Big Answers are more important than Big Data
Get the answers from your Big Data
So the pollsters got it wrong when they predicted the Election results. The data they collected gave them the wrong answer. Perhaps they were asking the wrong questions.
And, it’s finding the right questions to ask that is really important.
The wrong brief usually means the wrong result. It’s difficult and takes a lot of testing, trial and error to get the outcomes you need.
We get that, and we are working to make that process as easy as possible for businesses. Websand – our marketing automation software – helps users to manage their customer data.
Helping them to get the key answers they need from the customer data that they hold within their business.
The importance of your data
Data has been referred to as the new ‘oil’ and we are living in the #information age. However since the value of data is subjective to each business, and doesn’t have a universal measure, then it can be difficult for ‘normal’ business to appreciate the value of the information that they hold and manage on a daily basis as part of daily operations.
Your business and the data you collect
The personal MBA describes a business as a repeatable process that…
Creates and delivers something of value…
That other people want or need…
At a price they’re willing to pay…
In a way that satisfies the customer’s needs and expectations…
So that the business brings in sufficient profit to make it worthwhile for the owners to continue operation.
They also say if your business doesn’t achieve the above, then you don’t have a business yet.
To achieve the repeatable processes of a business, a business has usually has five different parts and each of them is driven by data.
1. Value Creation – Discovering what people need or want, then creating it. That means collecting data from market research, and analysing the information you hold to come to a conclusion.
2. Marketing – Attracting attention and building demand for what you’ve created. Historically, this was an area that was more feeling based than analytical. However, marketing is now driven by code, and in the most part that means creating data driven marketing campaigns.
3. Sales – Turning prospective customers into paying customers. Managing the process from prospect to customer, the land of the sales funnel and CRM.
4. Value Delivery – Giving your customers what you’ve promised and ensuring that they’re satisfied.
5. Finance – Bringing in enough money to keep going and make your effort worthwhile. In the majority of cases, Money is now managed through electronic means, and therefore more data. Cold hard cash is expensive and less secure.
Each of the parts described above, tend to have their own systems and processes to manage their ‘area of importance’. A typical challenge for a business is taking this data and creating a single metric to measure business performance.
Customer Lifetime Value – the true value of data
People are more comfortable when a universal measure can be applied. However, increased data can mean more measurement, and sometimes paralysis by analysis as opposed to generating genuine insights.
A common discussion in marketing still exists around a value of a ‘Twitter follower’ or a ‘Facebook like’.
For a business finding a universal measurement makes sense, I’d suggest that for data the only universal measure that can be applied is that of currency. Given that business generates money from customers, then outside of the ‘statutory’ measurements such as ‘profit’ the next logical measurement for most businesses should be customer lifetime value.
After all no customers, then no revenue!
Data is Uber important
Perhaps the value of data can be demonstrated in a different way.
Some of the largest business in the world are businesses that are used by a lot of people but actually produce nothing.
For example, take Uber. Uber has just launched locally (in Newcastle). Uber has a valuation of $40 Billion. That is more than Ford. Uber owns no taxis or cars, so how are they worth more than a huge Global corporation?
I’d suggest that Uber are worth more because of the customer data they hold. Because of Uber’s understanding and management of the customer data they collect they know a hell of a lot more about their customers than Ford ever will from the average Ford customer.
Big Data, Big Data !?
What does the term Big Data mean to you? Don’t worry, it’s just a buzzword. It means a lot of different things to different people. A huge spreadsheet could be the basis of your business and contain a lot of your key information – in that case, you may consider that Big Data. IBM are unlikely to consider your spreadsheet in the same terms.
It’s ok. It’s the importance of the Big Data conversation that we’d consider to be the most important thing. What data to you hold? How do you collect it? What do you use it for?
Of course the main drive for the data you collect should be to help your business answer specific questions. What have they bought? Where do I ship it to? How much of those do I have left?
So in our opinion Big Data is a subjective functional term. In real terms, using data to get the Big Answers you need to drive your business is the most important thing. After all collecting data for no reason would just be a bit silly (wouldn’t it?)
If you need any help finding the Big Answers in your business, let’s have a chat.
P.S. As I have written before, changes are coming to data protection, this time the theme is transparency of your how personal data will be used. We will be posting updates as things become clearer.
Let’s find the big answers hiding in your big data
If you want some help to find the big answers in your data, or to create some data driven marketing you’ve come to the right place. We help people find key insights from the data they collect everyday.
Get signed up and take the first steps to finding the big answers from your own big data.
Also published on Medium.