Data is exploding on all fronts, but we know that Big Data is more than just data. Many companies are sitting on this goldmineof internal data and external data without a plan or strategy to draw insight from that wealth of hidden information. Smart companies know that from this data come internal and external predictors of behavior. Responding to the crucial predictors can give sales reps the chance to identify the prospects who are ready to buy and focus their selling efforts on the valuable contacts.

Courtesy of William Warby

Earlier this year, Shashi Upadhyay described that Big Data can democratize selling. Big Data helps to answer one of the most important questions a sales rep could have: How do I find the customers who are most receptive to my products or services at a given time? Some of the most successful sales reps have this innate quality to have a “gut feel” about this. Selling, simply comes natural to them. Big Data helps even the course in that it automates the following three habits or skills:

  1. Having a sixth sense about knowing where the right opportunity lies
  2. Saying the right thing
  3. Testing, learning and iterating

So what if you are ready to incorporate a Big Data strategy into your sales and marketing organization. With all of the tools available, how do you choose?

Top 4 Criteria to Evaluate Predictive Analytics Software

1. MOVE BEYOND RAW DATA: An effective solution integrates and transforms raw data – including internal and external predictors – into intuitive, account-level recommendations and talking points.

2. COVER THE FULL DATA SPECTRUM: Solutions that incorporate only external data are incomplete. Look for one that helps harness both internal and external data.

3. TAP INTO EXISTING CRM AND MARKETING AUTOMATION SYSTEMS: Evaluate how efficiently the solution’s data platform connects to and manages disparate internal and external sources.

4. ENSURE DATA ACCURACY, COMPLETENESS AND TIMELINESS: Look at ten actual accounts to confirm the solution provides all necessary data in a timely fashion.

If you’ve experimented with Big Data for sales, we’d love to hear about your experience. Sound off!