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  • Marketing metrics that actually matter
  • Data silos hinder your organization’s growth
  • How workflow automation speeds up business projects
  • What is a Data pipeline and how does it work?
  • Shorten lead cycles through marketing automation
  • Marketing metrics that actually matter
    2023-01-17

    Marketing teams are tasked with the immense responsibility of driving brands’ success in the cutthroat world of business. They are constantly on the lookout for ways to increase the effectiveness of their marketing programs and maximize their marketing budgets. It’s a pressure cooker of a job where even the slightest misstep can lead to disastrous consequences.

    However, despite the pressure, most marketing teams often fall into the trap of measuring just surface-level metrics, such as click-through rates, cost per click (CPC), cost per thousand (CPM), and cost per action (CPA). Don’t get us wrong — these are great, but you need to delve deeper to conduct an actual in-depth analysis.

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    The right marketing metrics

    When it comes to understanding your customers, one size does not fit all. Grouping all customers together is a recipe for disaster, as it ignores the rich diversity of individual preferences and behaviors that make each target audience unique. 

    One powerful tool at your disposal is the combination of customer segmentation with higher-level analyses comparing customer acquisition costs (CAC) to customer lifetime value (LTV). This approach allows businesses to gain a deep understanding of their customers, and determine which segments are most profitable.

    Businesses can identify pockets of highly efficient marketing spend by analyzing customer acquisition efforts at this level. This information is crucial for making informed decisions.

    Grouping users into cohorts is your friend

    Delve deeper into cohorts, and do so far beyond what most marketers typically consider. While standard segments should be considered as well, don’t stop there. Explore various combinations of segments and test your hypotheses. Identify which pockets of spending drive the most value and which do not.

    For example:

    • How was CAC to LTV for users who have seen your Youtube ads and ended up completing your signup process? 
    • What about CAC to LTV for users over 45 that have seen your marketing campaign on Instagram?

    Why do advertisers overlook this system?

    Pulling all this data together can be painful. If you are employing a marketing agency to control marketing budgets, their specialists usually can only access ad platforms, while ad servers, CRMs, and back-end billing systems stay overlooked. Plus, some of these firms might charge serious fees. 

    AINSYS integration framework syncs data between every tool and platform your marketing team employs in their work, helping you get an accurate true picture of customer acquisition economics. View your end-to-end analytics all in one place.

    The integration process

    To quickly integrate your systems and activate this type of advanced metrics, AINSYS specialists have developed the perfect integration template:

    • Extracting click attribution, view-through conversion, and Google Ads data from Google Analytics into AINSYS Google Analytics connector for self-service analytics and collaboration.
    • Leveraging the AINSYS Salesforce connector to extract customer data from Salesforce into AINSYS.
    • Extracting data from your back-end billing and operational systems using the AINSYS SQL connector.

    You can now view and compare all your metrics in a number of dashboards that allow for easy data exploration with ready-to-use AINSYS templates. 

    Adopting this system is a revelatory experience for marketers, as it allows them to extract maximum value from every marketing dollar. It quickly becomes evident that even within seemingly profitable campaigns, there are pockets of highly profitable and underperforming spend.

  • Data silos hinder your organization’s growth
    2022-11-15

    Data silos, the issue of having your data trapped in separate apps with no means to link, sync, or edit it, is a serious problem that affects businesses of all kinds. Automating manual procedures is the answer to breaking down data silos that have been hindering your company’s growth. You will be able to advance to fundamentally redefinе processes and alter how your team operates without specialized tools. 

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    According to Statista, one of the biggest business data research centers, the world will produce 181 trillion gigabytes worth of data by 2025. It’s clear — organizations produce enormous amounts of data every day, without being able to fully utilize it 100% of the time. And data silos prevent your organization from processing your data. 

    Why are data silos so harmful? Here’s 4 reasons why your business needs to start breaking down data silos today.

    • Even slight issues with accessing data will cause limited collaboration across the business. Teams cannot make any decisions if there is not enough available information, causing employees to miss out on opportunities and reach the company’s goals;
    • Isolated data will quickly become outdated and inaccurate;
    • Generating analysis too becomes incorrect on an enterprise level;
    • Worsening customer experience. Your clients expect provided data to be available across an organization’s teams 24/7. However, 64% of customers note that most of the time they have to repeat or re-explain information to different representatives.

    Chances are, you don’t have a giant team of developers constantly working on state-of-the-art API integrations that would allow your other employees to effortlessly move data between your applications. For the same exact reason, more than 80% of businesses say they frequently struggle with data silos. 

    Breaking down data silos

    These silos are isolated islands of data, and they make it prohibitively costly to extract data and put it to other uses. Thanks to modern solutions, such as no-code service integration platforms, managers are able to break down data silos, improving all business processes. 

    5 easy steps to follow if you want to move past the data silos problem:

    1. Identify where the data currently sits, how it is collected, and how relevant or outdated it is;
    2. Once you have gathered and audited data, ask your employees to pinpoint what challenges data silos cause;
    3. Decide which platform you will use as your source of truth and which systems will be integrated to it;
    4. Centralize and integrate data through the proper platform, as well as centralize data access;
    5. Make sure to continue controlling data through a governance framework later on.

    For example, AINSYS provides all tools necessary to redefine business processes, connect multiple databases, and extract data from multiple sources and load it to any app of your liking. 

    What characteristics do I look for in software to find the best option for fighting data silos?

    The best platforms offer customizable solutions for dealing with any logic operations problems and connecting CRMs. At the same time, it needs to be available to non-tech personnel through a visual, drag-and-drop interface. In fact, teams often don’t want to worry about technical constraints at all, so you want to look for a platform that uses appropriate  architecture. However, if your developers team will want to get to the bottom of particular software, you also would need the platform to provide that opportunity.

    Ruben Puentedura, an education researcher, offers one of the best methods for assessing software for service integration and preventing data silos. He has developed the Substitution, Augmentation, Modification, and Redefinition (SAMR) model, a taxonomy-based approach. This model groups business processes into the four categories mentioned, allowing you to assess technology platforms. As you evaluate software, you need to check if it’s suitable for your company on each level.

    Here’s a tip: managers often focus on the first two levels, trying to plan out the data transformation process. They forget that enhancement is just as important. Teams in which the modification and redefinition have been embedded find more novel and immersive uses for the software. 

    Many seem to imagine SAMR as a mountain that needs to be conquered. However, effective technology integration doesn’t involve achieving the SAMR model’s pinnacle; rather, it involves being aware of the range of options it offers and selecting the best strategy for your company.

    Start delivering value now

    AINSYS platform will help you and your employees at every level of the SAMR model.

    • On the substitution level, we help you to look at every single resource your company uses in its core products and later identify higher-performing, less expensive, or less scarce materials that will help you save time and money;
    • You will be able to augment the sales process by adding CRM-to-ERP automation that not only logs new customer and sales order information in ERP but also quickly transfers data to the sales team. With an automated deal-close in the CRM, we can set off crucial revenue-related events, allowing for simple financial recording and team collaboration;
    • By linking a campaign list and lead/customer database queries to our software, you can modify the marketing campaign process. Your marketing team won’t need to manage the campaign subscription list in order to launch a configured messaging campaign for a specific client segment. As a result, by using auto-refreshed data that never unintentionally contacts leads who have previously opted out, marketers significantly boost their performance;
    • Customize a unique team experience using a variety of tools to redefine your work processes. 

    Automating manual procedures is the answer to breaking down data silos that have been hindering your company’s growth. You will be able to advance to fundamentally redefinе processes and alter how your team operates without specialized tools. Want to try out AINSYS? Learn how automation can help you prevent data silos and guarantee complete control over operations by registering for a free trial.

     

  • How workflow automation speeds up business projects
    2022-11-17

    More and more businesses are switching to workflow automation. Why? Their top managers say it is helping them to drastically increase ROI on Saas technologies and accelerate the most crucial operations. In fact, major companies have been increasing the automation platforms implementation so much that the low-code automation market is now predicted to reach $190 billion in volume by 2030.

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    If you work for a large company, this number probably did not blow your mind as on average teams use more than sixty apps to deal with data, therefore employees also have to look for API integrations. And they often meet roadblocks in their way.

    How integration problems obstruct your company’s objectives

    In the course of the pandemic alone, business spending on cloud and SaaS services has surged by more than 30% since usually integration projects grow into an infinite load of complicated builds across internally used technologies that eventually break as companies start to update their infrastructures, requiring continual maintenance from IT teams.

    Combine that issue with the developer scarcity that has companies searching for IT specialists to deal with the mounting integration backlog. Voila! A recipe for disaster. 

    According to KMPG, one of the Big Four accounting organizations, three times as many executives report low code as their most critical investment since 2020. They say that both no-code and low-code automation platforms significantly accelerate the development of applications that combine intricate business logic, automate workflow and case management tasks, interact with existing systems, and provide a smooth user experience.

    And this is how they are using them to speed up business processes:

    • Lead routing

    Lead assignment rules are usually built into CRMs, such as Salesforce, for sales and marketing teams to route leads. But out-of-the-box CRMs are usually constrained in their capabilities and frequently call for manual intervention, especially if leads are often misplaced.

    Not only does the AINSYS workflow automation solution allows to integrate CRMs with other applications for rerouting the most important leads to sales rep perfect for the job. Our advanced no-code and low-code tools provide support for custom logic operators, helping to use workflow automation for speeding up lead routing by three times.

    • Order fulfillment

    When it comes to e-commerce, order fulfillment includes several different processes, such as order processing, communication with customers, shipping, and others. Each one requires multiple applications that, in turn, demand integration.

    However, with the AINSYS workflow automation platform, companies have been able to scale the entire fulfillment process. Every order becomes a trigger, starting up the process of sending order details to ERP, allowing for coordination with delivery personnel. Our platform will also help you to automate informing customers and closing deals.

    • IT ticketing

    Companies use IT ticketing systems to quickly prioritize customer requests, load info on them to their databases, as well as assign and alert certain team members. However, many are now choosing to streamline the process to reduce ticket backlog and better manage human resources.

    • New team members onboarding

    The demand for a thorough and effective employee onboarding procedure has only increased as more people choose to work remotely. So many new employees necessitate new types of operations, such as user provisioning and tool authentication, planning training sessions, and many more.

    AINSYS no-code workflow automation platform can enable HR managers to sync employee data across HR management systems and applicant tracking ones, automate user provisioning, and smoothly offboard departing workers. With us, businesses can easily advance their HR processes and deliver a positive employee experience with an end-to-end automated onboarding process.

    AINSYS workflow automation platform bridges the gap between IT staff and business users by empowering citizen developers to set up connectors and build robust automated processes without utilizing development resources. 

  • What is a Data pipeline and how does it work?
    2022-11-11

    A data pipeline is a set of tools and methods for transporting data from  sources to the destination. AINSYS provides businesses of any size with the best tools for setting up data pipelines via data warehouses and pre-configured pipelines that facilitate data normalization for non-technical personnel. Our approach to data pipeline management reduces time to MVP for customers’ teams from weeks and months to minutes and hours.

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    Imagine that you just bought a popular bakery. Since it has its own website customers place orders 24/7. That means you have to process a lot of data, such as customers’ info, what cakes they order, credit card information, and many other details. Thanks to online transaction processing (OLTP) programs, including various databases and apps, your bakery is prospering.

    As the bakery’s owner, not only do you have to properly accept orders but you also have to closely watch your overall results, such as analyzing which cakes are popular and which ones should be taken off the shelf. For that, you collect transactional data and move it from the database that includes order info to another system that handles the rest of your data, transforming it in the process. 

    Moving data this, moving data that… You need infrastructure and software to do that. You need a data pipeline.

    What is a data pipeline?

    A data pipeline is a set of tools and methods for transporting data from the source (often many separate sources) to the destination. It’s important to note that data is changed and optimized during the journey, eventually arriving at a state that allows analysis and producing new business insights.

    So, all that concerns accumulating, organizing, and transporting data is a data pipeline. Many of the manual tasks needed to process, shorten, and improve lengthy data loads are automated by modern software. It also takes care of loading raw data into spreadsheets for interim storage and then modifying it before adding it to the final database.

    Dealing with data pipelines requires data integration — for example, processing and storing transaction data and completing a sales trend analysis for the entire quarter. To do the analysis, you will need to pull data from multiple sources into a single storage location and prepare it for analysis. As a result, a data pipeline enables the resolution of “origin-destination” issues, particularly with enormous amounts of data.

    Key components

    Different researchers identify basic data pipeline components differently. But, according to David Wells, the senior research analyst at Eckerson Group, at a high level, a data pipeline consists of eight types of components:

    • Origin

    The point at which data first enters the pipeline, for example, the company’s IoT devices, social media, APIs, or public datasets;

    • Destination 

    The final point of delivery. Depending on the use case, data can be sourced for data visualization and analytical tools or relocated to storage such as a data lake or a data warehouse.

    • Dataflow 

    Processes that allow data to move, including any transformations;

    • Storage 

    Databases for persisting data during various stages as it moves through the pipeline. Data storage options are determined by a variety of parameters, including frequency and volume of queries to a storage system, uses of data, and so on;

    • Processing 

    Steps for ingesting and transforming data. It focuses on how to support data movement. For example, data can be ingested by extracting it from source systems, replicating it from one database to another (database replication), streaming it, etc.;

    • Workflow

    Sequencing and dependency management of processes;

    • Monitoring 

    Ensuring a healthy and efficient pipeline by checking how the data pipeline and its stages are working.

    • Technology 

    Software for enabling dataflows, storing, processing, workflows, and monitoring. It plays the most crucial role since the right equipment can help your business rise to the top or tank it within days.

    Managing data pipelines

    It is impossible to overstate the importance of paying enough attention to each component, as well as connecting them. Your imaginary bakery needs every step of the way to be properly organized. Providing the right tools plays a key role in this.

    AINSYS provides businesses of any size with the best tools for setting up data pipelines via data warehouses and pre-configured pipelines that facilitate data normalization for non-technical personnel. Our approach to data pipeline management reduces time to MVP for customers’ teams from weeks and months to minutes and hours. You will also be able to integrate new IT solutions into your organization’s workflow with lighting-fast accuracy even after the end of the setup process.

    However, every business owner still needs to be acutely aware of how their company is structured. This starts with determining what type of pipeline you need created.

    1. Batch pipelines

    Batch data pipelines do exactly what you think — process data in batches, gathering it over a period of time and executing the procedure at regular intervals.

    When you think of a standard data analysis methodology, you are probably picturing batch pipelines. Indeed, batch processing has been crucial for decades in analytics and business intelligence, and it continues to be so today. No surprise there — its familiarity and simplicity have helped many businesses to streamline processes.

    You and we both know that for the company to run smoothly and efficiently, results should be delivered much faster than possible with batch pipelines. That’s why streaming pipelines were introduced.

    2. Streaming pipelines 

    Streaming pipelines employ real-time data processing, commonly referred to as event streaming. It is a method of continually processing data as it is collected in a matter of seconds or milliseconds. In an event-based architecture, real-time systems respond faster to new data inputs. While real-time data pipelines can be utilized for analytics, they are required for systems that require data to be operationalized instantly.

    For example, your imaginary bakery’s website is better off instantaneously managing inventory to avoid conflicts (for example, selling the same cake to two different customers), monitoring stock, and providing communication with clients.

    Of course, the advantages of real-time streaming and data analysis include the ability to rapidly investigate our data and automate processes. We take modern automating programs for granted but our companies would not be able to function without them.
    However, modern software for creating data pipelines often lacks connectivity and processing capabilities for data, making integrating vital business systems difficult.

    AINSYS solves issues that both batch and streaming pipelines might cause when you set up business processes. Your teams can use our no-code tools to transform and test data pipelines on the fly, eliminating the need to collect requirements and create long design and technical documentation.

  • Shorten lead cycles through marketing automation
    2022-11-08

    Marketing automation has become one of the biggest game-changers for small and medium-sized businesses. To ensure that no metrics are left unanalyzed and leads unpursued, businesses automate repetitive processes, marketing campaigns, and following up on leads. But not all marketing automation tools were made equal and provide smooth solutions for creating leads and turning them into actual customers.

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    Let’s see what to look for in a marketing automation program to reduce the lead cycle:

    • Features that allow tagging and categorizing prospects depending on lead qualifications, such as the fields your customers work in or what type of service they need;
    • Triggers that kick off different processes, for example, allowing information to flow through the company or sending emails in response to certain customer actions;
    • Automated processes that take care of lead generation and cultivation.

    AINSYS software offers these and even more features. As a result, our clients shorten lead cycles, generate more leads, and turn more prospects into clients.

    What issues can automation software alleviate? 

    Contrary to popular belief, speed is one of the most crucial aspects to consider while dealing with leads, not producing more marketing campaigns. Up to 50% of all potential clients will choose the provider who responds first. Marketers are 7x more likely to qualify leads if they follow up within an hour. However, the sad reality is that it takes 42 hours on average for leads to get a response.

    Also, according to research, 60% of sales professionals spend at least an hour each day manually entering data. Manual lead management procedures result in a number of difficulties, including an increasing amount of human errors, which lengthens reaction time and reduces conversion rate.

    Oh, my employees are so busy! How can I help them save time? 

    Well, your departments, especially sales and marketing ones, are more likely to waste far less time on administrative tasks if you provide ways to automatically enter data since the only alternative is to do that manually. All you have to deal with is the setup process: just prepare your email outreach in advance and schedule its deployment based on what triggers your leads might make.

    While both customer acquisition and retention are crucial, acquiring new clients is much more expensive than maintaining current ones.

    AINSYS automation software is used to grow and manage your current client databases, as well as to attract new customers. Interactions with them are tracked and moved between your apps and CRMs, making it simple to refer back to previous trends. To build long-lasting and fruitful relationships with customers, you can run reports to determine types of companies and industries worth concentrating on, as well as monitor which marketing campaigns result in the best outcomes.

    Cross-selling and upselling also become simpler with marketing automation — to increase customer lifetime value, configure triggers to inform your clients about other goods or services they might want to use. You can also improve customer satisfaction by providing reliable customer support through automatically logged conversations and consistent follow-ups. After all, happy clients are more likely to purchase from you again in the future.

    Other aspects prolonging the lead cycle

    87% of companies admit: their data is siloed among many different sources, locked away in applications and decentralized databases with no way to extract it quickly and efficiently. This is an especially painful subject for marketing companies since their lead and customer data is often caged away in their MAP, not synchronized with any CRMs.

    The lack of consistent, synced data causes ongoing problems with lead management, such as duplicate lead lists that artificially inflate lead counts, or unintentionally pursuing those who have already opted out.

    Optimize your long-term strategy

    Even though 97% of marketers agree that digital integrations are crucial for shortening the lead cycle, surveys reveal that only half are actually taking action. Markets, customers, and technology are all changing, so it’s no surprise that your sales and marketing teams have to adapt. 

    By providing proper automation software, you can help them to easily follow the status of any project, obtain insights early, and take appropriate actions. With the right analytics, you will be able to pinpoint where your tactics need adjustment and, after you’ve done so, monitor progress moving forward.

    Automation software speeds up the following steps of the lead cycle:

    • Uploading lists with leads to systems to set the stage for follow-up campaigns;
    • Making sure each lead has been properly formed and has additional info, required for later use;
    • Using filtering processes, sorting and prioritizing leads;
    • Routing the hottest leads to sales teams.

    With AINSYS marketing automation, it’s no longer necessary to guess which channels or strategies were successful and which ones weren’t. You have more time to focus on honing the effective ones because you aren’t wasting time guessing.

    AINSYS aids during every step of the way, so you can maximize the return on your investment. Our solution will foster your relationships with current clients by extracting data that enables recognizing trends, gaining insights, and improving marketing and sales strategies over time.

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