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Data Is Bought, Not Sold; Positioning Your Data To Demonstrate Value

A common narrative among entrepreneurs is that good companies are bought for value, not sold. But fewer are aware that the same can often be said for your company’s data.

Data is one of the most valuable assets a company can offer, providing significant insights across sectors to drive growth and innovation. Many companies are beginning to realize just how valuable their data is for generating new insights and driving innovation, not to mention the revenue they can generate from selling data to other companies. Yet to turn a well-known adage on its head, if you build it, they will not necessarily come. Just as in acquisitions, the buyers have the money and a vision for how to use the data. But for all sides to see a benefit, companies must learn how to sell their data, and understand what their customers need.

Be Upfront 

First and foremost, you can’t fit a square peg into a round hole. When it comes to your company’s data, always be upfront about the exact data you have available. If a customer has a specific need, it’s not worth selling them something that’s similar but not quite right. Too often, most companies selling their data don’t create a tailored approach for their data buyers.

Understand the data that you have at your disposal, whether it be on consumer behavior, products, employees, etc., and how this can assist other companies.

Does your data cover certain geographical regions, or do you have data on a national or global scale?

These are questions that should be considered when positioning your data to be purchased, and which data would be most beneficial to potential customers. Pre-built data sets are almost never the right fit for customers, leaving both sides feeling frustrated.

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Make It Custom 

One of the best ways for both companies to fully utilize the transaction is to give buyers the tools they need. This enables them to craft exactly what they want from the data available. We’ve witnessed this in a number of industries, from shoes to cars. Buyers are able to customize their shoes down to the style, materials, and laces to build their ideal shoe.

Data acquisition shouldn’t be any different. Consider the various types of data that your company has available, and how this can be packaged up differently for specific customers’ needs. Just about every consumer wants a customizable experience these days, and businesses are no different.

Be Accommodating 

Don’t forget to consider how unique your data is. What sets the data you have apart from other companies? Are you really the only company to have access to such data? With several rare exceptions, if you’re not willing or able to sell the data a company wants, it’s more than likely that someone else will. Most companies aren’t the only ones to have access to particular information. Be aware of your competitors, and what, if anything, sets your data apart.

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Many of today’s data marketplaces assume that companies will neatly package up their data, put it on the shelf, and wait for it to be purchased. However, the reality is that almost no one wants to buy data that isn’t customized to fit their exact needs. Instead, marketplaces should make it as easy as possible for buyers to get exactly what they need, when they need it.

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