John Pestana, ObservePoint – Creating a Better Digital World Starts with Accurate Data

January 16, 2020

In this webinar, John Pestana, CEO of ObservePoint, discusses how data, analytics, and the people who use them can drive global change through amazing experiences. Specifically, John will discuss how:

  • Experiences are built on a foundation of people and processes
  • Data quality often falls due to inadequate governance
  • Superior governance can increase outcomes for businesses and customers

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I love that video. It pulls us back from the day to day grind of data collection and analysis and helps us remember why we're doing all of this. It also helps us realize how much power we really have as data and insight professionals to affect change. Welcome to the Virtual Analytics Summit. I'm John Pestana, Co-founder and CEO of ObservePoint. We're glad that you're here with us today. For those that don't know, ObservePoint is a MarTech governance solution that helps organizations take control of their web and mobile tagging technologies. This is in order to validate analytics data managing, validate campaign tracking metadata and also to help protect yours and your customer's data. We see many challenges in this process. Because of these challenges, we decided to create this event to offer actionable tips and insights on improving your data-driven efforts and we hope that you get actionable takeaways from this event today. 

So let's get started. So getting back to the video, customers are the foundation of your business and in recent years we've come to the realization that customer experience really matters, perhaps more than anything. It's the experiences your teams are creating. And tracking that has changed our thinking. For example, helping us with travel and exploration, protecting our homes, families, our finances, helping us find rest and relaxation, connecting with each other across the world, enabling us to learn and live healthier etc. There's just tons of examples. We have discovered that customers have the power to demand great experiences. Because of that expectations are rising. 

Here are the results from a recent study by Salesforce: 62% of customers expect companies to adapt to their actions behaviors. 47% of customers say companies generally do. 56% of customers expect to find whatever need from a company in three clicks or less and 45% of customers can generally do so. 84% of customers say the experience a company provides is as important as the products that it produces. 73% of customers say one extraordinary experience raises their expectations of other companies. 66% of customers say they're willing to pay more for a great experience. That same study shows that 75% of customers expect companies to use new technologies to create better experiences. Report after report is showing that user experience driven companies are experiencing significantly faster revenue growth. 

Now, all the tech mentioned in that video, all this MarTech, gives us the opportunity to revolutionize experience and deliver what our customers demand. But as wonderful as all of this technology is and as all the data that is provided to guide our UX decisions, it also causes a lot of chaos, confusion and frustration for data professionals like you. Combine that with these never ending challenges, millions of users across websites, constant development, hundreds of MarTech, multiple teams and processes, manual, inconsistent non comprehensive processes and the lack of resources. All of this is heaped on your shoulders and you're expected to perform, but after all of this, are you sure that the data you're collecting to drive those experiences is accurate? 

ObservePoint was founded to help bring order to this chaos for data professionals. We feel your pain trying to control this data world and collect accurate and actionable data. You want to spend less time cleaning up the chaos and more time analyzing, more time to helping to move your company forward. Here's your digital foundation. Essentially goes like this: The goal of your company's digital presence is to generate revenue. In order to generate that revenue you create amazing digital experiences for web and mobile. These digital experiences rely on technology like web analytics to gather insights for KPI driven decisions. And finally, technology doesn't govern itself yet. So you hired qualified professionals to oversee the integrity of your systems. So how do we collect accurate data to deliver those experiences customers demand and drive results? 

Let's start from the core of the foundation, the people and processes. First, you have to put the right people and processes in place. It's critical to have high-ranking managers who not only care about the results, but know what it takes to drive these data resorts. Ideally, they have enough experience in this area to oversee data collection, analysis and implementation efforts across teams and projects. Companies who want to be data-driven are recognizing this need to bring in data at a higher level. For example, CDO, CIO's and project managers to push data-driven efforts. Many of our own customers have talked to us about how when they recognize to include this key figure projects and processes fell into place and they have been able to become truly data-driven and push their company forward and faster. If you don't have a position like this at your company, it's time to start the discussion internally because being data-driven requires a top down approach and an experienced person to execute these initiatives. 

Regardless of if you have this person at your company or not, it's critical that you create counsels between all your teams at your company that play a role in data collection, so marketing, analytics, IT-dev, however you're structured, and you need to meet regularly to keep tabs on data, processes and technologies. This can be weekly, biweekly or monthly. It's really up to you and your organization, but it needs to happen consistently. You need to clearly identify those processes that each team is using and how you will keep data and technology management in line with all the teams to keep the data clean. Take the time to combine processes or divide efforts between teams and identify what technologies can be shared or combined across teams as well. Find technologies that can help you automate a lot of those tasks. This will help you simplify where necessary and make your team as efficient as possible. 

Once you have the people in place, you need to make your mission and priorities clear. Why are you collecting and analyzing data? We've been over this already. To create amazing and engaging experiences with your audience to drive revenue. Starting with why, we'll allow you to make these good business decisions. A preliminary piece of understanding your why is recognizing that as a data professional, you have the power to create these experiences and drive your company forward. The details of why behind your digital analytic strategy will vary because of your company's vertical, the offerings and goal. But at a high level your why will revolve around creating better connections with your audience in order to gain their loyalty and drive revenue. Then you can dive into your company and team specific KPIs. There is a lot of buzz in the industry about creating amazing digital experiences but oftentimes data professionals are so wrapped up in their day to day jobs that they forget why they're ultimately collecting, cleansing, reporting and analyzing on analytics data to create these experiences and connect with their audiences. The core way of gaining customer understanding to drive experiences comes from the data being collected by your analytics and marketing technologies, but with such frequent updates to your digital properties and with so many different teams working on their own projects, things don't stay in place and the integrity of the data often suffers. So data professionals actually spend most of their time QA-ing their implementations and manually cleansing data. Thankfully, with all this wonderful new technology, you have tools like ObservePoint that automatically test your implementations and critical user pass to validate the data you're collecting, that it's actually accurate and actionable. It saves you from constantly questioning your data and gives you the freedom to create those amazing digital experiences that move your company forward. This is where most of us want to spend our time putting your hard earned data into play and seeing it driving engagement and creating meaningful experiences. 

Once you've ensured your data is accurate, you will need to bridge the gap between the data and the customer needs. Bridging this gap means analyzing data with a focus on improving customer experiences, which will require you to dig up data insights that indicate true customer needs. The needs of your specific customers will vary depending on your business, but you can rest assured the insights you need reside in your analytics data as long as that data remains accurate. It seems many companies are still struggling to grasp this one but you should be creating a single source of truth on your customers and enabling the ability to link data across systems and datasets. Multiple devices, browsers and visits should be linked to the same customer. Segment your customers using data and share those segments with tools including those for email ads and messaging. These tools let you optimize campaigns, AB tests and provide recommendations to customers based on cohesive profiles of them. Obviously people, trends, ideas, technologies, experiences are constantly changing. What worked today might not work tomorrow. You have to keep a pulse on your experiences, constantly testing to get the most out of them and adapt as necessary. 

This brings us to the results. I think a few years ago when everyone was obsessed with this idea of big data, we got a little carried away and tried to collect everything. One of the most effective things you can do is to focus your analytics on the most critical points to know about your customer. You don't need to collect everything, just what will drive the engagement with your customers. This goes back to your company specific KPIs that you've identified. Here we make a small nod back to the collection and analysis process. Implement your data collection correctly. Test that technology to validate your data is accurate. Create experiences based on that validated data and check your results and keep testing. Use the results to continue improving your approach to your customers and serving their needs and watch them come back time after time. Then rinse and repeat. Get all these elements of your digital foundation in place and you will move along the data-driven maturity progression from reactive to strategic. You'll be able to go from being a reactive firefighter to a strategic marketer, analyst, data architect or developer, one who delivers great experiences to your users. So that's the heart of it. Memorable digital experiences that continue to revolutionize the digital world. We believe in building a better digital world. You rely on accurate data to create memorable digital experiences, to connect with your customers and to each other and drive revenue and adoption. 

The digital revolution isn't going away and you are helping to drive it. We're here today to help bring order to the chaos of the data collection, to give you the confidence to spend less time in the tactical, more time creating a better digital world. That's what we want you to remember and that's what we want to help you accomplish. Let's create this world together. Take advantage of all the content here and the opportunities to engage with speakers, peers, and experts. Visit OP in the booth or the networking chat and ask questions or give feedback. Thank you and enjoy the rest of the summit.

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