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Microsoft Power BI for Business Reporting - Prima Technologies
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You’ve got marketing metrics coming in from Mail Chimp, lead funnel data from Sales Force, and website conversion stats from Google Analytics. Each one is in a different report, disconnected. Trying to tie them all together into one actionable picture can be challenging.

How can you make the right decisions on sales strategies if you can’t streamline your data into one big picture that points you in the right direction?

Wouldn’t it be nice to pull all that data together for a complete visualization of your organization’s sales and marketing so you can drill down into what’s working and change what’s not?

Microsoft created Power BI (Business Intelligence) to bring all that data together into a user-friendly interface with powerful data visualization. It’s one of those “secret weapons” that our Business Growth Team at The Modern Workplace by prima Technologies teaches companies to use to gain valuable insights.

Controlling your data allows you to control your future.

Analytics and reporting can either be your best friend or your worst enemy. If you don’t know that one particular marketing strategy has a 70% conversion rate, how will you know to do more of it? That’s where platforms like Power BI come in.

You have access to more data coming in from multiple sources than ever before, and the most successful companies learn how to combine all that information into understandable and cross-referenced reporting.

Understanding your data helps you:

    • Know which marketing channels are working and which aren’t
    • Tell you which email formats get the most interactions
    • Alert you to which marketing methods are working hand-in-hand to bring in cross-channel sales
    • Allow you to budget your money smarter by drilling down into what’s working
    • Help you better understand your customers and how to help them

Overview of Power BI by Microsoft

So, how does Power BI work? And what types of data can it pull into the interface? Power BI connects data from multiple sources into a single platform from which you can generate reports based upon those data sources. The software was chosen by PC Magazine as an Editor’s Choice and they mentioned its powerful data visualization features and easy to use interface.

As an example, let’s look at a typical retail business reporting flow:

  • You send out and email campaign and get reporting on click through rates telling you which marketing text and images are attracting people.
  • Once people click through to your website, your website analytics reporting tells you who fills out a contact form or visits your live chat.
  • When that website lead contacts you, they’re put into your CRM program and tracked by your sales team from first contact to sale with reporting on the lead funnel.

Power BI helps you connect all the breadcrumbs that took that initial email click through to a closed sale, so you can make data driven decisions that take all those separate data sources into consideration.

Types of Data You Can Bring into Microsoft Power BI

Microsoft Power BI has approximately 74 data connections (and growing) which gives you a lot of options for connecting your reporting. Here is just a sample of some of the popular programs you can connect:

  • Azure Analysis Services
  • Facebook
  • Github
  • Google Analytics
  • Mail Chimp
  • Marketo
  • QuickBooks Online
  • Sales Force
  • SharePoint Lists
  • Stripe
  • Twilio
  • Zendesk

Step-By-Step: How to Get Started with Power BI

It’s easy to get started with the Power BI platform. Microsoft offers a free version with less storage and longer cycling times. To get a more robust version you can either choose their Pro plan for $9.99 per user per month or contact Microsoft for Premium Capacity Pricing based upon your needs.

  1. First, sign up for a free or paid plan and open the platform in your browser.
  2. Import data from a CSV or Excel file, or connect to other data sources (like Google Analytics, social media channels, etc…).
  3. Build a data visualization by choosing the metrics you’d like to see from the data.
  4. Choose the way you’d like to see the data (Bar graph, pie chart, hot spot map, etc..).
  5. Save your report and pin it to your Power BI dashboard to easily see later.
  6. You can use natural language responses to create meaningful reports (like asking “which marketing channel had the most revenue last month?”).
  7. Share reports with others through a secure cloud interface that allows for mobile and desktop viewing.

You can make the initial set up much easier by asking The Modern Workplace by Prima Technologies for some help. We can do all the initial data connection to Power BI and set up visually engaging and understandable reports for the metrics that you need to see your entire business flow from marketing to sales to shipping to customer follow up.

Interested in Seeing What Your Data Can Do?

Data is nothing without meaningful reports to help you understand it and put that knowledge into action. If you’d like to see what Microsoft Power BI can do for your business, just give us a call at 1300 795 105 or contact us online today, we’d love to show you!