3 Data Management Strategies and How Businesses Can Use Them

Mihai-Alexandru Cristea 10/03/2021 | 15:33

95% of businesses need to manage their unstructured data. And that’s not surprising.  The amount of data an average company can access has skyrocketed over the past few years. With marketing and analytics tools becoming more accessible and powerful, making data-driven decisions became a possibility not only for large corporations but for small businesses as well.

 

However, with more data also came more challenges. Having more information is great, but only if you manage to use it. And when you have data coming in from multiple channels, systemizing, protecting, and applying it to your business isn’t always easy.

And that’s why data management has become more critical as well.

Implementing the right data management practices is the only way to ensure you get the most out of the data you have available and provide a boost to your ability to make sales. After all, there are many helpful guides on how to sell online but you need to make sure that you make data-driven decisions and sustain stable growth to achieve full potential. 

With that in mind, let’s look at how businesses can use today’s leading data management strategies and how they should be implemented. 

Identify Your Business Goals

Just because you have the option of collecting business data doesn’t mean you will end up using it. In fact, it’s likely that a lot of the data you’re currently collecting doesn’t serve any useful purpose and is just taking up resources that could be used more effectively.

Collecting, storing, and analyzing data all take time and cost money, so you need to be very strategic about what type of data you want to focus on.

Because of that, the first step of an effective data management strategy is to identify your business goals, which will help you figure out what role data could potentially play in achieving them.

Think about your short-term and long-term goals and what obstacles you’ll have to overcome to achieve them. Also, consider what questions you’ll need to answer to make more informed decisions at various stages of achieving the goals.

Then, look at the data you are currently collecting and consider what you could use to progress further and be more confident about the choices you are making.

Look at the data from the perspective of what kind of insights you could get from it. Data itself may not be useful, but by combining and analyzing data creatively, you can get answers to specific questions and know how to act in various situations.

For instance, if you are launching a new product, you could use data from previous launches to see how your audience responded on different marketing channels, what sales messages generated the biggest impact, and even what time of the year produced the best outcomes.

The more data you have to work with, the better your chances of minimizing risks and gaining an advantage over the competitors that don’t have the same insights as you. 

Establish How You Will Handle Data

If you want to use data effectively, you need to have a way to collect it, store it, and prepare it for analysis. But although this process can seem complicated, it can be broken down into actionable steps that make it much more manageable.

First, you’ll need to list all of the data sources that you want to use. Think about the marketing and analytics tools you’re currently using and consider whether you need to add additional data sources to have enough data for reaching your goals.

Then, look at the available options for storing that data while also preparing it to be analyzed. If you want a more unified way to look at the information you collect, data warehousing is one of the most effective solutions.

It allows collecting data from multiple sources, standardizing the formats, and preparing it for being analyzed. Data warehouses also provide security, ensuring your data is protected from unauthorized access and data loss.

Finally, you’ll need a way to run data analysis and get insights you can actually use. Today’s data management solutions make the job of your data teams much easier, allowing people to access data and collaborate remotely.

Generate Insights

When you determine what type of data you want to use and how to store it, you can generate insights that you can use to make better decisions for your business. And that means not just getting the data itself but also finding ways to understand it and share it with your teams.

And that’s where data visualization tools become essential. Whatever solution you might be using for storing data, you also need to have a convenient and visually-appealing way to generate reports, graphics, and sheets that tell the story the data can offer in an easy-to-understand and impactful way.

In fact, having multiple ways to look at the same data is vital for the quality of the insights as well, as graphs and charts can help spot outliers, trends, and inconsistencies that might be relevant to how you see the situation.

If you want to use data to prove a hypothesis, you also need to display the insights in a way that tells a story, with different data elements building on one another to create a narrative that makes sense and allows you to draw accurate conclusions.

Being able to adapt the data to different situations is also essential. For instance, when presenting data to a client, you may need to simplify the insights and emphasize the benefits that the data represents. 

Meanwhile, if you’re talking with someone who has an in-depth understanding of the behind-the-scenes aspects of the data, you might need to go deeper and emphasize the more intricate details about the origins of the data and the level of insights that can be gained from it.

Final Thoughts

Data is already an integral part of running any business online. And with more tools for gathering and analyzing data becoming available each year, the importance of having data to back up your business decisions will only grow.

But even though implementing the best data management practices can take time, the strategies listed above will help you ensure that you focus resources where they are needed the most and use data in a way that propels your company’s growth.

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Mihai-Alexandru Cristea | 29/11/2022 | 10:17

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