Exporting, Understanding and Using the Data You Collect

Using Your Data

Exporting, Understanding and Using the Data You Collect

Understanding how to work with data is a vital practice for business owners at every level. Important data includes numbers you likely look at frequently — such as analytics — but the practice also drives how you use data you’ve collected from your Campaign.

If you’ve recently run a ShortStack Campaign, you’ve likely collected several kinds of data, such as names, email addresses, demographic information and more.

So what now?

First, understand how to access the data, and then recognize its significance.

Exporting

Let’s start with how to get to your data. Any time you create a ShortStack Campaign that has a form on it, a corresponding database is set up for the form. This happens automatically, and these databases are where any entry submitted to your Campaign is stored.

You can access the database in two ways:

– Through the Campaign Builder. On your Form Widget, you’ll see a number and a small icon. Hover over this, and you’ll see that it says “View Entries.” Click there to go straight to your database from the Campaign Builder.

– Through the Forms page. You can access the Forms page also through the Campaign Builder, or through your main Campaign Manager page. The Forms page features a list of all of the forms you’ve created for all of your Campaigns. Each form is tied to its own database. This is also where you can make a copy of a form to use for another Campaign.

Once you’re in your database, you can then export your data. Exporting means you’re downloading all of your entries so you can view them as a spreadsheet, or import the data into another program. When you click the Export button, this will open up some exporting options. You can choose to export your data as an .xlsx file to use in Microsoft Excel; as a .csv file to use with email marketing services like MailChimp; or as a .zip file to have a folder containing all user entries (this is especially useful if you held a photo contest and want a file containing all of the photographs).

Understanding the data

Our database is pretty straightforward, although there are many elements to it. Remember: The only information we display is the information you’ve sought to collect.

There are several notable areas of the database, including the “Votes Round 1” column. This is where any votes an entry has received will be displayed. This is also where any points earned from referring friends will be displayed. Essentially, these points count as extra entries within the database.

Another feature to note is the Edit icon. Clicking on the Edit icon (which looks like a tiny pencil) for each entry will open up additional entry information, depending on what you’ve asked for in your form. So if you’ve asked users to answer additional questions, their responses will appear in the Edit section of the entry.

When you export, any data you collect will be stored in this exported document. If you’re viewing it in a spreadsheet, each field of the form will be displayed in a column, to make it easy for you to view.

What to do with it

Your data is now yours to use toward your marketing goals, and we recommend using it for multiple purposes–within reason. For instance, if you’ve collected email addresses to use for your regular newsletter, consider using that same list for another type of newsletter, such as offering special deals to those who entered into your Campaign. Keep in mind you’ll never want to use email addresses for reasons other than what you’ve specified to your users; they’ve signed up with you for a reason. But expanding your newsletter contact to include other deals, specials or events you want them to know about is a smart way to use your emails.

If you collected user information for a giveaway, you’ll want to use the information you’ve collected to contact them.

But most importantly, look at your lead data through an analytical lens. These are the direct results of your Campaign. The amount and the quality of the responses is a good indicator of success. This information can also help drive the decisions and goals for your next Campaign. Didn’t get the responses you wanted? Try changing the language on your form, or asking questions in a different way (such as using checkboxes instead of a dropdown menu).

Got any more questions about the information you’ve collected? Send an email to theteam@shortstacklab.com and we’ll be happy to answer them and help you figure out next steps.

Dana Kilroy
dana@shortstacklab.com

Dana Sullivan Kilroy is ShortStack's Director of Communications and Social Media Marketing. Before joining the ShortStack team she was a writer whose work appeared in publications and sites including The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Wall Street Journal, Fast Company, Inc. and many other lifestyle publications. Reach her on Twitter @dsullyk. Read more articles by Dana Kilroy.



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