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7 Simple Steps to Tracking Business Data

How Can Small Businesses Use Data?

What sets ‘Ma and Pop’ grocery stores apart from nationwide grocery chain stores?

How Can Small Businesses Use DataIt’s the feeling you get when you walk in and the produce manager yells a greeting to you by name. It’s the familiarity of having your cashier ask about your Golden Retriever and when they might see you at the dog park again. It’s that level of connection that keeps you coming back every other Saturday morning for groceries, even though you drive past two regional grocery chain stores with cheaper prices and more convenient access.

One of the biggest value differentiators for small businesses is being able to truly know their customers. Data is now allowing global businesses the same opportunity to deliver a personalized experience. Small businesses are facing stiff competition in this arena and you don’t have the margins to compete on price.

Location-Based Data

Location-based data specific to consumers is arguably the treasure trove of tomorrow’s business. The ability to track, document, and analyze a person’s driving habits, commuter routes, demographics, consumer locales, and time frames for all of these recorded activities is priceless to businesses. GPS-tracking is being used regularly in every smartphone around the world.  Geo-tracking is the ability to track any device in real time, such as Pokémon. We have expanded geo-tracking into wearables, browsers, kiosks, and other user-friendly technology.

Imagine a world where you’re standing on a street corner and a city bus passes in front of you with a personalized ad for a piece of clothing that fits your style and the coming season. This experience is possible because your phone is sharing your geolocation, social media profile, and other data in real time. This is the reality of today.

Business-Generated Data

It’s virtually impossible for any of us to stay current with all the potential data that’s generated for our businesses, let alone our personal lives. An estimated 90 percent of all data generated is unstructured, including photos on your smartphone, social media interactions, customer transaction trends, and more. Data overload is also a side effect of our current reality. While this is a challenge, it can be solved and turned into great profit.

Become a Client Whisperer…

Data allows you to be a client whisperer. The right data points help you see client needs before your client ever realizes the need is there. If you’re a financial advisor, knowing that a client is due with their first baby in October means you may want to track when the delivery is so you can send a congratulations card, a piggy bank, and information about setting up a college fund. This is turning data into real-life, profit-driving action.

Track The Effect Of Any Changes

The second part of making data-driven changes is tracking the effect of your changes on your business success. What is the impact of eliminating a specific time frame for client appointments? Were the select few clients who were available during that time frame also available at another time frame? Of the potentially affected clients, what is the value and social influence of each of those clients on the rest of your client base?

Make the changes, analyze the impact of those changes, and then make additional changes or confirmation from your analyses. This is a fluid process focused on optimal output based on your goals and objectives.

Tracking how your business operates down to the minutest detail creates market separation. Maintaining as much actionable data as possible on every one of your clients helps personalize your client interactions. Knowing what effect data-driven changes are having on your everyday operations and bottom-line revenue is what keeps businesses like yours ahead of global competitors.

How to start tracking business data

We know the importance of data and how it is shaping tomorrow… now what?

Step 1: Decide what data you would like to gather. I live by the concept that the more data, the better. I like to gather data on the following information at the core: contact information, personal information, social media information, web usage data, communication preferences, demographic data, hobbies and interests, family makeup, business data, consumer buying data, and any other data that would be helpful for your business. For example, a law firm needs to know the names of all of your beneficiaries and contact information.

Step 2: Collect as much data as possible. When I say collect, I don’t mean collecting data in your head. Gather data using a central system, like a CRM, that can integrate with the rest of your technologies.

Step 3: Engage in data cleanup and organization. While this might seem like a basic task, nothing could be further from the truth. If you talk to Data Scientists or Data Geeks, they will tell you the most time spent in the data world is on cleanup and organization. In fact, many say that 80% of their time is spent working with data on cleanup.

Step 4: Ask questions. What questions do you need or want to answer? What decision are you in the midst of needing to make? Do you need to hire more staff? Build out more space? Develop a new product? Change the hours you are open? Get rid of one product so you can focus on another product? Those are just a few of the questions that data can help you answer, providing you the clarity and peace of mind you need. You need to know you have all the information possible to understand the impact of any decision you make.

Step 5: Summarize and visualize the data. We are summarizing our data and reporting on it in this step. In other words, if we want to know how much revenue we did last year in September versus this year in September, we should have a report that clearly shows us that information.

Step 6: Identify actionable insights. Once we have summarized the data, we now use the data to provide actionable insights. We did some consulting for a dental practice that was considering if it was time to expand their space. After looking at the summary data, we found that while they were close to capacity, the type of patients they were serving wasn’t in line with their ideal patient. So, instead of building out more space, they first needed to focus their efforts on finding more of their ideal patients. We were able to provide clarity using data to make actionable insights.

Step 7: Implement advanced analytics and modeling. Being a data geek, this is one of my favorite parts of this whole process. While summary data and actionable insights are extremely helpful in providing us clarity and peace of mind, advanced analytics and modeling is what can propel us into innovation. In the previous story of the dental practice looking for more ideal patients, we developed a model that would help schedule appointments based on an algorithm we developed.

The purpose here is to not only provide actionable insights but also make it as easy as possible for the company to focus its efforts in the most direct way possible. This occurs while gaining valuable insights and improving automatically along the way. Automatically?… How is that possible? We can make baseline assumptions through machine learning and modeling and then let the data tell us how accurate we are and suggest any modifications into our models. This process is fascinating to say the least.

This article is an excerpt from NEO founder Jesse Morris’ new book Data and the World of Today: The Reality of Today that will Impact your Business Tomorrow. Purchase your copy via Amazon.com.

Denver CO Business Intelligence Company Never Ever Ordinary

Shake Up Your Business With Data Analytics

Denver CO Business Intelligence Company Never Ever OrdinaryBusiness today doesn’t look like it did for our grandparents, or even our parents.  In fact, technology is changing so much and at a staggering speed that we can’t keep up easily!  In fact, 90% of the world’s data historically has been created in the last two years!  That’s a lot of data being created and therefore a lot of data that a business needs to put to use.

Just because business looks different, and just because data feels daunting at times, this doesn’t mean that businesses should ignore it.  In fact, a few basic measures can get a business tracking, analyzing, and measuring data in a way that makes their business work more efficiently and effectively.

Big Data For Big Results:  Denver CO Business Intelligence Company Weighs In

• Baseline Metrics – Know where you started from to measure growth

• Key Performance Indicators – Put a measurable standard to the things you find most valuable.

• Demographic Understanding – Know your customers.  We mean really KNOW.   And, not just with an emotional hunch, but know something and back it up with the numbers.

• Business Opportunities – See clearly and easily where your business is falling short, so that you can know where to focus your efforts.

• Measure What-If Scenarios – Understand the implications of a decision before you make it.

• Understand Market & Industry Trends – The data will tell you what is going on and what you can expect.

• Predictive Analytics – Make educated predictions of what will happen in the future, based on hard facts of what is happening now!

• Competitive Intel – Get a leg up on your competition.

• Real-Time Knowledge – Base your business and marketing decisions on things happening right now in your business, not data that is months or years old.

& More…

The reality is that data analytics are constantly opening new doors and opportunities of how we can use data to propel our businesses forward.  The best part is that the technology and development needed to collect and analyze data is now more affordable than ever before for mid and small size businesses.  It is not out of the question for any size business to be using data analytics and business intelligence to grow their business.

Never Ever Ordinary is a business intelligence and data analytics company based in Denver, Colorado, but serving clients all over the country and even some internationally.  If you want to learn more about how to use data to grow your business, we’d love to talk to you.

Data Analytics For Denver Business

Why Denver Businesses Should Care About Data | Spotlight on Data Analytics For Denver Business

Data Analytics For Denver BusinessData Analytics For Denver Business & Startups

You may not realize it now, but you will…and soon.  Business intelligence is going to be a crucial thing for businesses within the next few years.  The reality is that business intelligence is already vital for businesses, but as with most new things, businesses haven’t all caught on.  We’re seeing this already locally: business intelligence in Denver CO is vital for the growing number of startups and tech-based businesses that are popping up.  The competition is fierce and there is no room for failure.

If you want to stay competitive, your business simply MUST be employing business intelligence and data analytics in your planning strategy.

What is Business Intelligence?

Business Intelligence is a broad term that applies to the software applications used to analyze raw data, data mining, analytical processing, querying and reporting.  There are immense amounts of data available today, and a business that can organize that data in a meaningful way can leverage their business above the competition.

Why Is Business Intelligence Important for Denver Businesses?

Denver is a prime example of why businesses need business intelligence and data powering their business.  Denver has been ranked as a top spot for entrepreneurs and startups by publications like Kiplingers, Nerdwallet, CNBC, and more.  The tech startup scene is alive and thriving.  New ideas are thriving and being promoted left and right.

With all of this new business and great energy, there are huge opportunities to start a business off right.  Data can help inform if an idea has viability and a future.  Data can also help a startup track and measure their growth. The best part is that these newer businesses can start from day #1 and have a comprehensive business approach with data. This is something most businesses cannot say because data was an afterthought and implemented later on in the business.

Data Is Not Just For Denver.

We’re based here in Denver and provide business intelligence solutions for businesses in Denver, so we have a keen vantage point to see the fun energy here.  But, we work with businesses all over the country, and even internationally.  We’re seeing the surge of businesses here locally rising from nothing to a booming company and all with the power of data.  The reality is that ALL businesses need a data plan, and if you don’t realize it and start now, your business WILL be left behind within a few years.

Press Release: Denver Data Analytics Company Releases Data Dashboard For Businesses

Denver, CO – Data Analytics Becomes Attainable For Businesses with NEO Analyzer Dashboard

Denver Data Analytics Company - Business Intelligence DenverFor many years, we’ve been told that data is important, but only the big boys, the giants of business, had the funds to implement and use data in a meaningful way.  However, local Denver, CO Data Analytics Company, Never Ever Ordinary (NEO) is out to change that.  NEO has developed a number of tools and resources for small and mid-size businesses that can change how they approach data, and allow them to use it in a meaningful way for growth.

Never Ever Ordinary is excited to announce the release of their NEO Analyzer Dashboard.  This dashboard allows businesses to stay current with real-time snapshots, down to laser-focused details of what is going on with their business.  Business owners can track growth and measure trends both internally and externally within their business model. The NEO Analyzer is focused around setting up data collection of the most valuable data for your business model, and organizing and analyzing that data in a way that makes most sense for you.  They call themselves translators of data because the dashboard puts complex data in easy-to-understand charts, graphs, and models.

The NEO Analyzer can be customized for more specific needs within a business.  It includes discovery sessions, development, support from the NEO team, and monthly access to track your data over time.  The dashboard is designed to help a business gather, track, analyze, and benchmark data over time to help a business stay competitive both now and in the years to come.

Data analytics allow any size business to stay competitive in their local community and within their overall industry.  Small business owners often argue that their competitive edge is that they know their customers so much more personally than a big box business.  However, data is changing all of that, and allowing the big companies to personalize the customer experience.  That competitive edge is going away for many small businesses, but it doesn’t have to!  Data analytics can help local businesses have the same data intel on their business trends, customer trends, local trends, and industry trends.  Data can give them the information they need to stay competitive and grow.

Never Ever Ordinary has created solutions that can work with almost any size business. In fact, one of their main client groups is the private practice sector where individual doctors own a few locations.  Never Ever Ordinary has designed data analytics dashboards and reports that give the local business owner data that actually means something to them in their market, and helps them make distinct decisions.  Their suite of services can be effective for anything from a brand new startup to an established, thriving business on the move.

Never Ever Ordinary is based in Denver, Colorado, but serves clients throughout the United States and even internationally.  To learn more about these innovative reports, contact Jesse Morris at the contact information provided below.

Never Ever Ordinary

Jesse Morris

info@nevereverordinary.com

www.nevereverordinary.com

Twitter:  @neverordinaryBI

Denver Data Analytics Company - Business Intelligence Denver

Press Release Denver Dental Analytics Company Leads The Way In Data Analytics For The Dental Industry

Data Analytics Company Creates Dental Analytics Tools

Dental Analytics Denver ColoradoNever Ever Ordinary is a data analytics company, Denver, who is out to change the way dentists approach their business.  Founded by a financial expert who worked closely with dentists and dental specialists for many years in the finance and accounting space, NEO works closely to bring a comprehensive perspective to how you run a dental practice.  The financial piece is only just a piece. The insurance, the clinical stats, the staffing, the marketing, are all just pieces, but they all impact each other and impact the practice’s bottom line.  Jesse Morris saw the desperate need for dentists to embrace data to help them look at all of the pieces together and use data analytics in a smart way to grow their business.

Data Analytics For Dentists

Never Ever Ordinary has created data analytics targeted specifically for the dental industry.  These analytics help dentists use and organize much of the data that they are already gathering via their practice management softwares, financials, and other data.  The reports organize the information in digestible charts and tables in a dashboard that updates real-time.  Dentists and doctors can have a current understanding of what is going on in their practice.  Reports can be customized to answer specific questions the dentist has about the practice and business.  The dashboard also collects data in a meaningful way, giving the practice hard and fast data to benchmark themselves against year after year.

Take the Guesswork Out Of Managing a Practice

Up until now, most practices have made their decisions based on postulation or guesses.  Now, most of the time, these guesses are highly educated looking at some KPI’s or getting insights from practice consultants or specialists.  However, if you’re not using the data your practice has in an intelligent, and analytical way, you’re still just making educated decisions that you hope will work out.  Using business intelligence to combine this massive amount of information together allows you to see the impact of your decision in a numerical, mathematical way.  You can KNOW what you need to do, rather than have a hunch of what to do.

Changing The Game For Dentists

Practice owners and dentists often hire a myriad of specialists and consultants to help them run the business and clinical sides of their practice.  While these roles are still very important, the NEO Analyzer dashboard for dentists pulls together all of these factors and data from all aspects of the business to help the dentist see the big picture.  This is a new thing for many dentists to grasp, and many simply aren’t ready for it.  However, those that don’t employ the use of data for their practice in an efficient and intelligent way, WILL be left in the dust by practices that do, or by corporate dentistry operations that have the resources to use data in a big way.

The reality is that data is a big deal in business, and that includes the private practice business model as well.  While data hasn’t always been easy to employ in a small business, Never Ever Ordinary has broken that barrier to bring data analytics and business intelligence to dentists, orthodontists, and other dental specialists.

Never Ever Ordinary is a business intelligence and data analytics company, Denver, CO.  They work primarily with dental practices, and other business to provide consultation on data gathering, real-time dashboards showing trends and data analytics, and customized reports that put data in a easy-to-understand format.  Never Ever Ordinary has developed many proprietary solutions to help businesses gather and use data in an effective way.  NEO serves clients locally in Denver, Colorado near their headquarters, but also services clients all over the country.

To learn more about these innovative reports, contact Jesse Morris at the contact information provided below.

Never Ever Ordinary

Jesse Morris

info@nevereverordinary.com

www.nevereverordinary.com

Twitter:  @neverordinaryBI

What Do Patients REALLY Care About?

Improve Your Practice By Knowing Your Practice |  Business Intelligence For Private Practice

NEO time Business Intelligence For Private PracticeA good practice is centered around making the patient experience a positive one, but how do you know if you’re doing the right things?  There are so many personalities and different needs of patients that it can feel daunting to know what you should actually focus on.

We talk to a lot of patients in our line of work, and we have seen a few common trends in the things that patients care about the most.

Here’s what patients care about:

  1. Time – Respect your patients’ time by staying on schedule.
  2. Convenience – Patients are looking for appointment times that can fit within their busy lives.  They’re also looking for easy access to find your office’s contact information, address, and physical location.  Make sure that all of this information is blatantly obvious for your patients to find.
  3. Clear Expectations – Set up the expectation of what is involved in a particular procedure or appointment up front so that the patient has no surprises.
  4. Taking Ownership – When you or your team has made a mistake, own up to it.  You’ll gain more respect by your integrity, rather than lose a patient that feels like you don’t care.
  5. Taking Perceived Ownership – The patient doesn’t always know the behind-the-scenes as to why something was done the way it was, nor do they care.  If the patient is perceiving that something was done wrong, take ownership and make steps to help make the situation right.
  6. Clear Explanations – Don’t expect that your patients understand all of your dental or medical jargon.  They didn’t go to medical school, and often need you to put things in plain English.
  7. A “Wow” Experience – Patients may not consciously know they are looking for a “wow” experience, but they know when they’ve had one.  What are you doing to make a memorable experience for your patients from the moment they walk in your door?
  8. Reviews – Patients care about word of mouth and online reviews more than anything else about your practice.  If someone else has vouched for your practice, they will automatically have a certain level of trust.
  9. Smiles – It’s a novel idea, really, that a dental or medical office is full of smiles.  A smiling face can go a long way to improve someone’s day, put them at ease about a scary procedure, or simply create a welcoming atmosphere.  Either way you spin it, smiles matter!

When you know what patients are looking for, you can manage your practice in a way that meets these needs.  So, the question is, how is your practice doing on all of these categories?

  • Do you run on time?
  • Do you have convenient appointment times for your patients (not necessarily just for you)?
  • Do you set clear expectations so that patients know what to expect when they come for an appointment?
  • Do you educate your patients in a way that they understand?
  • Do you take ownership?  When was the last time you apologized to a patient?
  • What do you do to create a memorable experience at your office?
  • How is you practice doing with online reviews?
  • Does your team smile more than frown?

 

Learn more about business intelligence and data analytics for private practices and dental offices from Never Ever Ordinary.

Could A Positive Attitude Save Your Practice?

Cultivating Positivity In Your Team | Business Intelligence For Private Practice

NEO positivity - Business Intelligence For Private PracticeA positive attitude is perhaps the best thing you can cultivate within your practice to not only improve your office’s atmosphere, but create a stellar patient experience every single time.  However, positivity is not something that will happen automatically, nor will it happen overnight.

How do you cultivate positivity into your practice?

  1. Start Off Positive.  Start your day by writing down five things you are grateful for.  It may be the same five things each day, or you can change it each day.  The point here is that you are taking time to mentally think through the things that you are thankful for.  Slowing down and being mindful of these things is so important, especially in our fast-paced lives.
  2. Express Gratitude To Others.  Find ways to thank others and verbalize gratitude to them.  Make it a point to thank people in your life for the little and big things they do.  Your patients will notice that you are grateful and respectful to your staff, and they will respect you more for it.
  3. Look For Silver Linings.  One of our favorite movies is Silver Linings Playbook and from that movie, we’ve adopted the habit of looking for silver linings in all situations.  Yes, bad situations and bad days happen, but there is always something good you can find.  There’s always something you can learn from bad days.
  4. View Difficulties As An Opportunity.  You have a great team behind you, and when you face difficulties, include the insight of your team as an opportunity to solve a problem.  That problem doesn’t have to always be a problem, and by seeing what you can learn from it the first time around, you can avoid these challenges in the future.
  5. Take Ten Minutes For Mindfulness.  Finding space in your day to be mindful of your emotions, be thankful, and recognize what is happening in the day is a great way to reset yourself.  We live in very busy lives, and most practices run at very fast paces.  Breaks are important and can be vital to helping you maintain a positive outlook on life.

Positivity Starts With You.

As the practice owner, you set the tone for the entire practice.  You need to project the positivity that you want to be prominent in your team.  Your team will follow your lead, and your patients will follow your team’s lead.  If you’re reading this and you’re not the team leader in your group, know that positivity starts with you too.  You can become a leader simply by projecting positivity into your environment.  Ultimately, no one can make positivity happen in your life for you; YOU have to choose to make it a priority in your life.

Cultivating positivity is so important within your practice, but these tips are applicable in any aspect of your life.  You can cultivate positivity in your friendships, your home, your marriage, or even just your interaction with the next store clerk you encounter.  Positivity can do wonders.  We’ve seen it turn practices around from failing to excelling beyond all belief.

 

Learn more about Never Ever Ordinary and our practice and dental analytics services and tools!

Managing Communication: The Art of Organizing Outlook

business intelligence company in Denver ColoradoPart 1: Folders

Communication – the ups & downs
Communication is a guiding principle in my interactions with our clients and their financial goals; however, communication becomes ineffective if I do not approach my workflow with a detail-oriented strategy. With the ever-present reality of technology and quick responses, clients and business contacts frequently pose questions, ideas, or thoughts through email. While this enables immediate dialogue, it also creates an email inbox full of messages.

Microsoft Outlook is an incredible tool for email if used properly; the personal information management system is known world-wide for its use in companies, non-profits, and for personal use to communicate ideas, achieve tasks, and maintain the interconnected reality of the present.

Still, nothing hinders efficiency than an unanswered inbox full of emails. One of the ways Outlook can help you –as it’s helped me – is to organize the internal folders.

What’s worked for me
In restructuring in my email folders within Outlook, I first analyzed the folders I had and my process for following up with emails I received daily. For me, the important emphasis was segmenting out and prioritizing what was important versus what could wait.

I borrowed a lot of organizational ideas from a book by a well-known productivity consultant, David Allen, titled Getting Things Done. My biggest take away from it was if I could achieve a task in two minutes or less, then I needed to go ahead and take care of it. If I was unable to in that very moment and yet still needed to take action, I could pull the email into its own folder, delete it, or archive it. The end goal is to only touch an email once to take action, and maybe a second time if you have to research something or need to think about your response. The subfolders I came up with were:

Action Items – Notes to Edit – Projects – Phone Calls -Waiting for/on- Travel – Webex
Within all folders, I proceeded to make subfolders that said “completed”. After, I generated archived folders that are a lot more detailed. It is necessary to have only a few folders within your inbox to keep it simplified. For example, I know “action items” is the one folder that I have to go to each and every day to make sure it is taken care. Your inbox should constantly be emptied throughout the day and most days I do not leave until it is emptied. If I am successful at this it is one thing that makes me feel like I accomplished or achieved something that day.

Within your inbox I recommend 4 to 7 folders. I have a couple of folders that serve a more temporary need (travel or webex, for example) but the folders I tend to be most concerned about are the action items, notes to edit, and phone calls.

What we are trying to achieve here is a way to organize emails to follow up with clients, with staff, and with other key individuals. How you manage your emails and tasks is a customized and personalized process. You might have certain nuances in your industry or in the way you keep up with client communication, but in the end, it is important that email is used as a tool for enhancing communication not barring it. Some of my colleagues prefer to organize their email folders by name of fellow staff or management – this is certainly another way that folders can be utilized to streamline the messages you receive daily.

Challenges
As you can imagine with any new organizational system there are challenges. To no surprise, time is one of the biggest issues on my end. Even with a goal to get through my emails daily, sometimes it just does not happen. Another issue is not forgetting about certain folders and losing some emails “in space”.

Yet, as with anything, we overcome challenges with patience and perseverance. I have stuck to my new internal email organizational system in Outlook and I feel more prepared, responsive, and ready to help the clients I serve. That is what organization can help you do, and I certainly hope these small approaches help you to achieve bigger goals.

Part II Coming Soon: Utilizing Outlook’s Task List

Jesse R. Morris, AIF®, CFS®, PPC

 

Jesse Morris is the founder of Never Ever Ordinary, a data and business intelligence company in Denver Colorado.