Data is among the most valuable assets for any business. Insights derived from data are used by companies to further formulate their business, marketing and sales strategies. Joshua Melick mentions that consumer data is especially is crucial for the growth and success of any company. It can include data about customer product preferences, contact roles, family purchase history, billing history, contact history and so on. To make sure that their company is able to effectively leverage this data; all businesses must have a well-planned data management system in place.
The whole process of data collection and management may sound simple as a theory, but is extremely difficult in practice. Joshua Melick mentions that most businesses use cutting-edge purpose-built SaaS applications today. While surely this technology makes businesses operations smoother, it also makes data collection a lot harder. In such a scenario, matching data across systems would be highly difficult as data shall be kept in disparate systems. To make the whole process a bit simpler for businesses, certain tools have been developed like Zapier, MuleSoft and Snowflake.
One of the popular tools companies use today for data management is Salesforce. Having personally tried this tool, Joshua Melick says it has both advantages and disadvantages. If a business can create proper integration paths and use the Salesforce ecosystem as a connector, then using this tool won’t be a problem for them. On the other hand, if they are forced to work manually, Salesforce can be a bit too difficult to use. The UI of this tool is also not competent enough, and does not feature as many ways to develop specialized and simplified flows for regular users as desired. On the whole, while for some Salesforce can be a good choice, for others it would be complicated and messy.
In addition to Salesforce, there are many other tools available in the market that offers similar functions. HubSpot, Airtable and Pipedrive are a few of the examples of such tools, and they are known to be quite simpler and easier to use. They shall be feasible for use for any small business. Joshua Melick himself had previously established Broadly.com. In certain ways, this platform acts as a CRM for small businesses, while being disguised as a messaging app.
The sales and marketing functions of many businesses depend on the data handled by customer relationship management or CRM software. Even Salesforce delivers CRM solutions. When taken care of in a proper manner, this data can be effective in fueling the success of a company. However, unfortunately, not many business leaders and founders pay enough heed to data and CRM as required. While some consider themselves to be too much of a visionary to get into data-related issues, more technical leaders believe that dealing with data is too minor a task for them. But both these approaches are wrong. For business success, all leaders and founders must strive to make the best use of data.