One of the most interesting developments for professionals trying to expand their marketing efforts is the use of Business Intelligence (BI) tools. These are tools that promise more access to important data that helps you better grasp your marketing and sales efforts. However, over time it has been demonstrated that many of the BI tools that entrepreneurs, business owners, and professionals use are either not as effective or improperly applied to the task at hand.
Why BI Tools Are Not Effective
Of the different reasons why the tools do not live up to expectations, the most obvious is that the creators of the software assume that ordinary people will take the time to learn and understand the platforms. This means that the very people that BI tools are designed to help are ill-equipped to understand the clunky software that must be learned in order to get the most out of the system. Those who are in marketing and sales need user-friendly, easy-to-understand platforms so that they can spend more time selling and less time learning.
Unfortunately, many of the tools get regulated to the IT team as they are the only ones qualified to create applications from the systems that were purchased. Not only do to the tools wind up in the wrong hands, they are often based on logic that is more system-oriented than human which discombobulates the entire process. Marketing and sales are designed to reach people, not machines and therefore the effectiveness of many BI tools gets lost in the process.
The Need for Smaller Applications
What really makes most BI tools problematic that goes beyond their difficulty to understand is that IT departments have to modularize them in order for the sales and marketing team to use them with any efficiency. This means taking apart, reshaping, and then creating a dashboard or reference where those involved in the marketing aspect can make some use of it.
However, creating smaller applications that meet certain guidelines can take days or longer depending on how good IT departments can sort through the information found in the BI tools. This means more money, more time and effort going into a process that quickly becomes less efficient. Plus, the window of opportunity to address new avenues in reaching customers may be lost depending on the timeframe when it comes to ordering and creating smaller, more usable applications from the BI tools that were purchased with the idea that they would create a more efficient environment.
Those is business want to make their companies more efficient when it comes to reaching new customers, not learning the complexities of BI tools. With Big Data become more a part of how businesses read and react to data, it becomes more important to create simple interfaces that are easy and intuitive to use.
Running a simple, natural-language question that pulls up the information needed in sections is the solution compared to difficult to use and understand BI tools. With usability being the key, BI tools simply fail in this regard which means that other methods must be examined.