academics and today I see the course also includes a lot of professionals. A Creative Director, professionals from Communication Agencies like Inforpress and ComOn.

This is also the opportunity to try something different. The course starts in October and until then I will share on the blog as much as I can. Maybe I can even put my account on Somewhere to good use.

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