In this episode, we talk with Pete Caputa from Databox about implementing better behavior around your data and measurements.
Pete shares the good the bad and the ugly of what many companies do pertaining to their data and reporting. He also shares that Databox has reporting training that you can take for free.
He maps out the blueprint the training teaches and that you can follow for better behavior around your data as you move forward. Understanding your data is all about making smart decisions for your business.
This episode of the 15-Minute Strategy Podcast will help you with your reporting, your data, and your decisions for your business in the future.
** Check out the Databox course: https://databox.com/business-analytics-course **
👉🏻 About Pete Caputa
Pete Caputa helps companies grow by implementing sales and marketing excellence. Pete has worked with 100's of businesses directly as well as helped 100's of agencies and media companies grow by helping their clients achieve predictable, measurable and improvable ROI from the marketing and advertising services they provide.
👉🏻 About Sprocket Talk
At Sprocket Talk, our mission is to help you navigate the HubSpot tool. We will help you get 100% ROI across the Marketing Hub, the Sales Hub, the Service Hub and yes, even the HubSpot CMS. Our videos will educate AND entertain.
Want to read the interview?
Hey, Sprocketeers. It's your boy George B. Thomas, and we're back with another episode of the 15-Minute Strategy Podcast, where we try to give you a strategy that can affect sales marketing service, or maybe the business as a whole in 15 minutes or less. We're never less sometimes more. Okay, most of the time was more. But I'm super excited today because we have a buddy of pal somebody I have known for years even before where he currently is.
But Pete, before we jump into the deep end of the pool, on the strategy podcast, why don't you let the sprocket tears The viewers and listeners know who you are, what you do, and where you do it.
Pete Caputa, CEO Databox. We are a software company that helps organizations get all their data into one spot, set goals against it, be alerted when things happen, and more efficiently and in an automated way, share the results to their team, clients, or investors.
So Pete, the deep end of the pool I want to dive into is I've been paying attention to the girls and boys out in the marketing and sales and service space, and they seem to be having a little bit of a problem, and that is they are really bad with their data.
So as we jump in, let's talk about better behavior around your data and building processes. What are the foundational pieces that the Sprocketeers, the viewers, and listeners need to know to carry on this conversation today?
I think that as a software company, I might be surprised to say this, but it's not about the software. But what we've discovered That most organizations use data sporadically. Or because someone asked for something, and they're not thinking strategically about what they should measure it? How should they be tracking it? How they should set goals against it, and things like that.
We're on a mission to help organizations use data better. As an engineer, turn marketer, myself, I'm passionate about demystifying math for business people, especially in sales, marketing, customer service, and we're the front office stuff.
So Pete, when we think about using data better, what are some places that people should just inherently immediately be measuring if they're not? And maybe even some time frames in which they should be doing those measurements.
We have a training program that we just launched if you go to Databox.com and Click training in the top navigation, you'll see it's called the predictable performance methodology. It's a; it's free, video-based. There are three steps that we push organizations to do. The first thing is to get aligned about what metrics to track.
We walk companies through an exercise where we ask them what they're working on? And how to measure what they're working on. As well as the impact that it has on their business. We like to call them output metrics and outcome metrics. That's kind of the first step.
The second step is saying, All right, well, now that you know what your output is, say you're making a certain amount of sales calls, or you're writing a certain amount of blog posts, or you're spending a certain amount of money on Facebook ads, those are your output metrics. Those are the things you do. Then the outcomes, of course, are things that are usually a little more important to the business. The things that you're asked to report on often, such as how much traffic do we get, how many signups did we get? How many leads do we gather? How many customers or how much revenue did we get? From our marketing and sales activity. That's the first step is getting aligned around that.
Then we're all about helping them think through how do they analyze that. When you're analyzing your blog performance, you might want to look at things like which the author has the best performing content? Which topics, of course, which posts individually, have the best performance? And then why how are they performing? Are they are people reading them in full? Are people converting when they read them? Are they converting the lead turning the sale? Are our people your existing customers reading? Are they coming back? Are your subscribers coming back in?
Those are the kind of output metrics that you might want to measure? Say, for example, with your content marketing or blogging, and that's the next step to analyze, and then from there, it's adjusting. And I think this is the part that most organizations don't quite get, right. It's adjusting your strategy, adjusting what you do, how frequently you do it, you know, the details about how you've executed upon it. And just to take You know, stick with blogging as an example for, for the sake of example here, you know, you might change the topics or the keywords you're targeting, you might work, you might have one author who seems to do well do more, you might do just more of it. If you're getting the results, or you might take the content that's performing well and figure out how to update it or promote it more.
There are so many different things you could adjust to your plan. To get better results, get more people reading it, get people reading the whole thing, get people converting it. So we're all about to align, analyze, adjust, and process everyone in the organization. Everyone should think about the things they're doing and the impact it has and thinks about what metrics you can use to measure both of those and start to analyze and improve your performance.
I love that we have a framework that you guys are providing for Well, everybody, but especially now because the sprockets ears are listening to this. They can go, and they can get this we will leave a link in The show notes, and I'll ask for that again because I'm sure that might be where you want to send people after this episode. But if you're a person who now is listening to this, and you want to start paying attention to your data, but you're kind of lost in how you would do that, if somebody asked you the question, How do I get started? What's your answer to that?
Tactically speaking, it's what tools are you using? And what do those tools measure? A lot of organizations, especially as they get larger, tend to like invent metrics, or have a specific way to look at it. But I find that people that create SAS software these days put a lot of thought into that, and will generally provide you the metrics that you need to track. So you should always start there.
So it's a matter of like listing out what tools you use, whether that's Google Analytics, or Google ads or Facebook ads or HubSpot, or MailChimp or active campaign, whatever it is, literally start by logging in and seeing what you can measure. And then from there, I think a lot of times when you're doing things, it might not be your software that might not measure how often you do things and think it's just as important to measure your output as the outcomes, especially if you can correlate those two. And so sometimes it's just using a Google Sheet and keeping track of things manually, but very tactically speaking, you know, start with the tools using the data that's in there.
So let's dive into the process side of this conversation that we're having. You're getting the tools in place; you're collecting the data, you've already said that many people, even though they start to collect the data, don't always use it. And we did an episode with Christopher Penn A while back if you haven't listened to that episode, go listen to that, where he talks about people using predictive analytics or paying for it and not ever using it's like having a bike and riding it down the road. Pete, you're leaning into the same thing. What are some things that you once you have the data once you have maybe data box and dashboards, and all this stuff is coming in there? What are some things that you can fundamentally change about your process or focus On your process to make those tweaks that are going to get you to help you grow better moving forward?
Everything we've talked about till now in the last few minutes is about empowering everyone in the organization to be more data-driven. And I don't think an organization can be data-driven unless everyone thinks that way and thinks about what they do every day and how it would impacts. So that's job number one. But that only takes an organization so far. And I think after that, what's critical is that the organization has a cadence to how they do things. I think that's a true statement, no matter where you're talking about marketing, sales, HR, or finance or whatever. But from being a data-driven perspective, we're leveraging data to improve your performance of your business; you have to have a cadence.
We have a model that we use, and we taught at in the last chapter of this training program, which is to build an annual model. To build a spreadsheet model that takes all of the major things that you do in your business and the major outcomes you have in your business, try to figure out what those correlations are and build that model. Now you've done I'm sure this kind of my thought before and like on a very simple basis, what I mean is like, look at the amount of traffic you have on your website and the typical conversion rate to lead and just use that for 12 months of the year and say, okay, you know, assume that either your conversion rates going to stay the same, or if you think it's going to drop or go up a little bit, but have that as one row and in your spreadsheet.
Another row in your spreadsheet might be how many clients cancel, and how much revenue you lose in a given quarter or given month. That step one is you got to build a model for your business that doesn't be complicated, but you got to get started somewhere. Otherwise, there's just you're not able to think to be thoughtful about what you should prioritize to improve your business. That's step one. Step two is we recommend picking initiatives on a quarterly basis. So an initiative might be Hey, we're going to start doing a lot more video marketing, or, hey, we're already doing video marketing its working. Where to 2X 5X or whatever. And so that's an initiative. And that's a marketing initiative. You can have sales initiatives, services issues; we have HR initiatives. That we do as well, so there's no shortage, the whole organization on a quarterly basis, every director in my company will sit down, write out exactly what they think they should prioritize for that quarter.
We go through that list, we think about what's the, what's the effort required, and the impact required, we make decisions about what we're going to prioritize. So that's number two. I think organizations that use data have to do that because they have to be thoughtful about their resources. The third step we recommend is setting and resetting goals monthly. What we've discovered because we have a goal tracking and goal setting and tracking feature in our system, what we've discovered is that most companies set annual goals, and they don't change out it's not a good app, because basically, you can't sit there and most organizations in January and say we're going to be here by December with any kind of confidence because there's just so many moving parts. So many things that happen, you might lose employees, you might lose major clients. You know, there are all kinds of positive things. Of course, that can happen to you might have a breakthrough and get figured out and get more clients on board.
We recommend revisiting that model every month and saying, what goal Are we going to achieve this month from there, and it should be realistic, ideally, based on historical data that you have, from there. We recommend having a weekly plan. So in our organization, like many agile organizations, we list out what every person on the team is going to do every week, many times that goes for certain teams that go into a project management system, like our product team, because there are so many interdependencies on what they're doing.
For marketing, that could be just a quick checklist and the things that we're going to do that we are usually done in the past, but every week we sit down, we talked through that, and if that's the right thing to do to hit the monthly goal that we set, and if it's not we'll adapt our plan. Then finally, the last thing we do is we try to celebrate wins all the time. I think someone has a We'll; we'll wait until their monthly meeting to celebrate the success of an individual, team, or company. We're trying to do that on a daily basis. There's in any business; there's good and bad news coming at you every day. And I think it's important to celebrate the wins be objective about them based off of the data, of course, but to celebrate those wins. So that's kind of the methodology or the cadence that we follow.
Ding ding, ding Sprocketeers, we've reached the rewind point, you've got to rewind that section. It is flush full of so much stuff. I heard everything from like; you've got to build the map. To you've got to put your pinpoints in the map to understand where you're going to like, hey, you've got to celebrate those successes along your journey. There's a ton. So here's the thing.
We got to build your annual models, pick your quarterly initiative, set your monthly goals, tweak your daily plan, celebrate your successes, or tweak your weekly plan. Celebrate your successes on a regular basis.
So because it is the 15-Minute Strategy Podcast and yes, Believe it or not, we have reached that destination. I want to ask you one last question. And that as people set out on this journey or as they set out on this journey, what are some potholes or hurdles or problems that you've seen that they face that we can help them not hit and run into
Don't treat data or reporting as a, set it and forget it thing. We are what we do. We have software that allows people to set up dashboards. But there isn't a week that goes by where we don't create a handful of new panels to measure and analyze something in our business.
So we're at the point where we have thousands of dashboards. Now I don't look at them all every day, but I know that they're and can take a look at that when we need to. So I think the biggest part all organizations make is that they come up with their way of reporting or analyzing, and they do it the same way every month. Now, I'm not saying that you should throw it away, but you should always be building upon it and constantly be looking for opportunities for improvement.
They are always improving. Great advice, Pete. If people want to reach out to you if they have questions about Databox if they want to dive deeper into this subject, where do you want to send them?
If you want to check out our free training data box, com, just click training in the top, top Now, the second Now, we offer a free product with pretty generous limits on it. Check that out Databox.com/signup.
I have a team of people there, and their mission in I wouldn't say life, but mission work is to help our users get set up. We offer free support in chat. There's something we need to research or think about will come back to you by email, but we have a chat live 14 hours a day in the free product as well as our paid products.
We're always thinking about how do we help companies measure their performance? We've figured a lot of stuff out. We haven't figured everything out. But you'll find that if you've got something that you want to accomplish, we'll try to figure it out with you and encourage you to go there somebody wants to talk to me personally. I'm on Twitter @PC4media, and I'm on LinkedIn, under Peter Caputa, and usually pretty responsive.
So Sprocketeers, make sure you check out that free training. Make sure you're paying attention to your data, make sure you're building better processes moving forward, and we'll be here waiting for you on the next episode.