Why Data Collection is Vital to Business Growth in 2020May 18, 2020
It’s no secret that the largest companies in the world collect large swaths of data. Companies like Google, Facebook, and Apple collect petabytes of data every day. That’s millions of gigabytes of data – enough ones and zeros to fill over 15 thousand iPhones a day. But why do these companies focus so much on data collection? It’s because data allows companies to make intelligent decisions regarding their limited resources, enabling them to maximize revenue streams and minimize costs.
This simple formula, maximizing revenue and minimizing costs, is the key to business growth. Improved net margin means increased retained earnings, granting a business more resources to hire more staff, advertise more, or develop new products. In order to maximize revenue streams, it’s key that a business understands what market segment to target, what customers are saying about their product, and how they can reach as many potential buyers as possible.
Data Collection Builds Consumer Insight
Consumer Insights refer to the profile of your ideal customer- how their attitudes and beliefs impact their decision to purchase your product or become habitual consumers of your good or service. Consumer insights can be anything that is helpful for you to understand your customer, including how they perceive and interact with your product or brand. With such insights, a company can increase efficiency in their ability to secure a sale or retain a life-long customer: it boils down to building the best product possible.
Of course, in order to deploy consumer insights, a company must first realize them. While there is no one way to improve a product or service, all improvement efforts stem from a deeper understanding of consumer behavior. In order to understand what your consumer wants from your company, you must engage in some level of data collection and analysis. Data collection can occur in many forms, including:
- Direct Mail, when a company mails questionnaires to past customers or potential customers
- Phone Surveys, when a company operates a call center to administer over-the-phone questionnaires
- Internet Questionnaires, when a company administrates surveys over the internet
- Interviews or in-person events, when a company interacts personally with potential customers at events
However, without structure, data is just meaningless numbers and figures, scattered without any direction or purpose.
Data Must be Cleaned, Wrangled, and Input into a Database
Data without processing is like a vehicle without an engine- extremely hard to move, deploy, or use at all. Data comes in structured and unstructured forms. Structured forms include organized formats such as 1-5 rating scales, multiple-choice questions, or yes/no questions. Unstructured forms require more work to use and include disorganized formats such as free-form written reviews, text messages or emails, or video or picture formats. Unstructured data needs cleaning to use, deriving key insights from amorphous formats.
Data must be wrangled and input into a database to be easily usable. Once unstructured data is collected, it must be cleaned and prepared for easily understandable formats. This process depends on an individual to clean and analyze this data for specific, quantifiable themes. Once cleaned and wrangled, data should be entered into a database.
Databases are used to efficiently store, process, and understand information. Databases allow companies and individuals to perform complex operations on hundreds of points of data at once, revealing correlations and making analysis much easier. A well-designed database can be used to draw relationships between buying habits, reviews, demographics, and more.
With this kind of information, a company can better allocate marketing and advertising resources on potential consumers that are more likely to buy their product. Furthermore, companies can utilize this kind of data to find out what their products weaknesses may be in order to address them.
DataWorks Can Help
At every step of the data-collection process, DataWorks has resources to help you and your company succeed. DataWorks has several B2B oriented services, including:
- Design, creation and deployment of customized back-end databases and data analysis
- Mass automatic email blasts for internet questionnaires, surveys, customer follow-up, and digital certificates and credentials
- Direct Mail warehouses for the printing, assembly, and shipping of kits, binders, surveys, or business-critical literature
- Development of custom web applications and secured web-pages for online data gathering, access, and reporting
- In-house call centers for phone surveys, marketing campaigns, or marketing research, and in-house customer service phone center operations
- Storage, packaging, and shipping of customized product
- Organization of data and logistics behind credential or business events through managing attendance, registration, survey collection, certification, and communication with attendees
- And ultimately, the collection, cleaning, unifying, modeling, reporting, and deployment of sales, consumer, or fulfillment data.