In the Rime Of The Ancient Mariner, Samuel Taylor Coleridge writes,

“Water water everywhere

Nor a drop to drink.”

Sometimes, I think there is a sales version of this, “Information, information everywhere, But we struggle so to think….”

The amount of information and data available to each of us is overwhelming.

There are thousands of blogs/articles/eBooks/white papers on sales and marketing. Any aspect of professional (and even unprofessional selling) is covered in any number of articles. Yet, too many consistently do what they have always done, even though it isn’t working as well. Rather than analyzing what works/what doesn’t too many double down, on the activities that aren’t producing results.

We are fortunate to have easy access to information about our markets, competition, and customers. We can get any level of detail about the organizations and individuals important to our ability to produce results.

Our challenges, largely, are not the lack of information, but knowing what to do with it. Understanding what the information means, being able to connect the dots between disparate sets of data, thinking, “It appears this organization might be having challenges here—perhaps I could show them how they might do something differently.

We talk about providing insights to our customers, but we forget about the insights we need to extract from the information and data that is at our fingertips.

I’m constantly amazed at the differences between the ways top performers and everyone else look at the data that’s available to them. Top performers see things differently, they are able to understand what information is important, what is irrelevant. They are able to connect the dots to things they can do with the information.

Others miss these clues. In fact they put the burden of interpreting the information on the customers, “tell me your needs,” “do you need to buy our widgets….”

You have lots of information and data, how are you leveraging that to find new opportunities? How are you leveraging these insights to create new insights for your customers?