Category: Business

5 Ways to Transform Your Business Using Data

Data is everywhere. It’s more than any business could ever process. It’s customer reviews, social media analytics, purchase history, page visits, productivity, and more. 

So forget about the overwhelming enormity of it for a minute. Instead, get hyper-focused on how they can actually use that data now to transform your business in real and tangible way. 

Here are 5 great places to start.

1. Business Intelligence, Not Just Data

It’s easy for business leaders to spread themselves too thin, reducing their effectiveness — especially when it comes to data analytics.

Given just how much data is out there, you’ll need to focus your efforts to see the greatest return on investment. Business intelligence is more than just collecting a lot of data.

It uses technology to narrow your focus to what’s important and helps you get a comprehensive view of performance. Harness an overwhelming amount of data quickly and efficiently so that it becomes more useful. Make more data-driven decisions because you always have up-to-date and useable information. 

For example, simple data collection can tell you how much revenue you generated in the third quarter. But business intelligence leverages the power of technology to analyze many data points. It helps you understand:

  • Why revenues rose/fell
  • Where they’re coming from
  • What you’re doing to affect them
  • How you can consistently repeat the desired result
  • How you can cut costs while doing it

Business intelligence data is not acquired through a specific type of tool. Rather, it’s a feature to look for in a great data analytics platform across industries and departments. Don’t just look for the tool that collects the most data. You can always collect more data. 

Rather, choose analytics tools that present data to you in a useful way.

2. Better Customer Targeting

For most businesses, somewhere around 50-75% of the target customers’ journey happens online. That’s great for your business. 

You can track most of what customers do online, within reason.

Don’t be a stalker. 

You can’t see everything. But you can use what you can to better understand who your ideal customers are.

  • What drives their decision-making? 
  • How do they find you?
  • What do they need from you?
  • How do they respond to your efforts?
  • What keeps them coming back?

Knowledge is power. Now, take what you learned to influence what they do. 

The real power is in collecting first-party data through your own customer relationship management software (CRM) such as HubSpot or Salesforce.

3. Cutting Costs Through Efficiency

Data analytics can help you streamline operations in every department. Identify where you’re wasting money. Then use that same data to narrow down the cause and start applying strategies to eliminate that waste.

Not only is this good for business. Employees and customers suffer in inefficient businesses. Businesses that overlook ineffective people, tech, and processes will lose customers and employees.

Enterprise resource planning tools (ERP) help you track, streamline operations, and cut wasteful resource usage related to:

  • Quality issues (internally and with vendors)
  • Productivity loss
  • Inefficient processes that should be automated or revised
  • Overspending on raw materials

4. Enhancing Customer Service

Data gives you a window into how well your customer service team is addressing customer complaints and questions.

See how these influence their future buying decisions and revenues. Gain insights into how you can generate more delighted customers. 

As an example, use data to identify your customer’s most common questions. Then build chatbots to answer those questions and free up your people to manage more advanced issues.

Not only are customers getting their answers without having to wait for a customer service rep. Customer care gets to stop answering the same obnoxious questions over and over.

Your CRM centralizes data across departments and helps you view the customer’s whole brand journey. Explore its customer experience enhancement features and put them to work to transform that brand experience.

5. Protecting Sensitive Data

Data can help you track who’s accessing private data and how they’re using it. Machine learning — a type of data analytics — can learn from the data it collects. It can spot nefarious activity more quickly, notify you, and even address the situation on its own with automation.

Network Security Monitoring tools and vulnerability scanning technology can help you begin to capture and track this data.

How to Revolutionise Your Small Business With Data

Big data has become a popular buzzword for businesses today. Digital ecosystems make it possible for businesses to incorporate enormous amounts of data about their customers and sales. This data can then be used to revolutionize the business and build the organization like never before.

If you want to help your business reach its maximum potential, incorporating business data is an excellent way to achieve that goal. Here are a few key ways that you can incorporate data to power your business. 

Improve your understanding of what customers look for before buying

Data can help you understand what customers want to see before they decide to move forward with a purchase. For example, you might find that people prefer certain types of content, such as short videos. They might also land on your page by researching particular keywords. Data will help you better follow what customers want to see throughout their buyers’ journeys, so you are more equipped to answer those needs.

Know how to build better email campaigns

Email can play a critical role in staying engaged with your target customers. For every dollar you spend, you can expect an average ROI of $44, which can make it an excellent investment. However, you do not want to waste money when drafting emails. Tracking data regarding what people open, the types of links they click, and how you can best engage your audience can help you build more effective marketing campaigns. You can use the data to better segment your email lists and then send out emails precisely targeted toward their interests.

Improve your customer service

When you employ data to guide your customer service, you can improve the customer experience. Data allows you to track customer profiles and how they use your product or service. You can also track common questions or concerns and then use this information to boost your ability to serve customers. You can better anticipate why people might need to contact you and know how you will solve the problem for them immediately.

Avoid repeating the same mistakes

Businesses make mistakes sometimes in their marketing or what they offer customers. Data allows you to track how people respond to everything you do so that you can avoid making the same mistakes twice. You might discover that no one seems to appreciate your latest ad. If you redesign your website, you might realize that customers become less likely to click on your CTA or respond to your offers. Only data will tell you if you made a mistake and that you need to fix it. 

Improve your forecasting

Forecasting can also play a critical role in business. It uses information from the past, combined with information about current conditions, to make a prediction about what will happen to the business moving forward. Proper forecasting can help you better plan for business growth. You will be able to anticipate the times of the year when you might see more sales and how different products rise and fall throughout the year. You can also anticipate how your business finances might evolve over time, which will help you better manage your accounts.

Depending upon your type of business, you might turn to popular business tools like HubSpot, EngageBay, or Pipedrive to help you with business forecasting and collecting business analytics.

Getting started on data for your business

If you are ready to dive into the potential for data to revolutionize your business, plan on getting started with Google Analytics. This free source of data can help you track visitors around your site. Google also offers free training courses to help you learn how to use the program so that you can set up the charts and monitor them in a way that works for you.

To put the data to work for you, you want to delve a bit into the study of analytics so you can see how to use comparisons like Year over Year or Month over Month. It will also help you learn how to interpret data and use it for your business.  

To help you further learn all about the potential for data and your business, you can take advantage of courses offered through MOOC platforms, like Coursera.

Data can be a powerful tool for your business. If you have not already incorporated big data into your business forecasting, see how you can use this insight to improve your business performance.

Top 5 Ways To Make Better Business Decisions

Business, by nature, is cutthroat. All of us that have gotten into business are trying to get ahead of the curve, especially as technology has evolved. This has caused people to make snap decisions, with fear of missing out (FOMO) becoming a trend in the business world. Just because the market is moving fast doesn’t mean that you have to make a decision within nanoseconds, though. It’s important to take your time when making any business decision, and here are some ways to do just that.

Remember the Past

Philosopher George Santayana famously said that “Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” This is a good mindset for anything, but especially in business. When trying to make a decision, see how a similar decision made either by yourself or someone else has worked in the past. If it failed miserably, you might want to steer in the opposite direction. Though times may change, results can often be the same.

Word of Mouth

Any good decision making process should include a lot of research. There will be facts and figures at your disposal, but it’s also important to talk to the right people. Don’t be afraid to ask for advice from anyone and everyone that you can think of before finalizing your decision making process. This is especially true if you can speak with someone that has experience in a similar decision. If you are a manager, ask your employees how they would feel about changes that your decision could make.

Think Long Term

In the evolving world that we live in, many decision makers in business are thinking short term. Whether this be to appease shareholders or mortgage the future for their own current wellbeing, it seems that the long term goals are getting thrown out of the window. If you want to set yourself and your fellow employees up for success. When you have a plan in place that focuses on five years down the road, you’re much more likely to retain employees and be more consistent in your success. It’s not necessary to follow every trend, and the most successful businessmen think years ahead instead of weeks.

Execution and Education

Once you’ve come up with a business plan, looked at data, asked around and did the research, it’s time to put your plan into place. Make sure that everyone you’re working with is on the same page with the decision that was made beforehand. You don’t want to get yourself into a situation where you made a decision without first educating employees on the changes that are being made, or else you’re setting yourself up for a big setback right from the start. Educating before a decision will also build trust that is vital to retaining good employees.

Progress Tracking

Now that your decision has been made and is off and running, you don’t just want to ignore it and hope for the best. Every month or so, it’s important to keep an eye on how the decision has impacted your business. If things aren’t working, it’s okay to make adjustments to make your decision more efficient. It’s not an admittal of failure, but rather some fine tuning that will be beneficial. After all, you don’t just buy a car and expect to run forever without new tires or oil changes at some point, right?

5 Sales Books You Need to Read to Help Your Business

Sales is one of the most important aspects of any business. You won’t be in business for long if you can’t sell your product or service. That’s why it’s essential to learn everything you can about sales and hone your skills.

One way to improve your sales skills is to read books about sales. Many great sales books can teach you a lot about how to be successful in sales.

This blog post will recommend five sales books we think you should read to help your business.

1: To Sell is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others by Daniel Pink

This book is all about how to be successful in sales. It’s written by Daniel Pink, who is a well-known business author. In the book, Pink offers a new take on selling and reveals the surprising truth about what it takes to move others.

You’ll learn about the three keys to selling: Attunement, Buoyancy, and Clarity. You’ll also learn about the power of storytelling in sales and how to use it to your advantage.

2: The Lean Start-Up: How Constant Innovation Creates Radically Successful Businesses by Eric Ries

The Lean Start-Up is all about how to create a successful business. It’s written by Eric Ries, a well-known entrepreneur, and author. Ries offers a new business approach based on constant innovation in the book.

You’ll learn about the lean start-up method and how to use it to create a successful business. You’ll also learn about the importance of customer feedback and how to use it to your advantage.

3: The Challenger Sale: Taking Control of the Customer Conversation by Matthew Dixon and Brent Adamson

The Challenger Sale is all about how to be successful in sales. It’s written by Matthew Dixon and Brent Adamson, both well-known sales experts. In the book, they offer a new selling approach based on taking control of the customer conversation.

You’ll learn about the five steps of the Challenger Sale method: Attune, Probe, Present, Close, and Differentiate. You’ll also understand the importance of being a Challenger in sales and how to use it to your advantage.

4: The Sales Acceleration Formula: Using Data, Technology, and Inbound Selling to Go from $0 to $100 Million by Mark Roberge

The Sales Acceleration Formula uses data and technology to grow your sales. It’s written by Mark Roberge, who is a well-known sales expert. In the book, he offers a new approach to sales based on using data and technology to accelerate growth.

You’ll learn about the five steps of the Sales Acceleration Formula: Attract, Convert, Close, Delight, and Analyze. You’ll also understand the importance of using data and technology in sales and how to use it to your advantage.

5: The Ultimate Sales Machine: Turbocharge Your Business with Relentless Focus on 12 Key Strategies by Chet Holmes

The Ultimate Sales Machine is all about how to be successful in sales. It’s written by Chet Holmes, who is a well-known sales expert. In the book, he offers a new approach to selling that is based on focusing on 12 key strategies.

You’ll learn about the 12 essential strategies you need to focus on to be successful in sales. You’ll also learn about the importance of focus in sales and how to use it to your advantage.

Wrapping Up

These are just a few of the many great sales books out there. If you want to improve your sales skills, we highly recommend reading as many of them as possible.

5 Things You Need to Know Before You Start a Small Business

Starting your own small business is a fascinating venture. It’s a way to be your boss, set your hours, and make your dreams a reality. But it’s also a lot of hard work, and there are a few things you need to know before you take the plunge. Here are five of the most important ones.

1: You Need a Solid Business Plan

Starting a small business without a solid plan is like setting sail without a map—you’re likely to end up lost. A good business plan will help you figure out where you want to go, how you’re going to get there, and what you need to do along the way. It’s essential to have one before you start your business, so take the time to write a good one.

2: You Need to Know Your Customers

Who are your customers? What do they need or want? How can you reach them? These are all critical questions to answer before you start your small business. Knowing your target market is essential to making sure your business is booming. After all, you can’t sell to someone if you don’t know who they are.

3: You Need to Know Your Competition

Just as important as knowing your customers is knowing your competition. Who are they? What do they offer? How can you beat them? These are all questions you need to answer before starting your small business. Knowing your competition and what they’re offering can make sure your business is one step ahead.

4: You Need to Understand the Finances

Money makes the world go round, and that includes the business world. Before you start your small business, you need to have a good understanding of the finances involved. This means knowing how much start-up capital you need, your operating expenses, and how to price your products or services. Without a firm grasp on the finances, your business will likely fail.

5: You Need a Support System

Starting a small business can be a lonely venture, so it’s essential to have a support system in place. This could include family and friends willing to help out, mentors who can offer advice, and professional service providers who can help with things like accounting or marketing. Surround yourself with people who believe in your business and will support you through thick and thin—you’ll need them!

Wrapping Up

Starting a small business is a big undertaking, but it’s also a fascinating one. Just be sure to go into it with your eyes wide open and a solid plan in place. With these five things in mind, you’ll be well on your way to success. Good luck!