I am concerned rather than surprised by these stats from Forrester showing that for B2B decision makers "just 52% of decisions are currently based on data, with 48% instead basing things on intuition or personal experience."

Volume, speed and the management of data are cited as the key reasons that such a large percentage of marketers still aren't utilising data effectively. This is perhaps suprising considering the ever-growing landscape of tools and tactics available to overcome those challenges. 

Maybe the primary issue then is that dealing with large amounts of data can seem daunting and time-consuming and rather than prioritising certain data points, marketers are neglecting them completely. 

I believe the key for any business is to simplify the process and prioritise the data points that are used to drive to decisions, rather than attempting to collect and analyse everything (and eventually drown in a sea of information).

For example, key data points can start with:

  • Most responsive marketing channels
  • Segments with highest conversion rates
  • Highest value deals

Once you've achieved this, then move on to further detailed insights by combining data from marketing channels, conversion rates and deal values, with the costs, resources and time required to win business.

But I urge you all to start simple, implement and measurement, and only then move onto the next level of data analysis. Don't run before you can walk.