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💡 Growth Genius Spotlight: Data and Growth💡

Data and Growth: How a Data Strategy Can Align You to Your Customer Experience

By Melissa McCready, President, The Growth Ops Community &

Jim Hopkins, Sr. Director Product Manager, Leadspace

We know that data is key to making the right business decisions. But the devil is in the details…nd the angel is in the analytics. Laying a solid data foundation from day one is critical for scaling quickly and effectively. It is not an easy task, but it is even more difficult to undo data issues down the road. 

What makes up good data? First and foremost, think of the customer first. What do you need to know about their needs that you can help fulfill? What are specific customer trigger events that let you know when to step forward and start the conversation about why your product and/or service matters to them? How do you know your offerings add value to the customer? It can sound very eloquent and simple in thought, but in reality, data strategy is complex. 

A data strategy means that you are thinking about how your strategic business processes and systems are capturing and maintaining customer information. A great data strategy has all three essential elements – Completeness, Accuracy, Relevance.

“Reasons Marketers Have Fallen Behind in Using Their Data: • rapid change • organizational silos • limited budgets • time shortage • staff lacks skills • lack of alignment between Sales and Marketing” – Customer Data Platform Institute with Leadspace.com

DATA COMPLETENESS

What it means:

Completeness means you have the data needed to define, segment, drive and measure your business. Missing titles, missing engagement information means missing authentic engagement opportunities.

What is the impact:

Missing key data points wreak havoc on the following:

  1. Segmentation – If you can’t break down your audiences into more granular, needs-based groups, you’ll be blasting a generic message to targets that don’t care and won’t convert.
  2. Lead Routing – Missing data means you can’t make decisions about how to disposition inbound leads, creating confusion or arguments, wasting time, or worse, leaving them stuck in a catch-all queue leaking value by the minute.
  3. Reporting & Analysis – If you’re hoping to make strategic decisions, measure performance, or optimize programs, missing data will have you either creating huge gaps or causing potentially catastrophic mistakes.

How to address:

Your data strategy needs to include:

  • Scheduled data audits to document, review and decide what fields are sources of truth
  • Implementing a change control process and designate a change control committee to manage adding/editing new data sources and when net new data feeds are being implemented
  • Driving a ‘document as you go’ approach to track changes to flows, training and other set up documentation 

88% of marketers say their biggest driver in personalization is to deliver a better customer experience.” – Evergage

DATA ACCURACY

What it means:

Accuracy is about the data being correct and current. Data points like phone, email, current title and company information are critical for sales, marketing and customer success. Accurate data also includes current product/services interest relevant to your business

What is the impact:

According to Salesforce.com, 73% of customers expect companies to understand their needs and expectations. Being able to deliver value to customers and engage with meaningful content and conversations are critical. For example if you have the right phone numbers, validated addresses, and correct titles for segmenting coupled with messaging about why it matters to the customer…wah lah! This is a much more meaningful engagement! Combine that all with on-time intent and topic-based engagement, you now have the master chef recipe to deliver a rich why-the person-cares personalized experience. 

How to address:

Choose and effectively implement data validation tools that are consistently validating critical data points – contact info, title, current company, etc. Using a Customer Data Platform (CDP) is amazing for this – plus it allows you to connect online anonymous activity with your customers for the ultimate personalization play! Also, set automated data programs to maintain accuracy plus consistency – i.e., location, region, time zones. Have regular check-ins with your SDR team about why marketing qualified leads are not “good.”

“49% of respondents said analytics helps them make better decisions” – Deloitte

DATA RELEVANCE

What it means:

The trifecta for data is relevance…getting to the right person, at the right company at the right time – this means you have the right information about the person, that the company is a best fit (a.k.a. in your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP)) and they have engaged with your brand to meet their needs or solve key pain points. Relevance gives an organization an opportunity for authentic interaction. 

What is the impact:

Here is a nicely wrapped up list about data impact from Grow.com:

  • Data helps make factual-based decisions (caveat is having good data quality!) 
  • Data allows you to analyze to problem solve
  • Data gives you the results
  • Data highlights process issues 
  • Data tells you who your customers are and why 

Net-net, data is relevant. Relevant data is king in knowing how to run your business to be customer focused.

How to address:

This is where investing in a platform that creates a unified customer profile geared towards your business needs is EVERYTHING! Having relevant data allows you to not only refine and tailor your messaging to speak to a customer’s needs, but helps you meet the customer where they are in their journey. You no longer are leading with the feature/function that does not address the why. At the end of the day, if you have the right data about the right people at the right time, you can have the engaging, authentic conversation about how your product/service helps a customer. 

Your data strategy is a blend of reprioritization, tool investment, and strategic application. As you investigate the three areas outlined above, you’ll take a leap forward in how you not only operationalize customer data, but in how you speak to your customers. Investing in the right platform may help you control the devilish details, but the power of any data platform is in how you integrate it into your customer strategy. Start by prioritizing data completeness, accuracy, and relevance – find success by knowing how to create genuine connections with your customers. 

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