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Pyramid Analytics helps LionShare increase speed, efficiency

Using the BI vendor's platform, the healthcare marketing and CRM firm has improved speed to insight and increased customer engagement with data for its clients.

Since starting to use Pyramid Analytics, LionShare Marketing has exponentially increased the speed at which it can develop reports, dashboards and models, and deliver insights to its customers.

"Before, it took us three or four -- sometimes even eight or 10 -- hours to make a report," Daniel Quinn, LionShare's vice president of business strategy and analytics, said during a recent webinar hosted by Pyramid. "Now, we have really reduced that time, sometimes all the way down to zero with the data flowing right into a pre-built dashboard."

LionShare, founded in 1995 and based in Lenexa, Kan., is a marketing and CRM vendor providing BI insights to healthcare organizations.

It competes in a crowded healthcare CRM market dominated by much larger companies, including electronic health record giants Cerner and Epic, and CRM powerhouse Salesforce. LionShare's customers include Stanford Health Care on the West Coast, NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital on the East Coast, and organizations such as Oklahoma University Health and the Indiana Regional Medical Center in between.

Pyramid, meanwhile, is an analytics vendor with a platform specializing in what it calls decision intelligence. The vendor, founded in 2009 and based in Amsterdam, offers end-to-end capabilities that enable users to go from data preparation through discovery, modeling and deployment.

LionShare's challenges

LionShare collects copious amounts of data that it aggregates and packages into reports, dashboards and models to help its customers develop marketing campaigns.

Data sources include website data, web forms, electronic health records and credit data, among others. "There are literally hundreds, if not thousands, of variables coming together in our CRM system," Quinn said.

Before taking on Pyramid for its analytics needs, LionShare did all its data preparation and modeling in that CRM system. It was possible, but because the vendor's CRM system wasn't specifically designed for data preparation and modeling, the task was onerous. "It was clunky because there were so many different variables," Quinn said.

Each client wanted to look at data in a unique way, so although LionShare could automate certain data preparation and modeling tasks within its CRM system, the reporting was time-consuming since each client's report had to be tailored to the client's wants, Quinn added.

LionShare needed something faster -- a platform actually designed for preparing and analyzing data instead of one built primarily to capture customer data.

Evaluating vendors

In its evaluation process, LionShare looked at five analytics platforms: Microsoft Power BI, Qlik, Sisense, Tableau and Pyramid.

"We had a long list of characteristics we wanted and looked at the big companies you might go and look at," Quinn said. "But the big names never seemed to satisfy all of the criteria we were looking for. There was a lot of manual intervention necessary that we didn't think our clients would want."

LionShare already had a small Power BI deployment for some of its analytics needs, so naturally it got in touch with Microsoft to explore building on their existing relationship. According to Quinn, however, the pricing was too high.

After determining that Tableau didn't have some of the machine learning capabilities LionShare wanted and Sisense was too narrowly focused on embedded analytics, LionShare decided to adopt Pyramid's platform.

"Pyramid was just a clean production, meaning that it was easy to get into everyone's hands. It was secure, and someone who is a little more technical or wants a little more detail can dive further in the dashboard they're running," Quinn said. "From a CEO all the way down to a business analyst, a similar instance works for everyone, and that really appeals to our clients."

Pyramid's built-in machine learning and augmented analytics capabilities, including no-code and natural language processing features, added to its appeal, he continued.

"And that's just gotten better since we've been with Pyramid," Quinn said. "Because we have all those different data sources, and because different clients want different levers, the ability to put on different filters and aggregate in an easy format makes a big difference so that a nontechnical user can get in there. It's a very dynamic interface."

Results

While Pyramid has enabled LionShare to build analytics assets -- reports, dashboards and models -- significantly faster, one of its biggest benefits has been its ease of use.

Before, it took us three or four -- sometimes even eight or 10 -- hours to make a report. Now, we have really reduced that time, sometimes all the way down to zero with the data flowing right into a pre-built dashboard.
Daniel QuinnVice president of business strategy and analytics, LionShare Marketing

Before Pyramid, wrangling and preparing data to build reports customized for each client took LionShare as much as an entire day and required a data specialist to do it. With Pyramid's AI and machine learning capabilities, more of LionShare's business users can take advantage of the analytics tools the CRM vendor uses to quickly and easily develop customized reports for the customers it manages.

"It makes it very easy for analysts to do their work," Quinn said.

In addition, it means the clients can more quickly get the information they need to develop marketing campaigns and understand patient journeys.

"The client now has that information at their fingertips," Quinn said. "This is not something they have to wait for. There's no turnaround time, and if they have questions, they don't have to come to us because now it's something they can answer on their own by interacting with their data."

Ultimately, by working with Pyramid, LionShare has not only improved its own efficiency, but also enabled its clients to become more engaged with data and analytics, he added.

"It saved us a lot of time," Quinn said. "And it's also helped our clients see the value of all that data. When you're sending them static reports, and they have questions and want to dive in more, they may not. But giving them the ability to ask questions on the fly and really dive in, it makes it a much more interactive experience."

Roadmap

LionShare plans to use Pyramid to continue to simplify its development of analytics assets for its customers, according to Quinn. That will entail more use of Pyramid's machine learning capabilities to track patient journeys and automate marketing and CRM tasks.

In addition, LionShare hopes to use Pyramid to better identify high-risk patients for its customers and automate proactive communication between the healthcare organization and patient.

"We want to make this easier for people and build in some of the natural progression when we ask questions," Quinn said. "That's one of the ways Pyramid has been a great partner. LionShare's goal is to make sure anybody can get in there and successfully communicate with their patients and customers."

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