This week's guest~
Hey, it's me, Teresa! If we haven't met yet, you can read more about me here on the site.
In this episode ~
Data-driven decisions sound so intimidating, especially in the early days of being a business owner. It also sounds pretty stiff, boring, and not fun. What if we decided to demystify it and simply see it as info that supports you as you grow your business? Today's that day. I'm breaking it down to its simplest form.
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Are you making data-driven decisions or are you all right? Yep, I don't even know where to start. Let's demystify the data today.
It's time for the becoming a profitable CEO podcast, and it's all about providing you with the tools to succeed on this ever-evolving business-building journey. My mission is to make sure, you know, you are not alone, that it is possible and that you yes, you can do this. You matter. The world is a better place for having you in it and your voice is needed. I'm Teresa Cleveland, and I believe that we can all make a difference and that having that successful online business is one of the best ways to do that.
Let's get to it. Hey, hey, welcome to February. It's week number five of 2021 with forty-seven bright, beautiful weeks laying out in front of us, we've just hit what could be considered our first milestone of the year. We've wrapped up the first month of 2021.
How are you feeling about that in those goals? You said pleased, confident, anxious, discouraged, like a boss. Just not sure how you're feeling about it. So whatever you're feeling, I have to ask, what's the source of those feelings? What are you basing them on? And then I always wonder what comes first, the feelings or the data, or do you have feelings about the data or do you have feelings about looking at the data?
Does the lack of data scare you? I know. I know. I'm full of questions today. So for anyone who's intimidated by data, uncomfortable with it and/or totally avoids it, here's what I want to do today. Let's just demystify it. Let's take all of the feelings around it and set those aside and let's just look at it. So with a quick Google search, we find this definition. Data: facts and statistics collected together for reference or analysis or things known or assumed as facts making the basis of reasoning or calculation.
So that's it, that's all. It's not good. It's not bad. It's just facts and statistics that we collect so we can analyze any given situation. So let's just look at a couple of places that we use data and our day to day lives. Let's take grocery shopping. Think about it. We've probably all gone to the store before without having gathered our information ahead of time. And what does that even look like? We end up buying things we don't need and typically forgetting one of the things that we do need.
So what do we do if we want a better result? We start out by saying, OK, this is what I want to make for the week. However, you do your grocery shopping, right? It's like, OK, this is what I want to eat this week. This is what I want to make. So what's the goal here at your Weekly Mail's? Right. What am I going to make this week? So first of all, you have to decide that and then you take inventory of where you are, what you have.
Look at that compared to what you want to make. Then you make the list of the things that are missing, the things that are going to get you to the goal. Then you put in the effort, the activity, go to the store, you buy the groceries and you come home and then you make the meals throughout the week, unless you do mail and do it all on Sundays like some people do, definitely not me. So much is right. Who doesn't need some more of that?
So. having done it both ways, run into the store and end up with things that you didn't need and forgetting some of the things that you did need. And that's data that we're gathering, whether we realize it or not. So what do we want to do? We wanted to make a better situation. We wanted more ease in it. So we mapped it out again.
That's it. It's just gathering data. It's not good or bad, but what the data does for you can help you end up with a much better experience.
So here's another common one. Our weight. We either step on the scale and then we either like or don't like the number that's there, or maybe we see ourselves in the mirror and we either think, damn, I look good today or I really like to make some changes here. If it's the latter, then what do we do?
We look at what we currently weigh and what we'd like to weigh. So there we set the goal. Right now, if we don't do anything else, we have the goal. But how are we going to measure whether we're on track or not? There's no specificity, right? So we want to develop a plan to make it happen. So we go back to what we'd like to say and we put a date on it. So I'd like to weigh X by X date.
How are we going to track this? Right? We've got the date. We've got the amount that we want to weigh. How are we going to know whether we're on track or not? So you may track meals or your food intake and do weigh-ins at different intervals. And what you're doing is gathering the data to see if your plan is working. If it's not working, then you get to identify the areas that are not working and then you get to course correct. And to do that, you'll create a new plan or adjust your existing plan based on the data that you've gathered.
So, again, as you can see, data is simply the facts and statistics that you're gathering. Data in and of itself are just numbers and facts. Of course, we then attach our feelings to those numbers or facts, but if we keep it at arm's length and look at it for what it is, it's a great tool to help us achieve whatever the goal is that we want to achieve, whether it's a relatively stress-free trip to the store, achieving our weight goal, or growing our business.
It's just data. It's just numbers and statistics and trust and believe, I have had those conversations with myself many times and still do from time to time.
All right. Let's look at using data to help you run a sustainable and profitable business. So one of the most common questions and frustrations, especially for those who are just starting to implement this in their business, is what do I even track? I don't know where to start.
And the answer is, as it so many times, it depends. Remember, in the previous two examples, the data was specific to the goal and why we all have different goals. There are some common areas that our goals fall into. A lot of times the knee-jerk reaction is to go straight to revenue. Right? That's a big one. We need to know how much we're bringing in. So, of course, that's one we want to know the data on.
The thing is, there are various things nestled within that. So, of course, you're going to be tracking multiple things.
To make things nice and easy, let's just use the example of you have three offerings and your goal is $100k for the year. So the big broad goal is $100k and what's the time? By the end of the year. Pretty specific.
So what's next? How are you going to get there? Well, you have those three core offers or those three products, right?
Let's say that product A sells for $2500, product B sells for $500 and Product C sells for $100. So when you sat down and did your business planning for the year, you said, OK, Product C at $100, we're going to sell 100 of those. That's going to account for $10,000. Product B at $500 we're going to sell 50 of those which is going to account for $25,000.
So that's $35,000. And so then you know, if your goal is $100,000, then that leaves $65,000 that product A at $2500 per sale needs to generate. So in that case, it's 26. So product A 26. Product B 50. Product C, 100.
What I would do in this case because I'd like to look at quarterly is that I would then break it down that way. So I have to sell 7 product A's, 13 product B's and 25 product C's per quarter.
Now I'm not going to get too far down in the weeds here because when I do that it's easier to follow along as I'm going down into the various levels, if you can see it. I am doing a training in our Facebook community and you're more than welcome to join us. You can find us at ThePurposefulCEO.com/Facebook.
So now I have my goal and I know what it's going to take to get me there. It's what I'm going to sell each one of those products.
Now, a lot of us think that's enough and we'll go out products blazing, hoping for the best. We'll do whatever we can to sell those number of products. And Lord knows I've done it in the past.
But here's the problem. By the time you're coming up to the end of the quarter, I don't know about you, but I was breaking out in a nervous sweat, waking up in the middle of the night in a panic, dreading the truth, which was that I simply didn't make it - that goal that I set for the quarter.
But hey, wait!! There's light at the end of the tunnel. There's a fresh new quarter right around the corner. You'll make it up then, right?
Lather, rinse, repeat.
Boy, does that get old fast, let me tell you.
So now let's take that same situation and see what it looks like if we throw some data in there. The goal is $100,000 and we've got three products or offers to meet our goal.
We need to sell 7 product A's, 13 product B's and 25 product C's. And instead of running our products blazing, we're going to stay at our desk just a little bit longer.
Side note here, this is the part that's easier to show than tell. So I'm not going to go into the details at which data is going to go where. But again, you're welcome to jump over to our Facebook group and join us for the full training.
All right. We're sitting at our desk a little bit longer now. We're going to pull up some spreadsheets. We're going to enter all the different ways that we're going to promote and sell each of those products. And for each of those ways, we're going to determine how often we're going to gather and enter the data associated with it so that we can analyze it. So rather than not knowing until the end what's what, we'll be able to see which of our efforts are working and which are not, at each interval.
So if you were running ads, for example, you would be able to stop the ones that aren't working and either consolidate your resources or your dollars on the ones that are. Or you could just create a different ad to replace the one that's not working.
And you might find some really interesting information on your social media. You might find out that your LinkedIn posts are getting really high engagement, but low to no one is actually signing up for your webinar. And even though your pins on Pinterest are lower in engagements, they're accounting for 25% of your sign-ups.
This works in areas that aren't specifically revenue-based also. So let's look at visibility, for example.
It's so easy to say I want to increase my visibility and then set about doing that. But if you're not tracking the data, at the end of the month or quarter, you'll probably say or feel something like, "well, that didn't work" or "that was OK" or "wow, that was great!" But how are you going to know what worked? Because obviously, you want to do more of that and what didn't work, because you definitely want to do less of that.
So it's the same deal.
#1, Take inventory. Here's where my visibility is now and here are the areas that I'm currently using to be visible and then note any numbers associated with the ones that you're already using if you're starting out fresh in zero. So it can only get better, right? So it could be your social your email list, guesting on a podcast or doing guest posting and maybe use in ads.
#2 Set your goals. It's not unusual to have several of them in different areas. So in this case, let's say that you want to grow to your Facebook group by 300 by the end of the first quarter, and you're going to grow your email list by 100 by the end of February. For each of those, just list out whatever you're going to do, the efforts that you're using to achieve that goal, then decide how often you're going to look at and enter the numbers, the data, for each of those activities.
For shorter time goals, the email list, you're growing that by one hundred within a month, then I would look at that weekly to see what's working and what's not working, because that's the next thing you do, right?
#3 Analyze You're looking at it and you say, OK, what's working, what's not working? And then you course-correct as you move forward.
So at the end of the day, in those conversations where it appears that people are put off or scared of data, it's not really the data. It's just knowing what and how to track.
So here's your simple formula to determine which specific areas are going to contribute to your overall goals. Take inventory or find out what is the current status of each of those areas. Next, you're going to create the plan and list out the steps or the efforts that are going to have to happen in order for you to achieve that goal. Add all of that into your spreadsheet and then determine the intervals that you're going to look at, the data, the numbers associated with those areas. And then based on those intervals, you're going to analyze the results thus far. And last but not least, you're going to course-correct if you need to. It may be that your plan is working perfectly and that's always a good thing.
So having this data allows you to make better decisions, data-driven decisions, right. And you can course-correct as needed. You're steering the ship on a clear path to your destination. You're not worrying about capsizing all the time. You actually might get a full night's sleep. Seriously!
You're able to confidently move forward. And I will guarantee you that it shows, it's going to come through in the way that you show up. And another wonderful benefit is that you're going to have updated more accurate data to use for future quarters.
Now, I know it seems so easy to do this with made-up situations and numbers, right? It's when you get into the practical application or the implementation with your own business that sometimes it can seem like it's a lot. So if you need help mapping it out, just reach out. I'm happy to have a chat. You can find me in our Facebook group at the ThePurposefulCEO.com/Facebook, or you can send me a message on the website at ThePurposefulCEO.com/Teresa. That's TEresa. Not TH.
So the next time you hit a milestone or it's time to look at where you are in relation to your goals, go ahead, feel the feels and then ask yourself, What does the data tell me?
So that's it for today, but be sure to tune in this Thursday when my guest interview is with Britney McBean, who is sharing some of the pivotal moments on her journey to becoming a profitable CEO.
Until then, let's go make a difference.
Thanks are tuning into another episode of becoming a Profitable CEO. I'll be back next week. But in the meantime, let's continue the conversation. Head on over to our Facebook group at ThePurposefulCEO.com/Facebook, and share your take on today's episode.
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