Cooladata: The Salesforce Venture Shifting How Brands Analyze Human Behavior

Photo courtesy of PCMag

Photo courtesy of PCMag

Photo courtesy of PCMag

The business intelligence market is projected to become a $20 billion industry by 2019, with 85% of business leaders believing big data will dramatically change the way they operate their company.

In the same year, an estimated 90% of large-scale organizations are expected to hire a Chief Data Officer, with 42% of companiesexpected to use mobile business intelligence tools.

Founded in 2012, Cooladata is an end-to-end business intelligence solution, designed to provide companies with a complete view of consumer behavior and an in-depth analysis of the consumer journey. By thoroughly studying user experience in real-time, this intelligence tool works to optimize digital businesses and accelerate their ability to scale.

Cooladata captures and connects data across a vast spectrum of mobile, web and social channels. This includes tracking primary marketing tactics such as Facebook Ads, email campaigns, site traffic, app engagement and insights generated from third-party apps like Optimizely, Hubspot and Salesforce.

Traditional business intelligence tools boasted the ability to understand clicks and page loads, but also required the addition of a robust data storage hub and implementing separate visualization tools. Although measuring these metrics is important, following this approach commonly made the process more complex and expensive – without delivery a comprehensive assessment of how consumers actually interact with the business.

By using Cooladata, companies can integrate a single solution that captures, translates, and visualizes the full scope of consumer data to better develop products, increase engagement and ultimately drive revenue.

The company has raised $13 million in funding to date, including a $5.6 million Series B investment from CRM giant Salesforce in July of 2016.

Cooladata CEO Dan Schoenbaum shares the vision behind the company, disrupting the data industry and redesigning how companies study human behavior.

What specific void or opportunity did you discover that inspired the idea behind Cooladata?

Dan Schoenbaum: Companies are relying on so many different forms of digital advertising and online mediums to reach and attract their customers. We have gone from the simple banner ads of 10-15 years ago, to a new world where customers can be acquired on Facebook, LinkedIn, email, mobile ads, partner networks, podcasts and thousands of other properties across the web. There is an old and very true adage in marketing that says, ‘50% of what we spend on marketing is wasted, but we don’t know which 50%.’ It’s this sentiment and very real challenge that was the inspiration behind Cooladata. Companies leverage so many of these channels to attract and sell to their customers, and this has created the need to measure and understand customer activity, sentiment and behavior. Our mission is to help businesses make sense of this mountain of new information and gain a deep understanding of their customers’ behavior.

What were some of the challenges you faced getting your company off the ground and what lessons did you learn from this process?

Dan Schoenbaum: After several very successful exits, our team had the confidence to try and tackle what seemed like an impossible challenge. People told us that it couldn’t be done, but this only provided extra motivation to create our product.After building a prototype, we needed investors who shared not only our vision, but also our passion. Not only did we find great institutional venture investors in Israel, we have also attracted a network of investors from China, Peru, and even corporate behemoth Salesforce in the United States. All of them have been so supportive and have helped us every step of the way, each with their on unique abilities.

Describe how your product actively tracks and measures consumer behavioral data?

Dan Schoenbaum: Think of us as the cloud-based version of the camera that stores use to watch customers. Only, instead of doing this in a real store, we are doing this for e-commerce. Our customers send their data to us from online marketing, advertising, website and mobile activity and we combine everything into one, big, searchable mass of data so that you can make sense of it and learn from it. Some of our customers are very technical and can write their own queries to look for information, but we believe in making this easy and available to anyone in a company to learn from. That’s why we provide a way to ask a question and get answers. For example, you can ask Cooladata where the most loyal customers come from. Often, this information is impossible to figure out, but by combining all of your data, we help customers learn things they would never learn and answer complex questions that typically don’t have an answer.

What specific challenges or pain points lead businesses to you and how does your product solve for these problems?

Dan Schoenbaum: Many of our customers start using free or entry level products, tracking their customers on their website or when they use mobile applications. These products yield simple reports and show which pages are popular, but they don’t provide the level of insight companies are seeking. As the level of sophistication has grown, the need for better and deeper information has become greater. Thus, we are seeing that many companies use multiple analytics products or build their own products. This is extremely expensive and time-consuming. We solve these problems by providing a ‘one-stop’ service — we help you analyze all of this data, and we even have a team of data scientists who take the complexity and guesswork out of making sense from the data.

How has the market for business intelligence tools changed and in what ways has the role of business intelligence shifted today

Dan Schoenbaum: The role of business intelligence has become absolutely mission critical. CEOs, CFOs, executives, boards, product managers, marketing and data teams all demand access to business data — and want it in real-time. As a result, the industry is exploding with a myriad of options from simple tools, to complex platforms and suites to help each person in the company gain access to the data they need. It has made the market exciting; it pushes our collective creativity, but it can also create confusion with so many different approaches. We have put our efforts into being different, solving a problem unlike any other company. That’s why we are pioneers in behavioral analysis, which we believe is the next generation in analytics.

What key metrics does Cooladata capture that are untapped or overlooked by other products?

Dan Schoenbaum: Most products are, as I call them, ‘first generation,’ where they count page loads and capture information and store it for reporting. We create a warehouse for your data and you can send us virtually any type of data. Irrespective of where it comes from, we accept it and help you understand it without having an advanced degree in computer or data science. People create and ‘digital footprints’ wherever they go on the internet. Like a detective, we analyze those footprints and help you learn what they mean. For example, we show how your customers discover you, what influences them, what paths they traverse across the internet and how they find you. We show you what products interest them, what influences their purchasing decisions. This information, as you can imagine, is like gold for a business.

How do you see the company evolving in 3-5 years and what impact do you hope to have on the industry?

Dan Schoenbaum: Online businesses have realized that they need to understand customer behavior. We saw a very sharp increase in the number of interested companies from all over the world. We added new customers from Brazil, Sri Lanka, Singapore, Israel and the United States in just the past two months. We feel that this is just the beginning and that this is opening a whole new market where consumers will be understood by a website or online business before they even arrive. Who wouldn’t want an experience custom-tailored to them, and we provide the service and expertise to help make that happen.

Posted and presented by Simon Clegg: Right Prospect  

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