Why is data important and how to get data that matters.

If you are just starting out or have been running your business for a while, being mindful of the data you are capturing is essential to growing your business. Let’s discuss the ways we can capture data that matters.

“It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data.”

Sherlock Holmes, A Study in Scarlett” (Arthur Conan Doyle)

Surveys 

Surveys are a great way for data collection because it allows you to gather specific data. You can ask specific questions that are relevant to your business.

They are cost-effective as well. You can conduct surveys in many ways. You can do it either manually or online. Email is a great way to invite customers to fill out surveys for more information.

It also offers a greater range of flexibility. You cannot always reach a specific target group manually. This is where an online survey can help you reach those people easily.

The different modes you can use are great to get quality data that is meaningful and can have a great impact on the business you do.

Mapping Out the Customer Journey 

This allows you to think from the customer’s point of view. You can then optimize your processes to suit the customer better. At the end of the day, that is one of the biggest uses of data in the modern world.

When documenting the customer journey it’s very crucial for businesses to be operating in this modern landscape. You can identify issues in your customer journey only if your customer journey is fully mapped and each step is documented. 

It gives you quite a deep insight into how your customers are interacting with your website, sales funnels, etc. With a detailed customer journey map and the data you gather, you can update the products/services in the future. 

You can somewhat predict or at least make an educated guess of what your customers will more likely to do. All of your content marketing efforts can then be more targeted. It can reach the right type of customers in the right places and time.  

Read more about Customer Journeys here.

Social Media

Chances are you are already doing some form of social media marketing. If you are not, you should be – social media platforms are a great way to get more customer data. 

Facebook Insights, for example, is a great tool. You can get some pretty useful data and trends in your marketing campaigns. You can get basics like age, demographic, location, gender, and even languages. 

Leveraging social media for data helps you create more targeted ads. You can get a bird’s eye view of everything that is happening. It also allows you to dive down to specifics.  

Like when your posts do the best and how much reach and engagement they get. Social media is a fantastic way of staying on top of trends as well. Used together with your customer journey map, you can truly optimize all your marketing efforts. 

By identifying trends, you can create content that creates more engagement and helps your customers understand your brand better.

Insights give you a good understanding of the action on pages. This is essentially what your followers click on when they are on your page. This data helps you better optimize your social media pages. 

Making it easy for your customers to take the most common actions.

If your business is savvy enough, this customer data can be used to target people who are most likely to be brand ambassadors. All social media marketing is crucial in today’s business world. Whether you are a tech company or a commodity goods manufacturer, leveraging social media is a must. 

Lead Generation Forms

Lead generation forms are effective for generating new business. If you are already using lead generation forms, try revisiting them. You are sure to uncover some ways you can make it better.

Could you ask other specific questions regarding the job title or location? Lead generation forms can work similarly to surveys, with one difference being it can create leads for your sales team.

Having said that, do not treat lead generation forms exactly like surveys. You want to keep the data fields and the questions you ask short and relevant.

Having a long stretched out lead generation form for data collection can get quite cumbersome for a potential customer to fill out, which could lead to loss of potential leads.  

Once you have a well-optimized lead generation system running, make sure it integrates well with your sales platform. The information you gather from your lead generation forms should go directly to your sales team or any CRMs that your business uses. 

Use an All-in-One Sales Platform 

An all-in-one sales platform will keep your data integrated and well organized throughout your business. This is a crucial point. It is important to use an all-in-one sales platform to make sure your data collection efforts give you the best return.

You want your information to be in one place and easy to access. Having scattered information is just as bad as having no data or having bad data. An integrated all-in-one sales platform takes care of this problem is a great way to collect data that is manageable and ultimately useful to grow your business. 

Entice Customers to Provide Data

Collecting valuable and high-quality data from your customers does not have to be a one-sided process. There is simply no reason why you can’t create enticing ways for your customers to leave data for you. 

This can be done in many ways, like through reviews and recommendations, for example. Plus, data and information given willingly by customers are sometimes likely to be richer and more useful. 

Rather than you hunting for data, make the process easier and enticing for your customers to leave their information. 

There is a caveat, though. If you are asking for more information, ensure you provide the same amount of benefits in return as well. This creates value for your customers and, at the end of the day, also builds brand loyalty.

Be Platform Agnostic 

One mistake many companies make is they become focused on a single platform for data collection, whether it be only surveys, social media, or customer feedback.

By doing this, you are possibly leaving a lot of usable platforms and opportunities to collect more data. Make the best use of all the platforms you are available on. Use the web, smartphones, your social media profiles, customer feedback, and other online services to collect more data. 

Use Data the Right Way 

Data collection is only one side of the coin. If you cannot make effective use of the data, it really will not come to much use. Big data is here to stay and is the future of business growth. 

Here is what you can do make the best use of the customer data:

Hire the Right People

Hire the right people to work with all the data you collect. Over the last decade, the internet and big data have created many different types of jobs. Data and business analysts are one of them.

Having the right person with the right experience and knowledge in your team will be an invaluable addition to all your business efforts. They can help you make sense of the data you collect and give proper direction to your business growth strategies.

Align Goals

You need to be defining clear goals and objectives for why you are collecting the data. That is why it is crucial to have clearly set out goals and objectives. You can then use the data to achieve business goals.

Having a proper goal also helps you put the information to better use. You can categorize customers and leads through the data you collect. This will, in turn, better optimization and create a robust pipeline for your business.

Streamline and Simplify 

Streamline and simplify your collection process to make it as smooth as possible. This will help you collect better data. Also, it will ensure you know what data is being collected and how they can be used to further your business goals. 

Have a proper process in place. Processes add another benefit. It tells you what tools and technologies you need to collect relevant data for your business.

Use the Data to Optimize Your Process

At the end of the day, the point of the data you collect is to help you with your business goals and drive revenue. Which eventually leads to growth. You need to be using the data to lead your business strategy. Data is priceless.

So, make the proper use of it. Improve your process, sales funnels, and customer journeys with the help of the data you collect. You can monitor how your users engage with your business and social media profiles.

This piece of information helps you better create valuable content for your customers. Your marketing efforts will also give you a better ROI.

Create Detailed Reports

Use the data you collect to produce detailed and relevant reports. End-user reports can give you valuable insights into how your marketing and growth efforts are performing.

You can use this data along with your KPIs to see where opportunities and bottlenecks are. Reports are also great for providing a bird’s eye view of where you stand. Reporting is one of the biggest uses of big data.

Conclusion

These examples are just a few things to think about as you think about collecting data. The important thing is gathering the data because the future of your business depends on it.

Are you interested in brainstorming the steps your business needs to capture valuable data? Then shoot me a message so we can get the ball rolling!

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