It is not gut or instinct, but data that helps businesses succeed
The world is a start-up frenzy today. In this fast paced productized world, where almost all offline behavior finds an online counterpart, is heavily reliant on a four-letter word - data. Yes, the world today is not shaped by literary geniuses or language proficiencies. Instead, it derives meaning from the combination of 0s and 1s. Unearthing the very meaning of the efficiencies and inefficiencies, good and bad, useful and useless, profit or losses are dependents on unraveling these combinations that have surrounded us. And drawing insights from this data is fondly known as data analytics.
The era of conventional sales and marketing are a thing of the past now. The digital wave has taken every industry by storm and they have been flooded with numbers and figures. Also, optimization helps reduce cost.
It is a common phenomenon that today data scientists (and yes! they truly are scientists) are among the highest earning. They even out-earn the coveted chartered accountants. So why is it so important? What is so special about data analytics?
Well, the answer lies in another inefficiency. Resource crunch. All the companies today trying to solve the world problems face resource crunch. Hence, optimization has become a success metric for these companies. Companies today need analytics at every juncture. Historically, marketing and revenue were under the realms of data analytics. However, times have changed. Today products themselves are subject to data analytics. Right from cohorts explaining the entire funnels from acquisition to activation to retention to driving referrals and invites.
Today success metrics are defined at every juncture. Single or multiple, these success metrics themselves are a result of retrospective data. The motto today is to build, measure, optimize and repeat.
Data analysis can be as simple as SWOT to the complexities of data modelling. Product marketing today is in itself a data-driven function. Call it tech-marketing or growth hacking, data is at the center of the action. Analyzing each data point and multiple data-sets guide us to our next adventure. An example of the importance of data can be underlined in growth loops. Perhaps, they are the perfect examples of how historical data helps you define a certain user journey, and then measuring and analyzing at each step to optimize and ultimately reach near viral numbers. The heavily product-minded innovators and problem-solvers today have even assigned data points to sentiments to quantify human emotions and arrive at actionable insights. This is the power of data analysis.
Whatever the data is, it is meant to make the future error free and drive the product towards its growth path. Today IT giants like Google have built their very own analytics platform - Google trends and Google analytics. Facebook, Twitter, all have analytic products that are being used daily to repeat that one less mistake. Mix panel, Appannie, Alexa and a zillion more are fighting it out to be the weapon of choice of the analytics guy. Today, even at the product building cycle, data plays a pivotal role in shaping its on-boarding and overall user interface. In this particular case, data like drop offs at particular stages, number of details to be filled, are data sets of paramount importance. Once on, the product data tells us whether a customer is activated or not. It would be foolish to say that gut and instincts make decisions. It is baseless. It is decisions backed by solid data and analysis that help you hit that success metric every time.
So what does it say about the future? Well, we must explore further. We are far away from the future and snazzy infrastructure that the future has in store for us. But with honest data and retrospective wisdom, future certainly looks bright. And as they say, first there is god, for everything else there is data.
The author is co-founder, Curofy, a networking platform for doctors.
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