Why Data is Important to the Success of Your Business



Photo from Stock That Rocks

Let’s face it–data can be intimidating! If you’re a business owner or content creator, it’s easy to get caught up continuously chasing after new ideas and forgetting to take a step back and look at your data.

If you fail to acknowledge your data, though, you miss out on valuable information that can completely transform the success of your business. The world we live in today is constantly changing, so it requires companies to be able to react quickly to new demands. Having the ability to analyze and act on your data puts you a step ahead in the game.

Here at Bloguettes, we know how intimidating it can be to try to interpret your data. However, we also know how crucial it is to the performance of your business! So, at our 2018 Workshop, we’re bringing in expert Janneke van Geuns to share her knowledge on using big data to inform big ideas. She’s the Head of Insights & Analytics at Google, and she’s a master at using data to inform wise business decisions!

Keep reading to get to know Janneke and get a sneak peek at what she’ll be teaching at her Workshop:

Tell us about yourself! How did you get to where you are today?

My interest for advertising and marketing started when I was young! I was 15 when my mom signed me up for a summer camp focused on advertising. I was always commenting on TV commercials and how they could be made so much better. My mom was tired of hearing me say that and got me to walk my talk.

The summer camp was at a Dutch university and we were tasked to create an advertising campaign for Ben & Jerry’s. I loved it and that made me choose to study Communication Science in Amsterdam focused on Persuasive Communications. I went on to pursue my Master in Marketing at Northwestern University where my passion for data-driven marketing was born.

I did my summer internship at a creative advertising agency in Chicago and ended up working there for 4 years in their Strategic Analytics department. I made the move to Google about 4 years ago. My team uses data to inform Google’s large brand advertisers on innovation, marketing strategy and we help them measure the impact of their advertising investments. It’s a lot of fun!

Why is it so important for businesses to understand their data?

Data is a powerful source to make more informed decisions, guide strategy and understand how effective your tactics are. Data allows an objective view and is one of the biggest assets any organization has.

"Data is a powerful source to make more informed decisions, guide strategy and understand how effective your tactics are."

What is one of the most common mistakes you see when it comes to businesses interpreting their data?

A common mistake I see with businesses interpreting their data is that they just look at data and metrics but do not generate insights from data. The magic, the ‘aha’, comes from the data discovery process where analytics and data visualization approaches are used to find a credible and novel finding in the data that can be tied to an action that eventually leads to business value.

What advice do you have for someone who wants to start diving into their data, but isn’t sure where to start?

Before diving in, have a clear understanding of what your business objective is. What are you hoping to find in the data, and do you have a hypothesis? This allows you to not have to boil the ocean and pull only the data and metrics that matter to you. There is a lot of data out there, but not all will be relevant.

The world we live in today is always changing. What exactly does it mean to ‘future proof’ your business?

Technology, and with that data availability, is changing very fast and we are just at the beginning. McKinsey published a report indicating that 98% of the economy will be impacted by digitization. To future proof your business means that you are ready for that. Understand the role of technology and data for your products and/or services, your consumer, and the industry that you operate in.

"It's important to understand the role of technology and data for your products and or services, your consumer, and the industry that you operate in."

What are 3 things businesses can do now to prepare themselves for the future?

  1. 1

    Create a culture where everyone is comfortable with data – not only the data scientist, everyone should be able to analyze and interpret data.

  2. 2

    Make sure your data is ready for analysis– clean, organized and accessible data should be at the base of your process.

  3. 3

    Ensure you have the right technology for accessing and analyzing your data – there are many free tools out there to help you with that including Google tools. E.g. Google Analytics or Google Trends.

For more tips, visit Think with Google.

Tell us a little bit about what we can expect from your Workshops on data and how to prepare your business for the future!

I am excited to bring you some of the latest digital trends that you should be watching to set you up for future success. From Machine Learning to Assistance: these developments open up great opportunities to collect and analyze new data that will help to inform your business decisions.

Furthermore, I will do a deep dive on how you can use data to guide your business strategy, inform content and ensure you are always relevant to your customers.

When you’re not busy working at Google, what can we find you doing?

I just moved to NYC in January so you can find me exploring the city on my Dutch bike! I also like to run, travel and inspire more people to pursue careers in analytics!

Want to attend Janneke’s session at The Workshop? Tickets are going fast, so be sure to grab yours now!