Many organizations are treating their data like Oliver Twist, the Charles Dickens famed character that personifies the general theme of orphan, misfortune and miserable existence. This is the message I hope to convey about data, particularly, the data that businesses use to drive their CRM, their Marketing Automation efforts, new market opportunities and overall revenue growth. Does your data suffer from misfortune and a miserable existence? Is it orphaned? Is your data an Oliver Twist?
You may be reading this and thinking, “Not us! We value our client and prospect data. We cherish the leads that come into our system via inbound web forms, lists uploads and sales professionals’ data entry.” Perhaps so, but let’s say there is a 100-person sales organization with a premier CRM system, Salesforce, outfitted with all the goodies that will run a company about $150 per user/per month or about $180,000.00 per year, not including the costs associated with one or multiple Salesforce administrators or some third administrator. Then, of course, there is the actual personnel costs of the sales organization itself. Let’s be ultra-conservative and stamp a $10,000 per month (base/variable/benefits), per sales professional, which runs this particular organization $1,000,000 per month.
If you closely read the history of Home Depot, when in 1978, Bernie Marcus and Arthur Blank virtually revolutionized the Do-It-Yourself home improvement market overnight, you’ll find certain parallels and trends that took place at that particular time in that industry and what is taking shape today with business data.
Home Depot, Lowes and…Broadlook? Do these three really have anything in common? Well, with $74 billion and $50 billion for Home Depot and Lowes respectively for 2013, I can certainly tell you it is not revenues…but might it someday?
I believe there is room to examine and anchor such parallels around the number of data assets available, both inside the organization (data silos, databases, ERP, CRMs, email servers and more) and outside the organization (Internet, websites, search and social), including tools and technologies available, the general rise of competencies and capabilities of employees and/or the emergence of specialty titles; database administrators, CRM and marketing automation data managers, sourcers and researchers, data analytics and more.
SoftwareAdvice recently completed some very telling research about organizations buying marketing automation for the first time. With this research, they sought to find out what drives organizations to purchase marketing automation, and what’s fueling growth in the marketplace.
They analyzed data from 896 interactions with marketing automation software buyers in the 2013 calendar year. To get to the real takeaways of the research, here are the key stats from this study. Hold on tight – it’s a bumpy ride.