Work Hard, Play Hard

The saying goes: work hard, play harder. At RockBoost and DotControl (our sister agency) we are not only colleagues but also enjoy doing things together outside of work. This has lead to things such as the infamous Fast Food Friday, the DJ Jam sessions and spontaneous Friday afternoon drinks.

During the summer you can often find us all at one festival or another. The best of course is our own Quarterly Theme parties. Every quarter we set ourselves a couple of Rocks we would like to achieve, this is in accordance with the Rockefeller Habits. Everything we do that quarter is then in line with the Rocks we have set ourselves and if we manage to achieve it we treat ourselves to a little party.

A Day Kitesurfing by 4Wind Kitesurfing

At the end of quarter 2, we celebrated our team achievements at the best kitesurfing school in the Netherlands. The guys of 4Wind, Ronald and Sander, prepared an awesome team building event for us at their beautiful location in Castricum. Ok, ok the warm weather also helped create a chilled surfer atmosphere. It took some of us longer than others to get used to not being online; however, after the safety instructions from Instructor Aad we quickly forgot all about our computers ;-) In the first session, we practiced getting control of the power kites on the beach and in the second session, we put on our wetsuits and headed out into the water. After a session on the water, 4Wind gave the diehards to paddleboards. Finally, after a busy day, there was a sunset barbecue on the beach.

The first RockBoosters and DotControllers have already caught the kitesurf virus and are now busy completing their kitesurf course at 4Wind.

Check out our after-movie that our digital hero, Mitchell, made after the 4Wind Kitesurf Theme Party:

 

Kitesurfing API Mashup!

We would not be real digital heros if the #NERD in us did not secretly think of one way or another to link kitesurfing with our other hobby, making awesome digital things! What kind of challenges do kitesurf schools tend to face? One of the core challenges that kitesurf schools face are that they are highly reliant on the weather, particularly wind. So what about a SAAS tool that is available 24/7 to solve this? Could we use this tool for 4Wind to give them more insights into their analytics and conversions?

This was a challenge we at RockBoost and DotControl gladly accepted. That is why we created the following mashup. A mashup is a quickly created project in which you combine different services or APIs. In this example, we used geolocation and weather data combined with advice to show you whether you can kitesurf in Castricum based on wind direction and wind prediction. And as the icing on the cake, we even sent the weather data to Google Analytics so that 4Wind could get a better idea of how the weather influences their registration patterns. Check it out:

http://ishetalkiteweer.nl (Translated to English: Is it already kitesurfing weather?)

Through a clever combination of different geolocations and weather API's, we could combine this data and put it into Google Analytics. This was all based on the custom dimension Google Tech Manager blog post by Simo Ahava. We extended this application in a way that did not only include temperature and the weather of the location of the user, but also wind direction and speed from the kitesurfing spot. Wind direction and wind speed of the kitesurfing spot are key in deciding if you can (safely) kitesurf. This data has allowed 4Wind to base their website analytics on wind speed and direction, providing them with important insights:

Coincidences do exist?

This blog post has been ready for quite a while now. We were waiting to ensure we had enough analytics to get significant learning points out the data for 4Wind. However, coincidently Richard Branson posted this blog post a few days ago with the same title and subject. We share a passion for entrepreneurship and kitesurfing, a great combination!

Great minds think alike.... (and fools seldom differ?)

We can only agree with Richard that kitesurfing is guaranteed to get you hooked. If you have not kitesurfed yet, we highly recommend you take a lesson! For example, in the best kitesurfing school in the Netherlands (with the best teachers!):

Learn how to kitesurf now!

oh and the above is a great example of how DotControl and RockBoost A/B testing is used for Conversion Optimization ;-)

Surf’s up dude!