For any organization, insights democratization is no easy feat.
That’s because democratizing insights isn’t just a matter of distributing insights. Rather, it’s a matter of empowering stakeholders to access, process, and apply insights in a way that can be sustained over the long term.
With the right insights management solution, you can simplify the process and increase the impact of your insights democratization initiative. In this article, we’ll review the foundations of democratizing insights and then show how a tool like Stravito can support you in these efforts.
What do we mean when we say democratize insights?
Democratizing insights means to make insights accessible to stakeholders across the organization. However, making insights accessible isn’t as straightforward as it might sound. Because insights are the most directly applicable, it makes sense to prioritize their democratization over that of data or information. This helps to increase the likelihood that insights are applied in decision-making processes, which is the desired outcome.
Why is it important to democratize consumer insights?
McKinsey found that organizations that leverage customer insights outperform peers by 85 percent in sales growth and by more than 25 percent in gross margin. But how exactly do you leverage insights?
Practically, it means ensuring that stakeholders across the organization can blend vetted insights with their unique areas of expertise. When all stakeholders in a project are able to cultivate a deep understanding of consumers, it’s much more likely that the needs of the consumer will be considered at all levels of product or campaign.
But what about consumer insights teams?
An excellent question. A common misconception about democratizing insights is that it will make the role of insights teams irrelevant. But this couldn’t be farther from the truth.
Research from Boston Consulting Group found that as many as 80% of companies limit the role of the Consumer Insights function, instead of leveraging them as a strategic business partner or a source of competitive advantage.
It’s far too common that insights teams end up functioning as an information desk for organizational stakeholders, answering requests for information or being asked to commission research on specific topics. Consumer behavior is complicated, and insights teams are uniquely poised to offer nuanced, actionable interpretations of research findings.
Another frequent problem is that insights teams are included at irregular stages of projects, often being asked to confirm decisions that have already been made, rather than being given the opportunity to apply their expertise in a deeper, more meaningful, and more proactive way.
So democratizing insights can actually help to elevate the role of insights teams in the organization by shifting the way that consumer insights are used.
How do you actually democratize insights?
While exact steps will always depend on your organization’s specific needs, there are 3 core capabilities involved in democratizing insights: self-service access, thoughtful knowledge sharing, and minimized barriers to long-term success.
How a tool like Stravito can help
Of course, democratizing insights can require a lot of time and effort, especially if it isn’t the way your organization is used to working. The good news is that a specialized insights management platform like Stravito can make the process a lot easier and help to eliminate many common challenges.
Self-service access to insights
Self-service access is essential for empowering everyone in the organization to work with insights. For stakeholders, it means being able to quickly find answers to common questions. For insights teams, it means being able to work more effectively and free up time to focus on deeper insights work.
Stravito’s powerful search and user-friendly design help to empower everyone in the organization with self-service access to insights. With search built on AI and machine learning, users are able to go beyond basic keyword search and receive results based on what they mean, not just what they type.
In addition, Stravito’s user-friendly design is intuitive to use, like Google, Spotify, or Netflix. No need for extensive training sessions or manuals. Many users are able to just login and get started.
Search in Stravito
Rethinking how insights are shared
Sharing knowledge doesn’t mean that knowledge has been shared. Sending someone an email with information doesn't guarantee that they will read it or remember it later. That’s why it’s essential to think strategically about knowledge sharing, for example with the 5 Dimensions framework.
The 5 Dimensions framework looks at:
-what is being shared
-why it’s been shared
-who it’s being shared with
-how it’s being shared
-when it’s being shared
Considering these variables makes it easier to tailor how insights are packaged and distributed, helping to ensure maximum impact.
Stravito was built with these needs in mind. For example, users can share 1-1 via link, but also asynchronously share insights with groups of any size via Collections, which are like playlists of insights. Additionally, insights in Stravito’s Home View are tailored to individual users, based on their role, location, and interests.
Collections in Stravito
Ensuring long-term success
When it comes to democratizing insights, it’s the long-term game that truly matters. This means being able to maintain new processes or workflows, as well as encouraging engagement well after the initial launch.
But how do you actually ensure long-term success? Well, the short answer is to remove the obstacles that you have control over. For example, the amount of additional work that this sort of initiative can create.
Part of that is accomplished by the aspects of Stravito that we already discussed: powerful technology paired with intuitive, human-centered design. These elements prevent common challenges, like poor user adoption or endless training sessions, by ensuring that your platform actually does what you want it to. This might seem like a basic point to make, but the term shelfware exists for a reason.
Beyond the technology itself, it’s also about ensuring that you are able to adapt existing workflows and generate enthusiasm to help drive adoption long-term. This can be a full-time job in itself, which is why Stravito offers dedicated support that helps to tailor launch and roll-out to your organization’s specific needs.
Power to the people
At the end of the day, insights democratization is all about putting people first. It benefits insights teams by creating more time for high-value work, empowers stakeholders to use more insights, and helps your organization to better meet consumers’ needs.
That’s why Stravito is such a powerful tool to support insights democratization – because it’s designed to make insights engagement a habit for the whole organization.
But of course, democratizing insights will never be one-size-fits-all. Every enterprise has unique structures, processes, and ecosystems that need to be taken into consideration.
Because the right insights management solution shouldn’t just work–it should work for you.
What Does it Mean to Democratize Insights?
Sarah Wiggins Sep 17, 2021