Selling Data Insights vs. Tools? Let’s Connect
I have written a number of times about the massive potential that resides in extracting insight from data. Leveraging new database, storage, parallel processing and cloud infrastructure, we can now get to these insights at cost levels and in timeframes that can impact decision making at very regular intervals and in major ways. This was just not possible a few years ago. But it is still hard.
To reach this potential, many companies have to shift their culture to become more data-driven. They must break down political, technical and legacy barriers and figure out how to pull the vast array of data sources – much of it siloed and in unstructured form – together. I expect many companies, large and small, to continue to struggle with this process of data integration, especially when it needs to be performed on a regular basis – not just once.
But the data challenge is also an opportunity. Many technology providers, both established and new, are bringing fresh solutions to market that should make data integration easier. On the infrastructure side we have invested in and work closely with companies like Interactive Supercomputing (acquired by Microsoft), Terascala and ScaleBase. Each addresses a different part of the Big Data problem, but each also plays well with traditional database technologies, meaning existing databases don’t have to be discarded.
We also have had a lot of experience on the application side of Big Data, working with companies such as ZoomInfo, Cymfony (acquired by TNS), Bizo, Network Intelligence (acquired by EMC) and ClickFox. I continue to see major opportunities for these types of companies; solution providers that pull data sources together – sometimes public, sometimes proprietary – and then clean, filter, normalize and analyze it all before presenting it to customers in ready-to-digest form. These companies are basically driving big data insights for their customers – rather than simply providing the tools for them to do it themselves – by sticking to specific areas of focus.
I welcome any companies leveraging various data sources for customer insights in any vertical or business function to reach out to me (mfates-at-ascentvp-dot-com). I’d love to hear more about what you are doing and how you are enabling customers to be more data-driven.