The Importance of Data

It is often quoted that ‘Data is the new oil’ and it would be hard to disagree with that statement in modern times. Data is being used in a monumental scale with companies basing multi-million pound decisions on the data they hold.

But what is the role of data in marketing?

Data, in a marketing sense, can typically highlight three different characteristics:

  • Behaviour – What products are bought? How much revenue was spent? What service they use?
  • Personal – Who is the buyer/key decision maker? Where are they from? What are their contact details?
  • Lifestyle – What makes them buy? What are their interests and attitudes towards products/services?

In a “business to business” capacity, ‘Behaviour’ and ‘Personal’ are critical characteristics of data which should be analysed, reviewed and actioned upon. Knowing who your (future) customers are, what they currently do, their financial details, and who the key decision maker is are just a handful of valuable information traits which can be used to make your sales and marketing effectiveness increase rapidly.

How to get the best from your data

Getting value out of big data, small data, qualitative data and quantitative data can be daunting. Following the well-known, “DIKW” model is a great place to start.

A pyramid graph

Collecting the data is the start. Names, addresses, product information, and behaviours are some examples of the kinds of data you could collect. At this current point, the data is just ‘there’, its unprocessed and, potentially, you might not even know what it means.

Information is giving the data some context. ‘Why’ is a product more popular than another one? ‘What’ product is the most popular? ‘When’ did the product popularity peak? These are some questions you should be asking at this stage of the process. You might now start to get some meaning from the data, but that still doesn’t necessarily make it useful.

Using the information you now have, it’s time to apply knowledge. Knowledge uses the information to identify patterns and behaviours in the data. For example, we know a certain product is popular, but it is popular at the detriment of which other product? Is a pattern emerging? Is there a certain time of year that it peaks, for example? Applying knowledge builds you to the final step.

Wisdom is the final process. Or as we call it…insight! Understating the data, information and knowledge, now gives you the insight into how to correctly predict, plan and be prepared for the future. The insight will give you an edge on your competitors and help you succeed as a business.

Need help?

Insight Data are the leading experts in prospect data and market intelligence. To find out how we can help your business get the best out of data and give you insight in the future, please contact us on 01934 808293 or fill out a contact form here.