Everyone loves data.
Whenever I’m presenting detailed information about a client’s industry, target audiences, or competition, the initial look in the recipient’s eyes reminds me of Anchorman Ron Burgundy’s lust for Scotch. “I love data. Datadatadata. Here it goes in. Into my brain. Mmmmm.”
But if I’m not careful, I can overwhelm them with statistics and facts, and I start getting the Ron Burgundy without a teleprompter distant stare.
Data is HOT. Clients gotta have it. Agencies want to give it to them.
But just like scotch, social media, or Anchorman movies, too much of anything, including data, will kill you.
The key is having the ability to recognize what information is relevant to the business objective and how to apply it toward helping you achieve that goal.
That’s what analytics are supposed to do… turn raw data into insight that can be used for making better decisions.
But the information rabbit hole is so big, it can be difficult to stay on course when there are statistics, graphs, and charts skewing in multiple directions available at your fingertips.
So how do you differentiate good data from extraneous fluff?
Good data should be information that is accurate, relevant, and free from bias. In the world of sales and marketing, relevancy tends to focus on converting target audiences into prospects into customers.
Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) is a buzzy term these days intended to help businesses differentiate hard-to-measure ideas like awareness and brand perception from conversions or sales.
Before entering the rabbit’s lair, it’s important you have established measurable KPIs for your company or department to ensure the quality and credibility of the data you may use to determine the message you are communicating or the direction of your business.
Companies that rely on faulty information are in just as much danger as the companies that ignore it altogether.
Three Tips to Improve the Reliability of Data
- Don’t force it to tell you what you want to hear
- Scrutinize your sources to make sure their recommendations are agenda-free
- Test it against smaller KPIs. If you see positive, measurable results THEN you can consider making wholesale changes to your marketing, sales, or operations.
Good data is both relevant and reliable.
It’s kind of a big deal.