What’s your top priority in 2017?

Sales and revenue? Efficiency? Risk? Retention? Loyalty? Something else?

Whatever your answer, there’s one thing you absolutely must, must, must do this year: use your data better.

You won’t be alone.

There are are countless technologies – like cloud, mobile, blockchain, IoT, M2M, virtual and augmented reality, 3d printing, robotics, and more – that can help you with your digital transformation over time.

Yet, brands everywhere have made it their #1 priority to figure out exactly how to use data tech better in their day-to-day to get the results they want, easier, cheaper, and ahead of the competition.

“Winners and losers in the digital world get separated at the data level,” according to Malcolm Frank, chief strategy officer at Cognizant, contributing to a recent Forbes-Hitachi study.

So why is everyone rushing to data tech?

Data Delivers Huge Gains

Brands are starting to understand that only data can deliver huge gains in every part of the enterprise, in every industry.

For example, one national online retailer increased their revenue 18% just by using data to make better product recommendations to shoppers.

A large contact center for a national brand decreased customer churn 35% by using data to provide better service and make better offers.

A manufacturer reduced operational costs 22% by using data to consolidate parts and suppliers.

You Have to Get Better All the Time

Customers are more demanding every day. They want perfect experiences and unprecedented value provided to them before they even think to ask. They want you to read their minds.

Competition is fiercer than ever. Legacy brands are going head-to-head with a rapid influx of digital upstarts with disruptive business models, products, and services.

Executives, boards, and shareholders aren’t satisfied with small improvements. They want to see big gains, reliably, quarter over quarter and year over year.

So how do you win in this environment?

Continuous automated improvement is the only way to win. Change for the better can’t happen every once in a while, or in only one department.

You need to wire your entire enterprise so that every part of it improves automatically 24/7. You need to become a responsive enterprise, automatically sensing opportunities to adapt and improve and acting on them with perfect execution.

Data Is the Key to the Responsive Enterprise

Only data can make the responsive enterprise a reality.

This is because only data can continually and automatically find every real opportunity – every chink in your armor, under-leveraged advantage, or moment of truth – for you to improve.

And also give you your best (i.e. most effective based on all evidence) play for each opportunity.

And also execute each play for you automatically, in the right moment, around-the-clock.

That’s why brands are making data their #1 priority this year.

How much more could you be doing more with your data?

Emily Gay

Emily is the Marketing Director at Emcien.

How is automation transforming analysis? Download Redefining Analytics to find out.