The recent results of the US Presidential election, which surprised pundits and pollsters alike, are a reminder that hidden variables can influence prognostications and projections, which is why having the actual data at your fingertips is so important.
Working at a company that helps librarians and publishers “see what they’re missing” by giving them purpose-built access to critical decision-making data brings this point home in a very salient manner. We often work with clients and potential clients who have a more impressionistic view of their market and trends around particular customers or providers, and use these watercolored perceptions to make decisions. As we’ve just seen, this imperfect view can lead to unexpected outcomes and set back sales efforts or budgeting processes in unanticipated ways. Having hard data — trends over time based on actual usage, denials, PPVs, and so forth — not only helps make people more efficient, but also can be far more convincing for the multiple stakeholders often involved in budgeting or purchasing decisions.
In our industry, we are fortunate to have standardized data in many areas, and a regular pulse of data issuing from our products. However, tools to see, drill into, and explore the data in ways that make sense and require little to no training remain rare — which is why we’re always so pleased when customers tell us how intuitive our Publisher Dashboard and Library Dashboard products are to use.
Our forthcoming SiteLeads™ product also uses actual data to identify and size potential sales leads for publishers. Again, rather than just exploring the market for similar organizations and approaching them with limited data, SiteLeads™ will put data at the center of the conversation.
Getting the actual facts has never been more important. General impressions and intuition have a role, but informing those with hard data only helps. We’re proud to have affordable, purpose-built products that can help you “see what you’re missing.” I’m sure there are plenty of politicians in the US right now who wish they had been able to do the same.