Making analytics a long-term priority and not trying to implement too much too quickly is the key to a successful plan, according to MDM CEO & Publisher Tom Gale in 7 Steps to Elevate Analytics in 2018.
"There are many unknowns about how this industry will be shaped in the next five years by Amazon and many other players," Gale says. "What is known – a strong analytics foundation will be critical to compete effectively."
Gale recommends building out a three-year plan for analytics in order to grow at a steady, yet manageable place.
"The keyword is 'build,'" Gale says. "The vast majority of distributors are early in developing analytics capabilities. Or outsource a slice of analytics to a vendor as a turnkey solution that sometimes delays building a stronger internal capability."
Keeping a team on pace over a long period of time can be easier said than done, but the long-term importance of analytics should be incentive enough to stay motivated.
"Unless your management team is aligned on the longer-term strategic objective, it will get derailed by other priorities," Gale says.
Read more tips for changing how your organization thinks about analytics in 7 Steps to Elevate Analytics in 2018.