4 Steps to Become a Data-Driven Business


Companies are looking to data analytics to help them make better decisions, and those that aren’t are quickly falling behind.

You’ve seen the recent headlines of some of the biggest brands in the world losing steam: Peloton, Netflix and Zoom, to name a few. They were all consumer favorites last year, but are now seemingly out-of-touch with their same audiences.

Each failed to deliver on expectations set on consumer adoption, and their stock prices have been in tumble mode since. Data can be a preventative and prescriptive tool to keep up with consumer demands and help deliver their evolving expectations.

If you want to revolutionize your business, you need to become a data-driven business. That means incorporating data into every aspect of your operations, from marketing to product development to customer service.

To be successful in today’s business environment and tomorrow’s digital world, organizations must treat data with respect. Data is used by leading businesses to make informed decisions, and 91% of companies say that data-driven decision-making is essential to their business.

But what does it take to become a data-driven business? Here are some tips to get you started.

Design a data-driven culture

Businesses need to foster a data-driven culture. But what does that culture look like? A data-driven culture is one in which data is a part of decision-making, not an afterthought. Guessing where strengths and weaknesses are across the organization is replaced with factual information provided by data.

Data is at the center of strategy when companies have a data-driven culture, from streamlining operations to pricing.

How can companies design a data-driven culture? Here are a few ways to keep in mind:

  • Educate teams (especially the C-Suite) on the importance of how data can be used and the insights it provides.
  • Show how data solves critical problems across the organization.
  • Use data to make teams more efficient and to track improvements.

Businesses will need to be patient. Creating a data-driven culture doesn’t happen overnight. There should be tools, processes and a genuine desire to learn (since data is just information) to support this cultural evolution.

It’ll take an investment in data collection and tools to gain information before a new culture can take root. Then there needs to be an equal investment of time to make sure teams are trained to use it.

Related: How to Use Real-Time Data to Fine-Tune Your Business Decisions

Develop a data-driven marketing strategy

Data-driven marketing is key to driving revenue growth. Implementing a data-driven marketing plan can help businesses turn customer insights into action and increase profits.

How can companies develop a data-driven marketing strategy? Here are a couple of steps used by leading teams:

  • Identify where target audiences are — offline and online — and their preferences for browsing, engagement and conversion.
  • Discover and segment audiences to differentiate customers, prospects and window-shoppers.
  • Create content based on audience interests and clicks to build trust and increase sales.

Businesses that rely on data-driven marketing can make more informed decisions, which leads to better results.

Rather than relying on intuition, data-driven marketing relies on real-world evidence. Data can help businesses track what is and isn’t working, making it easier to optimize their campaigns and go-to-market strategies.

Related: 8 Ways Data Analytics Can Revolutionize Your Business

Create data-driven customer experiences

To create data-driven customer experiences, businesses must first understand what data they need to gather about their customers and how companies can use data to improve customer interactions.

A basic rule of thumb: Don’t gather data you can’t use.

How can companies create data-driven customer experiences? Here are some common ways where data is applied:

  • Providing real-time product recommendations and advice to customers throughout their buying journey.
  • Eliminating wasted ad spend by not showing ads for products that customers have already purchased or are not interested in.
  • Personalizing engagement from the entry point to enhance their experience and increases the likeliness to convert.
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