The amount of data around us is exploding. Eric Schmidt once said that every 2 days, we create as much information as we did up to 2003… And that was back in 2010! We can answer more questions, using more tools, than ever before.

The drawback, of course, is choosing the right ones. Increasingly, data visualization is proving invaluable for sales and marketing teams seeking to understand their customer base, and to discover nuanced customer trends often hidden in a sea of numbers. Today, we are featuring some of the best data visualizations on the web and their potential as sales and marketing tools.

1) How Different Groups Spend Their Days by New York Times

This New York Times data visualization presents a cross-section of a typical day in the United States, with the population’s different activities broken down by the time of day and demographic segment. This data visualization can be useful for your marketing and sales teams because it provides valuable insight to understanding customer behaviors. For example, at 8:50 p.m. on a typical American workday, 42% of people with only a high school diploma were watching TV or movies, while it was 34% for people with an advanced university degree. This information allows sales and marketing teams to better understand their customer demographics and to target the right customers at the right time.


2) Tune Glue

Tune Glue allows viewers to discover musical artists who are similar in style and genre to their favorite music artists. To get started, type in the name of a music artist, and then click Expand on the artist’s icon to see similar bands and artists.


Tune Glue functions as a product recommender; based on your input of one artist, you are then given suggestions on similar artists that you might like. By using a visualization similar to what Tune Glue does for music, companies can see what up-sell or cross-sell opportunities are available to customers based on their past purchases and preferences.


3) Wealth & Health of Nations

Our last featured data visualization is Hans Rosling’s Wealth and Health of Nations. Made famous by a 2007 TED Talk, this example plots changes in the world’s life expectancy and wealth from the year 1800 to the present day.


What makes this visualization particularly interesting for companies is its ability to plot and compare different cohorts against a set of variables. We introduced to you the four dimensions of customer value in a past Insights blog post – now imagine being able to see an animation of your customer cohorts plotted by loyalty, engagement, and value in the same way as this data visualization!