Knowledge is power and that’s why you need to know everything that there is to know about your business. For instance, Business Intelligence (BI) is the process and method of analysing your business for data insights. By retrieving and analysing data on your business’s operations, you can discover what drives revenue and ROI, enabling you to effectively tune and optimise business models, marketing campaigns, supply chains and more.
By IMOGEN CLARKE
Business Intelligence also takes external data into account, e.g. social and economic trends, industry reports and analysis of competitors. The end goal is to create a complete, nuanced picture of your business operations.
So, how do you utilise Business Intelligence to help grow your brand?
Discover Your Audience
Business audiences may span a diverse, international demographic or they could be focused on a very niche set of individuals – but do you really know who your audience is?
Discovering and analysing your audience enables you to better target marketing campaigns, tweak brand messaging and target new products and services that serve your customer’s needs, desires and pain-points.
Social media analytics provides an excellent starting point for audience analysis. All major social media platforms have their own analytics suites such as Twitter Analytics, Facebook Analytics and Instagram Insights; these can integrate with data suites for advanced analysis.
You can extract and analyse data on who is interacting with your content, where and when. Discover customer’s mutual interests, things they have in common and the trends they’re engaged with. You’ll also be able to explore when your audience is more receptive or likely to engage with content, helping you to optimise your social media strategy.
Scratch Under the Surface of Sales Data
Analysing sales data can provide you with clues of who your customers are, their average spending, their seasonal tastes and their likelihood to respond to upselling or other forms of marketing.
Business intelligence answers basic questions such as “What product is the most popular and when?” but also complex questions such as “Which customers are most likely to respond to an advert that uses this colour scheme or these specific keywords?”
The idea is to build a complete, nuanced picture of who your customers are and what motivates them to interact with your brand. What problems are they looking to solve, and how can you help them?
Business Intelligence can also be used to calculate customer metrics, such as customer lifetime value (CLV), which can help you drill down into the economics of customer acquisition and retainment.
Identify Revenue Bottlenecks
A revenue or sales bottleneck occurs when an area of your business is at capacity and cannot respond to additional demand.
By analysing the internal flow of goods and services through your business, you can identify structural weak points that cause loss of revenue. For example, you might find that your product stock levels are usually high enough throughout the year, but your packaging supply is limited at certain times, e.g. Christmas, slowing down the entire sales pipeline. Rectify the packaging issue by stocking up earlier in the year and Christmas sales will increase.
Anomaly detection, once used in digital security systems, e.g. to predict and identify fraudulent payments, now has a much wider remit with business intelligence.
Anomalies are a valuable indicator of the unexpected; they occur when something unpredicted occurs in a data stream. For example, a sudden drop or rise in sales could point towards changes in social media content, such as a video or post going viral and attracting a great deal of attention. An anomalous series of abandoned eCommerce sales could indicate a technical error with a payment gateway or other site error.
AI algorithms can learn from streams of data to uncover what an anomaly looks like and alert you when it encounters one. Results are instantaneous, so you can immediately check the cause and source of the anomaly without having to sift through a week or month-end data report.
Detecting and responding to anomalies with AI-driven digital analytics platforms such as Avora is simple and allows businesses to keep up-to-date with anomalies as they develop in real-time.
Marketing Information Systems (MIS)
Marketing information systems (MIS) synthesise data from social and industry trends, economic data, current and historical sales records and customer information.
Business intelligence platforms gather information from inside of the business- customer records, sales data, etc – and outside of the business – economic and public access data.
Automated data collection helps centralise data within an MIS. Marketing professionals will be reading from the same page, synchronised to the same businesswide data-streams, and marketing and advertising campaigns can be easily analysed, chopped and changed based on real-time data.
Data visualisation makes Business Intelligence data easy to read and interact with. Business Intelligence is no longer about spreadsheets and CSVs; it’s now straightforward to construct highly intuitive graphs and visuals from business data to understand what is going on at a glance.
Data visualisation and report generation also provides a valuable means to communicate business growth with stakeholders and keeps various business departments on the same page when it comes to the state and progression of the business.
Hopefully, this gives you a clearer idea of what Business Intelligence can offer your company.
Once you have Business Intelligence data, you can go about extracting actionable insights to go forth and grow your brand.