Aaron Dix Of BettrData On How To Use Digital Transformation To Take Your Company To The Next Level

An Interview With Cynthia Corsetti

Modeling is key — Once data is transformed into a usable form, use predictive modeling to identify data that has a high propensity for activation or responsiveness and use it to your business advantage.

Digital transformation has become a crucial component for businesses striving to stay competitive and relevant in today’s rapidly evolving landscape. As technology continues to shape industries and redefine business models, companies must adapt and leverage digital tools and strategies to unlock new opportunities for growth and innovation. In this interview series, we aim to explore various aspects of digital transformation, including best practices, challenges, success stories, and expert insights. We are talking to thought leaders, industry experts, entrepreneurs, technology innovators, and executives who have firsthand experience in driving digital transformation initiatives within their organizations. As part of this series, we had the pleasure of interviewing Aaron Dix.

With nearly 20 years in the database marketing industry and delivering big data solutions, Aaron Dix has emerged as an expert in ETL, distributed systems, data pipeline design and managing world-class data operations teams. Aaron’s first-hand experience in building data pipeline solutions and managing teams of developers and data analysts, helped him compile the long list of ideas that contributed to the development of BettrData, the system he always wished he had.

Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series. Before we dive in, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your ‘backstory’ and how you got started?

“I developed an expertise in data operations and engineering at a young age and had a passion for it. I saw the impact it made on the organizations I was working for, and I wanted to bring that impact to other organizations, but at a lower cost, with a better product. BettrData was born!”

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lessons or ‘takeaways’ you learned from that?

Anyone in tech knows there are always mistakes that can happen. An early mistake I made was in a very large production environment that I thought was a dev environment. I executed something that deleted everything in that environment! Shut the whole company down for 10 minutes. It could have been worse, but it was a big lesson. Create process and procedure, put safeguards in place, and help others not to make those same mistakes!”

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful for who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story?

I’ve been lucky with some key support systems throughout my life, including my Mom, great teachers, my wife, and family, as well as great teams that enable the execution of ideas to become reality. When I was 13, my Mom got me a huge gift — a Packard Bell computer. We didn’t have a lot of money, but I was captivated by it and wanted to learn about every piece. She got me the RAM, modem, hard drive, and all the parts to keep it together, fix it, and keep it going. She helped me start tinkering, fostered my curiosity, and supported the start of my tech career. She taught me that words of encouragement, patience, and hard work go a long way.”

Is there a particular book, podcast, or film that made a significant impact on you? Can you share a story or explain why it resonated with you so much?

The Lean StartUp. There was a story in that book that talked about 2 entrepreneurs who started an online grocery-ordering marketplace. They visited one of their first prospective customers each week to sit at her dinner table and find out what she wanted to cook for dinner each night the following week and what ingredients were important to her. When challenged by their peers with questions about how they were going to scale that, they responded that they were not trying to scale, only to learn more about what their customer wants.”

Are you working on any new, exciting projects now? How do you think that might help people?

Data standardization (and bringing data into a centralized location) is what we do well. We figured out that people wanted a way to look at data in a customizable but repeatable way. We are building a count engine that can connect to any database to provide the customer with near-instant answers to data questions. We can load and build queries on the fly, to allow customers to quickly and easily get more from their data assets.”

Thank you for all that. Let’s now turn to the main focus of our discussion about Digital Transformation. Digital transformation can mean many things to many people, from your perspective, how do you define digital transformation in your industry?

When you can ingest raw data from dozens, hundreds or even thousands of data sources at once, and change it all from its original form to meet any need, in any format, digital transformation is the outcome.”

Which companies can most benefit from a Digital Transformation?

Any companies that use data from multiple sources to drive business decisions or products. Examples include Direct Marketing, Database Marketing, Direct mail, Data service bureaus, Printers, AI & Analytics providers, Identity providers, Data and List Providers, Healthcare, Retail, Automotive, Finance, Manufacturing.

Has integrating Digital Transformation been a challenging process for some companies? What are the challenges? How do you help resolve them?

Extremely challenging when you take in thousands of different formats that change at any given time. Human resources are expensive, they don’t scale well, and it was the only way to deal with this problem, until BettrData. We use a straightforward, streamlined, automated workflow that uses AI and machine learning to remove guesswork, and get high-quality data validations that are completely automated.

Based on your experience and success, what are “Five Ways a Company Can Use Digital Transformation To Take It To The Next Level”?

1 . Build a Data Lake — Get all of your data consolidated into a centralized location for business analytics intelligence.

2 . Take advantage of tools like machine learning and AI to take advantage of automation, transformation and validation.

3 . Clean up data sources — Standardize address data and names, remove dups, validate emails, enhance data with new data attributes, and keep a clean database for use.

4 . Compliance — Data transformation needs to be tracked, audited, and centralized, so best practices increase data maturity level.

5 . Modeling is key — Once data is transformed into a usable form, use predictive modeling to identify data that has a high propensity for activation or responsiveness and use it to your business advantage.

In your opinion, how can companies best create a “culture of innovation” in order to create new competitive advantages?

Listen to your customers. Foster a culture that is willing to listen to what customers want and adjust your own paradigm of what you thought it should be. Learning how to listen breeds innovation.”

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

Fail forward. Learn from mistakes but don’t dwell on them. Think of everything as a learning opportunity and grow and learn from everything you do. We all make mistakes, and I’ve made a lot of them, but use it as feedback to do better next time.”

How can our readers further follow your work?

Follow me on Linkedin or read the BettrData blog! Let’s get connected!

Thank you so much for sharing these important insights. We wish you continued success and good health!

About the Interviewer: Cynthia Corsetti is an esteemed executive coach with over two decades in corporate leadership and 11 years in executive coaching. Author of the upcoming book, “Dark Drivers,” she guides high-performing professionals and Fortune 500 firms to recognize and manage underlying influences affecting their leadership. Beyond individual coaching, Cynthia offers a 6-month executive transition program and partners with organizations to nurture the next wave of leadership excellence.