Data vs Insights (and why all insights should be actionable)

Competitive EnablementResearchEnablement
Published Date
August 26, 2022

I’ll be the first to admit

I’ve used the term “actionable insights” in marketing copy 😬

But an insight, by definition, should be actionable.

“insights” and “data” are often used interchangeably.

But they mean very different things.

Data is is raw information we gather. For example, the raw intel you collect around your competitors. New articles, social posts, press releases, website changes, reviews. Those different data points are interesting for sure, but on their own, not insights. Your company can’t do anything with those.

Insights are generated by analyzing data and drawing conclusions. As a competitive analyst or product marketer, you generate insights. It takes effort and expertise. You are interpreting the data, adding context, and presenting recommendations that lead to people taking action.

Without that last step, you’re just presenting data and expecting others to make their own conclusions. That can still be valuable, but just not an insight.

Shout out to Robin at DoubleCheck for reminding me of this 👏

Credit: Inspired by Gapingvoid Culture Design Group

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