You shouldn’t spend time speculating about what a potential client or customer values in a company like yours or how they would respond to a planned marketing effort. Instead, you may use data-driven marketing to tailor your campaigns to the specific preferences of your target audience with the right data mapping tool.
Perhaps you realize that your company’s data is enormous, complicated, and spread out over various locations and formats, so data mapping might prove invaluable.
The process of data mapping is an essential component of both the management and integration of data. Because it guarantees that you are looking at and examining all available data and doing it properly — or, to put it another way, because it enables you to combine your data from many sources — this is why data mapping is so important.
This article will cover some of the fundamentals of data mapping, including what it is, why it’s helpful in marketing campaigns, how to do it, and what tools are available to help.
Just what is a “data map”?
Establishing connections between data models stored in disparate systems requires a process known as “data mapping,” which involves comparing and matching data fields or components from one source to their corresponding fields in another destination. Data mapping tools and software do the heavy lifting of manually matching data fields across sources for you.
Data mapping gives you the ability to organize, condense, examine, and comprehend massive volumes of data stored in various places, enabling you to make conclusions and gain insights.
What are the benefits of mapping data?
The following is a further list of justifications for the need and use of data mapping:
- Data can be simply integrated, transformed, and migrated, and data warehouses can also be quickly created.
- Create one or more direct associations between the data you have from many sources simultaneously.
- Assert the quality and accuracy of your data (data mapping tools may easily see inconsistencies and inaccurate information).
- Discover current trends and facilitate the smooth and effective sharing of data reports with other team members.
- Make sure you gain the most value possible from your data and correctly put your insights and lessons to use.
- Code-free data mapping may be made considerably more accessible (and sometimes fully automated) with the help of dedicated tools.
Data Mapping Examples
A company like Amazon could employ data mapping to target you in their advertisements appropriately. They accomplish this by deducing information about you from things like your clickstream, reviews, purchases, and how long you spend on each page. They can then access data from other sources, such as demographic information, and bring that data together with data from other sources.
By pooling this information, Amazon is in a position to recommend items to you based on your past purchases, provide deals based on your region, and otherwise tailor your shopping experience. Taking into account factors such as your age, nationality, obstacles you may be experiencing, educational background, hobbies, degree of expertise, geographic area, and interests, as well as other factors.
The three primary approaches to data mapping are as follows:
Hand-coding, or manual mapping, of data sources to target schemas needs the expertise of IT specialists.
- Schema Mapping is an approach that is only partially automated. A system that implements data mapping creates a connection between the schema of the destination data store and the data source schema. IT specialists examine the schema mapping tool’s relationships and make necessary improvements.
- Using a code-free, the drag-and-drop user interface for data mapping is the most practical, user-friendly, and productive method of fully automating the data mapping process. In only a few clicks, mapping activities may be accomplished by people with no prior technical experience.
- Typical Applications of Data Mapping
- Mapping helps firms to gain economic value from data by unifying and transforming information from external and internal sources. The following are some examples of use cases that make extensive use of the mapping process:
To have a successful integration, both the source and destination data repository, which is an uncommon situation, need to have the same structure. Through data transformation and conversion, data mapping technologies assist bridge the gap that exists between the schemas of source systems and destination systems. The effective consolidation of information gleaned from several data sources is made possible for enterprises due to this. The code-free mapping capability is included in data integration solutions since this is why such products are accessible on the market.
The transfer of data from one database to the next is referred to as data migration, and it is a procedure that may be carried out efficiently with the help of a database mapping tool. Even though there are many different processes associated with the process, one of the activities that take the most effort and time is the creation of mappings between the source and the destination. It is especially true when the mappings are done manually.
The use of mappings that are inaccurate at this point may hurt the completeness and correctness of the data, which can ultimately lead to the cancellation of the data transfer project. When properly moving information to any destination, like a data warehouse, a safer choice is code-free data mapping software equipped with automated functions.
Transformation of the Data
It is necessary to map and transform corporate data since it is stored in various places and formats to break down information silos and get insights. The initial stage in transforming data involves bringing it to a staging location where it may be converted into the appropriate format. It is called mapping. Following the completion of the change, it is subsequently transferred to its ultimate location, the database.
EDI Exchange is short for electronic data interchange.
Converting EDI files into other forms, such as Excel, XML, and JSON is an integral part of data mapping’s contribution to the EDI file conversion process. Without writing a single line of code, a simple data mapping tool enables the user to extract data from various sources and map it to EDI formats using built-in transformations and functions. It facilitates the execution of B2B data exchange smoothly.
Different Categories of Mapping Software
The procedure may be made much more straightforward by using one of many kinds of data mapping solutions on the market. They may be broken down into the following three categories:
On-premise data mapping solutions use the native computer infrastructure of an organization and are hosted on the server of that organization. Many on-premise applications can automate repetitive data processing activities, so you won’t have to code anything anymore manually.
Tools Hosted on the Cloud
These tools are accessible through a web browser and are housed on a remote server in the cloud. The mapping process may be made more straightforward by using the automated functions offered by cloud-based mapping solutions.
Free and Open-Source Software
Open-source data mapping technologies offer a low-cost alternative to data mapping software installed on-premises. These graphical solutions for data mapping are most useful for small firms because of their smaller data quantities and more straightforward use cases.
Choosing the Best Data Mapping Software: What to Look for
Choosing the right data mapping software is essential to the success of any project that involves the integration, transformation, or warehousing of data. The procedure entails determining the specific business use case and the elements required to be present.
Research is essential to ensure you choose the proper software for your requirements. Reading online evaluations on platforms such as Capterra, G2 Crowd, or Software Advice might be a useful starting point when narrowing down your options. You should look for an automatic data mapping solution that has the following significant qualities, among others:
Support for a Wide Variety of Mapping Systems, From the Source to the Target:
Connectivity to structured, unstructured, and semi-structured data sources, such as database systems, web services, and flat file types, such as delimited and CSV, is essential to all knowledge mapping and data modeling tools. These data sources can be semi-structured, unstructured, or even partially structured.
The graphical user interface supports drag-and-drop and does not need any coding: An environment that does not require coding to generate mappings, as well as a visual, drag-and-drop user interface for processing data with in-built transformations.
Work Order Scheduling and Automation Capabilities: A significant product feature is the capacity to orchestrate a whole workflow using time and event-triggered task scheduling. This automation reduces the work that must be done manually, increasing productivity and saving time.
Real-Time Testing Capability with Instant Preview Feature:
At the design stage of the application mapping process, may avoid mistakes with the use of intuitive tools such as Instant Data Preview. With this capability’s help, the user can both the processed and the raw data at any point throughout the data processing.
To help resolve naming disputes, try using SmartMatch’s synonym-driven file reading and business information lineage function. It is possible to do this by defining many synonyms for a given term within the context of a specific project’s synonym dictionary.
In conclusion, the marketing department and the company may benefit greatly from data mapping. In addition, it assists you in the upkeep of high-quality data and automating various operations relating to data integration, transfer, and migration. Determine the method you will use and whether your team will need a tool’s assistance before beginning the data mapping process.
For help understanding how you can use data to understand the needs of your customers, please see the resource below.
Infographic provided by Riveron – accounting advisory professionals