The sheer quantity of data being generated every day is a marketer's dream. From IoT-connected devices in the home to user profiles on social media to our browsing habits on the web, companies are constantly mining for valuable data they can use to drive campaigns that win over the customer and generate conversions. These can be incredibly effective, but figuring out how to make music from all the noise can easily overwhelm the average business owner.
It's a common misconception that data science is overly complicated, and business owners everywhere tell themselves that the field doesn't apply to their own business. In truth, while data science is already essential, its importance will continue to grow indefinitely as consumers become more and more connected.
Diving Deep Into Data
Education is the first step -- not only for business owners but their employees as well. Data creates insights that allow entrepreneurs to improve their business and marketing tactics. With some basic training, it can be quite simple to discern patterns and apply your findings to your business.
Curious entrepreneurs can always start their journey with web-based research, but those serious about absorbing practical knowledge and then applying their experience to their business might find immersion training to be the best method. DataScienceGO, which takes place on Nov. 10-12, is an event dedicated to the subject that's being put on by the educational resource providers over at SuperDataScience. This event and others like it offer an excellent way to learn from authoritative speakers and through hands-on workshops while networking with peers and establishing relationships with mentors in the community.
Data science can feel like quite the mysterious weapon for businesses to wield, but once you understand its myriad practical applications, a number of business goals will be within your grasp:
1. Finding more customers
Data science goes a long way in creating a picture of your overall marketing efforts. Seeing which advertising methods are attracting the most attention can help your business optimize both spending and labor resources. If no one clicks on your banner ads, for instance, you can either move them to another location or remove them from your strategy entirely. With data, you can focus on the real drivers of revenue and allocate a small portion of your budget to exploring new sources -- resulting in predictable and maximized ROI.
2. Determining your target audience
Data can do so much more than tell you how many clicks your advertisements are getting. That information is useful, but it's even more illuminating to know who is doing the clicking.
Data paints a picture of your customer and allows you to see just who your biggest fans are. Soccer moms? Tech heads? Corporate tax professionals between the ages of 32 and 46 with two or more teenage kids? Data can be as specific as you want it to be. When you know whom you're catering to, you can segment different audiences and invest the most in the highest-performing groups.
3. Finding the best candidate for your job opening
Data isn't just for finding and enticing new customers. Today, with social media platforms for professionals such as LinkedIn, data scientists can segment different applicants for a position to narrow the field. They can also use search phrases and keywords found on an ideal résumé to seek out potential recruits who show particular promise. Forget reading through thousands of applications -- properly utilized data analysis can do the work for you.
4. Making future goals based on current analysis
Analytics can even help you gauge the effectiveness of your employees. Tools such as Toggl allow you to track the time employees spend on each task, meaning you can get more transparent KPIs each quarter and ensure you properly compensate your highest performers.
15Five, meanwhile, helps managers become more effective with a minimal time investment. Employees answer questions for 15 minutes each week that managers then review for five minutes to make sure the workforce is functioning as well as possible.
If you aren't yet taking advantage of data science, there's good news -- it has the potential to revolutionize the way you do business and give you insights you never thought possible. The bad news is that you're running late, and there's a good chance your competitors are already using the power of data science to get a leg up.
Once you familiarize yourself with the concepts of data science and analytics, dive right in by attending an event. You never know what you might learn or whom you might meet around the data science pool.