Many research studies conducted over the years have advocated data-driven decision making as a fundamental cornerstone of any successful business which is sensitive to customer needs and market trends. This is important, especially so for startups that are just entering into the marketplace. Analyzing vast loads of data might seem intimidating which leads to several startups making the fatal mistake of ignoring data analysis which only ensures that they are behind their competition in their sales process.

Start-ups start out on survival mode, but using data metrics coupled with a sales funnel strategy is truly the step a business takes towards moving beyond just existing and actually beginning to succeed by optimizing their sales cycle. This leads to the idea of attaining data maturity.

Data maturity for a business

Now data is used for a bunch of different reasons like monitoring sales and employee performance, client behavior, or current marketing trends. But the mistake is segregating the data into three categories for analysis which only provides a limited outlook into the key metrics relevant to a start-up’s success.

Data maturity is the concept of analyzing data on a universal scale which can help grow the entire business. It also differentiates between the idea of only collecting and examining the data to measure the effectiveness of a decision and actually using past data to drive future decisions.

A start-up can truly attain data maturity by following certain steps which would afford it the following benefits:

Assess current standing

Even start-ups need to frequently touch base to ensure that the team leads are up to date on the data metrics, especially in relation to whether your business has the correct applications in place to implement periodic collection and analysis of data. It is also important to ask yourself whether the decisions your start-up makes is based on the data and if it combats stagnation by constantly updating and remodeling the strategies used.

Engage in comparison with other start-ups

With the advent of social media, it’s become easier for a business to maintain a network  and grab the attention of target audience . An effective start-up would use this grid to learn from other similar start-ups about how they use data to make decisions and customize the methods to suit their own needs. This allows you to keep abreast of the trends in the market and your fellow competitors.

Establish quantifiable goals

If you haven’t already, you need to set specific business goals for the start-up and the timelines to achieve them. Existing data can help you critically evaluate your start-up’s standing so you can set realistic goals with achievable deadlines. It’s imperative henceforth to frequently measure the performance metrics and compare the actuals with the planned through a best CRM software to ensure that the start-up is on the right track. If there are discrepancies, you can catch them early on so you can launch corrective measures. Remember that a start-up needs to be extra careful about veering off course because every mistake could potentially be fatal to the business.

Emphasize innovation

Innovation is what really sets a start-up apart from thousands of similar small businesses across the market. Truly creative achievements by a start-up is often hailed immensely in the market and spreads like wildfire through social media which would really help a start-up to transition to a larger scale. Data can greatly enhance your understanding of what a customer wants which can help you create customized products for the market and come out as an innovative market leader.

Combating resource crunch

Typically, in a start-up, you would find that you’re faced with limited resources to conduct your business. This puts you in a position of not being able to staff up as much as your business needs, which is where data analytics is enormously important. Hiring a couple of data scientists or hiring an external agency would help you greatly reduce costs by optimizing several functions which would have otherwise required twice or thrice the number of staff.

Optimal data analysis

Several start-ups mistakenly collect huge loads of data and neglect it thus wasting the time and money spent collecting it in the first place and not reaping any of the benefits data analytics could have provided them. Therefore, it is imperative for a start-up to be precise about the nature of data to be collected to allow for a smart streamlining of the whole process so it’s easier to perform the data analytics as intended. This can truly help you achieve the ideal of a lean start-up by reducing waste wherever you can, even the collected data.

Data analytics can essentially help you get from the small picture to the proverbial big picture. It is detrimental to imitate the data set-up of an established company. Instead, you must focus on manufacturing your own brand of a lean data model. This involves ranking the actions that you glean from the data based on the priority level so you can dedicate your limited resources to the tasks that are immediately beneficial to the start-up.

In a constantly dynamic marketplace, it is important to rely on data to make enlightened predictions and act accordingly to succeed as a business.

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