A data point is a unique, single piece of information. Data insight is what has been learned from the data after it has been analyzed, that insight can then be used to gain perception and make strategic, more informed decisions. Data points and data insight go hand in hand because without the use of one the other is none existent. If you do not have any data points, then you will not be able to gather any insight off of the data. You collect data points individually and based on those points you analyze it and gain insights.
Data insight is used to change the way a brand plans or executes its marketing. It gives the customer a way to interpret the data and create something of value. In order to turn data points into useful and actionable insights for a business, it needs to provide data that will create a shift or move towards a new goal. For instance, you have data points that show your ROI for last year’s Christmas sale did not go as projected. You use the data points from that sale, and you create a better projected and executed objective to beat the previous year’s data points and meet your goal. You are basically creating an output of sort of all the work that was completed to collect, prepare, and analyze your data.
There are six key attributes of an actionable insight in order for it to be lucrative.
- Alignment- you need to make sure that your insight is aligned with your business or your ultimate goal because that will make it more likely to drive action. It will create the movement to utilize your insight.
- Context- you need to have some background information in order for your insight to be of use. If you do not have a prior background, then you do not know where you started or where you could potentially end up. Having context is very important in utilizing your insight.
- Relevance- There is a level of subjectivity when it comes to relevance. It needs to come in the proper format in order for it to mean something to a person. For example, if you are receiving insight from the new employee who just started 2 weeks ago rather than the VP of the company then the relevance of the data will not be the same.
- Specificity- As with anything else in the business market, the more specific you are the more likely it can be acted upon.
- Novelty- this can be very subjective as well, depending on the person. At times, newer information can have an advantage over more well-known insights. For others, the opposite is truer. Information that is more familiar is more important than information that is novel. Having information established means it contains more validity.
- Clarity- This will most likely be the most important attribute. If data insight is not clear, then it is not able to become actionable. Data that is clearly communicated has a greater chance to be interpreted and create more movement on than data that is not clear. Be specific and concise with your data.
By keeping these six attributes in the forefront then your data insights have a higher chance to become actionable insights.