The best and easiest way to understand the true power and usefulness of mapping is to look at real examples from everyday life. Believe it or not, hundreds of thousands of maps are being created each and every week by businesses, nonprofits, and media organizations in an effort to sell an idea, persuade a group of people, or tell a story.
Mapping is everywhere. Why? Because visuals are extremely powerful tools. The fact is, most people can’t look at a spreadsheet filled with hundreds of rows and columns of raw data and easily understand what it all means. Data is complex. It can’t tell stories in the same way that visuals can.
If you didn’t take advantage of the power and value of mapping in 2015, this year is the year to do it. As we’ve written before on this blog, there are a number of reasons why you should be visualizing data for your business.
In 2015, more people than ever before began leveraging the power of business intelligence and data to grow their businesses. With the rise of new, affordable, and easy-to-use tools, business owners began to dabble more with data. In addition to the introduction of new tools, more blog posts, case studies, and white papers on the subject of data science and business intelligence were published last year than ever before.
Last month you may have seen that we launched a new series where we share our favorite news stories and articles about mapping from around the globe. If you missed our edition from last month, check it out here.
As we mentioned in that first post, we created the series to celebrate our love of maps—and to highlight the fact that maps are literally all around us. They are everywhere. Why? Because maps create the opportunity to present extremely complex data in a way that most people can digest and understand. Maps tell stories. They persuade. They change minds. They lead people to act. They inform.
If you want to succeed in business today, you have to take the time to collect, analyze, interpret, and act on data. You have to invest in business intelligence.
Not sure where to start? We can help. We’ve compiled a list of the top nine best business intelligence blogs on the web. Start exploring them to learn what your business data can do for you:
DOMO is a business intelligence software platform. Their blog, the Domosphere, is filled with helpful information, industry trends, actionable insight, and real stories that all relate to business intelligence. It’s a great blog to go to when you’re interesting in gaining more insight on the data you’re collecting for your business.
If you’re a business owner and you’re looking to boost growth in the final months of the year and into 2016, one of the best tactics you can implement is to create and share more maps. If you’re like a lot of other business owners, you may not be creating maps for one of the following reasons:
- You have no experience creating maps and the thought of doing so is a bit intimidating
- You can’t think of any mapping opportunities that exist for your business
- You’d like to create maps, but you don’t think you have the time needed to do it
- You just don’t see any value in creating maps
In 2012 the Harvard Business Review called Data Scientist the sexiest job of the 21st century.
Obviously there are varying opinions on the definition of “sexy,” but in the wake of the data revolution, data scientists have been coming out of the woodwork and enjoying previously unheard of popularity.
Tim O’Brien once said, “Storytelling is the essential human activity. The harder the situation, the more essential it is.” This applies to everything in life, especially data.
Contently reinforced this point, when it quoted Myles Harrison, saying, “Just like you wouldn’t expect an author to write a book without a plot, or an entrepreneur to launch a new venture without a business plan, you can’t expect to march blindly into creating a report or article using data without knowing what you want to say.”
With the average American being hit with around 34 gigabytes of content daily, the only way to make yours’ stick is by creating content that has substance and is backed up with objective data.
How are key stakeholders supposed to make data-driven decisions when they are only given a boatload of data and no story to easily connect the dots for them?
In recent years, data and business intelligence in general has become an important part of business success. More and more business owners and teams are now relying on data more than ever before in order to make better decisions about customers, products, and systems. The problem is, data analysis doesn’t come very easy to most people. Unless you’re an experienced data scientist or a mathematician, it can be hard to interpret thousands of rows of data in a spreadsheet. Fortunately, there are a lot of great tools out there that can help make data analysis a lot easier.
Here are seven data visualization and business intelligence tools that you can use in order to make better decisions about the future of your company or organization: