Real-time data strategy is on every organization’s roadmap. In the past year, I have spoken to many organizations planning “real-time” data systems. Without fail, those organizations fall into one of two buckets.
- The Visionaries: Can tell a great story about their target prospect, what they should see, and how they should interact with the brand but struggle to execute on their vision.
- The Graspers: Know they need “real-time data” for personalization, but are unable to explain or understand the “why.” These companies want to build a shiny new system but shrug their shoulders when discussing use-cases or strategic approaches.
Three Guidelines to Follow
Organizations can avoid both pitfalls of a real-time data strategy by following three, easy-to-administer guidelines. Having well-defined answers to these questions will help build a solid and successful strategy.
- Business drivers: How is the business going to make use of what is built? Does the business have the knowledge, skills, and vision to execute on a real-time data system? Does the organization have the processes and operating model in place to support this new revenue model?
- Customer Journey: Is the business letting the data and insights lead what is built first? How close are the decisions made to what customers and prospects want to use? How is the business telling the personalization story? What is the business doing to fold personalization into every touchpoint?
- ROI: When can the real-time system deliver ROI and how long until break-even? What is the ratio of incremental revenue gained vs. the total cost of ownership (TCO) of the new system?
- Real-time data is only useful if the business can make use of it
- Real-time data systems should be built as a function of insights about the customer (not “hunches”)
- These systems should be personal. Customers or prospects do not care that the business is “data-driven.” But they do care that the business can provide exceptional, zero friction service.
Setting Up Your Data Strategy
With data being such a vital part of successful businesses, it’s alarming that a recent study found data quality to be severely lacking. The Harvard Business Review discovered that data quality is far worse than most companies realize, with a mere 3% of the data quality scores in the study rated as “acceptable.” How then do you make sure your business doesn’t fall into the “unacceptable” category like the vast majority (a staggering 97%) of companies surveyed? The right tools and technologies can help you centralize your data and ultimately create marketing and sales programs that deliver the ROI you need.
Looking to build real-time data systems on a solid, zero-frills strategy? Reach out below!