How does your company prefer to make those critical financial or marketing decisions? Does it have a guess at what your customers want, or which product is selling best? In the modern business world, the answer to this should be a clear “No”. The rise of business intelligence software has meant that gaining the data that you need to make confident, informed decisions for the future is easier than ever.
It is the data here that is the key. All businesses now need reliable, accurate data to plan better for future business growth. Being able to collect and analyze this data will stop you from making poor decisions that could cost your organization money. Where you may struggle is not with collecting data but with turning it into actionable strategies.
This is actually the vital element in using business intelligence data collection. If you cannot take the raw data that you have and interpret it into actionable strategies, it will not be effective.
How can your data be turned into action?
In truth, most businesses can have problems with this essential step. This is especially true if you have large volumes of data that need to be analyzed and turned into realistic outcomes. The tips below should give you a firm base from which to start:
- Think about what you measure – to get actionable strategies out of your data, the data itself needs to help out! With this in mind, you first need to consider the key things to measure for your business. Decide on these at the start and make sure that any business intelligence software that you have is set up to capture the specific information that you need. Once you have this, it is much easier to see what real-world actions need to be implemented to help your business move forward.
- Segment your data – this is a great tip, especially if you have lots of it. Rather than be overwhelmed by one big mass of information, segment it into groups. Obviously, this should be done in a way that answers the business questions that you have. By grouping your data like this, it will allow you to implement an actionable strategy for customer group optimization.
- Present it in the right way – it has long been known that humans are mainly visual animals. This is also true when presenting or analyzing data. Rather than words and numbers, try to use graphs or charts along with images. This will help greatly with showing just what the data actually means in real terms and helping to formulate what you will do in response to it.
- Employ an external consultant – the main barrier to turning your data into actionable strategies can be because you are too close to it. It may be that your team simply cannot come up with any new strategies that have not been tried before.
If this is the case, think about using an external management or marketing consultant. Stan Gershengoren typifies how these consultants can turn data into action for your business. If your company needs a little help, Stan Gershengoren and consultants like him can really help.
- Set the context – if you want to really help with making business decisions on the data that you have, then set your context. Always ask, what does that figure mean, or is that a crucial business area for your organization? Doing this will always ensure that you can take the correct meaning from your data and then build a strategy for growth around solid understanding.
- Come up with a good optimization plan – to really come out with some strategies to push on with, you need a good optimization plan. This will allow you to not only define and measure the crucial elements in your business but also to improve them based on the data that you have.
Let data help you grow
The data that you have on your company and customers is key to business expansion. This data shows you clearly where you need to focus, what you are doing well, and which segment of your audience are buying which products. Even in terms of your company website, it can show which pages are most popular and therefore which content is most engaging to your customer base.
As we have looked at, this data can only work in the best way for you if you can make it actionable. By taking steps to really interpret your data deeply, you will more easily see what it is telling you and what you need to do next.