3 Tips for Emerging from the Data Swamp Victorious

Did you know it’s estimated that bad data cost US companies $3.1 trillion in 2016? Many sales teams are entering data into their systems manually, leaving data sets muddied, duplicated and inaccurate. This is a huge problem for sales teams, as their jobs depend on having reliable and easy to access data at their fingertips. If not, their prospecting will quickly go to the wayside. This is where the struggle starts for many sales departments.

Today’s sales technologies allow organizations to measure almost anything, causing sales leaders to lose sight of what is really driving sales and reps to get lost in the large amount of metrics provided. To ensure you’re leading your sales department to success through accurate data, it’s crucial to find the metrics that matter most. Whether using the data to identify the best time to call a prospect or the type of outreach method a prospect prefers, the answers are in your data so long as it’s organized and you know where to look for it.

Here are three best practices when it comes to collecting and utilizing loads of sales data coming in daily:

  1. Collect all the data you can: One problem organizations often run into is that once they collect a significant amount of data, they aren’t sure how to process it. Instead of having to sort through data to find what works and what doesn’t, they selectively collect data leaving them short of information that can be truly valuable to their sales team.
  2. Sometimes you need to remove the end user: Data can be your sales team’s best friend if used correctly. Most of the time, this means removing reps from the collecting process when possible and having strong rules around automation. A sales rep typically has to perform a number of steps in order to receive credit for their work. While this is fine most of the time, it has the potential to leave sales reps inputting bad data or not enough data as they rush through the necessary steps to receive their credit. To avoid muddied datasets, organizations need to find the right technologies to help automate their data processing systems for the user.
  3. Your sales team needs data, but not all of it: Your organization should collect all the data it can, but only make available the data that’s most relevant to your sales reps. It’s easy to get lost in the loads of data being presented, but by filtering the data to show the metrics that are most important to the rep’s book of business, they will have the information they need at their fingertips to close a lead.

The modern sales team is data-driven, and today’s sales journey combines the best of both worlds by giving sales reps the chance to act as advisors to their customers while using real data to complement sales. Similar to marketing, sales teams will continue to see how data will provide measurable ROI for their organization, so long as they know how to make it actionable.

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