Adapt to Grow

Panel with Experts – Rethink the customer journey with CURIOSITY (Reflection: Part 1)

On February 2 2021, Adapt to Grow hosted a panel with experts in data science. Wrapped around a theme of curiosity, the event discussed a topic of how we can use data differently to better understand our customers, and our panelists shared some immensely valuable nuggets of wisdom. 



Technology has been making leaps and bounds for quite some time now, especially over the past decade and a bit. We now live in a world that has donned an electronic skin, where devices, gadgets, and sensors have outnumbered people. And with all that comes a plethora of data. Sure, data can tell us how many and how much, it can also help us solve problems, but when we’re really intentional with the data we have, it can help us authentically connect with our audience – internal and external. 

Why is data important? 

The need for data is indisputable. Without it, we’re relying on instincts and opinions being thrown around. But having actionable data empowers us and removes the subjectiveness in our business. It helps us to narrow-in into our target audience and be personalized with our customers and users. As Cameron Musler put it so succinctly, it gives us the “ability to understand the consumer needs, personalize the message, better manage costs and deliver results”.
Data helps create strong strategies and quantifies the purpose of our work. A company’s ability to operate, compete, and thrive is being increasingly driven by how well it can leverage data. And according to our panelist, Kholoud Odeh, data is power and it can help provide sustainable solutions. She shared that “when you use it to understand problems, inform solutions, and ultimately put it into an actionable use, data can move the needle.”
Are we collecting too much data?
Just having more may not necessarily be better when it comes to data. Data saturation is everywhere and our ability to collect data has far surpassed our ability to support, filter and manage it. But that’s where the gem is. While data proliferation has been rapid in recent days, it’s important to start with key questions that we want answers for—and then seek out the right data for that question or that business objective. Our panelist Cameron Musler explained it with a simple analogy: “Just like you use a certain amount of flour for different recipes, similarly, you use different amounts and kinds of data for different purposes.” He continued, “Think about:
  • What do you already know about your consumer?
  • What pain points are you trying to solve with your product?
  • How can data help you understand your consumer?
  • How are you gonna use them?”
Starting with these questions might help you collect and use data intentionally with purpose.

How can you bring your diverse teams on the same page with data?

This is a big question. And this is where the people component comes in. Having a mountain of data to sit atop of is one thing, but intelligently targeting it to convey meaningful information to diverse stakeholders is another. And the answer is in keeping it actionable and keeping it relevant to that stakeholder.

According to Kholoud, it’s important to “ensure you bring opportunity to ensure you don’t make assumptions, especially when data is too large”. And underlining the importance of representation, she said, “it’s also important that you don’t over-represent a certain population and leave others under-represented.”

Cameron added the importance of trust. “Consumers give up their data when they trust the brand. And if you have consumer’s data, know that you have their trust – so you should use that trust wisely.” And to help with that, he added, you can start by making a solid plan with the team and do regular check-ins, using continuous coaching and education by hosting topics and webinars, sending regular reminders and setting up clear KPI’s.

And here’s part 2 to this blog where we share even more insights and knowledge from three more experts on our panel!

Join us on our next event

Theme: Empathy
How can you empathize and connect with your online, invisible customer?


About the Author

Monica H. Kang

Monica H. Kang

Monica H. Kang, Founder, and CEO of InnovatorsBox® and Author of Rethink Creativity is transforming today’s workforce through the power of creativity. She helps companies rethink culture, leadership, and team development by making creativity practical and relatable regardless of industry or job title. She has worked with clients worldwide including Fortune 500 companies, higher education, government, and nonprofits. Monica’s work has been recognized by The White House, Ashoka Changemakers, National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC), and Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC). Prior to InnovatorsBox®, Monica was a nuclear nonproliferation policy expert. She holds an M.A. from SAIS Johns Hopkins University in Strategic Studies and International Economics and a B.A. from Boston University.